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Jacqueline Winspear Books In Order

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Publication Order of Maisie Dobbs Books

Maisie Dobbs (2003)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Birds of a Feather (2004)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Pardonable Lies (2005)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Messenger of Truth (2006)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
An Incomplete Revenge (2008)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Among the Mad (2009)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Mapping of Love and Death (2010)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Lesson in Secrets (2011)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Elegy for Eddie (2012)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Leaving Everything Most Loved (2013)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Dangerous Place (2015)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Journey to Munich (2016)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
In This Grave Hour (2017)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
To Die but Once (2018)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The American Agent (2019)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Consequences of Fear (2021)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Sunlit Weapon (2022)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Maisie Dobbs Non-Fiction Books

What Would Maisie Do? (2019)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

The Care and Management of Lies (2014)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Memoirs

This Time Next Year We'll Be Laughing (2020)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Anthologies

A Study in Sherlock(2011)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Odd Partners(2019)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Shattering Glass(2020)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Jacqueline Winspear

An author’s origin story can be interesting and a source of inspiration. One well known author started her hugely famous wizard stories in coffee shops with a pen and yellow pad. Another from his collection of creepy Victorian photos. Others have to try to reconcile the pain and traumas they have experienced as children.

Jacqueline Winspear had a serendipitous beginning for her character Maisie Dobbs. In spring 2000 Ms. Winspear was stuck in heavy traffic in the San Francisco area. The image of Maisie exiting from a tube station in 1929, she says it was like “watching a movie” in her imagination. The details came fast in her mind and she rushed home to write down the first chapter. In that inspired instant she created an intelligent and complex female character that is now treasured by millions of readers.

Ms. Winspear was born in 1955 in Kent, England and graduated from the University of London Institute of Education. At that time the country was still recovering from the damage and trauma of WWII.

Her own mother had been buried in rubble after a bombing raid and had a lifelong fear of enclosed spaces. Her maternal grandmother was left partially blind after an explosion in the munitions plant where she was working that killed many around her.

Her paternal grandfather survived the Battle of the Somme and came home shell-shocked with shrapnel wounds. He would be picking out pieces of shrapnel from his legs his whole life and his lungs were damaged from the gasses used in chemical warfare. Their home was kept quiet. Loud noises were too traumatic for him.

The closeness she experienced of the real and personal effects of WWI and WWII informed and inspired her writing. Maisie Dobbs was born from history.

Ms. Winspear didn’t start out writing her fictional Maisie Dobbs. Rather she had various assignments of non-fiction, essays, and articles. She was writing anything to get paid, keep a home and buy groceries.

She didn’t set out to write mysteries; she was simply writing down Maisie’s story. Her publisher, realizing potential in her writing, sent her to a mystery writer’s convention. She came home rattled, telling her husband she was seriously out of her depth. She had no idea about the “three-act format” or that there was too many categories in the mystery genre. She simply wanted to tell Maisie’s story but she was feeling pressured to put her into a category. Fortunately her husband rescued her from that. “I wouldn’t worry about it, if I were you—just keep on doing what you’re doing.” Thank you for saying that!

Ms. Winspear has been the recipient of many awards and has been nominated for many more. Notable ones include the Agatha Award Winner for Best Novel, Edgar Award Finalist for Best Novel, and the Sue Grafton Memorial Award Finalist for Best Novel in a Series. “Maisie Dobbs”, which was an Agatha Award Best First Novel Winner was the first of a continuing series of books she has written over the past twenty years.

The stories of WWI have been told through many stories, books, poems, and movies. Infrequently they are told from the point of view of the women who have been to the front. They were not carrying the guns but they were carrying the hearts and the memories of the men who were suffering ghastly injuries and deaths on the front.

Maisie is introduced to us as a very young woman before the “Great War” (WWI). She is a thirteen-year-old servant in a mansion. Infatuated with the vast library of the house, she is caught by her employer reading the books. She thought she would be immediately dismissed for her trespass. Instead, to her shock and gratitude, her thirst for education is rewarded and supported by her employers.

Her and their plans for her further education are interrupted by WWI. She enlists as a nurse and is sent to the front as an ambulance driver. The things she saw and experienced created an indelible impression on her and would inform and determine many of her future actions and greatly assist her with her future clientele.

After the war she is mentored by the infamous Dr. Maurice Blanche. He’s an extraordinary man with a multitude of skills and extensive knowledge of a wide range of subjects. His time with Scotland Yard provides Maisie with experiences and an education rarely ever afforded to a young woman of her social standing in that era. Through Dr. Blanche, she is tutored and educated to be a psychologist and a private detective and her vocation is set.

“Maisie Dobbs” won, among others, New York Times Notable Book of the Year and 
Agatha Award Best First Novel Winner.

Besides her wonderful collection of “Maisie Dobbs” stories she has also provided us with non-fictions books and a stand-alone novel. “The Care and Management of Lies”, a 2015 Dayton Literary Peace Prize Finalist, is set during WWI. The beloved Herman Wouk, author of “The Winds of War” and “War and Remembrance”, declared “The Care and Management of Lies” to be “An engaging picture of the human spirit in a distant time of war, World War I, from the battlefields to the home front in an English village.” High praise and well deserved.

Her non-fiction work, “What Would Maisie Do?” – aka “WWMD” allows us to get into the mind of Maisie Dobbs as we are given her advice and insight on every day issues and problems. Respect, grief, and departure are examined and Maisie’s thoughts and “professional” advice are shared with us.

In Ms. Winspear’s memoir, “This Time Next Year We’ll Be Laughing”, she frankly shares, with her devoted readers, in her endearing writing style, her experiences growing up in England with shell-shocked grandparents, her parents living with Gypsies, and her time living on a farm. It is an honest and informative portrayal of post-war England we rarely see.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Jacqueline Winspear

3 Responses to “Jacqueline Winspear”

  1. Jan White: 3 months ago

    I have so loved reading all the Maise Dobbs books! Sadly, I am on the last one and I am savoring the last few pages. All so well written and just a joy to read. Thank you…

    Reply
  2. Judith Babbitt: 11 months ago

    Will there be a 17th Masie Dobbs book?

    Reply
    • Graeme: 11 months ago

      Likely in 2022

      Reply

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