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Jill McGown Books In Order

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Publication Order of Lloyd and Hill Books

A Perfect Match (1983)Description / Buy at Amazon
Redemption / Murder at the Old Vicarage (1988)Description / Buy at Amazon
Death of a Dancer / Gone to Her Death (1990)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Murders of Mrs. Austin and Mrs. Beale (1991)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Other Woman (1992)Description / Buy at Amazon
Murder... Now and Then (1993)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Shred of Evidence (1995)Description / Buy at Amazon
Verdict Unsafe (1997)Description / Buy at Amazon
Picture of Innocence (1998)Description / Buy at Amazon
Plots and Errors (1999)Description / Buy at Amazon
Scene of Crime (2001)Description / Buy at Amazon
Births, Deaths and Marriages / Death in the Family (2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
Unlucky for Some (2004)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Record of Sin (1985)Description / Buy at Amazon
An Evil Hour (1986)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Stalking Horse (1987)Description / Buy at Amazon
Murder Movie (1992)Description / Buy at Amazon
Hostage to Fortune (With: Elizabeth Chaplin) (1995)Description / Buy at Amazon

Jill McGown was a highly renowned British author of mystery novels who died in 2007. By the time Jill perished at the age of 59, she had made a name for herself for her ‘Inspector Lloyd and Judy Hill’ novels.


Jill McGown was born in 1947 in Campbeltown, Scotland, specifically on the Mull of Kintyre. Jill’s father was a fisherman, her mother a secretary. Jill spent her teenage years in a Northamptonshire Village by the names of Corby because complications with her father’s job forced the family to move.

Corby was undergoing a transformation because of all developments regarding iron and steel works, so the town held a lot of promise for the family. Of her new home, Jill was always fascinated by the manner in which everyone who migrated to Corby somehow adopted a Scottish accent, or at least an accent with Scottish overtones regardless of whether they were from Lithuania or London.

Jill McGown was always proud that she never lost her accent despite living in Corby for so long after the family made the move in 1957. After a stint at Corby Grammar school (Where she met the author responsible for the Inspector Morse books) and Kettering technical College, Jill McGown tried to settle down at Corby Development Corporation where she worked as a secretary.

She eventually moved on to a Solicitor’s Firm before seemingly settling at British Steel. The firm eventually saw fit to make her their voluntary redundancy programme’s counselor before she was also made redundant. It had been Jill’s job to help people opting for redundancy understand the options that lay before them as well as the benefits they might be unaware of. She couldn’t have been happy when British Steel closed and she lost her job after ten years of employment at the firm.

Some people might have considered that situation unfortunate.

However, Jill McGown eventually came to appreciate the opportunity it threw her way. With her redundancy pay in hand, Jill could have gone on to look for another job in a town struggling with a disturbing level of unemployment. This was in the 1980s where one person in four was unemployed.

However, Jill instead chose to write a novel. Others might have dismissed the choice for being safe and lacking in adventure. However, Jill knew where her talents lay and she put them to good use.

Writing wasn’t new to Jill McGown. She had nurtured a passion for the activity since she was a child and had even gone so far as to enter a crime writing competition. Even though she didn’t win the contest, the commendation Jill got for her story raised her spirits and her belief in her own writing abilities.

The author eventually produced the manuscript for her first book in the Lloyd and Hill series which Macmillan quickly accepted and published in 1983, introducing readers to an enigmatic pair of investigators.

The book elicited great success for Jill who went on to write many more novels in the series. The author’s books were such an unexpected success that ‘A Shred of Evidence’, one of the books in the series, was adapted into a television drama.

The plan was to produce a television show based on the Lloyd and Hill books but, even with amazing performances from the likes of Michelle Collins and Philip Glenister, the project did not make it past the pilot stage.

Jill McGown, who was unmarried and lived with her sister at Corby before her death, often wrote at night, using the hours between midnight and six in the morning to work without any distractions.

Jill’s idols included Agatha Christie and Josephine Tey. The author, who died from cancer, was essential for making crime writers a more contemporary element of literature. She emphasized well-crafted plots and made sure that her stories and characters left readers thinking and questioning.

She has been praised for the skill with which she handled the relationship between Danny Lloyd and Judy Hill, not only on a professional level but in the personal arena.

+A Perfect Match

Detective Inspector Lloyd and Sergeant Judy Hill don’t think much of the case before them. A woman is dead and the suspect, who went out drinking that night, has very little in the way of a defense, despite his vigorous denials.

Unfortunately for Lloyd and Hill, they soon realize that their easy case isn’t so straightforward.

This book came out in 1983. It was the first of the Lloyd and Hill books to be published. The mystery is competently structured, though it isn’t so strong that one can fail to figure it out before the clever twist near the end.

Lloyd and Hill take a surprisingly leisurely approach to tackling the mystery. That might explain why this book feels largely safe to read for young audiences. There is very little violence to speak of, though that might be a negative for some people.

Because this was her first book, Jill McGown can be forgiven for not having enough suspense in her story. The fact that the book is so short works in its favor. It is just long enough to allow one to appreciate Jill’s writing abilities and the well-developed characters.

+Gone to Her Death

Diana Hamlyn is found dead on the grounds of an English school. She was clearly bludgeoned to death. Her husband, the deputy headmaster of the school, is naturally devastated. Unfortunately for him, Lloyd and Hill have him in their sights, not to mention his superior and their colleagues.

A sinister incident, Lloyd and Hill know that it will take time to unveil the truth behind Diana’s murder.

This book, the third in a surprisingly consistent series, finds Hill and Lloyd investigating a rape and murder. The task won’t be easy. Hill and Lloyd have a very long list of suspects to scrutinize. Additionally, the murder weapon has gone missing.

The police procedures described in this book are a little difficult to follow and understand. Hill and Lloyd take their time looking at one suspect after another, but Jill McGown’s writing ensures that things don’t get too stale or boring.

The meat of the story revolves around the relationships between all the staff members at the English School. Things are not as they seem at the start, especially when the story turns the spotlight on Judy Hill, her husband, and Lloyd.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Jill McGown

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