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Murder, She Wrote Books In Order

Publication Order of Murder, She Wrote Books

Gin and Daggers (1989) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Manhattans and Murder (1994) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Rum and Razors (1995) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Brandy and Bullets (1995) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Martinis and Mayhem (1995) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Deadly Judgment (1996) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Palette for Murder (1996) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Highland Fling Murders (1997) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Murder on the QE2 (1997) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Murder in Moscow (1998) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Little Yuletide Murder (1998) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Murder at the Powderhorn Ranch (1999) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Knock 'em Dead (1999) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Trick or Treachery (2000) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Blood on the Vine (2001) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Murder in a Minor Key (2001) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Provence - To Die For (2002) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
You Bet Your Life (2002) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Majoring in Murder (2003) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Destination Murder (2003) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Dying to Retire (2004) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Vote for Murder (2004) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Maine Mutiny (2005) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Margaritas and Murder (2005) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Question of Murder (2006) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Three Strikes and You're Dead (2006) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Coffee, Tea or Murder (2007) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Panning for Murder (2007) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Murder on Parade (2008) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Slaying in Savannah (2008) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Madison Avenue Shoot (2009) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Fatal Feast (2009) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Nashville Noir (2010) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Queen's Jewels (2010) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Skating on Thin Ice (2011) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Fine Art of Murder (2011) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Trouble at High Tide (2012) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Domestic Malice (2012) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Prescription for Murder (2013) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Close-Up on Murder (2013) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Aloha Betrayed (2014) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Death of a Blue Blood (2014) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Killer in the Kitchen (2015) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Ghost and Mrs. Fletcher (2015) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Design for Murder (2016) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Hook, Line and Murder (2016) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Date with Murder (2018) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Manuscript for Murder (2018) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Murder in Red (2019) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Time for Murder (2019) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Today I will talk about a successful murder mystery of its time, a series that was written by Donald Bain and fictional female detective Jessica Fletcher. Donald Bain is the author or ghost author as they call him of more than 115 books, most of them were bestsellers. These consist of both fiction and non-fiction. The popular categories that his novels can be categorised are: murder mysteries, comedies, westerns, investigative journalism, business, psychology, historical dramatizations and food.

Now looking into a brief overview of how this series was born. Harvey Shepard, the CBS network (US television) executive approached William Link and Richard Levinson in 1984 about making a mystery series with a female lead role. Angela Lansbury who was secretly expressing her interest in a small screen series finally bagged the role. In April 1984 filming of the series started and the series came to life.

The novel series was born following the popularity of the television series that were aired from 1984 to 1996 over 264 episodes covering 12 seasons.

Donald Bain started writing this series for the TV show and have written all the above when he was writing approximately two each year. The setting for most of the books in this series saw the female detective Jessica Fletcher moving from her favourite location Cabot Cove to various locations all over the world to solve mystery cases. From London, Scotland, Provance, San Francisco, to the Carribbean, Manhatten, Las Vegas and New Orleans, Jessica travelled all over the globe via this series chasing her culprits.

Jessica was female detective and the spine of the mystery murder series :Murder, she wrote. Her ancestor’s belonged from Kilcleer, Ireland (Cork). Jessica had two brothers and two sisters. She was a widow and an English teacher (retired). This extremely talented detective lived at 698 Candlewood Lane in Cabot Cove, which is situated in Maine. Jessica and her late husband were not blessed with children but there is mention of nieces and nephews, cousins, in-laws and relatives in the series.

Jessica’s relationship with law enforcing officers was not always pleasant. They preferred her staying away from crime scenes. However her accurate judgement and deductions on the cases forced them to accept her role to resolve the mysteries were dragging quite a bit.

In some series readers felt that Jessica Fletcher’s personal life and her personal relationships were portrayed more than the actual mystery. On a popular site; the novel is given a rating of 3.5 – 3.7 stars. However there is a section of readers who are absolute loyal and dedicated fans of Jessica Fletcher and have read every single novel just for this love for the character.

The opening scenes of every novel is a clear inspiration of the TV series and closely follow the pattern of its beginning; build up, climax, resolution and ending. In every novel Jessica Fletcher is placed just before a murder waiting to happen or just after a crime. Her analytical sense always made her build up the puzzle bits together and reach to the resolution of every mystery.

The Signet Books, a subsidiary of The Penguine Group released this novel internationally and helped it become a household name.

The first series of the novel The Corpse Danced at Midnight was made into a TV film and later a successful theatre. The series also inspired video games for PC and Mac; board games and Dvds. This nerve wracking series has been popularised via Twitter, Facebook and Google Plus with over 114,000 likes and followers. Amazon and Barnes & Noble are the popular distributors of the book. Some followers of the series have pointed out in their reviews and discussion boards that some characters have changed massively from the TV series to the books. Viewers and readers kept the author under constant pressure of making sure that both settings marry up. I feel that since the TV series came in first, readers were automatically expecting a similar pattern in the books that followed.

Now talking briefly about few of the novels written in this series:

1) The Corpse Danced at Midnight : This is the first novel of the series. this was written just after the death of Jessica’s husband as a way to cope with her grief. It was published in late 1984. Jessica got inspiration to write this from a recent newspaper news. Artistic designer Andrew Probert made the illustrations of this book. This book was later made into a film. The murder weapon in this novel was poison and the pregnant ballerina was behind the horrific crime.

2) Murder comes to Maine: This book was later transformed in to a broadway play by the name ‘Mainly Murder’.

3) Ashes, Ashes, fall down to dead: This book was dedicated by Jessica to Mort Metzger and is a narrative version of autobiography of Mort’s brother while returning home from New York.

4) All the Murderers: This is another novel in the series that reached great heights of appreciation. The movie version of this novel was a big hit in the Milan film festival of 1992.

5) Yours’ Truly Damian Sinclair: This novel Jessica based on the life of her friend who was an ex- jewel thief by the name Damian Stanton.

6) The uncaught: This book created controversies with a man called David Novaro. He was accused of killing his own wife and when the book was released, he claimed that the book was written based on his story. More problems followed on when David Novaro himself was found dead.

7) Murder in White: This was another bestseller which was made into a play to debut at the famous West End , London.

8) The Launch Pad Murders: San Francisco’s Daily Union was meant to serialise this book.

9) A case of Half Murder: This was the last novel written in this phase of this series. This was being promoted in San Francisco when the US TV series that was a household name for more than 12 years came to an end.

However the novels did not stop at this. there were more series after this.

‘There’s just something that doesn’t seem right’; said Jessica in one of her novels and thus started another nerve wracking adventure involving crime and suspence


Book Series In Order » Characters » Murder, She Wrote