Murder By Author

by dgranger | created - 30 Dec 2017 | updated - 11 Feb 2018 | Public

Which one of these mystery writers' work would you like to see made into a movie? Their detective characters are mentioned in the notes. Follow the clues here. Let's start this off with the man whose works created the genre with the stories "Murders In The Rue Morgue", "The Mystery of Marie Roget", "The Purloined Letter", "The Gold Bug", "Thou Art the Man" and "The Man of the Crowd".

1. Edgar Allan Poe

Writer | Eliza Graves

Edgar Allan Poe was born on January 19, 1809, in Boston, Massachusetts. His father, named David Poe Jr., and his mother, named Elizabeth Arnold Hopkins Poe, were touring actors. Both parents died in 1811, and Poe became an orphan before he was 3 years old. He was adopted by John Allan, a tobacco ...

The Chevalier C. Auguste Dupin

2. Lee Child

Writer | Jack Reacher

Lee Child was born in the exact geographic centre of England, in the heart of the industrial badlands. Never saw a tree until he was 12. It was the sort of place where if you fell in the river, you had to go to the hospital for a mandatory stomach pump. The sort of place where minor disputes were ...

Jack Reacher

3. Arthur Conan Doyle

Writer | Sherlock Holmes

Arthur Conan Doyle was born on May 22, 1859 in Edinburgh, Scotland as Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle. He was a writer and producer, known for Sherlock Holmes (2009), Sherlock (2010) and The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (1984). He was married to Jean Leckie and Louisa Hawkins. He died on July 7, 1930 ...

Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson

4. Raymond Chandler

Writer | Double Indemnity

An American novelist, writer of crime fiction featuring the private detective Philip Marlowe, Raymond (Thornton) Chandler was born in Chicago of an American father and an Anglo-Irish mother. He moved to England when his parents divorced. He attended Dulwich College and studied languages in France ...

Phillip Marlowe

5. Dashiell Hammett

Writer | The Maltese Falcon

Dashiell Hammett was born May 27, 1894, in St. Mary's County, Maryland, to Richard Hammett and Mary Bond. He joined the Baltimore branch of the Pinkerton Detective Agency in 1915. He enlisted in the US Army's Ambulance Corps in June 1918 and was posted to a camp 20 miles from Baltimore, where he ...

Sam Spade Nick and Nora Charles

6. James M. Cain

Writer | Double Indemnity

James M. Cain was a 'Film Noir' author. His father was a professor, and president, of 'Washington College'. His mother was an opera singer in Maryland.

James graduated from the same college in 1910, and became a writer for 'Baltimore American', then 'Baltimore Sun' [still being published] by 1914. ...

No detective. His books includes "The Postman Always Rings Twice", "Double Indemnity' and "Mildred Pierce".

7. Agatha Christie

Writer | Witness for the Prosecution

Agatha was born as "Agatha Mary Clarissa Miller" in 1890 to Frederick Alvah Miller and Clara Boehmer. Agatha was of American and British descent, her father being American and her mother British. Her father was a relatively affluent stockbroker. Agatha received home education from early childhood ...

Tommy & Tuppence Beresford, Hercule Poirot, Miss Jane Marple, Harley Quin*, and Mr. Parker Pyne. *Yes, Dame Agatha Christie had named one of her detectives Harley Quin long before D.C. Comics used "Harley Quinn" as the name of one or their characters.

8. Dan Brown

Writer | Inferno

Dan Brown was born on June 22, 1964 in Exeter, New Hampshire, USA. He is a writer and actor, known for Inferno (2016), The Da Vinci Code (2006) and Angels & Demons (2009). He has been married to Blythe Newlon since 1997.

Robert Langdon

9. P.D. James

Writer | Children of Men

P.D. James was born on August 3, 1920 in Oxford, Oxfordshire, England as Phyllis Dorothy James. She was a writer and producer, known for Children of Men (2006), Death in Holy Orders (2003) and Death Comes to Pemberley (2013). She was married to Ernest Connor Bantry White. She died on November 27, ...

Adam Dalgliesh

10. Daphne Du Maurier

Writer | The Birds

Daphne Du Maurier was one of the most popular English writers of the 20th Century, when middle-brow genre fiction was accorded a higher level of respect in a more broadly literate age. For her services to literature, she was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1969, the ...

No main detective but she is a master of mystery, and suspense novels and gothic historical romance novels too. Her best known works are "Rebecca", "Jamaica Inn", "The Scapegoat", and "The Birds".

11. Isaac Asimov

Writer | I, Robot

Isaac Asimov was born Isaak Judah Ozimov, on January 2, 1920, in Petrovichi shtetl, near Smolensk, Russia. He was the oldest of three children. His father, named Judah Ozimov, and his mother, named Anna Rachel Ozimov (nee Berman), were Orthodox Jews. Ozimov family were millers (the name Ozimov ...

Yes, this famous science fiction writer wrote detective mystery stories too which include "Murder At The A.B.A.", "A Whiff of Death", "The Caves of Steel", "The Naked Sun", "The Robots Of Dawn", "Mirror Image" and the three collections of The Black Widowers stories and the short story "The Thirteeth Day Of Christmas". His detective in the Science Fiction mystery genre is Detective Elijah "Lije" Baley.

12. Jo Nesbø

Writer | The Snowman

Jo Nesbø is a world-renowned crime writer recognized for broadening the scope of modern crime and thriller fiction. His books have garnered countless international awards, sold over forty million copies, and been translated into fifty languages. In addition to the Harry Hole series he is the author...

More of a crime novelist than a mystery writer, his detective is Harry Hole.

13. Georges Simenon

Writer | Maigret tend un piège

Georges Simenon was born on February 13, 1903 in Liège, Wallonia, Belgium as Georges Joseph Christian Simenon. He is known for his work on Inspector Maigret (1958), The Man on the Eiffel Tower (1949) and La veuve Couderc (1971). He was married to Denyse Ouimet and Régine "Tigy" Renchon. He died on ...

Jules Maigret

15. James Patterson

Writer | Alex Cross

James Patterson was born on March 22, 1947 in Newburgh, New York, USA. He is a writer and producer, known for Alex Cross (2012), Kiss the Girls (1997) and Along Came a Spider (2001). He has been married to Susan Lori Solie since July 24, 1997. They have one child.

Alex Cross

Hannah Swensen, aka the "Murder, She Baked" series.

17. Rex Stout

Writer | Meet Nero Wolfe

Rex Stout was born on December 1, 1886 in Noblesville, Indiana, USA as Rex Todhunter Stout. He was a writer, known for Meet Nero Wolfe (1936), Nero Wolfe (1981) and A Nero Wolfe Mystery (2001). He was married to Pola Weinbach Hoffmann and Fay Kennedy. He died on October 27, 1975 in Danbury, ...

Nero Wolfe and Adam Goodwin

18. Mary Higgins Clark

Writer | Where Are the Children?

In 2002 Mary Higgins Clark published her memoir "Kitchen Privileges". The book describes her upbringing, first marriage and how she became such a famous author. Meanwhile 36 movies have been made that are based on Mary Higgins Clark's thrillers. For a while Mary Higgins Clark and her daughter ...

19. Tami Hoag

Writer | Night Sins

Biography/bibliography in: "Contemporary Authors". New Revision Series, vol. 136, pages 198-201. Farmington Hills, MI: Thomson Gale, 2005.

Detective Nikki Liska and Detective Sam Kovac

20. John D. MacDonald

Writer | Cape Fear

John Dann MacDonald was born on July 24, 1916, in Sharon, Pennsylvania. He served in the OSS in the far east during World War Two. While still in the military, he wrote a short story and mailed it home to his wife, simply for her entertainment. Unknown to him, she submitted it to the magazine "...

He wrote "Cape Fear" and his detective is Travis McGee.

21. Ross Macdonald

Writer | Harper

Crime novelist and creator of the private eye Lew Archer, Ross MacDonald is often linked to his predecessors Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler as a master of the "hard-boiled" school of detective fiction, but MacDonald added a psychological depth and a unity of theme which was unique.

MacDonald ...

Lew Archer

This is actually two writers using the same pseudonym. Their detective? Who else? Ellery Queen!

23. Earl Derr Biggers

Writer | The House Without a Key

Novelist and playwright, famous as the creator of detective Charlie Chan. He was a 1907 graduate of Harvard University and worked as a journalist before becoming an author of fiction. His novel "Seven Keys to Baldpate" was several times adapted for the screen.

Charlie Chan

24. John P. Marquand

Writer | Think Fast, Mr. Moto

He attended Harvard, where he majored in chemistry, and worked on the Harvard Lampoon.

Mr. Moto

25. Mickey Spillane

Writer | The Girl Hunters

Mickey Spillane, the king of the pulp novelists in the post-WW II period, sold an estimated 200 million copies globally. He was born Frank Morrison Spillane in Brooklyn, New York. Young Frank's mother was a Protestant who bestowed on him his middle name "Morrison", but his Irish Catholic father, ...

Mike Hammer

26. Robert B. Parker

Writer | Jesse Stone: Night Passage

Robert B. Parker was born on September 17, 1932 in Springfield, Massachusetts, USA as Robert Brown Parker. He is known for his work on Jesse Stone: Night Passage (2006), B.L. Stryker (1989) and Spenser: For Hire (1985). He was married to Joan H. Parker. He died on January 18, 2010 in Cambridge, ...

Jesse Stone

27. Dorothy L. Sayers

Writer | Busman's Honeymoon

Although she was married for over twenty years, her only child was born out of wedlock.

Lord Peter Wimsey

28. G.K. Chesterton

Writer | Father Brown

Prolific English poet, novelist, essayist G (ilbert) K(eith) Chesterton was born in London on 29 May 1874. He was traditional, extolling the virtues of the 'little man', and the romantic, pre-modern past. He rejected the experimental in art as well as life, and distrusted the state and the modern ...

Fr. Brown

29. Craig Johnson

Writer | Longmire

Craig Johnson was born as Craig Allen Johnson. He is known for his work on Longmire (2012).


30. Erle Stanley Gardner

Writer | Perry Mason

Erle Stanley Gardner, the prolific pulp fiction writer best known for creating the fictional lawyer Perry Mason; Della Street, Mason's secretary; private detective Paul Drake, Mason's favorite investigator; and Hamilton Burger, the district attorney with the worst won-lost record in the history of ...

Perry Mason. At one time, the Perry Mason novels were the third best selling book series in the U.S.A.. The book series was re-issused in 2015.

31. Nora Roberts

Writer | Sanctuary

Nora Roberts was born on October 10, 1950 in Washington, District of Columbia, USA as Eleanor Robertson. She is known for her work on Sanctuary (2001), Blue Smoke (2007) and Carolina Moon (2007). She has been married to Bruce Wilder since July 6, 1985. She was previously married to Ronald ...

When writing under the name of J. D. Robb for her "In Death" book series, her detectives are Lieutenant Eve Dallas and her husband Roarke.

32. Karin Slaughter

Writer | Pieces of Her

Karin Slaughter is one of the world's most popular and acclaimed storytellers. Published in 120 countries with more than 35 million copies sold across the globe, her eighteen novels include the Grant County and Will Trent books, as well as the Edgar-nominated COP TOWN and the instant NEW YORK TIMES...

Sara Linton and Will Trent

33. Paula Hawkins

Writer | The Girl on the Train

Paula Hawkins is a writer and producer, known for The Girl on the Train (2016), Into the Water and CBS This Morning (1992).

"The Girl On The Train"

34. Ralph McInerny

Writer | Fatal Confession: A Father Dowling Mystery

Served in the U. S. Marine Corp in 1946-1947.

Father Dowling and Sister Steve

35. R.D. Wingfield

Writer | A Touch of Frost

Creator of Inspector William "Jack" Frost of Denton C.I.D.

Inspector William "Jack" Frost of Denton C.I.D.. This stretches the rule of appearing first in literature first before appearing on television or in the movies a bit. Why? Because, Wingfield wrote the novel "Frost at Christmas" (introducing the character) first but failed to get it published. Then the tv show, "A Touch Of Frost" was made.

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