The other contender for the title of “Next Queen of Crime,” James has written several highly acclaimed detective novels about Scotland Yard Superintendant Adam Dalgliesh, as well as a series starring Cordelia Gray. Having never read one of the latter, I will reserve my comments to the Dalgiesh books. Dalgliesh is a brainy, psychologically complex hero who goes about his job with a careful and practiced grace. He understands too well the feelings of grief that come after a murder, as his wife died many years ago. Yet his mild cynicism gives way to supreme tact and dignity throughout the series. These books are best read in order; the first is Cover Her Face.
For those interested in the Cordelia Gray series, the first is An Unsuitable Job for a Woman.
James has also written a few works of non-fiction, including an autobiography that spans her long life (James is now in her eighties) and recently,a slim volume chronicling the history of the detective novel and which expresses her personal views on the subject of crime writing – a must-read for any mystery lover.
Post by Evan, teen blogger