For People Who Like Stories in a Series

Dave Pelzer

This book chronicles the unforgettable account of one of the most severe child abuse cases in California history. It is the story of Dave Pelzer, who was brutally beaten and starved by his emotionally unstable, alcoholic mother: a mother who played tortuous, unpredictable games--games that left him nearly dead. He had to learn how to play his mother's games in order to survive because she no longer considered him a son, but a slave; and no longer a boy, but an "it." Dave's bed was an old army cot in the basement, and his clothes were torn and raunchy.

Sue Grafton

A tough-talking former cop, private investigator Kinsey Millhone has set up a modest detective agency in a quiet corner of Santa Teresa, California. A twice-divorced loner with few personal possessions and fewer personal attachments, she's got a soft spot for underdogs and lost causes. Eight years ago, Nikki Fife was convicted of killing her philandering husband. Now she's out on parole and needs Kinsey's help to find the real killer. If there's one thing that makes Kinsey feel alive, it's playing on the edge. When her investigation turns up a second corpse, more suspects, and a new reason to kill, Kinsey discovers that the edge is closer--and sharper--than she imagined.

Linda Barnes

TROUBLE…
Since being bounced from the Boston police for insubordination after six years of service, Carlotta Carlyle has set up shop as a private investigator ready to deal with anything from lost pets to substantially grander larcenies. Though Carlotta, a six-foot-tall, redheaded ex cop, part-time cabbie, and neophyte private eye, works out of her home, it's rare that clients stop by unannounced. Especially clients like the genteel, reserved, elderly spinster Miss Margaret Devens.

ALWAYS COMES…
With cash flow problems and a caseload so light that she's taken to reading her cat's mail, Carlotta accepts the case of Miss Devens's missing brother Eugene. Oddly enough, Carlotta knew Eugene when they worked together back at Green and White Cab. As far as Carlotta sees it, this case should be a pinch--until two thugs looking for money send her client to the hospital.

WHEN YOU LEAST EXPECT IT…
The old lady's missing brother seems to have been involved in something much more dangerous than simply driving a cab. Carlotta is determined to do whatever it takes?work the cops, pose as a hooker, and even drive a cab again--to find Eugene before it's too late."

Peter Mayle

They had been there often as tourists. They had cherished the dream of someday living all year under the Provencal sun. And suddenly it happened. Here is the month-by-month account of the charms and frustrations that Peter Mayle and his wife -- and their two large dogs -- experience their first year in the remote country of the Luberon restoring a two-centuries-old stone farmhouse that they bought on sight. From coping in January with the first mistral, which comes howling down from the Rhone Valley and wreaks havoc with the pipes, to dealing as the months go by with the disarming promises and procrastination of the local masons and plumbers, Peter Mayle delights us with his strategies for survival.

M.C. Beaton

Agatha has moved to a picture-book English village and wants to get in the swing. So she buys herself a quiche for the village quiche-making contest and is more than alarmed when it kills a judge. Hot on the trail of the poisoner, Agatha is fearless, all the while unaware, that she's become the next victim....

Also available on audio.

James Herriot

An English veterinarian reminisces about his life, career, and animal patients in a small village.

Lauraine Snelling
Promises of untold wealth and land drew the Bjorklund family across the Atlantic, but the prairie refused to yield its treasure without a struggle.
Red River of the North, Book 1.
L. M. Montgomery

As soon as Anne Shirley arrived at the snug, white farmhouse called Green Gables, she knew she wanted to stay forever. But would the Cuthberts send her back to the orphanage? The first book in a classic series for young readers that adults will enjoy, too.

Adriana Trigiani

It's 1978, and 35-year-old Ave Maria Mulligan is about to discover a skeleton in her own family's tidy closet that will blow the lid right off her quiet, uneventful life. This is the first of a trilogy about people in Big Stone Gap, Virginia.

Rowan Atkinson, Tony Robinson, Tim McInnerny, Miranda Richardson, Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie, Patsy Byrne
The comedy serial about the terminally treacherous Edmund, Duke of Edinburgh (alias The Black Adder) following him through time and English history from the 15th century to World War I.
Elizabeth Peters

"Meet art historian Vicky Bliss, She is as beautiful as she is brainy--with unassailable courage, insatiable curiosity, and an expertise in lost museum treasures that often leads her into the most dangerous of situations. A missing masterwork in wood, the last creation of a master carver who died in the violent tumult of the sixteenth century, may be hidden in a medieval German castle in the town of Rothenburg. The prize has called to Vicky Bliss, drawing her and an arrogant male colleague into the forbidding citadel and its dark secrets. But the treasure hunt soon turns deadly. Here, where the blood of the long forgotten damned stains ancient stones, Vicky must face two equally perilous possibilities. Either a powerful supernatural evil inhabits this place. . .or someone frighteningly real is willing to kill for what Vicky is determined to find."
First of a series.

Jemma Redgrave

Set in 1895, this video series follows the fortunes of the feisty but compassionate Dr. Eleanor Bramwell as she struggles to make her mark in the medical world.

Lawrence Block

Bernie Rhodenbarr is a personable chap, a good neighbor, a passable poker player. His chosen profession, however, might not sit well with some. Bernie is a burglar, a good one, effortlessly lifting valuables from the not-so-well-protected abodes of well-to-do New Yorkers like a modern-day Robin Hood. (The poor, as Bernie would be the first to tell you, alas, have nothing worth stealing.) He's not perfect, however; he occasionally makes mistakes.
Also available to download as an audiobook.

Frank Herbert

Follows the adventures of Paul Atreides, the son of a betrayed duke given up for dead on a treacherous desert planet and adopted by its fierce, nomadic people, who help him unravel his most unexpected destiny.

On Film: people either love or hate David's Lynch's film version of Dune. But one thing you shouldn't miss is Kyle MacLachlan's performance as Paul Atreides. Having read the book first makes enjoying the movie easier.

Marcia Muller
"Sharon McCone, a tough-minded investigator for a legal services cooperative, noses her way through the tainted underbelly of a San Francisco street occupied by an eclectic assortment of dealers in antiques, pseudo art and junk. She's after a killer who slashed a diminutive victim, antique dealer Joan Albritton, with the victim's own bone-handled knife."
On audio.
Loren D. Estleman
"Enter Valentino, a mild-mannered UCLA film archivist. In the surreal world of Hollywood filmdom truth is often stranger than celluloid fiction. When Valentino buys a decrepit movie palace and uncovers a skeleton in the secret Prohibition basement, he's not really surprised. But he's staggered by a second discovery: long-lost, priceless, reels of film: Erich von Stroheim’s infamous Greed.

"The LAPD wants to take the reels as evidence, jeopardizing the precious old film. If Valentino wants to save his find, he has only one choice: solve the murder within 72 hours with the help of his mentor, the noted film scholar Broadhead, and Fanta, a feisty if slightly flaky young law student.

"Between a budding romance with a beautiful forensics investigator and visions of Von Stroheim’s ghost, Valentino’s madcap race to save the flick is as fast and frenetic as a classic screwball comedy. A quirky cast of characters, smart dialogue and a touch of romance make this Estleman's most engaging and accessible novel to date."

Jill Churchill

It's So Hard to Kill Good Help These Days. . .

With three kids to raise on her own, Jane Jeffry sometimes needs a hand with the housework. But many of her complaining neighbors believe that the Happy Helper cleaning lady they all share wouldn't know a dustball if she was choking on it. That hardly seems reason enough, however, to do the disreputable domestic in.

So when the charwoman in question is discovered strangled to death with a vacuum cleaner cord, Jane decides to dig up the real dirt--if the tenacious single mom can find any time to spare between her PTA meetings and car-pooling duties. But despite her busy schedule, Jane is determined to tidy up the whole murderous mess--even if it means provoking a killer who may live as close as next door.

Philip Gulley

"In the fictional small town of Harmony, Indiana, Sam Gardner becomes the pastor of his hometown church, Harmony Friends Meeting. In this delightful, first-person audio book, Sam describes in a warm, down-home style the moving and humorous adventures he encounters his first year home to Harmony. Bestselling author Philip Gulley tackles the sticky issues of grace, faith, and forgiveness through skillful storytelling-subtly introducing lessons on the power of relationship with each other and with God. Come to Harmony-where the characters are wise yet fallible, the mishaps familiar yet funny, and the moral of the story is always heartwarming and faith-inspiring."
First of a series.

Kristen Heitzmann

Set in post-Civil War Colorado, the "Rocky Mountain Legacy" skillfully weaves spiritual truths into an unforgettable tale of love, honor, betrayal, and ultimately, forgiveness. To Abbie Morgan, honor means betrayal when Montgomery Farrel chooses a wartime pledge and a family debt over his love for her. A dramatic kidnapping and an epidemic of scarlet fever bring Abbie and Montgomery to a greater destiny.

Sara Paretsky
Meeting an anonymous client late on a sizzling summer night is asking for trouble. But trouble is Chicago private eye V.I. Warshwski's specialty. Her client says he's the prominent banker, John Thayer. Turns out he's not. He says his son's girlfriend, Anita Hill, is missing. Turns out that's not her real name. V.I.'s search turns up someone soon enough -- the real John Thayer's son, and he's dead. Who's V.I.'s client? Why has she been set up and sent out on a wild-goose chase? By the time she's got it figured, things are hotter -- and deadlier -- than Chicago in July. V.I.'s in a desperate race against time. At stake: a young woman's life.
Peter Straub

"'KOKO...'

Only four men knew what it meant. They were Vietnam vets-a doctor, a lawyer, a working stiff, and a writer. They were as different as men could be. Yet all of them were bound eternally together by a single shattering secret. And now they have been reunited, on a quest that will take them from the graveyards and fleshpots of the Far East to the human jungle of New York...as they hunt something inhuman from the past that has risen from the darkness to kill and kill and kill...."

First of the Blue Rose Trilogy, including Mystery and The Throat.

Gore Vidal

Lincoln is the cornerstone of Gore Vidal's fictional American chronicle, which includes Burr, 1876Empire, Hollywood, Washington, D.C., and The Golden Age.

"It opens early on a frozen winter morning in 1861, when President-elect Abraham Lincoln slips into Washington, flanked by two bodyguards. The future president is in disguise, for there is talk of a plot to murder him. During the next four years there will be numerous plots to murder this man who has sworn to unite a disintegrating nation. Isolated in a ramshackle White House in the center of a proslavery city, Lincoln presides over a fragmenting government as Lee's armies beat at the gates. In this profoundly moving novel, a work of epic proportions and intense human sympathy, Lincoln is observed by his loved ones and his rivals. The cast of characters is almost Dickensian: politicians, generals, White House aides, newspapermen, Northern and Southern conspirators, amiably evil bankers, and a wife slowly going mad. Vidal's portrait of the president is at once intimate and monumental, stark and complex, drawn with the wit, grace, and authority of one of the great historical novelists."

Part of Gore Vidal's Narratives of Empire series.

Janette Oke

After her husband dies unexpectedly, Marty enters into a marriage of convenience with Clark, who needs a mother for his young daughter, Missie. Together they learn that love comes softly.

Also available on video. First of a series.

John Jakes

When their two sons meet as West Point cadets, the southern, plantation-owning Main family and the industrialist Hazards of Pennsylvania find their lives interlocked, as the nation moves toward Civil War.
Continues with Love and War and Heaven and Hell.

Diane Gabaldon

Claire Randall is leading a double life. She has a husband in one century, and a lover in another... In 1945, Claire Randall, a former combat nurse, is back from the war and reunited with her husband on a second honeymoon when she innocently touches a boulder in one of the ancient stone circles that dot the British Isles. Suddenly she is a Sassenach, an "outlander"--in a Scotland torn by war and raiding border clans in the year of our Lord...1743. Hurled back in time by forces she cannot understand, Claire's destiny in soon inextricably intertwined with Clan MacKenzie and the forbidden Castle Leoch. She is catapulted without warning into the intrigues of lairds and spies that may threaten her life ...and shatter her heart. For here, James Fraser, a gallant young Scots warrior, shows her a passion so fierce and a love so absolute that Claire becomes a woman torn between fidelity and desire...and between two vastly different men in two irreconcilable lives.

Patricia Daniels Cornwell

"Four women with nothing in common, united only in death. Four brutalized victims of a brilliant monster - a 'Mr. Nobody,"'moving undetected through a paralyzed city, leaving behind a gruesome trail of carnage . . . but few clues. With skilled hands, an unerring eye, and the latest advances in forensic research, an unrelenting female medical examiner - Kay Scarpetta - is determined to unmask a maniac. But someone is trying to sabotage Kay's investigation from the inside. And worse yet, someone wants her dead . . ."
Winner of the Edgar Award and the Macavity Award for best first mystery

Joanne Dobson

Enfield College is shattered when a professor tumbles into Professor Karen Pelletier's arms at a cocktail party--strangled to death with his own necktie. It is up to Karen to find the killer, lest another scholar publish and perish.

John Sandford

"The murderer was intelligent. He was a member of the bar. He derived rules based on professional examination of actual cases: Never kill anyone you know. Never have a motive. Never follow a discernible pattern. Never carry a weapon after it has been used. Beware of leaving physical evidence. There were more. He built them into a challenge. He was mad, of course . . . .

"It is after the third murder that Lucas Davenport is called in. It is the opinion of his colleagues that everything about the lieutenant is a little different, and they are right – in the computer games he invents and sells, in the Porsche he drives to work, in the quality of the women he attracts, in his single-minded pursuit of justice. The only member of the department's Office of Special Intelligence, Davenport prefers to work alone, parallel with Homicide, and there is something about this serial killer that he quickly understands.

"The man who signs himself 'maddog' in taunting notes to the police is no textbook sociopath; he has a perverse playfulness that makes him kill for the sheer contest of it. He is a player. Which means that Davenport will have to put all his mental strength – and physical courage – on the line to learn to think like the killer. For the only way to beat the maddog is at his own hellish game. . ."

Charlaine Harris

Lily Bard is a loner. Other than the day-to-day workings of her cleaning and errand-running service, she pays little attention to the town around her. But when her landlord is murdered, Lily is singled out as the prime suspect, and proving her innocence will depend on finding the real killer in quiet, secretive Shakespeare.

Bernard Cornwell

In a battery of events that will make a hero out of an illiterate private, a young Richard Sharpe poses as the enemy to bring down a ruthless Indian dictator backed by fearsome French troops. The year is 1799, and Richard Sharpe is just beginning his military career.

Elizabeth Peters

"Art historian Vicky Bliss may be blond and beautiful, but looks can be deceiving. She also has the brain of an Einstein, the reckless courage of a test pilot--and no one's more savvy about fine works of art. For example: the gold pendant her boss at Munich's National Museum is currently dangling in front of her. It's an exquisite replica of a Charlemagne talisman--and it was found, along with a note written in hieroglyphs, sewn into the suit pocket of an unidentified man lying dead in an alley. 

"There's a murderous puzzle to unravel-and Vicky will start by hunting down the master craftsperson who created the magnificent piece, even if the search carries her to the ends of the Earth. Instead, it's pointing her toward Rome, the most romantic city in the world. But it's also pulling her into a treacherous game of intrigue where the stakes could not be higher: Vicky's life!"

Katherine Hall Page

During her years spent in New York City. Faith Fairchild was convinced she had seen pretty much everything. But the transplanted caterer/minister's wife was unprepared for the surprises awaiting her in the sleepy Massachusetts village of Aleford. And she is especially taken aback by the dead body of a pretty young thing she discovers stashed in the church's belfry. The victim, Cindy Shepherd. was well-known locally for her acid tongue and her jilted beaux, which created a lot of bad blood and more than a few possible perpetrators -- including her luckless fiance, who had neither an alibi nor a better way to break off the engagement.

Faith thinks it's terribly unfair that the police have zeroed in on the hapless boyfriend, and so she sets out to uncover the truth. But digging too deeply into the sordid secrets of a small New England village tends to make the natives nervous. And an overly curious big city lady can become just another small town death statistic in very short order.

Lilian Jackson Braun

The first appearance in hardcover of the first installment of the author's ever-popular series features the unusual detective team of award-winning reporter Jim Qwilleran and Koko, his brilliant Siamese cat, who penetrate the world of modern art to solve a mystery.

Anne Perry

Five girls are brutally murdered on the streets of London. All clues point to the Ellison household where the charming Misses Charlotte and Emily reside. Can Inspector Thomas Pitt discover the truth behind the elegant façade of exquisite manners and societal mores without losing his heart? First of the Charlotte and Thomas Pitt series.

Tad Williams

"The Dragonbone Chair is the story of Simon, a young kitchen boy and magician's
apprentice whose dreams of great deeds and heroic wars come all too shockingly
true when his world is torn apart by a terrifying civil war--a war fueled by ancient
hatreds, immortal enemies, and the dark powers of sorcery."
Book one of the Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn series.  Sequels are Stone of Farewell and To the Green Angel Tower.

Gilbert Morris
Forced by his family to become a minister in the Church of England, Gilbert Winslow is offered a dangerous and challenging task by one of the most powerful nobles in Britain. Taking the post offers fortune and escape from a life he despises, but Winslow discovers it also means becoming a spy. His mission is to infiltrate a group of religious separatists and to ferret out the whereabouts of their leader, who is accused of dissention against the King.

In spite of his initial uneasiness, infiltration proves to be an easy matter. But will the ultimate betrayal be so simple? With the influences of good and evil, faith and doubt, compassion and selfishness pulling him apart, to whom could he turn?
House of Winslow, Book 1.

Tom Clancy

A deadly game of hide-and-seek played out in 18 days over 4000 miles of ocean. Red October is the Soviet Navy's newest ballistic missile submarine. When the whole crew decides to defect, the Soviet fleet sets out to destroy it, while the US and British fleets attempt to prevent them.

Paul Scott
The first volume in Paul Scott's historical tour-de-force, the Raj Quartet, opens in 1942 as the British fear both Japanese invasion and Indian demands for self-rule. In the Mayapore gardens, Daphne Manners, daughter of the provincial governor, leaves her Indian lover, who will soon be arrested for her alleged rape.
Daniel Silva

Art restorer--and former Israeli intelligence operative--Gabriel Allon is drawn back into the game to take on a cunning terrorist on one last killing spree, a Palestinian zealot who played a dark part in Gabriel's past. And what begins as a manhunt turns into a globe-spanning duel fueled by both political intrigue and deep personal passions...

Alexander McCall Smith

This first novel in Alexander McCall Smith's widely acclaimed The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series tells the story of the delightfully cunning and enormously engaging Precious Ramotswe, who is drawn to her profession to help people with problems in their lives. Immediately upon setting up shop in a small storefront in Gaborone, she is hired to track down a missing husband, uncover a con man, and follow a wayward daughter. But the case that tugs at her heart, and lands her in danger, is a missing eleven-year-old boy, who may have been snatched by witchdoctors.

Andrea Camilleri
The discreet lives of Vigata's drug dealers and prostitutes are disrupted when the body of a well known engineer is found. Although the cause of death is ruled as natural causes, Inspector Salvo Montalbano will pick his way through a labyrinth of high comedy corruption, delicious meals, vendetta firepower, and carefully planted false clues to get to the heart of the matter.
Keith Michell, Annette Crosbie, Dorothy Tutin, Anne Stallybrass, Elvi Hale, Angela Pleasence, Rosalie Crutchley
This six episode video collection portrays the courtly and private lives of Henry and his wives. Each episode covers one wife and all are designed to present the pageantry, intrigue, and humor of the period.
Dorothy Gilman
Mrs. Virgil (Emily) Pollifax of New Brunswick, New Jersey, was a widow with grown children. She was tired of attending her Garden Club meetings. She wanted to do something good for her country. So, naturally, she became a CIA agent. This time, the assignment sounds as tasty as a taco. A quick trip to Mexico City is on her agenda. Unfortunately, something goes wrong, and our dear Mrs. Pollifax finds herself embroiled in quite a hot Cold War--and her country's enemies find themselves entangled with one unbelievably feisty lady.
Jane Peart

First in the Brides of Montclair historical romance series set in Williamsburg, a young woman is conflicted about duty and love.

Janet Oke

"Readers will laugh and cry as they follow the story of Josh Jones, an orphan growing up during the Great Depression. Eighteen-year-old Auntie Lou is the only mother Josh has ever known. When his grandfather and uncle start talking about finding a husband for his aunt, he knows something has to be done! As he grows to manhood through disappointment and tragedy, triumph and joy, Josh learns to trust God no matter what life brings."
Seasons of the Heart series, Book 3.

Rita Mae Brown and Sneaky Pie Brown

"Curiosity just might be the death of Mrs. Murphy--and her human companion, Mary Minor "Harry" Haristeen. Small towns are like families. Everyone lives very close together. . .and everyone keeps secrets. Crozet, Virginia, is a typical small town--until its secrets explode into murder. Crozet's thirty-something post-mistress, Mary Minor "Harry" Haristeen, has a tiger cat (Mrs. Murphy) and a Welsh Corgi (Tucker), a pending divorce, and a bad habit of reading postcards not addressed to her.

"When Crozet's citizens start turning up murdered, Harry remembers that each received a card with a tombstone on the front and the message 'Wish you were here' on the back. Intent on protecting their human friend, Mrs. Murphy and Tucker begin to scent out clues. Meanwhile, Harry is conducting her own investigation, unaware her pets are one step ahead of her. If only Mrs. Murphy could alert her somehow, Harry could uncover the culprit before the murder occurs--and before Harry finds herself on the killer's mailing list."