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Lone Star Sleuths

Lone Star Sleuths: An Anthology of Texas Crime Fiction

A Bibliography of Texas-based Mystery/Detective Fiction

Be sure to check out the anthology, Lone Star Sleuths, published as part of the Wittliff's Southwestern Writers Collection Book Series.
Reflecting the remarkable diversity of the state, Texas-based mysteries extend from the Guadalupe Mountains in the west to the Piney Woods of East Texas. This annotated bibliography, arranged according to different regions of the state, helps map out some reading trails for mystery fans
We sought to provide a comprehensive list of mystery authors, although not every title published by each author is included. This list is not intended to provide an exhaustive listing of each book published by each author. Instead, it is intended to simply point the way towards further exploration by readers
This bibliography was originally compiled in 2004 for the exhibition Scene of the Crime at the Wittliff Collections. It was prepared by Steve Davis, Curator, and by Dr. Rollo K. Newsom, Professor Emeritus at Texas State. Along with Bill Cunningham, Davis and Newsom are co-editors of Lone Star Sleuths.
This bibliography is not currently being updated, so think of it as a starting point, not a destination. Many new Texas-based mysteries have been published since then and we encourage you to check them out!
Abbott, Jeff
Librarian/sleuth Jordan Poteet solves murders from his home in "Mirabeau," a small town along the Colorado River halfway between Austin and Houston. Titles include:
Do Unto Others (1994)
The Only Good Yankee (1995)
Promises of Home (1996)
Albert, Susan Wittig
Hill Country herb store owner China Bayles is featured in several titles:
Thyme of Death (1992)
Witches' Bane (1993)
Hangman's Root (1994)
Rosemary Remembered (1995)
Rueful Death (1996)
Love Lies Bleeding (1997)
Chile Death (1998)
Lavender Lies (1999)
Mistletoe Man (2000)
Bloodroot (2001)
Indigo Dying (2003)
An Unthymely Death (2003)
A Dilly of a Death (2004)
Alexander, Al
The Last Blue Kiss (1995) Set near Austin.
Amey, Linda
Christian mysteries set in Austin. Titles include:
Snare of the Trapper (1985)
A Major Deception (1988)
The following title features funeral director Blair Emerson:
Bury Her Sweetly (2002)
Anderson, Rex
Cover Her With Roses (1969) Murder mystery set at UT-Austin in the 1960s.
Banks, Carolyn
Equestrian mysteries with Texas horsewoman Robin Vaughan. Titles include:
Death by Dressage (1993)
Groomed for Death (1995)
A Horse to Die For (1996)
Blankenship, William D.
The Time of the Wolf (1998) A private auction in Austin for Jim Bowie's knife brings murder.
Coalson, Les
Sever the Darkness (2003) Murder, romance, racial unrest, and environmental concerns along the Guadalupe River in the Texas Hill Country

Cooper, Susan Rogers
Romance writer and mother E.J. Pugh solves the murder mysteries from the Central Texas town of "Black Cat Ridge." Titles include:
Hickory Dickory Stalk (1996)
Home Again, Home Again (1997)
A Crooked Little House (1999)
Crider, Bill
The Texas Capitol Murders (1992) Murder in the state legislature.

Friedman, Kinky
Outrageous country musician-turned-private eye Kinky Friedman stars in these mysteries. From his home base is in Greenwich Village, Kinky's investigations often draw him back to old stomping grounds in Central Texas. Titles include:
A Case of Lone Star (1987)
Armadillos and Old Lace (1994)
Road Kill (1997)
Meanwhile Back at the Ranch (2002)
Grape, Jan
Austin City Blue (2001) Austin cop Zoe Barrow investigates police corruption and murder.

Green, Tim
Former pro football player now writes mysteries, some with Austin settings. Titles include:
Outlaws (1999)
The Letter of the Law (2000)

Kahn, Sharon
Ruby the Rabbi's wife stars in this Austin-based series. Titles include:
Fax Me a Bagel (1998)
Never Nosh a Matso Ball (1999)
Lindsey, David L.
Animosity (2001) The chic hill country art enclave of "San Rafael" is the setting for this mystery.

Meyer, Charles
Episcopalian priest solves murders from his Austin church. Titles include:
The Saints of God Murders (1995)
Blessed Are the Merciless (1996)
Beside the Still Waters (1997)

Pollock, D.J.
The Austin Affair (1994) Austin nightclub singer and college student becomes involved in a murder mystery.

Rehder, Ben
Buck Fever: A Blanco County, Texas Novel (2002) Absurd humor in this deer-hunting mystery.

Reid, Sally Helen
Close Call (1994) Austin-based freelance journalist gets mixed up in murder.

Riordan, Rick
The Devil Went Down to Austin (2001) High tech murder brings San Antonio detective Tres Navarre to Austin. Riordan has donated his literary archives to the Southwestern Writers Collection.
Ripley, J.R.
Lost in Austin: A Tony Kozol Mystery (2001) Country music mystery set in Austin.
Roberson, Chris
Voices of Thunder (2001) Austin journalist becomes involved in a supernatural murder mystery.

Saylor, Steven
A Twist at the End (2000) Historical mystery featuring O. Henry and serial murders in 1880s Austin.
Have You Seen Dawn (2003) Dot-com refugee and murder in the Texas Hill Country.

Smith, Aubrey
The Rio County Murders (1995) Author is a former hill country sheriff.

Smith, Barbara Burnett
Series featuring Jolie Wyatt, wife, mother, radio reporter, and amateur sleuth in the Hill Country town of "Purple Sage." Titles include:
Writers of the Purple Sage (1994)
Celebration in Purple Sage (1996)
Skeletons in Purple Sage (2002)
Sprauge, Kurth
Frighten the Horses: A Rusty Coulter Mystery (2003) The chair of UT-Austin's English department is murdered.
Sublett, Jesse
Legendary Austin musician Jesse Sublett published this well-received mystery series that features a musican-turned-detective named Martin Fender. Jesse Sublett has donated literary and music-related archives to the Southwestern Writers Collection. A guide to the Sublett collection is available on-line.
The Rock Critic Murders (1989)
Tough Baby (1990)
Boiled in Concrete (1992)
Walker, Mary Willis
Austin journalist Molly Cates writes about crime for "Lone Star Monthly" and gets mixed up in murder.
The Red Scream (1994)
Under the Beetle's Cellar (1995)
All the Dead Lie Down (1998)
Webb, Don
The Double: An Investigation (1998) Austin computer game designer finds a dead man in his home.
Essential Saltes (1999) Austin bookseller and fireworks operator investigates his wife's murder.
Abbott, Jeff
Series featuring "Port Leo, Texas" Judge Whit Mosley and police detective Claudia Salazar. Titles include:
A Kiss Gone Bad (2001)
Black Jack Point (2002)
Anderson, Rex
Houston-based mysteries:
Night Calls (1986)
My Dead Brother (1990)
Lawnmower Blues (1998)
Baker, Susan
My First Murder (2002) Houston-based P.I. Mavis Davis. Author is a former District Court Judge in Galveston.

Barthelme, Peter
Houston advertising executive tackles murder mysteries:
Push, Meet Shove (1987)
Tart, With a Silken Finish (1988)
Brainfade (1989)
Bell, Nancy
Biggie and her 13-year-old grandson solve crime in the East Texas town of "Job's Crossing." Titles include:
Biggie and the Mangled Mortician (1997)
Biggie and the Meddlesome Mailman (1999)
Biggie and the Quincy Ghost (2001)
Biggie and the Devil Diet: A Mystery (2002)
Bell, Nancy
Restored to Death (2003) New series with Judge Jackson Crain.

Bingham, Linda
Up in Flames (1998) Features Houston arson expert John Bolt.

Bradley, Lynn
Stand in For Murder (1994) Features Houston insurance-fraud investigator Cole January.
Brown, Sandra
Unspeakable (1999) Set in fictional "Blewer County" in East Texas.
Bullard, Linda McKeever
Shades of Justice (1998) Legal thriller featuring a female African American prosecutor in Houston.

Burk, Patsy Ward
The Knife Struck Four (1997) Set in Houston and Huntsville.

Carver, John
Hardball Fever (2000) baseball manager of a minor-league team in East Texas becomes involved in a murder mystery.
Chapman, Sally
Hardwired (1997) Astronauts are murdered at the Johnson Space Center.

Cleeves, Ann
High Island Blues (1996) Set along the Texas coast near Galveston.

Cobb, L.B.
Promises Town: A Texas Mystery (2002) Assistant District Attorney Virginia Rodriguez solves crime in "Bayou City," Texas.

Cooley, Marilyn and James Gunn
You'll Hear from Us (1989) Features Houston advertising executive Suzanne Hilbourne.

Cooper, Susan Rogers
Houston in the Rearview Mirror (1990) Oklahoma sheriff Milton Kovak travels to Texas to investigate murder.
Funny As a Dead Relative: A Kimmey Kruse Mystery (1994) Features a stand-up comic from Port Arthur.

Crider, Bill
Author of dozens of mysteries, most set along the Texas Gulf Coast. Crider's series include P.I. Truman Smith, Sheriff Dan Rhodes, and English professor Carl Burns. Titles include:
One Dead Dean (1988)
Dead on the Island (1991)
Booked for a Hanging: A Sheriff Dan Rhodes Mystery (1992)
Winning Can Be Murder: A Sheriff Dan Rhodes Mystery (1996)
The Prairie Chicken Kill: A Truman Smith Mystery (1996)
A Ghost of a Chance: A Sheriff Dan Rhodes Mystery (2000)
A Knife in the Back (2002)
Crump, David
Conflict of Interest (1997) Houston trial lawyer struggles against a psychopathic murderer.
Davis, Austin
Shoveling Smoke: A Clay Parker Crime Novel (2003) Houston corporate lawyer has moved to a small East Texas town, where murder is in the air.
Dickson, Athol
Christian mysteries featuring a construction business owner, set in the East Texas town of "Mount Sinai."
Whom Shall I Fear? (1996)
Every Hidden Thing (1998)
Dold, Gaylord
Bay of Sorrows (1995) A Vietnamese is immigrant killed in Port Arthur and Deputy Sheriff Tom Poole investigates.

Donahue, Jack
Houston-based courtroom dramas:
Pray to the Hustlers' God (1977)
The Lady Loved Too Well (1978)
Franklet, Duane
Bad Memory (1997) a Houston computer company is infiltrated by a malevolent hacker.

Furman, Laura
The Shadow Line (1982) Big money, murder and mystery in Houston and Galveston from this literary novelist.

Gardner, Lisa
The Other Daughter (1999) A Boston woman is drawn to Huntsville, Texas in this serial killer mystery.
Glikin, Bruce
Slumming Angels (2000) Houston-based murder mystery.

Grissom, Ken
Galveston boatman and tough-guy John Rodrigue is featured in this series.
Drop-Off (1988)
Big Fish (1991)
Drowned Man's Key (1992)

Haley, James L.
Final Refuge: A Novel of Eco-Terrorism (1994) Endangered rhinos are killed at a wildlife preserve outside of Houston.

Harris, Leann
The Detective and the D. A. (2002) A romance murder mystery featuring Houston District Attorney Kelly Whalen.
Hemlin, Timothy
Culinary mysteries starring a part-time chef. Titles include:
People in Glass Houses (1997)
A Catered Christmas (1998)
Dead Man's Broth (1999)

Hime, James
The Night of the Dance: A Mystery (2003) Murder in pastoral Brenham, Texas.

Irving, Clifford
Trial (2003) Featuring Houston criminal lawyer Warren Blackburn.
James, Dean
Cruel as the Grave (2000) Houston-based Ph.D. student returns to Mississippi to solve a family murder mystery.
Kerr, J.W.
Series featuring Houston police officer Anson Hilderbrand.
The Devil and Lt. Hilderbrand (2000)
Graves, Worms, and Epitaphs (2001)
Kok, Marilyn R.
Heaven's Song (1997) Christian mystery based at Texas A&M University.
Landry, Dallari
The Bayou Privilege (2002) Attorney and one-time forensic chemist Micki Lane investigates murder in "Liberty, Texas."
Adored to Death (2003)
Lansdale, Joe
Nacogdoches resident and acclaimed Horror/Fantasy writer Joe Lansdale has also created a Deep East Texas mystery series featuring Hap Collins and Leonard Pine. Lansdale has donated literary archives to the Southwestern Writers Collection. See info at Lansdale's mystery titles include:
Savage Season (1990)
Mucho Mojo (1994)
Two-Bear Mambo (1995)
Bad Chili (1997)
Rumble Tumble (1998)
Captains Outrageous (2001)
Leavenworth, Geoffrey
Isle of Misfortune (2003) Galveston-based psychological thriller
Lindsey, David L.
Series featuring Houston's high society homicide detective Stuart Haydon. Titles include:
A Cold Mind (1983)
Heat from Another Sun (1984)
Spiral (1986)

Mathis, Edward
P.I. Dan Roman sets up shop in a small town southeast of Dallas. Series titles include:
From a High Place (1985)
September Song (1991)
The Fifth Level (1992)
Mosiman, Billie Sue
Widow (1995) Houston stripper gets entangled in murder and intrigue.
Stiletto (1996) Vegas mob puts contract on the daughter of a female D.A. from "Geneva, Texas."
Mosley, Walter
Gone Fishin' (1996) Famous LA detective Easy Rawlins recalls his early days growing up near Houston.

Myers, Helen R.
Romantic mysteries set in East Texas.
Lost (2000)
Dead End (2001)

Nighbert, David F.
Squeezeplay (1992) A Houston Astros star pitcher is murdered.

Owens, Virginia
At Point Blank (1992) A ninety-four-year-old woman is murdered in the rustic East Texas town of "Point Blank."

Powell, Deborah
Lesbian crime reporter Hollis Carpenter solves mysteries in Houston in the 1930s.
Bayou City Secrets (1991)
Houston Town (1992)
Purtee, Les
Death Dressed in White (1995) Featuring Houston P.I. Jack Thorn.

Rogers, Chris
Dixie Flanagan is Houston's toughest bounty hunter. Titles include:
Bitch Factor (1998)
Rage Factor (1999)
Chill Factor (2000)

Sexton, Rodney D.
SAC Time (2000) Houston-based psychological thriller involving suicide cases among high school students.

Sissel, Barbara Taylor
The Last Innocent Hour (2000) Political thriller set in Houston and small town Texas.

Sloan, Anne
Murder on the Boulevard (1996) Early 20th century mystery set in Houston featuring a female suffragist.
Smith, Mary-Ann Tirone
Love Her Madly (2002) A female FBI Agent stars in this novel drawn from the Karla Faye Tucker case.

Stuyck, Karen Hanson
The Texas Medical Center in Houston is the setting.
Cry For Help (1995)
Lethal Lessons (1997)
Waggoner, Bill
Sweat Death (1992) Former FBI agent settles down to teach college in Nacogdoches, but murder quickly intervenes.
Walker, Margie
Indiscretions (1996) African-American heroine Sydney Webster leaves Houston only to find murder in her hometown of "Dalston."
Walker, Robert
Houston police detective Lucas Stonecolt and police psychologist Meredyth Sanger investigate brutal, bizarre murders.
Cutting Edge (1997)
Double Edge (1998)
Cold Edge (2001)
Willocks, Tim
Green River Rising (1994) East Texas penitentiary thriller written by an English psychiatrist.

Wingate, Anne
Japanese-American police chief Mark Shigata solves murders from Bayport, Texas. Author Anne Wingate also writes under the pseudonyms Lee Martin and Martha G. Webb. Titles in the Shigata series include:
The Eye of Anna (1989)
The Buzzards Must Also Be Fed (1991)
Yakuza, Go Home! A Mark Shigata Mystery (1999)
Wyatt, Wyatt
Deep in the Heart (1980) Love and murder, East Texas style.
Abshire, Richard
Dallas detective Jack Kyle featured in this series. Titles include:
Gants (1985)
Dallas Drop (1990)
The Dallas Deception (1992)
Allen, Tricia
Historical mysteries set in Dallas in 1947.
Texas Weather (2000)
A Well-Respected Dead Man (2003)
Aubrey, Edmund
Sherlock Holmes in Dallas (1980) Holmes and Watson take on the Kennedy assassination.

Bernhart, William
Double Jeopardy (1996) Features Dallas cop turned defense attorney Travis Byrne.

Boyd, Paula
Offbeat mysteries feature a mother/daughter sleuthing team based in "Kickapoo, Texas," a small town near Wichita Falls.
Hot Enough to Kill (1999)
Dead Man Falls (2000)
Clarke, Kenneth
Deadly Justice (2002) Psychological thriller set in Dallas.

Duncan, W. Glenn
Dallas-based P.I. Rafferty is a working class guy who never plays by the rules.
Rafferty's Rules (1987)
Rafferty: Wrong Place, Wrong Time (1989)
Gray, A.W.
The "Bino" series features a hardboiled, six-foot-six albino lawyer from Dallas. Gray also writes mysteries under the pseudonym "Sarah Gregory." Titles in the Bino series include:
Bino (1988)
Size (1989)
Bino's Blues (1995)
Other A.W. Gray novels with North Texas settings include:
The Man Offside (1991) Ex-Dallas Cowboy has been framed.
Prime Suspect (1993) Construction business owner in Fort Worth.
Shares (1999) Dallas cop is released from prison for a crime he didn't commit.
Green, Chloe
Going Out in Style (2001) Dallas O'Connor is a Dallas-based fashion stylist who becomes a sleuth when murder intrudes into the fashion world.
Gregory, Sarah (A.W. Gray)
Series featuring Dallas lawyer Sharon Hays.
Public Trust (1987)
Capitol Scandal (1999)
Best Defense (1999)
Hardie, Robert
The Smiling Dog (1995) Fort Worth-based mystery.

Hayden, L.C.
Where Secrets Lie (2001) Intrigue in Dallas as a woman searches for her birth parents.
Hunsicker, Harry
Still River: A Lee Henry Oswald Mystery (2005) The unfortunately named Lee Henry Oswald is a Dallas PI who tries to stop a corrupt real estate developer bent on taking over the Trinity River.
Jenkins, Dan
Fast Copy (1987) Female newspaper editor in 1930s Fort Worth takes on a corrupt Texas Ranger.
Manchee, William
Series featuring Dallas attorney Stan Turner:
Brash Endeavor (1997)
Undaunted (1998)

Martin, Lee (Anne Wingate)
Series featuring Fort Worth cop Deb Ralston. Titles include:
Death Warmed Over (1988)
Genealogy of Murder (1988)
Hacker (1992)
The Mensa Murders (1993)

McBride, Susan
Former policewoman and suburban Dallas resident Maggie Ryan solves crimes involving schoolchildren:
And Then She Was Gone (1999)
Overkill (2001)
Mills, Deanie Francis
The Jigsaw Man (1997) Wife of a Dallas cop must solve the crime when her husband is accused of murder.

Moore, Laurie
Series featuring Fort Worth cop Cezanne Martin:
The Lady Godiva Murder (2002)
Constable's Run (2002)

Moseley, Margaret
The Fourth Steven (1998) This installment in the Honey Huckleberry series is based in Fort Worth.

Myers, Helen R.
More than you Know (1999) Dallas-based suspense novel involving murder and sex games.
Reasoner, James
Tie a Black Ribbon (2000) Skeeter Barlow is a Fort Worth cowgirl and P.I. who also works evenings as a bouncer at the Horsehead Bar and Grill.

Reynolds, Clay
Rage (1994) Originally published as "Agatite," this literary novel tells of a crime spree in a small town west of Wichita Falls.
Players (1997) This Dallas-based literary crime novel has been described as "Tarantino meets McMurtry." (Reynolds has donated literary archives to the Southwestern Writers Collection. The papers are not yet processed.)

Richardson, Doug
True Believers (1999) A messianic cult leader lures a U.S. Senator and his wife from Massachusetts to a Dallas fertility clinic.

Simons, Paullina
Eleven Hours (1998) A nine-months pregnant woman from North Dallas is abducted from a shopping mall.

Swanson, Doug
Offbeat Dallas detective Jack Flippo stars in this wry series. Titles include:
Big Town (1994)
96 Tears (1996)
House of Corrections (2000)
Swindle, Howard
Series featuring Dallas police detective and alcoholic Jeb Quinlan:
Jitter Joint (1999)
Doin' Dirty (2000)

Rosenberg, Nancy Taylor
Trial By Fire (1996) Dallas D.A. Stella Cataloni is haunted by the arson that killed her parents.

Webb, Martha G. (Anne Wingate)
Series featuring Smoky O'Donnell, a narcotics officer in "Farmer's Mound," a small town outside of Dallas.
A White Male Running (1985)
Even Cop's Daughters (1986)
Willeford, Charles
Deliver Me From Dallas (2001) This was originally published in 1961 as The Whip Hand by Franklin W. Sanders.
Bay, Austin
The Coyote Cried Twice (1985) Vietnam veteran takes on murder in the South Texas brush country.

Borthwick, J.S.
The Case of the Hook-Billed Kites (1991) Birdwatchers in the Lower Rio Grande Valley are beset by murder.
Brandon, Jay
Courtroom suspense novels based in San Antonio. Titles include:
Fade the Heat (1991)
Rules of Evidence (1992)
Angel of Death (1998)

Brown, Sandra
Charade (1995) A San Antonio television personality becomes involved in murder and romance.

Douden, Skip
Texas Donuts (2001) Self-published mystery novel set in Corpus Christi.
The Worst Liar in Texas (2003) A Corpus Christi detective's girlfriend mysteriously disappears.
Douglas, Laramee
Dancing at the Shoulder of the Bull (2002) Mystery set in fictional "Katerina," modeled on Victoria, Texas.
Flynn, Robert and Dan Klepper
The Devil's Tiger (2000) Infected Siberian Tigers rampage across South Texas in this espionage thriller.

Hart, Carolyn
Death on the River Walk (1999) Murder brings supersleuth Henrie O. to San Antonio.

Hinojosa, Rolando
Two mystery novels set in the Lower Rio Grande Valley by the dean of Texas Chicano literature:
Partners in Crime (1985)
Ask a Policeman (1998)
La Fountaine, George
Flashpoint (1976) Two Texas border guards find a body and money and are soon involved in a conspiracy that reaches back to the Kennedy Assassination.
Langley, Glenda Stewart
Murder in Mesquite Springs (1999) A waitress in a South Texas barbecue joint is the heroine.
Martinez, Max
This noted Chicano author grew up in Gonzalez and has written two crime novels set in the area:
White Leg (1996)
Layover (1997)

Morell, Mary
Lesbian police detective Lucia Ramos from San Antonio is the heroine of this series:
Final Session (1991)
Final Rest (1993)
Nixon, Joan Lowery
The Trap (2002) Sixteen-year-old girl's summer vacation to her relatives' South Texas ranch turns dangerous as murder breaks out.

Ramon, Alberto
On Both Sides of the River (1996) Eagle Pass attorney tackles drug kingpins, corruption, and murder along the Texas-Mexico border.

Reid, Sally Helen
Undertow (1992) "Port Alicia," a fishing village along the Texas coast is the setting for this mystery.

Richardson, Doug
Dark Horse (1998) "Cathedral Island" in far South Texas is the setting for this political thriller.
West, Nancy Glass
Nine Days to Evil (2003) Undercurrents of Shakespeare run through this San Antonio-based mystery thriller.

Riordan, Rick
San Antonio P.I. Tres Navarre has a Ph.D. in medieval studies and an enchilada-eating cat. Riordan has donated his literary archives to the Southwestern Writers Collection.
Big Red Tequila (1998)
The Widower's Two-Step (1999)
The Last King of Texas (2001)
Cold Spring (2003)
Risenhoover, C.C.
Series stars a San Antonio-based investigative reporter with Rambo overtones. Titles include:
Blood Bath (1987)
Lethal Rage (2001)
Death Angel (2002)

Rogers, Carolyn
Home is Where the Murder Is (2002) A San Antonio policewoman returns to her family ranch near the Mexican border, where murder breaks out.

Sanderson, Jim
Safe Delivery (2000) Female bail bondsman Jerri Johnson is at the heart of this literary San Antonio-based murder mystery.
Smith, Aubrey
The Alamodome Murders (1995) Featuring San Antonio detective Robert Slore.
Speart, Jessica
Border Prey: A Rachel Porter Mystery (2000) U.S. Fish and Wildlife Agent Rachel Porter investigates murder at an exotic game ranch along the Texas-Mexico border .

Tell, Dorothy
Series featuring a sixty-something lesbian detective in South Texas:
Murder at Red Rook Ranch (1990)
The Hallalujah Murders: A Poppy Dillworth Mystery (1991)
Barr, Nevada
Track of the Cat (1993) Guadalupe Mountains National Park is the setting for this mystery.

Bean, Frederic
Murder at the Spirit Cave (1999) The first-ever female Texas Ranger takes on murder in far West Texas.
The Hangman's Tree (2000) Marfa-based mystery.

Benson, Raymond
Evil Hours (2001) A mystery set in the West Texas town of "Limite" by the Odessa-born author, who in recent years has taken over writing the James Bond series.
Child, Lee
Echo Burning (2001) P.I. Jack Reacher investigates murder at a ranch near Lubbock.
Crumley, James
One of America's most acclaimed literary crime writers, Crumley's novels play out against the vast landscape of the American West. Crumley has donated literary archives to the Southwestern Writers Collection. See info at Crumley makes use of West Texas settings in novels including:
The Mexican Tree Duck (1993)
Bordersnakes (1996)
The Final Country (2001)
Cullin, Mitch
Branches (2000) A novel in poetic form, narrated by a murderous sheriff in the "gnarled hide of West Texas."

Dearl, Elizabeth
Taylor Madison and her pet ferret Hazel confront murder in "Perdue," a tiny town near Lubbock:
Diamondback (2002)
Twice Dead (2003)

Dewlen, Al
Twilight of Honor (1961) Vintage courtroom drama and murder mystery set in the Texas Panhandle.

Edson, John Thomas
Texas Teamwork (1997) A "western" mystery penned by a British author.

Fackler, Elizabeth
Series featuring El Paso Detective Devon Gray:
When Kindness Fails (1999)
Patricide (2000)
Forbes, Stanton
Mysteries set in the Texas panhandle:
She Was Only the Sheriff's Daughter (1970)
A Deadly Kind of Lonely (1971)

Gillenwater, Sharon
Texas Tender (1997) Christian romance/mystery set at a watermelon farm in West Texas.

Hall, Malinda
Nowhere is Somewhere (2002) Genealogical murders in a small West Texas town are investigated by a mother/daughter team.
Hayden, L.C.
Who's Susan (1998) Mystery novel by this retired El Paso schoolteacher is set in El Paso, New Mexico, and Dallas.
Herndon, Nancy
El Paso author's "Elena Jarvis" mysteries are set in "Los Santos," Texas. Titles include:
Acid Bath (1995)
Casanova Crimes (1999)
C.O.P. Out (2002)
Jones, Stephen Graham
All the Beautiful Sinners (2003) Native American Deputy Sheriff John Doe from "Nazareth, Texas" tracks a sociopath killer who targets Indian children. Author is a member of the Blackfeet Nation and an Assistant Professor of English at Texas Tech University.
Lantigua, John
Twister (1992) Manhattan journalist investigates murder in the struggling post-oil boom town of "Paradise."
Larkin, E.L.
Die in Texas (2003) A mystery set in far West Texas and New Mexico.
Maples, J.D. Trojan Steers (2000) Veterinary whodunit set in the ranch country of West Texas.
Martin, Allana
Series featuring amateur sleuth Texana Jones, who runs a trading post in the Big Bend area. Titles include:
Death of a Healing Woman (1996)
Death of a Saint Maker (1998)
Death of the Last Villista (2001)
McCathern, Gerald
Quarantine! A Story of Murder, Drugs, And Terrorism (1985) A sheriff in the Texas Panhandle investigates a cattle virus outbreak linked to international terrorism.
Medawar, Mardi Oakley
Witch of the Palo Duro (1997) A historical mystery set among the Kiowa Indians in Palo Duro Canyon in 1866.

Meredith, D.R. (Doris)
The Texas Panhandle is often the setting for mysteries by this former librarian. Meredith's series feature Sheriff Charles Matthews, reference librarian Megan Clark, and attorney John Lloyd Branson. Titles include:
The Sheriff and the Branding Iron Murders (1985)
The Sheriff & the Panhandle Murders (1985)
Murder by Reference (1991)
Murder Past Due (2001)

Mills, Deanie Francis
Ordeal (1997) A militaristic cult leader based in West Texas kidnaps his ex-wife and plots to blow up a government building.

Sanderson, Jim
Literary mysteries featuring Presidio's bi-cultural border agent Dolph Martinez
El Camino Del Rio (1998)
La Mordida (2002)
Schumacher, Aileen
Engineering mysteries featuring El Paso detectives David Alvarez and Scott Faulkner:
Framework for Death (1998)
Affirmative Reaction (1999)
Engineered for Murder (2000)
Anderson, Edward
Thieves Like Us (1937) This Depression-era Texas crime tale has inspired two films.

Anthony, Patricia
Happy Policeman (1994) A sci-fi post-holocaust mystery set in "Coomey, Texas."

Barrett, Neal Jr.
Acclaimed author of humorous, offbeat fantasy fiction turned to the mystery form in the 1990s. Barrett has donated literary archives to the Southwestern Writers Collection. See info at Barrett's mystery titles include:
Pink Vodka Blues (1992)
Dead Dog Blues (1994)
Skinny Annie Blues (1996)
Bad Eye Blues (1997)
Bird, Sarah
Do Evil Cheerfully (1983) Early mystery novel from the acclaimed literary novelist, set in Houston and New Mexico. Sarah Bird has donated literary archives to the Southwestern Writers Collection. See info at:
Burke, James Lee
This author, best known for his Louisiana detective Dave Robineaux, has also used Texas settings in his mysteries. Titles include:
Lay Down My Sword and Shield (1971)
Cimarron Rose (1998)
Heartwood (1999)

Cook, Christopher
Robbers (2000) In pursuit of killers on a road trip across Texas.
Davis, Kaye
Series featuring Maris Middleton, Lesbian Forensic Chemist of Texas:
Devil's Leg Crossing (1997)
Possessions (1998)
Until the End (1998)

Denton, Bradley
Blackburn (1993) A fugitive serial killer on the road across Texas and beyond.
Grape, Jan (editor)
Found Dead in Texas (2002) An anthology of Texas crime literature.

Haley, Wendy
Shadow Vengeance (1994) Adoption mystery turns murderous.
Halliday, Brett
This prolific writer known for his "Michael Shayne" series published more than 60 mystery novels from 1939 to 1976. Halliday grew up in West Texas.
Highsmith, Patricia
This well-known author of literary mysteries such as Strangers on a Train and The Talented Mr. Ripley was born in Fort Worth.
Irsfeld, John
Literary crime fiction that plays out across Texas:
Coming Through (1975)
Little Kingdoms (1976)

Joria, Joseph
Death and Texas (2002)
Maxwell, Jan
Baptism by Murder (1995) A Reverend must solve a murder-or be charged with the crime.
McMillion, Bonner
The Lot of Her Neighbors (1953) Vintage Texas mystery fiction: a recluse returns to his tiny farm to find his wife dead.
Ripley, Bill
Prisoners (1988) Criminal road trip through Texas and the Southwest.

Sheffield, Helen
Nelda Sees Red (1999) A Texas mystery from this Bryan-based author.

Shuman, Malcolm
Assassin's Blood: An Alan Graham Mystery (1999) A Louisiana archaeologist gets involved in investigating the Kennedy assassination.

Skillman, Trish MacDonald
Texas banker-turned-mystery writer.
Someone to Watch Over Me (1994)
Buried Secrets (1995)
Sohmer, Steve
Favorite Son (1987) A liberal U.S. Senator from Texas is the target of an assassination attempt.

Thompson, Jim
The major American crime novelist born in Oklahoma has set some of his 29 mysteries in Texas, including:
Texas by the Tail (1965)
South of Heaven (1967)
The Getaway (1973)

Wade, Susan
Walking Rain (1996) A woman whose family was murdered by neo-Nazis in Houston returns to her grandfather's New Mexico ranch, but the Nazis are in hot pursuit.

Webb, Martha (Anne Wingate)
Darling Corey's Dead (1984) A Postal mystery set in small town Texas.

Young, Karen
Kiss and Kill (2000) Houston-based author writes of a Texas U.S. senator's widow who is stalked.
Dingus, Anne
"Whodunit? Who Cares?" (Texas Monthly, November 2000) TM Senior Editor attacks the "once-reliable genre" for decomposing into "work that remains is too often limp, predictable, even downright stinky." The same issue features a response from Mary Willis Walker.
Places for Dead Bodies (1994) Academic study by this University of Nevada-Reno Geography professor examines how murder mysteries function in defining "a sense of place." Included in the study is a chapter on David L. Lindsey's novels.
Walker, Mary Willis
"I care, I'm a mystery writer, and I don't think Anne Dingus has a clue." (Texas Monthly, November 2000) A response to Anne Dingus' attack on the state of Texas mystery fiction.
Weeks, Jerome
"Blood and Grits: Texas-based mystery novels reveal more about life in the Lone Star State than just whodunit." (Dallas Morning News, June 12, 1996) Weeks describes how mystery novels provide a cutting edge portrait of evolving Texas cultures, and points out that some geography professors have begun to use detective novels in their courses.