P. D. James - Author

About the Author

P. D. James was born in Oxford in 1920 and educated at Cambridge High School for Girls. From 1949 to 1968 she worked in the National Health Service and subsequently in the Home Office, first in the Police Department and later in the Criminal Policy Department. All that experience has been used in her novels. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and of the Royal Society of the Arts and has served as a Governor of the BBC, a member of the Arts Council, where she was Chairman of its Literary Advisory Panel, on the Board of the British Council and as a magistrate in Middlesex and London. She has won awards for crime writing in Britain, America, Italy and Scandinavia, including the Mystery Writers of America Grandmaster Award. She has received honorary degrees from seven British universities, was awarded an OBE in 1983 and was created a life peer in 1991. In 1997 she was elected President of the Society of Authors.

P. D. James died in November 2014.

Photograph © Ulla Montan

Featured books by P. D. James

The Maul and the Pear Tree : The Ratcliffe Highway Murders, 1811

The Maul and the Pear Tree : The Ratcliffe Highway Murders, 1811

Author: P. D. James Format: Paperback Release Date: 04/11/2010

Featured on The Book Show on Sky Arts on 9 December 2010. P. D. James and T. A. Critchley piece together the evidence of an early 19th century murder case in this fascinating book.

The Lighthouse

The Lighthouse

Author: P. D. James Format: Hardback Release Date: 10/10/2005

This eagerly awaited successor to The Murder Room displays the qualities which aficionados have come to expect of P.D. James: sensitive characterisation, an exciting and superbly structured plot and vivid evocation of place. The Lighthouse is a subtle and powerful work of contemporary fiction.Comparison: Nicci French, Elizabeth George, Laura Wilson.

eBooks of the Month
The Private Patient

The Private Patient

Author: P. D. James Format: Paperback Release Date: 10/05/2018

When the notorious investigative journalist, Rhoda Gradwyn, books into Mr Chandler-Powell's private clinic in Dorset for the removal of a disfiguring scar, she has every prospect of a successful operation and the beginning of a new life. But she was never to leave Cheverell Manor alive. Dalgliesh and his team are called in to investigate the murder, and later a second death, which raises far more complicated problems than merely the question of innocence or guilt . . .

eBooks of the Month
Death Comes to Pemberley

Death Comes to Pemberley

Author: P. D. James Format: Paperback Release Date: 04/10/2018

Two great literary minds-master of suspense P.D. James and literary icon Jane Austen-come together in Death Comes to Pemberley, a bestselling historical crime fiction tribute to Pride and Prejudice. Conjuring the world of Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy and combining the trappings of Regency British society with a classic murder mystery, James creates a delightful mash-up that will intrigue any Janeite. The year is 1803, and Darcy and Elizabeth have been married for six years. There are now two handsome and healthy sons in the nursery, Elizabeth's beloved sister Jane and her husband Bingley live nearby and the orderly world of Pemberley seems unassailable. But all this is threatened when, on the eve of the annual autumn ball, the guests are preparing to retire for the night when a chaise appears, rocking down the path from Pemberley's wild woodland. As it pulls up, Lydia Wickham - Elizabeth's younger, unreliable sister - stumbles out screaming that her husband, George Wickham, has been murdered. Inspired by a lifelong passion for the work of Jane Austen, P.D. James masterfully recreates the world of Pride and Prejudice. Combining Austen's wit and the social commentary of Downton Abbey with her own signature excitement and suspense, James has crafted a brilliant crime story. Death Comes to Pemberley is a distinguished work of fiction, from one of the best-loved, most- read writers of our time, and was adapted as a miniseries by the BBC in 2013, starring Matthew Rhys, Anna Maxwell Martin, and Matthew Goode.

eBooks of the Month
The Children of Men

The Children of Men

Author: P. D. James Format: Paperback Release Date: 05/04/2018

ONE OF THE BBC'S '100 NOVELS THAT SHAPED OUR WORLD' The year is 2021. No child has been born for twenty-five years. The human race faces extinction. Under the despotic rule of Xan Lyppiat, the Warden of England, the old are despairing and the young cruel. Theo Faren, a cousin of the Warden, lives a solitary life in this ominous atmosphere. That is, until a chance encounter with a young woman leads him into contact with a group of dissenters. Suddenly his life is changed irrevocably as he faces agonising choices which could affect the future of mankind.

eBooks of the Month
The Mistletoe Murder and Other Stories

The Mistletoe Murder and Other Stories

Author: P. D. James Format: Paperback Release Date: 05/10/2017

P. D. James was frequently commissioned by newspapers and magazines to write a short story for Christmas, and four of the best have been drawn from the archives and published here together for the first time. From the title story about a strained country-house Christmas party, to another about an illicit affair that ends in murder, plus two cases for detective Adam Dalgliesh, these are masterfully atmospheric stories by the acknowledged 'Queen of Crime'.

eBooks of the Month

Other books by P. D. James

A Certain Justice

A Certain Justice

Author: P. D. James Format: Paperback Release Date: 12/03/2020

A chilling murder mystery packed with forensic detail from the 'Queen of Crime' 'Ingenious.' Sunday Telegraph 'Fiendishly clever.' Sunday Times 'Spine-chilling.' Guardian Venetia Aldridge QC is a distinguished barrister. When she agrees to defend Garry Ashe, accused of the brutal murder of his aunt, it is one more opportunity to triumph in her distinguished career as a criminal lawyer. But just four weeks later, Miss Aldridge is found dead at her desk. Commander Adam Dalgliesh, called in to investigate, finds motives for murder among the clients Venetia has defended, her professional colleagues, her family - even her lover. As Dalgliesh narrows the field of suspects, a second brutal murder draws them into greater complexities of intrigue and evil . . .

A Mind to Murder

A Mind to Murder

Author: P. D. James Format: Paperback Release Date: 06/06/2019

Lies. Adultery. Blackmail. 'Neat and startling . P. D. James is simply a wonderful writer.' New York Times 'Highly recommended.' Daily Telegraph Superintendent Adam Dalgliesh has never failed to solve a case. When he is called to the scene of a gruesome murder at a psychiatry clinic in London, he finds it in lockdown: no one has entered or left the building since the discovery of the body. So, it figures, the culprit must be amongst the people before him. As Dalgliesh quickly discovers, however, the intricate web of lies and grudges among the staff and patients at the Steen Clinic cast confusing shadows. Amid all that deceit, could the killer be preparing to strike again?

Original Sin

Original Sin

Author: P. D. James Format: Paperback Release Date: 07/02/2019

An Adam Dalgliesh Mystery The Peverell Press, a two-hundred-year-old publishing firm housed in a dramatic mock-Venetian palace on the Thames, is certainly ripe for change. But the proposals of its ruthlessly ambitious new managing director, Gerard Etienne, have made him dangerous enemies - a discarded mistress, a neglected and humiliated author, and rebellious colleagues and staff. When Gerard's body is discovered bizarrely desecrated, there is no shortage of suspects and Dalgliesh and his team are confronted with a puzzle of extraordinary complexity and a murderer who is prepared to strike again.

Innocent Blood

Innocent Blood

Author: P. D. James Format: Paperback Release Date: 07/02/2019

A stand-alone thriller from P. D. James. Philippa Palfrey, adopted as a child, believes herself to be the motherless, illegitimate daughter of an aristocratic father. At eighteen she exercises her right to find out the truth. What she discovers will change her life forever. Philippa enters a new and terrifying world and soon comes to realize that she is not the only one interested in her parents' whereabouts. Innocent Blood is both a mystery and a thriller, a superb novel that explores the themes of self-identity and the meaning of life.

Sleep No More

Sleep No More

Author: P. D. James Format: Ebook Release Date: 14/11/2017

No one gets inside the head of the murdereror makes it a more thrilling readthan the late, great P. D. James. Fast on the heels of her latest best seller: a new, fiendishly entertaining gathering of previously uncollected stories, from the author of Death Comes to Pemberley and The Private Patient. It's not always a question of "e;whodunit?"e; Sometimes there's more mystery in the why or how. And although we usually know the unhealthy fates of both victim and perpetrator, what of those clever few who plan and carry out the perfect crime? The ones who aren't brought down even though they're found out? And what about those who do the finding out who witness a murder or who identify the murderer but keep the information to themselves? These are some of the mysteries that we follow through those six stories as we are drawn into the thinking, the memories, the emotional machinations, the rationalizations, the dreams and desires behind murderous cause and effect.This selection 2017 by the Estate of P.D. James. ';The Yo-Yo' written 1996; revised as ';Hearing Ghote' in The Verdict of Us All, ed. Peter Lovesey copyright P. D. James 2006. ';The Victim' first published in Winter's Crimes 5, ed. Virginia Whitaker copyright P. D. James 1973. ';The Murder of Santa Claus' first published in Great Detectives, ed. D. W. McCullough copyright P. D. James 1984. ';The Girl Who Loved Graveyards' first published in Winter's Crimes 15, ed. George Hardinge copyright P. D. James 1983. ';A Very Desirable Residence' first published in Winter's Crimes 8, ed. Hilary Watson copyright P. D. James 1976. ';Mr Millcroft's Birthday' first published as ';The Man Who Was 80' in The Man Who copyright P. D. James 1992; revised as ';Mr Maybrick's Birthday' copyright 2005. Foreword copyright 2017 by Peter Kemp.

Mistletoe Murder

Mistletoe Murder

Author: P. D. James Format: Ebook Release Date: 25/10/2016

Four previously uncollected stories from one of the great mystery writers of our time--swift, cunning murder mysteries (two of which feature the young Adam Dalgliesh) that together, to borrow the author's own word, add up to a delightful "e;entertainment."e; The newly appointed Sgt. Dalgliesh is drawn into a case that is "e;pure Agatha Christie."e; . . . A "e;pedantic, respectable, censorious"e; clerk's secret taste for pornography is only the first reason he finds for not coming forward as a witness to a murder . . . A best-selling crime novelist describes the crime she herself was involved in fifty years earlier . . . Dalgliesh's godfather implores him to reinvestigate a notorious murder that might ease the godfather's mind about an inheritance, but which will reveal a truth that even the supremely upstanding Adam Dalgliesh will keep to himself. Each of these stories is as playful as it is ingeniously plotted, the author's sly humor as evident as her hallmark narrative elegance and shrewd understanding of some of the most complex--not to say the most damning--aspects of human nature. A treat for P. D. James's legions of fans and anyone who enjoys the pleasures of a masterfully wrought whodunit.From the Hardcover edition.

Der Tod kommt nach Pemberley

Der Tod kommt nach Pemberley

Author: P. D. James Format: Ebook Release Date: 01/03/2013

Im Jahr 1803, sechs Jahre nach der Hochzeit von Mr. Darcy und seiner Elizabeth, geht das Leben auf dem Herrensitz Pemberley seinen idyllischen Gang. Doch am Abend vor dem groen Herbstball wird die Vorfreude empfindlich gestort: Aus dem waldigen Teil des Pemberley-Parks bricht in rasender Fahrt eine Kutsche, darin eine vollig aufgeloste Lydia Wickham - Elizabeths missratene kleine Schwester -, die behauptet, ihr Mann sei ermordet worden! Nachdem die Damen in Sicherheit gebracht wurden, machen sich Mr. Darcy und sein Cousin in den Wald auf, um den Toten zu suchen. Was sie finden, ist ein lebender, blutverschmierter, verwirrter Wickham - und neben ihm eine Leiche.

Certain Justice

Certain Justice

Author: P. D. James Format: Ebook Release Date: 15/01/2013

It begins, dramatically enough, with a trial for murder. The distinguished criminal lawyer Venetia Aldridge is defending Garry Ashe on charges of having brutally killed his aunt. For Aldridge the trial is mainly a test of her courtroom skills, one more opportunity to succeed--and she does. But now murder is in the air. The next victim will be Aldridge herself, stabbed to death at her desk in her Chambers in the Middle Temple, a bloodstained wig on her head. Enter Commander Adam Dalgliesh and his team, whose struggle to investigate and understand the shocking events cannot halt the spiral into more horrors, more murders...A Certain Justice is P.D. James at her strongest.In her first foray into the strange closed world of the Law Courts and the London legal community, she has created a fascinating tale of interwoven passion and terror. As each character leaps into unforgettable life, as each scene draws us forward into new complexities of plot, she proves yet again that no other writer can match her skill in combining the excitement of the classic detective story with the richness of a fine novel. In its subtle portrayal of morality and human behavior, A Certain Justice will stand alongside Devices and Desires and A Taste for Death as one of P.D. James's most important, accomplished and entertaining works.

Ihres Vaters Haus

Ihres Vaters Haus

Author: P. D. James Format: Ebook Release Date: 06/01/2012

Die achtzehnjahrige Philippa auf der Suche nach ihrer eigenen Identitat, doch der "e;Weg zu ihres Vaters Haus"e; steht unter einem dusteren Stern. P. D. James stellt wieder einmal unter Beweis, dass ihre Romane viel mehr sind als nur Krimis.

Death Comes to Pemberley

Death Comes to Pemberley

Author: P. D. James Format: Ebook Release Date: 06/12/2011

A rare meeting of literary genius: P. D. James, long among the most admired mystery writers of our time, draws the characters of Jane Austen's beloved novel Pride and Prejudice into a tale of murder and emotional mayhem. It is 1803, six years since Elizabeth and Darcy embarked on their life together at Pemberley, Darcy's magnificent estate.Their peaceful, orderly world seems almost unassailable.Elizabeth has found her footing as the chatelaine of the great house.They have two fine sons, Fitzwilliam and Charles.Elizabeth's sister Jane and her husband, Bingley, live nearby; her father visits often; there is optimistic talk about the prospects of marriage for Darcy's sister Georgiana.And preparations are under way for their much-anticipated annual autumn ball. Then, on the eve of the ball, the patrician idyll is shattered.A coach careens up the drive carrying Lydia, Elizabeth's disgraced sister, who with her husband, the very dubious Wickham, has been banned from Pemberley.She stumbles out of the carriage, hysterical, shrieking that Wickham has been murdered.With shocking suddenness, Pemberley is plunged into a frightening mystery. Inspired by a lifelong passion for Austen, P. D. James masterfully re-creates the world of Pride and Prejudice, electrifying it with the excitement and suspense of a brilliantly crafted crime story, as only she can write it.

Zeit der Ehrlichkeit

Zeit der Ehrlichkeit

Author: P. D. James Format: Ebook Release Date: 12/09/2011

Sie spielt Scrabble, signiert 1000 Bucher in einem Rutsch, liebt Katzen und Kirchen, besucht Garten, Freunde und Familie, kann nicht Auto fahren und recherchiert morbide Morde: P.D. James erzahlt locker und assoziativ von ihrem Alltag, gibt Einblicke in den Prozess des Schreibens, schildert Reisen. Sie macht sich Gedanken uber das Alterwerden und die Macht der Disziplin, erinnert sich an Jugend und Krieg. P.D. James hat zwei Kinder grogezogen und immer gearbeitet. 1991 wurde sie geadelt. Mit Raffinesse, Common Sense und Diskretion blickt sie auf ein im Alter geordnetes, erfulltes Leben zuruck - kontrolliert, aber lebendig und ungezwungen zugleich - very british, very good. "e;Dieses feinfhlige/diskrete Tagebuch kann man nicht aus der Hand legen. Es ist sehr menschlich, sehr charakteristisch."e; The Times

The Children of Men

The Children of Men

Author: P. D. James Format: Paperback Release Date: 05/08/2010

The Children of Men by P. D. James

eBooks of the Month
Vorsatz und Begierde

Vorsatz und Begierde

Author: P. D. James Format: Ebook Release Date: 09/07/2010

An der Kuste Norfolks treibt der "e;Whistler"e; sein Unwesen. Geht der Mord an der hubschen Hilary Robarts, die als leitende Angestellte in dem nahen Atomkraftwerk arbeitete, auch auf sein Konto? Commander Dalgliesh ermittelt auf seine eigenwillige Weise. Vorsatz und Begierde von P. D. James: Spannung pur im eBook!

Wer sein Haus auf Sunden baut

Wer sein Haus auf Sunden baut

Author: P. D. James Format: Ebook Release Date: 09/07/2010

Peverell Press ist ein angesehenes Londoner Verlagshaus. Doch seit kurzem stehen die Geschicke des Unternehmens unter einem schlechten Stern; jemand versucht dem Verlag zu schaden. Als der Verleger ermordet wird, ist die Zahl der Verdachtigen gro, denn Gerard Etienne hat sich mit seiner drastischen Verlagspolitik viele Feinde gemacht. Scotland Yards Mordspezialist Commander Adam Dagliesh steht einem uberaus komplexen Mordfall gegenuber ... Wer sein Haus auf Snden baut von P. D. James: packender Thriller im eBook!

Im Land der leeren Hauser

Im Land der leeren Hauser

Author: P. D. James Format: Ebook Release Date: 09/07/2010

Ein Polit-Thriller, der im England des Jahres 2021 spielt. Groe Teile der Insel sind von Wald bedeckt, viele Straen von Gras uberwuchert. Wie uberall auf der Welt haben die Menschen ihre Fortpflanzungsfahigkeit verloren. Unter der Regierungsherrschaft eines Despoten scheint Ordnung zu herrschen, aufrechterhalten allerdings durch eine allgegenwartige Geheimpolizei. Bespitzelungen und Einweisungen in Straflager gehoren zum Alltag. Aber es existiert eine kleine Dissidentengruppe, die sich gegen das brutale Regime auflehnt ... Im land der leeren Huser von P.D. James: packender Thriller im eBook!

Ende einer Karriere

Ende einer Karriere

Author: P. D. James Format: Ebook Release Date: 09/07/2010

Wer kann ein Interesse daran haben, Clarissa, die alternde Theaterdiva, mit Morddrohungen zu verfolgen? Als sie bei einer Privatinszenierung die Hauptrolle ubernimmt, engagiert ihr Mann fur sie die Privatdetektivin Cordelia als Sekretarin. Doch ehe sich der Premierenvorhang hebt, ist Clarissa tot ...

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