CRRL Picks: 21 Historical Female Sleuths You Don't Want to Mess With

Absolution By Murder
Absolution By Murder By Tremayne, Peter Paperback - 1997 Available in some locations

Annotation:Tremayne's series features Sister Fidelma, a 7th century Celtic sister and legal advocate in Kildare, Ireland.

And Only to Deceive
And Only to Deceive By Alexander, Tasha Book - 2005 FICTION Ale Available in some locations

Annotation:Lady Emily Ashton moves in the most exclusive circles of Victorian London. But behind the veneer of sumptuous drawing rooms and ballrooms, even the aristocracy is not immune to burglary, betrayals and brutal murders. Follow Lady Emily through country estates and Mayfair mansions, on Continental excursions and journeys to exotic locales, as she uncovers clues--and romance--in this historical mystery series.

Bellfield Hall, Or, The Observations of Miss Dido Kent
Bellfield Hall, Or, The Observations of Miss Dido Kent By Dean, Anna Book - 2010 FICTION Dea Available in some locations

Annotation:Historical mysteries set in England in the early 1800s starring Miss Dido Kent.

Cocaine Blues
Cocaine Blues A Phryne Fisher Mystery By Greenwood, Kerry Book - 2006 FICTION Gre Available in some locations

Annotation:The Honourable Miss Phryne Fisher is a 1920s London socialite living in Melbourne, Australia. She is highly fashionable and generous, knows poverty from humble origins until war deaths elevated her father to British aristocracy. Having found herself to be adept at solving mysteries, she becomes a professional lady detective.

Crocodile On The Sandbank
Crocodile On The Sandbank By Peters, Elizabeth Book - 2002

Annotation:Featuring Egyptologist Amelia Peabody Emerson, the novels blend satire, mystery, romance, and comedy. The series spans a thirty-eight-year period from 1884 to 1923. Most of the books are primarily set in Egypt, with some installments including scenes set in England and Gaza.

Death at Wentwater Court: A Daisy Dalrymple Mystery
Death at Wentwater Court: A Daisy Dalrymple Mystery By Dunn, Carola Large Print - 2007 FICTION Dun Available in some locations

Annotation:These 1920's mysteries are a cozy look at post World War I Britain. The Honourable Daisy Dalrymple writes magazine features that frequently get her involved in murder.

Death in Lacquer Red
Death in Lacquer Red A Hilda Johansson Mystery By Dams, Jeanne M. Book - 1999 FICTION Dam Available in some locations

Annotation:Hilda Johansson is a turn-of-the-century Swedish housemaid in South Bend, Indiana.

A Duty to the Dead
A Duty to the Dead By Todd, Charles Book - 2009 FICTION Tod Available in some locations

Annotation:A mystery series set on the battlefields of World War I featuring nurse Bess Crawford.

Her Royal Spyness
Her Royal Spyness By Bowen, Rhys Book - 2007 FICTION Bow Available in some locations

Annotation:The Royal Spyness mysteries feature Lady Victoria Georgiana "Georgie" Charlotte Eugenie, cousin of King George V of England, who is penniless and trying to survive on her own as an ordinary person in London in 1932.

Jane and the Unpleasantness at Scargrave Manor
Jane and the Unpleasantness at Scargrave Manor Being the First Jane Austen Mystery By Barron, Stephanie Book - 1996 FICTION Bar Available in some locations

Annotation:This mystery series features Jane Austen as detective in Regency England.

Maisie Dobbs
Maisie Dobbs A Novel By Winspear, Jacqueline Book - 2003 FICTION Win Available in some locations

Annotation:Maisie Dobbs is a psychologist and private investigator in 1920's London.

Mistress of the Art of Death
Mistress of the Art of Death By Franklin, Ariana Book - 2007 FICTION Fra Available in some locations

Annotation:Vesuvia Adelia Rachel Ortese Aguilar did not want to leave her native Salerno for the chilly fens of uncivilized medieval England, but even a highly trained medical coroner cannot ignore King Henry II’s request for her detecting skills.

Murder at the Vicarage
Murder at the Vicarage A Miss Marple Mystery By Christie, Agatha Book - 2006 FICTION Chr Available in some locations

Annotation:"Murder at the Vicarage" marks the debut of Agatha Christie's unflappable and much beloved female detective, Miss Jane Marple. The series is set mainly in the English countryside throughout the early to mid 20th century.

Murphy's Law
Murphy's Law A Molly Murphy Mystery By Bowen, Rhys Book - 2001 FICTION Bow All copies in use Availability details Holds: 1 on 1 copy

Annotation:Molly Murphy always knew she'd end up in trouble, just as her mother predicted. She has to flee her cherished Ireland for the anonymous shores of America. But starting a new life doesn’t keep Molly out of trouble—and soon she’s doing detective work in early 20th-century New York.

Murder On Astor Place
Murder On Astor Place By Thompson, Victoria Book - 1999

Annotation:Sarah Brandt, a midwife in turn-of-the-20th-century New York City, in the Gaslight Mysteries.

The Poyson Garden
The Poyson Garden An Elizabethan Mystery By Harper, Karen Book - 1999 FICTION Har Available in some locations

Annotation:Many books feature an Elizabethan setting, only this one features Elizabeth I as the investigator.

Sister Pelagia and the White Bulldog
Sister Pelagia and the White Bulldog A Novel By Akunin, B. Book - 2007 FICTION Aku Available in some locations

Annotation:Sister Pelagia is a Russian Orthodox nun, acting as a girls' school teacher in the provincial town of Zavolzhsk on the left bank of the Volga in Imperial Russia that is set in the late 1890s or in the early 1900s.

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie
The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie By Bradley, C. Alan Book - 2010 FICTION Bra Available in some locations

Annotation:Precocious 11-year old fascinated with chemistry and death bicycles around Bishop's Lacey from ancient country house Buckshaw in 1950s England. Picture a girl who lives there with her most unusual family. Her name is Flavia de Luce—and she’s almost eleven. Picture a long-abandoned Victorian chemistry laboratory; no one ever goes there but Flavia. Put them all together and you’ll have a new kind of detective fiction.

The Three-body Problem
The Three-body Problem By Shaw, Catherine Book - 2004 FICTION Sha Available in some locations

Annotation:Vanessa Duncan, a schoolteacher in late 19th century Cambridge, England, in the Cambridge mysteries. Each book is built around a true mathematical problem that concerned the greatest minds in the intellectual circles of the time.

To Shield the Queen
To Shield the Queen A Mystery at Queen Elizabeth I's Court, Introducing Ursula Blanchard By Buckley, Fiona Book - 1997 FICTION Buc Available in some locations

Annotation:Set in 16th Century England these mysteries feature Ursula Blanchard, a young widow who is one of Elizabeth I's Ladies of the Presence Chamber. An eye for suspicious dealings has gained her an additional income as a spy for the Queen.

A Trace of Smoke
A Trace of Smoke By Cantrell, Rebecca Book - 2009 FICTION Can Available in some locations

Annotation:Cantrell's mystery series features Hannah Vogel, a crime reporter in 1930s Berlin, Germany.

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Looking for a new mystery series? Try one of these historical novels, which showcase strong female detectives.

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