Mystery Resources | Mysterious Connecticut

Scope out these mystery titles set in Connecticut.

Berenson, Laurien

Melanie Travis mysteries
Melanie Travis, Fairfield County amateur sleuth, poodle owner
A Pedigree to Die For (1995)
Underdog (1996)
Dog eat dog (1996)
Hair of the dog (1997)
Watchdog (1998)
Hush puppy (1999)
Unleashed (2000)
Once Bitten (2001)
Hot Dog (2002)
Best in Show (2003)
Jingle Bell Bark (2004)
Raining Cats & Dogs (2005)
Chow Down (2006)
Hounded to Death (2007)
Doggie Day Care Murder (2008)


Blizzard, Marie

Eve MacWilliams series
Eve MacWilliams, Wisconsin transplant married to an FBI agent
The Late Lamented Lady (1946)
The Men in her Death (1947)


Christmas, Joyce

Betty Trenka mysteries
Betty Trenka, businesswoman
This Business is Murder (1993)
Death at Face Value (1995)
Downsized to Death (1997)
Mood to Murder (1999)
A Better Class of Murder (2000)
Forged in Blood (2002)


Dank, Gloria

Bernard & Snooky mysteries
Bernard Woodruff, writer, and Snooky, his brother-in-law
Friends till the End (1989)
Going Out in Style (1990)
The Misfortunes of Others (1993)


Delving, Michael (pseudonym of Jay Williams)

Dave Cannon mysteries
Dave Cannon, antique dealer and bookseller Smiling the boy fell dead (1967)
The Devil Finds Work (1969)
Die Like a Man (1970)
A Shadow of Himself (1972)
Bored to Death (1975)
No Sign of Life (1978)


Disney, Doris Miles

Jim O'Neill mysteries
Jim O'Neill, Police Officer
Compound for Death (1943)
Murder on a Tangent (1945)
Appointment at Nine (1947)
Fire at Will (1950)
The Last Straw (1954) [a.k.a. Driven to kill]


Dolson, Hildegarde

Ramsdale & McDougal mysteries
Lucy Ramsdale, Wingate illustrator, and James McDougal, retired homicide detective
To Spite her Face (1971)
A Dying Fall (1973)
Please Omit Funeral (1975)
Beauty Sleep (1977)


Forrest, Richard

Lyon & Bea Wentworth mysteries
Lyon Wentworth, a children's author, and Bea, his state senator wife
A Child's Garden of Death (1975)
The Wizard of Death (1977)
Death Through the Looking Glass (1978)
The Death in the Willows (1979)
The Death at Yew Corner (1981)
Death under the Lilacs (1985)
Death on the Mississippi (1989)
The Pied Piper of Death (1997)
Death in the Secret Garden (2004) 

Death at King Arthur’s Court (2005)


Goulart, Ron

Mavity and Spanner mysteries
H.J. Mavity, Brimsone painter of romance novel covers and her ex-husband, radio announcer Benn Spanner Even the butler was poor (1990)
Now He Thinks He's Dead (1992)


Hall, Parnell

The Puzzle Lady mysteries
Miss Cora Felton, Bakershaven chain-smoking crossword puzzle creator
A Clue for the Puzzle Lady (2000)
Last Puzzle & Testament (2001)
Puzzled to Death (2002)
A Puzzle in a Pear Tree (2002)
With This Puzzle I Thee Kill (2003)
And a Puzzle to Die On (2004)
Stalking the Puzzle Lady (2005)
You Have the Right to Remain Puzzled (2006)
The Sudoku Puzzle Murders (2008)
Dead Man’s Puzzle (2009)


Handler, David 

Berger & Mitry mysteries
Mitch Berger, Dorset film critic, and Desiree Mitry, state trooper
The Cold Blue Blood (2001)
The Hot Pink Farmhouse (2002)
The Bright Silver Star (2003)
The Burnt Orange Sunrise (2004)
The Sweet Golden Parachute (2006)
Sour Cherry Surprise (2008)


Harris, Rosemary

Dirty Business mysteries
Paula Holliday, Springfield landscaper
Pushing Up Daisies (2008)
The Big Dirt Nap (2009)


Hill, Katharine
Lorna Donahue series
Lorna Donahue, Ridgemont realtor
Dear, Dead Mother-in-Law (1944)
Case for Equity (a.k.a. The case of the absent corpse) (1945)


Isleib, Roberta

Advice Column mysteries
Dr. Rebecca Butterman, Guilford CT clinical psychologist and advice columnist
Deadly Advice (2007)
Preaching to the Corpse (2007)
Asking for Murder (2008)


Kallen, Lucille

C. B. Greenfield mysteries
C. B. Greenfield, Sloan's Ford newspaper editor, and Maggie Rome, reporter/musician Introducing C.B. Greenfield (1979)
The Tanglewood Murder (1980)
No Lady in the House (1982)

Kittredge, Mary
Edwina Crusoe mysteries
Edwina Crusoe, New Haven nurse/private investigator Fatal diagnosis (1990)
Rigor Mortis (1991)
Cadaver (1992)
Walking Dead Man (1992)
Desperate Remedy (1993)
Kill or Cure (1995)


Lackey, Mercedes

Diana Tregarde investigations
Diana Tregarde, Hartford paranormal investigator
Burning Water (1989)
Children of the Night (1990)
Jinx High (1991)


Maxim, John R.

Paul Bannerman mysteries
Paul Bannerman, contract agent (assassinations, interrogations, etc.), turned Westport retiree
The Bannerman Solution (1989)
The Bannerman Effect (1990)
Bannerman's Law (1991)
Bannerman's Promise (2001)
Bannerman's Ghosts (2003)


McCullough, Colleen 

Carmine Delmonico mysteries
Carmine Delmonico, police detective in 1960s Holloman (i.e., New Haven)
On, off (2006)
Too Many Murders (2009)


McGaughey, Neil

Stokes Moran mysteries
Stokes Moran, mystery book reviewer Otherwise known as murder (1994)
And Then There Were Ten (1995)
The Best Money Murder Can Buy (1996)
A Corpse by Any Other Name (1998)

McShea, Susanna Hoffman
Hometown Heroes mysteries
Mildred Bennett, Raven's Wing retiree Hometown heroes (1990)
The Pumpkin-shell Wife (1992)
Ladybug, ladybug (1994)


Meade, Amy Patricia

Marjorie McClelland Mysteries
Marjorie McClelland, 1930s Ridgebury mystery writer
Million Dollar Baby (2006)
Ghost of a Chance (2007)
Shadow Waltz (2008)


Olson, Karen E. 

Annie Seymour mysteries
Annie Seymour, New Haven crime reporter Sacred cows (2005)
Secondhand Smoke (2006)
Dead of the Day (2007)
Shot Girl (2008)    


Scott, Justin

Ben Abbott mysteries
Ben Abbott, Newbury real estate agent HardScape (1994)
StoneDust (1995)
FrostLine (2003)
McMansion (2006)
Mausoleum (2007)


Shmurak, Carole B.

Susan Lombardi mysteries
Susan Lombardi, university professor
Deadmistress (2004)
Death by Committee (2006)


Sipherd, Ray

Jonathan Wilder mysteries
Jonathan Wilder, Scarborourgh ornithologist Dance of the scarecrows (1996)
The Audubon quartet (1998)
The devil's hawk (2002)


Travis, Elizabeth

Ben & Carrie Porter mysteries
The Porters, mystery book publishers in upscale Riverdale
Under the Influence (1989)
Finders Keepers (1990)


Van Wormer, Laura

Sally Harrington mysteries
Sally Harrington, Castleford journalist
Expose (1999)
The Last Lover (2000)
Trouble Becomes Her (2001)
The Bad Witness (2002)
The Kill Fee (2003)
Mr. Murder (2006)


Waugh, Hillary

Fred Fellows mysteries
Fred Fellows, small town Stockford police department head Sleep long, my love (1959)
Road Block (1959)
That Night it Rained (1961)
The Late Mrs. D. (1962)
Born Victim (1962)
Death and Circumstances (1963)
Prisoner's Plea (1963)
The Missing Man (1964)
End of a Party (1965)
Pure Poison (1966)
The Con Game (1968)


Wolzien, Valerie

Susan Henshaw mysteries
Susan Henshaw, Hancock housewife and PTA vice-president
Murder at the PTA Luncheon (1987)
The Fortieth Birthday Body (1989)
We Wish You a Merry Murder (1991)
All Hallow's Evil (1992)
An Old Faithful Murder (1992)
A Star Spangled Murder (1993)
A Good Year for a Corpse (1994)
Tis the Season to Be Murdered (1994)
Remodeled to Death (1995)
Elected for Death (1996)
Weddings are Murder (1998)
The Student Body (1999)
Death at a Discount (2000)
An Anniversary to Die For (2002)
Death in a Beach Chair (2004)
Death in Duplicate (2005)


Individual Titles

Abrahams, Peter

The tutor (2002)

When their son’s SAT scores are poor, a central Connecticut couple hire a tutor. The young man is wonderful at tutoring, but he's also wonderful at learning their secrets and uses what he has learned against each member of the family.

Barclay, Linwood

Fear the worst (2009)

Milford car dealer Tim Blake‘s daughter Sydney vanishes into thin air after leaving for her job at a nearby hotel, where it turns out no one has ever heard of her.  He soon discovers that Syndney drinks when she parties, hangs out with a wild crowd, and might be pregnant, and finds himself in over his head with cops and criminals alike.  

Barclay, Linwood

No time for goodbye (2007)

Twenty-five years after her parents and brother vanished without a trace a Milford housewife agrees to appear on a reenactment show. A mysterious phone call after her story airs is just the beginning of a vicious game that someone has decided to play with her emotions.  It becomes obvious that her family was keeping secrets she never suspected.

Bechard, Gorman

Good neighbors (1998)

Ex-cop Juke Miller now runs a bar in Harmony, a slightly downscale suburb of New Haven. When his best friend is killed by a cop for shooting a neighbor who poisoned his dog, Miller doubts the official version of the incident.

Bechard, Gorman

Ninth Square (2002)

When a man's body is discovered in one of New Haven's sleazier motels, it appears to be a simple case of a prostitute killing a john. A case that's quick, clean, and easy. But, as William Shute and his fellow detectives investigate, it becomes clear that this case will be anything but quick and easy.

Benitivegna, Joseph 

The Lords of Greenwich (2003)

Down and out mechanic Bob Dusza is looking to better his life by gambling at the Bridgeport jai alai fronton. His winnings are piling up and the fronton’s owner, a Greenwich millionaire, is not amused. When Dusza ends up dead, detective Pierre Appollon can’t even figure out how he died, let alone who killed him.

Brogan, Jan

Confidential Source (2005)

Providence reporter Hallie Ahern digs for facts at Connecticut blackjack tables while investigating the shooting death of her neighborhood convenience store owner.

Clark, Mary Higgins

A stranger is watching (1991)

Ronald Thompson did not kill Nina Peterson, but in two days the state of Connecticut will execute him for her murder. But his death won't stop the pain and anger of Nina's husband, nor will it still the fears of the young son who witnessed her brutal slaying. And a cunning psychopath who has killed before has unfinished business at the Peterson home.

Clark, Mary Higgins

Two Little Girls in Blue (2006)

Three-year old twin sisters Kathy and Kelly Frawley are kidnapped from their Ridgefield home and held for an $8 million ransom. Kelly is returned safely but Kathy is believed to be dead until Kelly incredibly begins imparting information about her sister's whereabouts and the identity of her ruthless abductors.

Clark, Mary Higgins

We'll meet again (1999)

Investigative reporter Fran Simmons has just been hired to work on a new TV show called True Crime. Her first assignment involves a former student from her own Greenwich high school, Molly Lasch, who was incarcerated in her mid-20s, for pulverizing her husband's head with a Remington bronze sculpture.

Crespi, Camilla T.

The Trouble With Thin Ice (1994)

Simona treks to the Sleepy Hollow Inn in Fieldston at Christmas for a wedding in this fourth Simona Griffo mystery. Tensions rise when local widow Elizabeth Dobson announces that she's selling her Frank Lloyd Wright house to an interracial couple. Soon after, Simona stumbles upon the woman's corpse.

Coffey, Jan

Blind eye (2009)

When an experimental program to read brain images is used on a woman in a Waterbury psychiatric unit, researchers are shocked at what they find.

Davis, Lavinia R.

Reference to death (1950)

A librarian at Stillbridge Memorial Library is murdered.

Davis, Lavinia R.

Taste of vengeance (1947)

The body of a handyman is found after a newlywed couple are renovating their new Connecticut home, followed by two other deaths, perhaps having to do with the couple’s uncle who had been active in intelligence work during World War II.

Disney, Doris Miles

No Next of Kin (1959)

A mystery involving the tragic Hartford circus fire of 1944. 

Drake, Rebecca

Don’t be afraid (2006)

Amy Moran leaves her cheating husband in Manhattan and moves with her daughter Emma to Steerforth where major crimes seldom happen. When Amy gets a job as a realtor she finds a fellow realtor murdered and becomes the prime suspect when she then finds one of her clients murdered in the same way.

Dunne, Dominick

A season in purgatory (1993)

A saga about the Bradley (Skakel!) clan of Scarborough Hill (Greenwich!) in which a young man’s silence is bought by the family patriarch after he witnesses a crime committed by the man’s son.

Fasman, Jon 

The geographer's library (2005)

When an esteemed professor is been found dead in his Lincoln home, Paul Tomm, the somewhat feckless new recruit on the local paper, is asked to write an obituary and ends up involved in an elaborate international intrigue.

Goulart, Ron

The Tijuana Bible (1989)

The Tijuana Bible (a pornographic comic book) is the key to hidden treasure. In its pages is a coded map leading to a collection of "Golden Age" comics worth millions. Cartoonist Jack Deacon follows the clues from Connecticut all the way to California.

Graham, Heather

A season of miracles (2001)

Since her husband's death, jewelry designer Jillian Llewellyn has withdrawn and focused only on her work. During family Christmas celebrations at a Connecticut farmhouse, a series of bizarre accidents make Jillian fearful that someone wants to harm her.

Grandhi, Preetham

A circle of souls (2009)

The sleepy town of Newbury is shocked when a little girl is found brutally murdered. Another girl in town starts having disturbing nightmares and begins drawing chilling images of the crime. Her doctor teams up with an FBI agent to find out what she may have witnessed.

Grant, Ellsworth S.

Agenda for murder (1985)

Political factions are at war over the proposed Foxfield Mall in Wintonbury and when a downtown grocer is found dead from strangulation in the burned out ruins of his store and then the mayor dies under suspicious circumstances, Detective Elmer “Billy” Budd has his hands full as he tries to connect the two deaths.

Haddam, Jane

Fountain of death (1995)

The naked, lethally poisoned body of a weight-training instructor is found in the bushes behind the Fountain of Youth Workout Studio. The New Haven police ask ex-FBI agent Gregor Demarkian to assist with the investigation, but when Demarkian arrives from Philadelphia, he finds that the local police are less than helpful.

Haddam, Jane

Skeleton key (2000)

When writer Bennis Hannaford discovers the body of heiress Kayla Anson, her visit to Litchfield County is reluctantly extended. Ex-FBI man Gregor Demarkian arrives to consult with local police and finds that the countryside is brimming with secrets.

Handler, David

The Girl Who Ran Off with Daddy (1996)

Big city ghost-writer Stewart “Hoagy” Hoag decides to try the quiet country life and moves to bucolic Lyme. After one of his author friends runs off with his wife's 18-year-old daughter (a la Woody Allen) Hoagy agrees to take them in and help write a tell-all book, but the author’s body is found in a pond on Hoagy’s farm.

Hanson, Mary Catherine

The house on Holly Street (1999)

Francesca Mayhew, the daughter of a career diplomat, has lived most of her life in foreign countries. When her parents are killed she returns to Edgecombe, her mother's hometown. Francesca finds that there is more intrigue in the house on Holly Street than in any of the embassies in which her father ever served.

Heller, Jane

Cha cha cha (1994)

Alison Koff can't make ends meet with her part-time job as a reporter for the upscale Layton newspaper, so she goes to work as a maid for a celebrity writer who's in town to dig up some dirt. When Alison finds her murdered body, she becomes the main suspect.

Heller, Jane

The Club (1995)

While attempting to perk up her marriage and deal with other family issues, Judy Mills tries networking at an old-line Connecticut country club. There, she meets Claire Cox, the club's first single woman member. When Claire is found dead, Judy is hired by the local police to help find the killer.

Hogan, Michael

Burial of the dead (2008)

When a wealthy woman dies in Hartford, the mystery surrounding her death and estate involves many suspects and motives.  The cause of death will determine the payout of her estate.

Johns, Veronica

Shady doings (1941)

A woman returns to Connecticut to sell her house and her welcome-home party is disrupted when the hostess’ dog appears with a human bone.

Judd, Margaret H.

Murder makes its mark (1961)

After acquiring a harmless looking diary among a group of books, Peg Gilbert is knocked unconscious in her Hartford bookshop and the diary is stolen. The trail of clues leads her to a church in New Hampshire from which the books had been shipped.

Kains, Josephine (pseud. of Ron Goulart) 

The witch’s tower mystery (1979)

A Boston television reporter attends a conference on Hedge Island where a famous horror writer once lived.  There is a lot of bickering between the horror writers in attendance and then one of them is found dad at the base of a local landmark called the Witch’s Tower.

Kittredge, Mary

Dead and Gone (1989)

Charlotte Kent is freelance writer from California moves to New Haven when her son develops medical problems. When a young medical student is murdered and his body disappears her best friend is the prime suspect. This is the second novel of the Kent series.

Kittredge, Mary

Poison pen (1990)

Charlotte takes a job editing at a magazine and after the author who is the main contributor is murdered she begins to suspects that she was the real target. This is the third and final novel of the Kent series.

Klein, Kathleen Gregory

The deadly garden tour (2004)

The chair of the annual garden tour, Greenwich’s premier social event, is dead in garden designer Liz Clarke’s garage, and Liz's pregnant goddaughter, Melissa, who discovers the body, becomes the prime suspect.

Law, Janice

Infected be the air (1991)

Alice doesn't have much love lost for her ex-husband but when he is found dead along with his new lover and her child in the family's rustic cabin, ostensibly a case of murder-suicide, Alice doesn't believe it. She begins her own investigation and finds that all is not well in charming eastern Connecticut.

Law, Janice

The Lost Diaries of Iris Weed (2002)

Connecticut university professor Jason "Lars" Larson's dalliance with Iris Weed leaves him out of control. When her body is found in a nearby park, the police eye him as their prime suspect. He undertakes his own investigation, unwittingly making himself, his wife, and their daughter the target of a psychopath.

Law, Janice

The Night Bus (2001)

Cath Tolland wakes up in a hospital in Florida with no memory of how she got there. Her sister-in-law arrives from Connecticut to take her home to her husband whom, she is told, she stabbed before taking flight. As Cath begins to regain her memory, she finds that a vague terror is growing inside of her.

Law, Janice

A Safe Place to Die (1995)

The Estates at branch Hill offers state of the art security but when a local girl is found murdered within yards of her home, Anna Peters begins to put together a complicated and tragic puzzle.

Law, Janice

Voices (2003)

For some time, Leslie has felt as though there is more to her childhood than she can remember. When she comes across a story about the mysterious disappearance of a little girl 25 years ago she makes an impulsive trip to a small Connecticut town to find some answers.

Marlowe, Katharine

Nightfall (1993)

Rebecca Leighton leads a calm life in a quiet Connecticut town until she is threatened by an anonymous stalker. Though the police say they can't help, one enigmatic detective is drawn to both Rebecca and her case. By the time she discovers the identity of her stalker, her peaceful existence has been destroyed.

Masterton, Graham 

Touchy and Feely (2006)

The state police are baffled by a spree of random shootings until New Preston fortune-teller Sissy Sawyer contacts them with predictions and clues that she has read in her cards.

Maxim, John 

Platforms (1980)

Peter Halloran commutes each day from his home in Riverside to New York City. His ordinary life begins to unravel on the day he sees a dead man standing on the train platform. Soon Halloran is trapped in the dark secrets and lethal mysteries of his quiet home town.

Miano, Mark

Dead of summer (1999)

Television writer Michael Carpo escapes to the small town of Bridgewater once a year for a week at the house of a friend, elderly writer Jack Crawford. When he finds Jack dead. it looks a lot like suicide, but a trip to the local library reveals that the older residents of the town are dying at a suspiciously fast clip. The deceased are all linked to a ghost town submerged by a recently constructed lake.

Michaels, Barbara 

Other Worlds (1999)

A group of specialists including Harry Houdini and Arthur Conan Doyle meet to review unsolved supernatural mysteries, including the 1850 haunting of the family of the Reverend Dr. Phelps in Stratford.

Morgenroth, Kate

They Did it with Love (2008)

A newly transported Greenwich woman falls in with a group of desperate housewives and when a young trophy wife is found swinging from a tree in her front yard, the obvious conclusion is suicide, but mystery addict Sofie sets out to do a little sleuthing.

Murder in New England (1989)

Contains 19 short murder mysteries set in New England, some with Connecticut as the locale.

Nelscott, Kris

War at home (2005)

African American P.I. Smokey Dalton heads east from Chicago on the trail of a missing Yale student.  It is the 1960s and Dalton learns that the young man may be involved in the dark side of the antiwar movement and may have gone underground with a group intent on bombing New York City.

O'Grady, Leslie

The Grateful Undead (2002)

A former actress with a talent for attracting trouble returns to her Connecticut hometown and lands a job as the assistant to a handsome PI. A teenage girl has disappeared, and in tracking down a vampire wannabe killer Wanda Miranda LaFortuna discovers just how good her acting really is.

Papazoglou, Orania

Charisma (1992)

The week that 35-year-old Susan Murphy, out of the convent after 17 years, returns to her family's home to live with her brother Dan, the Elm City's DA, marks the beginning of two crime waves: the murders and ritual markings of former nuns and the execution-style murders of very young male prostitutes. New Haven's chief of homicide, Pat Mallory, must try to solve both sets of crimes as he and Susan are drawn together.

Papazoglou, Orania

Once and Only Murder (1991)

When Patience “Pay” McKenna returns to her family home in Waverly  to plan her wedding her relatives start dying off and then her high school friend is found hanging in a greenhouse in this fifth and final title in the Pay McKenna series.

Papazoglou, Orania

Sanctity (1986)

Three postulants arrive at the motherhouse of a religious order in suburban Connecticut, each with her own set of intricate reasons to become a nun. When a bell rope resembling a noose and dismembered birds appear along with strange lights and sounds and stolen amphetamines it becomes doubtful that someone is trying to ruin the convent and drive them towards madness and death.

Pearson, Ridley

Chain of Evidence (1995)

Hartford, just might have a serial killer on its streets. A rare chemical has shown up in the blood of several corpses. It's a case for Sergeant Joe "Dart" Dartelli, a genius in the field of forensic medicine, who discovers that the killings may be linked to his old mentor.

Perran, Gaila Ozaki 

Ticked Off (2003)

The promiscuous owner of a downtown beauty salon in Westport is found dead with a knife wound in his back. Police Lt. Michael Phelan enlists the aid of Fairfield University psychology professor Don Sanford to unravel a tangle of conflicting clues.

Pintoff, Ernest

Zachary (1990)

The sole witness to the grisly murder of a local war hero in a small Connecticut town just after World War II joins forces with a big city detective to solve the crime.

Ripley, Ann

The Garden Tour Affair (1999)

Public TV hostess Louise Eldridge travels to Connecticut to tape a TV show on the gardens of Litchfield. One of the other guests staying at the same inn as Louise falls off a mountain summit. Another guest is found dead, an apparent suicide. This is the 4th novel of the Eldridge amateur sleuth/horticulturalist series.

Savage, Tom

The inheritance (1998)

Holly Smith learns that she is really Holly Randall, with a $600 million fortune, including an estate in Connecticut. There are a few small drawbacks, including relatives who want Holly dead badly enough to hire a hit man. Randall House conceals many dark and terrifying secrets that could cost Holly her life.

Schneider, Joyce Anne

Darkness falls (1989)

Psychiatrist Amanda Hammond returns to coastal Grand Cove to practice in a private hospital there and becomes involved in the suspicious drowning of a local girl.

Smith, Mary-Ann Tirone

Masters of illusion (1994)

A married couple search to find the truth behind the Hartford circus fire of 1944. The wife is a survivor of the tragedy. The husband is convinced it was an act of deliberate murder.

Southard, Duke

Agent for justice (2003)

Bradford Wallace was an idealistic teacher in Hampton Village during the early sixties. His life is marked by one disillusioning event after another and he becomes mentally unstable. When an unusual accident nearly kills the doctor he blames for the stillbirth of his son, the police have some questions for him.

Straub, Peter

The Hellfire Club (1995)

While visiting the local police station to identify the most recent victim of a serial killer, Nora Chancel is kidnapped by the accused killer. Intertwined with the kidnapping plot is an account of the terrifying events that followed the writing of a horror story at the Shorelands writers' colony in 1938.

Thomas-Graham, Pamela

Blue blood: an Ivy League mystery (2000)

When Nikki learns that the wife of her old mentor has been found brutally murdered on a deserted New Haven street, Nikki starts her own probe into the circumstances surrounding the murder. While the police build a case against a black sophomore football star, Nikki learns that others had stronger motives and that even blue blood can be spilled in the heat.

Weiner, Jennifer 

Goodnight Nobody (2005)

Kate Klein, a young mother, moves to postcard-perfect Upchurch, which turns out to be full of unpleasant surprises. When a fellow mom is murdered, Kate launches her own unofficial investigation with the help of some of her friends.

West, Eugenia Lovett

Without warning (2007)

Emma Streat’s husband dies in a hit-and-run accident shortly after they return from London. She heads back to London to investigate and soon learns of two apparently related deaths. Though attempts are made on her own life, she remains determined to learn who murdered her husband and why.

Westlake, Donald

The Hook (2000)

Bryce Proctorr has a huge contract for his next novel, a wife he hates, and a bad case of writer's block. He makes a deal with Wayne Prentice to publish his unsold manuscript under Proctorr's name. The two will split the book advance fifty-fifty, if Prentice will also dispose of the wife. The story begins in Manhattan but plays out at Proctorr’s Connecticut estate.

White, Kate

If Looks Could Kill (2002)

When her editor finds her son's nanny dead (literally "death by chocolate"), Bailey Weggins, true crime writer and some-time sleuth, finds herself on a dangerous trail of clues that begins in the elegant suburbs of Connecticut.

White, Kate

'Til Death Do Us Part (2004)

When two bridesmaids die in freak accidents, the third turns to Bailey Weggins for help, who must cope with "Bridezilla" of Greenwich in the process.

White, Stephen

The Siege (2009)

FBI agents are desperately trying to solve the riddle of what is going on inside the windowless stone tomb on the edge of the Yale campus where an unknown enemy is sending students, one by one, out of the building’s front door to die.

Wiltse, David

Prayer for the Dead (1991)

Retired FBI agent John Becker reluctantly agrees to help the police chief of a small Connecticut town investigate the cases of 15 missing men. Learning that many of the men have mothers with Scandinavian maiden names, Becker looks for someone who might have access to such information.

Wiltse, David

Bone Deep (1995)

Wiltse's fifth thriller to John Becker finds him back in Connecticut once again. A serial killer is preying on young women in the commuter hamlet of Camden. The rain-swollen Saugatuck River floats a human bone into a local backyard, and marks on the bone reveal that the body it belongs to was cut in pieces before burial. A local police officer is implicated in the killings.

Yager, Fred and Jan

Just Your Everyday People (2001)

Julia Stanton and her husband Paul get together every Friday night at a local bar in their Connecticut town to unwind with Julia's best friend, Lizzie, and her husband John. When Lizzie comes on to a stranger in the bar, blackmail, betrayal and murder ensue.


True Crime

Barthel, Joan

A death in Canaan (1976)

In Canaan in 1973 Peter Reilly was charged with the mutilation murder of his mother, Barbara Gibbons.

Bass, Paul

Murder in the Model City (2006)

Recounts the circus-like trial of Bobby Seale and seven other Black Panthers after the body of Alex Rackley, a suspected spy within their group, was discovered near New Haven on May 21, 1969.

Colucci, Vito

Inside the Private Eyes of a P.I. (2007)

Includes details of Connecticut cases including the Moxley murder and the cruise ship honeymoon disappearance of George Smith.

Connery, Donald S.

Guilty Until Proven Innocent(1977)

Peter Reilly was cleared of the crime and it remains unsolved.

Douglas, Geoffrey

Dead Opposites: The Lives and Loss of Two American Boys (1994)

Christian Prince, a Yale student from an affluent family was fatally shot in New Haven in 1991. His accused murderer was a Black gang member.

Dumas, Timothy

A Wealth of Evil (1998) [a.k.a. Greentown]

The true story of the murder of Martha Moxley in America's wealthiest community

Fuhrman, Mark

Murder in Greenwich: who killed Martha Moxley? (1999)

In 1975, fifteen-year-old Martha Moxley was bludgeoned and stabbed with a golf club on the grounds of her family's Greenwich home. One of her friends, Michael Skakel, was convicted for the crime almost twenty five years later.

Hammer, Richard

Beyond Obsession: A Chilling Account of Love, Abuse, and Murder (1992)

In 1987, Glastonbury social worker Joyce Aparo was strangled by Dennis Coleman at the urging of her daughter, Karin.

Herzog, Arthur

The Woodchipper Murder (1989)

In November, 1986, shortly before divorce papers were to be served on her husband, Helle Crafts, a flight attendant and mother of three, disappeared from her Newtown home. Her husband was convicted of killing her and destroying her remains with a woodchipper.

Lee, Henry C.

Cracking cases (2002)

Includes a chapter on the Helle Craft woodchipper murder.

Lee, Henry C.

Cracking more cases (2004)

Includes a chapter on the Martha Moxley case.

Levitt, Leonard

Conviction: Solving the Moxley Murder (2004)

Written after the Michael Skakel conviction, a reporter tells of his efforts to solve the case along with a Greenwich detective despite attempts by the press and the police to suppress their investigation.

McConnell, Virginia A.

Arsenic Under the Elms: Murder in Victorian New Haven (1999)

Unrelated, although disturbingly similar, murders of two young women in New Haven in the late 1800s.

Nizer, Louis

Catspaw: the Famed Trial Attorney's Heroic Defense of a Man Unjustly Accused (1992)

In 1974, Irving and Rhoda Pasternak, a Waterbury lawyer and his wife, were hacked to death by an intruder. Their ex-son-in-law Murray Gold was accused of the crime.

O’Nan, Stewart

The Circus Fire (2000)

Only July 6, 1944 the Ringling Bros. circus big top caught fire during an afternoon performance in Hartford. 167 people died in the resulting inferno. The identity of one unclaimed victim, a young girl known only as Little Miss 1565, remains a mystery to this day.

Phelps, M. William

Lethal Guardian (2004)

Beth Carpenter sought guardianship of her niece, the daughter of her estranged sister who had married "Buzz" Clinton, a former male exotic dancer. Clinton was found dead and Carpenter was sentenced to life in prison for his murder.

Sherman, Mickey

How Can You Defend Those People? (2008)

Sherman gives an account of his legal career including the Alex Kelly, Roger Ligon and Michael Skakel trials.

Smith, Mary-Ann Tirone

Girls of Tender Age (2006)

The author investigates the life and crimes of the psychopath who murdered her 11 year-old girlfriend in Hartford in 1953.

Wilbourne, William W.

The wheels: the state of Connecticut vs. Patrick G. Finno (1968)

An account of the defense of Patrick G. Finno for the 1966 Stamford murder of Margot Farnham.


Jane Murphy, Reference Librarian
Tel: 203.291.4836 Email: jmurphy [at] westportlibrary [dot] org