Friday FabOoolousness – Love a Good Mystery?

A great method to enjoy reading is to find an author or a series of stories that you simply can’t put down. 

My collection of the series on a messy bookshelf

One fabOoolous example: James Patterson’s Women’s Murder Club Series

The series follows four female friends (a detective, Lindsey Boxer; an attorney, Jill Bernhardt, and later Yuki Castellano; a medical examiner, Claire Washburn; and a reporter, Cindy Thomas) as they work together to solve murder cases in San Francisco.  Without giving too much away, I’ve included a short synopsis of each story.

1st to DieLindsey and her team of friends investigate the serial murders of multiple couples.  Readers are introduced to a few of the hardships in Lindsey’s life following her working on a tough case, “The Honeymoon Murders”, and her diagnoses of a life-threatening disease.        

1st to Die received such great reviews that a two-hour television movie starring Tracy Pollan as the blonde bombshell homicide detective aired in 2003. 

2nd Chance, co-written by Andrew Gross – The Women’s Club investigates a local gang-related murder spree.  Lindsey’s troubles continue, plus her father is introduced (they too share a troubled past).  The other three women have their hands full while assisting Lindsey with the case: one of the four is targeted by the killers, another gets involved in a relationship with one of the victims, and another announces life changing news. 

3rd Degree, co-written by Andrew Gross – Arson, fire, and bombs – OH MY!  The third installment of the series is action packed.  The “August Spies” threaten to kill every three days, and promise the politicians in San Francisco aren’t safe.  FBI investigator, Joe Molinari, joins as a recurring character while one of Lindsey’s friend’s life is in danger.  3rd Degree is nail-biting!

4th of July, co-written by Maxine Paetro – Lindsey goes on vacation to stay at her sister’s house in a desperate attempt to escape the drama and sadness in her life.  The detective in Lindsey can’t vacation, so she starts investigating the murders that she reads about in the small town’s newspaper, and discovers that these murders seem familiar to her.  Lindsey then does what she does best – she throws herself right in the middle of the cases.  Local authorities warn her to mind her own business, but does she? 

The 5th Horseman – co-written by Maxine Paetro – Lindsey and team investigate a San Francisco hospital when one of their own family members takes a turn for the worst after what should have been a routine hospital stay.  A pattern of inexplicable deaths emerge, and the investigation then threatens one of their own.  A new member of the team is introduced in the fifth installment: Yuki. 

The 6th Target, co-written by Maxine Paetro – Lindsey focuses on two cases – A shootout on a ferry ride where one of her best friends narrowly escapes with her life, and the kidnapping of affluent families’ children – no ransom, no contact – the children simply vanish. 

7th Heaven, co written by Maxine Paetro – The governor’s son is missing, and another arsonist is on the loose destroying rich couples and their beautiful homes.  Romantic tensions flare as Lindsey fights the intensifying emotions for her partner Rich, and her FBI agent, Joe. 

8th Confession, co-written by Maxine Paetro – Cindy discovers a homeless man’s corpse, and her empathy pushes her deep into the case.  Despite Lindsey’s warnings, the reporter in Cindy yearns for her big story, prompting Lindsey’s partner to keep a watchful eye, and a few other things, on Cindy.  Will jealousy break up the group?  Meanwhile, Lindsey investigates the mysterious deaths of a wealthy couple, and discovers her case might be related to another homicide that occurred decades earlier.   

The 9th Judgment, co-written by Maxine Paetro – Mothers and their small children are being brutally murdered in public parking garages, and the killer proudly signs his work with lipstick on the car windows.   At the same time, a cat burglar happens into the wrong home, and is now wanted for murder.  After successfully closing the cases, Lindsey’s life is turned upside down; the ending brought me to tears. 

The series releases the tenth installment, 10th Anniversary, Tuesday, May 2nd

ABC aired a dramatic series for one season (2007-2008) and cast Angie Harmon as Lindsey Boxer.  While I enjoyed the show, the episodes didn’t stick to the novel’s storyline, and the show was short-lived.  The visualization of the TV cast helps create a picture show in my mind as I read Patterson’s novels.  I can’t help but envision Angie Harmon as Lindsey (except Lindsey is blonde in the books), Laura Harris as Jill, Paula Newsome as Clair, and Aubrey Dollar as Cindy. 

Here’s to hoping that a network adapts a screenplay for the remainder of the series!  Why stop after 1st to Die?  Who doesn’t love a good two-hour mystery? 

Do you like The Women’s Murder Club series?  Who’s your favorite character?  What other series has you riveted and eagerly awaiting new installments?  I’d love to hear from you!

15 Replies to “Friday FabOoolousness – Love a Good Mystery?”

  1. I haven’t read the series, I did watch the tv show. I like Angie Harmon.
    I am currently trying out the Richard Castle books from the tv show Castle. I think my favorite mystery series is the Hannibal Lector one by Thomas Harris. When I start those books I can’t put them down.

  2. Very nice, Tiffany! I read the first of these and then got away from them. Sounds like I might have to pick them back up. 🙂

    I follow Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum novels – they are hilarious! Also, J.D. Robb’s In Death series. Right now I’m excited to read the last installment of Jean M. Auel’s Earth’s Children series.

    1. Jenny – tell me more about the In Death series…

      Jenny & Angela, I’ve heard a ton about the Stephanie Plum series – I definitely need to check it out!

      Thanks you guys for stopping by! See you in #MyWANA…

      1. I’ve read a couple of the “In Death” series and enjoyed them, but never knew which one came first – I really like to start at the beginning where possible!

      2. Hey, D! You are the 2nd person to recommend the In Death series. I’m with you, I like to read from the beginning…same with TV series. I also like to read a book before watching it’s adapted screenplay. Thanks for stopping by – good luck selling your play!

  3. Mysteries are my fave! I’ve read several series I enjoy. Currently, I eagerly await each installment of the Molly Murphy series by Rhys Bowen. It’s got aspects of history, mystery, and romance.

    1. Hey, Julie! I haven’t heard of the Molly Murphy series. I will have to check it out! I attended a Books n Authors conference yesterday, and specifically a Write-Tight workshop taught by Earl Staggs. He’s written a mystery that is apparantely difficult to figure out. I felt he was challenging me specifically so I bought it – Memory of a Murder. If you like mysteries, maybe we should read together? Thanks for stopping by!

  4. I haven’t read the series but it sounds interesting so I may look for a copy of the first book. My big fav is John Sandford’s Prey series with Lucas Davenport, I love how the character has grown over the years.
    I’m a big fan of the the Stephanie Plum series, too. They make me laugh out loud.

  5. Love these books and loved the sitcom but I wish it would have lasted longer! Have you read any of the “in death” series by JD Robb (Nora Roberts)?

  6. I had read the WMC books before; when I discovered the show, it was love at first sight for many reasons; I think the idea of more than 2 female leads working together and being friends, relating to one another in a respectful way is still unique. During the writers’ strike, when rumors of cancellation first occurred, we started a letter campaign. After the cancellation, we sat down and produced Virtual Seasons for two years (fanfiction); that’s how much we loved the show. I still enjoy the books, but like you said, it’s easy to imagine the actresses who played them while reading. There’s also an annual WMC Day by the way. (@wmcday1 on twitter). Thank you for this post. Always glad to see that it’s not forgotten!

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