All 30+ Elly Griffiths Books in Order | Ultimate Guide

Elly Griffiths’ debut novel was the first book in her popular Ruth Galloway series. More than a decade later, Griffiths has now written two dozen more books and began three more series. The first standalone novel in the list of Elly Griffiths books in order will be published in the spring of 2024.

Her books vividly describe the settings of rural England, Brighton, and beyond. The descriptive prose serves as the backdrop for befuddling murders that her protagonists must unravel.

Who is Elly Griffiths?

Elly Griffiths is the pen name for Domenica de Rosa. She wrote four novels under that name, though they are out of print these days.

Those first four books are romances, and when she wanted to begin writing mysteries, the publisher wasn’t interested. Thankfully, her agent suggested adopting a pseudonym and seeking out a new publisher, which is how the first Ruth Galloway book became a reality.

Elly Griffiths Books in Order

#1 Elly Griffiths Books in Order by Series

Reading the Elly Griffiths books in order by series is really the only way to go. Pick whichever series captures your attention and power through to the end. We recommend beginning with Ruth Galloway and then moving on to the Brighton Mysteries.

Ruth Galloway Books

This is Elly Griffith’s most popular series and it also includes her debut under this name. The Ruth Galloway books follow the titular character who is a forensic archaeologist in Norfolk.

If you would like to learn more about the Ruth Galloway books, you can check out this article all about the series.

  1. The Crossing Places (2009)
  2. The Janus Stone (2010)
  3. The House at Sea’s End (2012)
  4. A Room Full of Bones (2012)
  5. Ruth’s First Christmas Tree (2012) (Short Story)
  6. A Dying Fall / Tomb of the Raven King (2013)
  7. The Outcast Dead (2014)
  8. The Ghost Fields (2015)
  9. The Woman in Blue (2016)
  10. The Chalk Pit (2017)
  11. The Dark Angel (2018)
  12. The Stone Circle (2019)
  13. The Lantern Men (2020)
  14. The Night Hawks (2021)
  15. The Locked Room (2022)
  16. The Last Remains (2023)

Do you have to read Ruth Galloway Mysteries in order?                      

It is not strictly necessary to read these books by Elly Griffiths in order of publication, but it is recommended.

Each book does contain a standalone murder mystery, so the plots can stand on their own. However, there are recurring characters throughout the series. Their motivations and the character development will make the most sense if you read the books in order.

The relationship between Ruth and Detective Chief Inspector Nelson will also make more sense if you read these books in order of publication. Reading the books in this order will means that you won’t accidentally stumble across any spoilers for their relationship at various points in the series.

Is The Last Remains the last book in the Ruth Galloway series?

Unfortunately, the latest book in the series, The Last Remains, is the last book in the series. This news prompted heartbroken outcry from fans. However, Griffiths has left a door, or at least a window, open with the possibility of one day returning to this beloved world.

Griffiths said that The Last Remains felt like the closing of a chapter for Ruth Galloway, and for herself as well. For this reason, her focus will be shifting to her other writing projects, but the possibility for Ruth to return in the future is always there.

The Brighton Mysteries Books

Elly Griffith’s second series is about another place she knows very well, which is Brighton. The Brighton Mysteries take place in the 1950s and follow Detective Inspector Edgar Stephens and magician Max Mephisto.

Once again each book will contain a standalone crime. However, in order to best understand the characters, their backstory, and their motivations, you should read these books in order of publication.

  1. The Zig Zag Girl (2015)
  2. Smoke and Mirrors (2016)
  3. The Blood Card (2017)
  4. The Vanishing Box (2018)
  5. Now You See Them (2019)
  6. The Midnight Hour (2021)

Justice Jones Books

Next is a middle grade series from Elly Griffiths. This takes the crime fiction writing for which Griffiths has become well-known and tailors it for a younger audience.

The series follows a young girl named Justice who is sent to Highbury House Boarding School for the Daughters of Gentlefolk. While the transition is a shock for her, Justice takes it upon herself to uncover the truth about a chamber maid’s murder and the etiquette of this strange boarding school.

  1. A Girl Called Justice (2019)
  2. The Smugglers’ Secret (2020)
  3. A Ghost in the Garden (2021)
  4. The Spy at the Window (2022)

Harbinder Kaur Books

What began as standalone novels have since been linked by the recurring character of Harbinder Kaur. Once more, the best way to read these books is in order of publication.

  1. The Stranger Diaries (2019)
  2. The Postscript Murders (2021)
  3. Bleeding Heart Yard (2022)

Standalone Books

Elly Griffiths’s upcoming novel will be her first standalone mystery with the introduction of new characters.

  1. The Last Word (Expected: April 23, 2024)

Published as Domenica de Rosa

Finally, the very first books Elly Griffiths ever published were under her real name of Domenica de Rosa. These books all take place in Italy and are about family and identity. While these books are very different from her detective books, if you enjoy her writing it may be worth seeking out a copy of her first novels.

  1. The Italian Quarter (2004)
  2. The Eternal City (2005)
  3. Villa Serena (2007)
  4. Summer School (2008)

#2 Elly Griffiths Books In Order Of Publication

This list of Elly Griffiths books in order according to publication date is only meant to show you an overview of her publishing history. While you could read the books in this order, it would be very confusing to do so.

As you can see below, Elly Griffiths is a prolific writer, often publishing 2 to 3 books a year across several different series.

  1. The Italian Quarter (2004)
  2. The Eternal City (2005)
  3. Villa Serena (2007)
  4. Summer School (2008)
  5. The Crossing Places (2009)
  6. The Janus Stone (2010)
  7. The House at Sea’s End (January 2012)
  8. A Room Full of Bones (July 2012)
  9. Ruth’s First Christmas Tree (December 2012) (Short Story)
  10. A Dying Fall / Tomb of the Raven King (2013)
  11. The Outcast Dead (2014)
  12. The Ghost Fields (May 2015)
  13. The Zig Zag Girl (September 2015)
  14. The Woman in Blue (May 2016)
  15. Smoke and Mirrors (October 2016)
  16. The Chalk Pit (May 2017)
  17. The Blood Card (September 2017)
  18. The Dark Angel (May 2018)
  19. The Vanishing Box (October 2018)
  20. The Stranger Diaries (March 2019)
  21. A Girl Called Justice (May 2019)
  22. The Stone Circle (May 2019)
  23. Now You See Them (December 2019)
  24. The Smugglers’ Secret (May 2020)
  25. The Lantern Men (July 2020)
  26. The Postscript Murders (March 2021)
  27. A Ghost in the Garden (May 2021)
  28. The Night Hawks (June 2021)
  29. The Midnight Hour (December 2021)
  30. The Spy at the Window (May 2022)
  31. The Locked Room (June 2022)
  32. Bleeding Heart Yard (November 2022)
  33. The Last Remains (April 2023)
  34. The Last Word (Expected: April 23, 2024)

Summary Of Elly Griffiths Books In Order

Now that we’ve provided a full list of all the Elly Griffiths books in order, let’s take a look at her Brighton Mysteries and Harbinder Kaur books. Below is a brief summary of each of the books belonging to those series.

The Brighton Mysteries

The Zig Zag Girl Elly Griffiths Books in Order

1. The Zig Zag Girl

It is Brighton, 1950. When the body of a girl is found, cut into three, Detective Inspector Edgar Stephens is reminded of a magic trick, the Zig Zag Girl.

That’s because the inventor of the trick, Max Mephisto, is an old friend of Edgar’s. They served together in the war as part of a shadowy unit called the Magic Men. Max is still on the circuit, touring seaside towns in the company of ventriloquists, sword-swallowers, and dancing girls.

Changing times mean that variety is not what it once was, yet Max is reluctant to leave this world to help Edgar investigate. But when it turns out he knows the girl, Max changes his mind.

Another death, another magic trick: Edgar and Max become convinced that the answer to the murders lies in their army days. When Edgar receives a letter warning of another “trick”, the Wolf Trap, he knows that they are all in the killer’s sights…

Smoke and Mirrors Brighton Mysteries

2. Smoke and Mirrors

It’s December 1951. It’s also snowing when two children, Mark and Annie, go missing in Brighton. As DI Edgar Stephens leads an increasing desperate search, Max Mephisto is preparing to star in Aladdin on the end of the pier.

Then the children’s bodies are found on lonely downland, surrounded by a trail of sweets. For old music hall star, Stan Parks (aka The Great Diablo), the case sparks memories of another murder before the war, when the killer was obsessed with the dark origins of pantomime.

Annie used to write plays for the other children, disturbing versions of old tales. Could there be a link between the murders and these stories?

As Christmas approaches, Edgar embarks on the most difficult case of his career. Then another child vanishes. Can Edgar put the pieces of the puzzle together before it’s too late?

The Blood Card Elly Griffiths

3. The Blood Card

Elizabeth II’s coronation is looming, but the murder of their wartime commander, Colonel Cartwright, spoils the happy mood for DI Edgar Stephens and magician Max Mephisto.

A playbill featuring another deceased comrade is found in Colonel Cartwright’s possession, and a playing card, the ace of hearts: The blood card. The wartime connection and the suggestion of magic are enough to put Stephens and Mephisto on the case.

Edgar’s investigation into the death of Brighton fortune-teller Madame Zabini is put on hold. Max is busy rehearsing for a spectacular Coronation Day variety show — and his television debut — so it’s Edgar who is sent to New York, a land plenty worlds away from still-rationed England.

He’s on the trail of a small-town mesmerist who may provide the key, but someone else silences him first. It’s Sergeant Emma Holmes who finds the clue, buried in the files of the Zabini case, that leads them to an anarchist group intent on providing an explosive finale to Coronation Day.

So now it’s up to Edgar, Max, and Emma to foil the plot, and find out who it is who’s been dealing the cards.

The Vanishing Box Brighton Mysteries

4. The Vanishing Box

It is Christmas 1953. Max Mephisto and his daughter Ruby are headlining Brighton Hippodrome, an achievement only slightly marred by the less-than-savoury support act: A tableau show of naked “living statues.”

This might appear to have nothing in common with DI Edgar Stephens’ current case investigating the death of a quiet flowerseller, but if there’s one thing the old comrades have learned it’s that, in Brighton, the line between art and life — and death — is all too easily blurred…

Now You See Them Elly Griffiths Books in Order

5. Now You See Them

It is Brighton 1963. Edgar Stephens has been promoted to Superintendent and is married to his former sergeant, Emma Holmes. Edgar’s wartime partner in arms, magician Max Mephisto, is a movie star in Hollywood, while his daughter Ruby has her own TV show.

But the funeral of an old friend highlights just how much the gang’s lives have changed in the last nine years. Edgar is struggling with fresh responsibilities and the new swinging Brighton of rioting mods and rockers; Emma is chafing against the restrictions of life as a housewife.

Bob Willis, meanwhile, is tackling his biggest case since his promotion to DI: A schoolgirl missing from high-class boarding school Roedean. It looks like she’s run away; but there are disturbing similarities to the disappearances of a young local nurse and a tearaway Modette, neither of whom have been seen or heard from since…

The Midnight Hour Brighton Mysteries

6. The Midnight Hour

When theatrical impresario Bert Billington is found dead in his retirement home, no one suspects foul play. But when the postmortem reveals that he was poisoned, suspicion falls on his wife, eccentric ex-Music Hall star Verity Malone.

Frustrated by the police response to Bert’s death and determined to prove her innocence, Verity calls in private detective duo Emma Holmes and Sam Collins. This is their first real case, but as luck would have it they have a friend on the inside: Max Mephisto is filming a remake of Dracula, starring Seth Billington, Bert’s son. But when they question Max, they feel he isn’t telling them the whole story.

Emma and Sam must vie with the police to untangle the case and bring the killer to justice. They’re sure the answers must lie in Bert’s dark past and in the glamorous, occasionally deadly, days of Music Hall. But the closer they get to the truth, the more danger they find themselves in…

Harbinder Kaur Books

The Stranger Diaries Elly Griffiths

1. The Stranger Diaries

This is what the police know: English teacher Clare Cassidy’s friend Ella has just been murdered. Clare and Ella had recently fallen out. Found beside the body was a line from The Stranger, a story by the Gothic writer Clare teaches, and the murder scene is identical to one of the deaths in the story.

But this is what Clare knows: No one else was aware of her fight with Ella. Few others have even read The Stranger.

Someone has wormed their way into her life and her work. They know her darkest secrets. And they don’t mean well.

This is what the killer knows: Who will be next to die.

The Postscript Murders Harbinder Kaur

2. The Postscript Murders

The death of a ninety-year-old woman with a heart condition should absolutely not be suspicious. DS Harbinder Kaur certainly sees nothing to concern her in carer Natalka’s account of Peggy Smith’s death.

But then Natalka reveals that Peggy lied about her heart condition and that she had been sure someone was following her…

And that Peggy Smith had been a “murder consultant” who plotted deaths for authors, and knew more about murder than anyone has any right to…

And when clearing out Peggy’s flat ends in Natalka being held at gunpoint by a masked figure…

Well, now DS Harbinder Kaur thinks that maybe there is no such thing as an unsuspicious death after all.

Bleeding Heart Yard Elly Griffiths Books in Order

3. Bleeding Heart Yard

Is it possible to forget that you’ve committed a murder?

When Cassie Fitzgerald was at school in the late 90s, she and her friends killed a fellow student. Almost twenty years later, Cassie is a happily married mother who loves her job — as a police officer. She closely guards the secret she has all but erased from her memory.

One day her husband finally persuades her to go to a school reunion. Cassie catches up with her high-achieving old friends from the Manor Park School, which includes two politicians, a rock star, and a famous actress.

But then, shockingly, one of them, Garfield Rice, turns up dead in the school bathroom, supposedly from a drug overdose. As Garfield was an eminent — and controversial — MP and the investigation is high profile, it’s headed by Cassie’s new boss, DI Harbinder Kaur, freshly promoted and newly arrived in London. But the trouble is, Cassie can’t shake the feeling that one of them has killed again.

Is Cassie right, or was Garfield murdered by one of his political cronies? It’s in Cassie’s interest to skew the investigation so that it looks like it has nothing to do with Manor Park and she seems to be succeeding.

Until someone else from the reunion turns up dead in Bleeding Heart Yard…

Final thoughts on Elly Griffiths books in order

I hope you’ve enjoyed this list of Elly Griffiths books in order. Let us know your thoughts on any of these books or what other authors you enjoy reading by leaving us a comment below. Happy reading!

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