Top Ten authors of historical detective novels

Top Ten Tuesday

I have already blogged about this topic and if you have been to my blog before chances are you will have heard of one or two people on this list. 


Top Ten authors of historical detective novels
  • David Wishart
    My absolute favourite. I just love his detective, patrician Marcus Corvinus, who wisecracks his way through Tiberius’ Rome.
  • John Maddox Roberts
    I like his SPQR series not so much for the sleuthing of his hero Decius Caecilius Metellus, but for the setting in the last days of the republic. Tons of interesting characters come to life here.
  • Lindsey Davis
    I didn’t care too much for The Silver Pigs which is set in Britain, but the later books are really good. Set in Rome in the time of Vespasian.
  • Margaret Doody
    With Aristotle this series has an interesting detective. Set in Greece in the 4th century B.C.
  • Bernard Knight
    His Crowner John books are very entertaining. Set in England in the 12th century.
  • Ellis Peters
    Well, everybody loves Brother Cadfael, if only because of Derek Jacobi. Set in England in the 12th century.
  • Susanna Gregory
    Her detective Matthew Bartholomew is a Cambridge fellow in the 14th century.
  • Robert van Gulik
    The interesting detective is Judge Dee, a Chinese magistrate in the 7th century. Based on a real person.
  • Stephanie Barron
    I love those books with Jane Austen as detective for the lovely settings.
  • Steven Saylor
    I am no big fan of Steven Saylor’s Sub Rosa series. It is set around the same time as the SPQR books, but his detective Gordianus is not nearly as interesting as the Metellan one. However, I did like the fact that Mr. Saylor has one book in the series about the little incident on the Appian way where Milo killed Clodius (Murder on the Appian Way).

What are your Top Ten Authors in a favourite genre of yours?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. You will find tons of more Top Ten Tuesday participants there.

7 Comments Write a comment

    • Elena, I don’t think any of them would be your thing, they are rathr cozy than thrilling. Plus, if you read more contemporary detective novels then those wouldn’t be on your radar.


  1. Oh, historical fiction authors! I didn’t know there were so many who wrote about antiquity 🙂 If only my library carried them… I’ve read most of Lindsey Davis’ books, I think. The series ended with Nemesis, if I’m not mistaken? She’s continuing on a new path with Falco’s adopted daughter as the master sleuth.
    Murder on the Appian way sounds like one I need to read. I remember studying a text on Cicero’s Pro Milone speech. Brings back memories 🙂
    Chinoiseries’s last post ..Book review: In the Tall Grass – Joe Hill, Stephen King


    • Not sure what the last one in Davis’ series is. I haven#t kept track and just read them sporadically. The only one I keep up with is the David Wishart one.

      The Saylor book is only interesting for the topic, in my eyes. I don’t particularly like his sleuth, but if you liked Cidero’s speech you might want to read it. Btw, if you read his speeches against Catilina, you might also be interested in the SPQR series. He usually takes real incidents (e.g. The Catiline conspiracy, but also other minor things like Clodius’ sneaking into the rites of Bona Dea) and creates a mystery around it. Quite entertaining!


      • It seems my library only carries Saylor’s Rome, but none of his Sub Rosa books. I’ll have to add that to my wishlist, because I like the idea of mysteries written around real historical incidents 🙂


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