Have you started reading a great book only to find that it’s the second or third in a long series? Even worse if it mentions details from previous books you haven’t read! So, here at Apple Green Books we have put together a handy list for you to check the order of books in your favourite series, and you can also quickly and easily find them all on eBay for you to purchase. We hope you find it useful, and please do not hesitate to contact us to request a list of books we don’t have. Happy reading!
Colin Dexter Inspector Morse Book List In Order
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23 July 2012
Colin Dexter was born in Lincolnshire in 1930, where he went to Stamford School. After he completed his National Service, he went on to go to Christ’s College at Cambridge to study classics, where he received a Master’s degree. He taught in the East Midlands for 13 years until deafness forced him to resign. He began writing after reading a crime novel whilst on holiday and felt he could have written better- his Inspector Morse books are now incredibly popular, and have been adapted for television. He currently lives in Oxford with his wife and is a keen crossword enthusiast.
Here are Colin Dexter’s Inspector Morse novels in reading list order from first to last:
Do you think I'm wasting your time, Lewis?' Lewis was nobody's fool and was a man of some honesty and integrity. 'Yes, sir.' An engaging smile crept across Morse's mouth. He thought they could get on well together . . .' The death of Sylvia Kaye figured dramatically in Thursday afternoon's edition of the Oxford Mail. By Friday evening Inspector Morse had informed the nation that the police were looking for a dangerous man – facing charges of wilful murder, sexual assault and rape. But as the obvious leads fade into twilight and darkness, Morse becomes more and more convinced that passion holds the key . . .
Morse was beset by a nagging feeling. Most of his fanciful notions about the Taylor girl had evaporated and he had begun to suspect that further investigation into Valerie's disappearance would involve little more than sober and tedious routine.
Morse had never ceased to wonder why, with the staggering advances in medical science, all pronouncements concerning times of death seemed so disconcertingly vague. The newly appointed member of the Oxford Examinations Syndicate was deaf, provincial and gifted. Now he is dead . . . And his murder, in his north Oxford home, proves to be the start of a formidably labyrinthine case for Chief Inspector Morse, as he tries to track down the killer through the insular and bitchy world of the Oxford Colleges . . .
The sweet countenance of Reason greeted Morse serenely when he woke, and told him that it would be no bad idea to have a quiet look at the problem itself before galloping off to a solution. Chief Inspector Morse was alone among the congregation in suspecting continued unrest in the quiet parish of St Frideswide’s. Most people could still remember the churchwarden’s murder. A few could still recall the murderer’s suicide. Now even the police had closed the case. Until a chance meeting among the tombstones reveals startling new evidence of a conspiracy to deceive . . .
Morse switched on the gramophone to ‘play’, and sought to switch his mind away from all the terrestrial troubles. Sometimes, this way, he almost managed to forget. But not tonight . . . Anne Scott’s address was scribbled on a crumpled note in the pocket of Morse’s smartest suit. He turned the corner of Canal Street, Jericho, on the afternoon of Wednesday, 3rd October. He hadn’t planned a second visit. But he was back later the same day – as the officer in charge of a suicide investigation . . .
The thought suddenly occurred to Morse that this would be a marvellous time to murder a few of the doddery old bachelor dons. No wives to worry about their whereabouts; no landladies to whine about the unpaid rents. In fact nobody would miss most of them at all . . . By the 16th of July the Master of Lonsdale was concerned, but not yet worried. Dr Browne-Smith had passed through the porter’s lodge at approximately 8.15 a.m. on the morning of Friday, 11th July. And nobody had heard from him since. Plenty of time to disappear, thought Morse. And plenty of time, too, for someone to commit murder . . .
Morse sought to hide his disappointment. So many people in the Haworth Hotel that fateful evening had been wearing some sort of disguise – a change of dress, a change of make-up, a change of partner, a change of attitude, a change of life almost; and the man who had died had been the most consummate artist of them all . . . Chief Inspector Morse seldom allowed himself to be caught up in New Year celebrations. So the murder inquiry in the festive hotel had a certain appeal. It was a crime worthy of the season. The corpse was still in fancy dress. And hardly a single guest at the Haworth had registered under a genuine name . . .
That night he dreamed in Technicolor. He saw the ochre-skinned, scantily clad siren in her black, arrowed stockings. And in Morse’s muddled computer of a mind, that siren took the name of one Joanna Franks . . . The body of Joanna Franks was found at Duke’s Cut on the Oxford Canal at about 5.30 a.m. on Wednesday, 22nd June 1859. At around 10.15 a.m. on a Saturday morning in 1989 the body of Chief Inspector Morse – though very much alive – was removed to Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital. Treatment for a perforated ulcer was later pronounced successful. As Morse begins his recovery he comes across an account of the investigation and the trial that followed Joanna Franks’ death . . . and becomes convinced that the two men hanged for her murder were innocent . . .
He looked overweight around the midriff, though nowhere else, and she wondered whether perhaps he drank too much. He looked weary, as if he had been up most of the night conducting his investigations . . . For Oxford, the arrival of twenty-seven American tourists is nothing out of the ordinary . . . until one of their number is found dead in Room 310 at the Randolph Hotel. It looks like a sudden – and tragic – accident. Only Chief Inspector Morse appears not to overlook the simultaneous theft of a jewel-encrusted antique from the victim’s handbag . . . Then, two days later, a naked and battered corpse is dragged from the River Cherwell. A coincidence? Maybe. But this time Morse is determined to prove the link . . .
Quietly, rather movingly, Strange was making his plea: ‘Christ knows why, Lewis, but Morse will always put himself out for you.’ As he put the phone down, Lewis knew that Strange had been right . . . in the case of the Swedish Maiden, the pair of them were in business again . . . They called her the Swedish Maiden – the beautiful young tourist who disappeared on a hot summer’s day somewhere in North Oxford. Twelve months later the case remained unsolved – pending further developments. On holiday in Lyme Regis, Chief Inspector Morse is startled to read a tantalizing article in The Times about the missing woman. An article which lures him back to Wytham Woods near Oxford . . . and straight into the most extraordinary murder investigation of his career.
Bizarre and bewildering – that’s what so many murder investigations in the past had proved to be . . . In this respect, at least, Lewis was correct in his thinking. What he could not have known was what unprecedented anguish the present case would cause to Morse’s soul. Chief Superintendent Strange’s opinion was that too little progress had been made since the discovery of a corpse in a North Oxford flat. The victim had been killed by a single stab wound to the stomach. Yet the police had no weapon, no suspect, no motive. Within days of taking over the case Chief Inspector Morse and Sergeant Lewis uncover startling new information about the life and death of Dr Felix McClure. When another body is discovered Morse suddenly finds himself with rather too many suspects. For once, he can see no solution. But then he receives a letter containing a declaration of love . . .
As he drove his chief down to Kidlington, Lewis returned the conversation to where it had begun. ‘You haven’t told me what you think about this fellow Owens – the dead woman’s next-door neighbour.’ ‘Death is always the next-door neighbour,’ said Morse sombrely. The murder of a young woman . . . A cryptic ‘seventeenth-century’ love poem . . . And a photograph of a mystery grey-haired man . . . More than enough to set Chief Inspector E. Morse on the trail of a killer. And it’s a trail that leads him to Lonsdale College, where the contest between Julian Storrs and Dr Denis Cornford for the coveted position of Master is hotting up. But then Morse faces a greater, far more personal crisis . . .
‘ Where does this all leave us, sir?’ ‘Things are moving fast.’ ‘We’re getting near the end, you mean?’ ‘We were always near the end.’ The murder of Yvonne Harrison had left Thames Valley CID baffled. A year after the dreadful crime they are still no nearer to making an arrest. But one man has yet to tackle the case – and it is just the sort of puzzle at which Chief Inspector Morse excels. So why is he adamant that he will not lead the re-investigation, despite the entreaties of Chief Superintendent Strange and dark hints of some new evidence? And why, if he refuses to take on the case officially, does he seem to be carrying out his own private enquiries? For Sergeant Lewis this is yet another example of the unsettling behaviour his chief has been displaying of late . . .
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