Someone recently asked me whether there are any mystery novels set in Arizona. I’m not sure how many there are altogether, but three mystery series by authors with ties to Arizona came to mind right away.
1. Sheriff Joanna Brady series by J. A. Jance
Judith Ann Jance grew up in Bisbee, Arizona and graduated from The University of Arizona. After moving to Seattle and setting her first mystery novel series there, she returned to her roots for the Sheriff Joanna Brady series and set it in Bisbee.
The first in this series is Desert Heat.
I’ve written several posts about J. A. Jance, including a WhoDunIt video, summary of her first novels, and discussion of what launched her career in suspense/mysteries.
By the way, Jance’s Ali Reynolds series is set in Sedona.
2. Lena Jones series by Betty Webb
Arizona author Betty Webb sprinkles her Lena Jones mysteries with local Phoenix lore, landmarks, and even cameo appearances by local authors.
The first in the series is Desert Noir.
3. David Mapstone series by Jon Talton
Jon Talton is also an Arizona native who moved to Seattle. His main character, David Mapstone, is a history buff who explores the shady side of Phoenix’s past.
The first in this series is Concrete Desert.
I’ve previously reviewed Talton’s second in the series, Camelback Falls.
All three of these authors give talks at local libraries and bookstores, as well as at the Tucson Festival of Books.
Have you read any of their books?
Do you have any mystery novels set in Arizona to recommend?
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