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Top 5 Mystery Book Characters: In my view

Updated on June 12, 2014

Kinsey Millhone, Joanna Brady, Bernie Rhodenbarr, Sharon McCone, Matthew Scudder: My Top 5

I have listed my Top 5 Favorite Mystery Book Characters above - over the last 30 or so years, I suppose I could add. I will discuss each in turn, below, an Amazon Spotlight book on each one, and comments on the four authors who created these 5 characters. Each, of course, star in on-going mystery series over many years. I've read most if not every single one.

I've used a Wikimedia Commons image of Author Sue Grafton, creator of Kinsey Millhone, for the intro because, of course, none of the characters have images - we each create our own for each as we read their adventures and immerse ourselves in their stories.

Come join an interesting journey! ;-) I look forward to your comments on "my favorite characters" as well, of course! ;-)

Amazon Spotlight Personal Review-Kinsey Millhone

V is for Vengeance: A Kinsey Millhone Novel
V is for Vengeance: A Kinsey Millhone Novel

V is for Vengences is the latest in the series. Kinsey continues to develop and change over time, as one would expect. It is fun to see the way Sue weaves past characters back into the stories, and the books, and the years, flow past. Kinsey exudes a special brand of independence that really resonates with me. I look forward, anxiously, to the arrival of each new book in the series. Do you agree? ;-)

 

Amazon Spotlight Personal Review-Joanna Brady

Judgment Call: A Brady Novel of Suspense (Joanna Brady Mysteries)
Judgment Call: A Brady Novel of Suspense (Joanna Brady Mysteries)

This is the latest is the series as well. This is a much newer series, although it is now several years old. Having a professional wife and three grown, professional daughters, you will note that three of my Top 5 are female... it is not by accident.

Joanna also exerts her independence, but 'within' the system rather than outside it, as Kinsey seems to... although she doesn't ever really violate the 'major rules' of her profession. I've read some of Jance's other characters, but this is by far my favorite! ;-)

 

Amazon Spotlight Personal Review-Bernie Rhodenbarr

The Burglar Who Liked to Quote Kipling (Bernie Rhodenbarr)
The Burglar Who Liked to Quote Kipling (Bernie Rhodenbarr)

This was an interesting read... Lawrence Block was the author of Matthew Scudder, that I read first... after several of them (see below), I found out about Bernie. Their is something 'mischievous' about him that really appeals to me, as the reader, I think. I know he does bad things, as well as solving crimes and doing good things. Block has a special talent for creating distinctive characters. I've read several others of his, as well, and like each one of them... each in their special ways. ;-)

 

Amazon Spotlight Personal Review-Sharon McCone

Looking for Yesterday (Sharon McCone Mysteries)
Looking for Yesterday (Sharon McCone Mysteries)

As I recall, I started reading about Sharon McCone after the early alphabet books about Kinsey. I went back and got the earlier books in this series in paperback, so that I could read from the beginning. In later years, Muller went too much into the psychology of Sharon's thinking, for, and I dropped off. But, the earlier books, I really appreciated and still carry fond memories.

 

Amazon Spotlight Personal Review-Matthew Scudder

The Sins of the Fathers (Matthew Scudder)
The Sins of the Fathers (Matthew Scudder)

This is the first series detective mystery I read. In the early years, Matthew Scudder was the hard-drinking, tough-nosed detective that had become common, over the years - but this was the first one I read. I learned, in 'writer's classes' that Block was a master, so that got me started. Over the years, Matthew Scudder changed with the times. In the later books about him that I read, he became a reformed alcoholic. Block wove this story into his individual books over several years. But, eventually, while I appreciated Scudder becoming clean, he also lost some of what he was before... and lost my interest, it seemed. Still loved the early stories! ;-)

 
Cover of Skeleton Canyon book
Cover of Skeleton Canyon book

Are one of these 5 a favorite of yours, as well?

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Your Comments on this lens are appreciated

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    • tfsherman lm profile image

      tfsherman lm 4 years ago

      Sookie Stackhouse for me! I think everyone's tastes vary.

    • Mellithorpe profile image

      Mellithorpe 4 years ago

      I enjoyed reading your lens. Looks like it's been a while since I've read a good mystery book because I have not heard of any of these characters.

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
      Author

      William Leverne Smith 4 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @DeborahDian: Totally agree!! ;-)

    • DeborahDian profile image

      Deborah Carr 4 years ago from Orange County, California

      I love good mystery books ... and Kinsey Millhone has long been my favorite character. I've always imagined her looking like a young Sue Graffton!

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
      Author

      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @CoolFool83: For sure! ;-)

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
      Author

      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @WBJanitorial LM: How nice of you to say that. It is certainly my intent, but I love to get confirmation. Thank you, So Much! ;-)

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
      Author

      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @tammy59: Thanks for sharing! ;-)

    • CoolFool83 profile image

      CoolFool83 5 years ago

      I always enjoy a really good mystery book.

    • WBJanitorial LM profile image

      WBJanitorial LM 5 years ago

      Well done!! Every one of your lens teaches me something. There very well thought out and you put a good amount of time into each ofthem. Thanks for the inspiration.

    • tammy59 profile image

      tammy59 5 years ago

      I prefer cozy mysteries, more than hardcore. My favorite series of mysteries at this time are by Joanne Fluke and her character Hannah Swensen.

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
      Author

      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @anonymous: I hope you like them! ;-)

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I'd still have to with Hercules Peirot and Sherlock Holmes myself, But I did see a couple here I'll be giving a try.

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
      Author

      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @Faye Rutledge: For sure! ;-)

    • HalloweenRecipes profile image

      HalloweenRecipes 5 years ago

      I've read three of your favs, but have never read anything by Lawrence Block, but I am going to check him out. Some of my favorites are Alex Cross, Myron Bolitar, John Wells, Scot Harvath, and Jane Rizzoli. I do so love to read!

    • Faye Rutledge profile image

      Faye Rutledge 5 years ago from Concord VA

      Of your choices, I've only read Sue Grafton, but she is my all time favorite mystery writer.

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
      Author

      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @HalloweenRecipes: Neat! Enjoy each of them! ;-)

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
      Author

      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @irminia: Great! Enjoy! ;-)

    • irminia profile image

      irminia 5 years ago

      Well, here's some reading for me to do - I never heard of any of these stoies. Thank you.

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
      Author

      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @SimonJay: I appreciate the visit! ;-)

    • SimonJay profile image

      SimonJay 5 years ago

      I love the mystery book stories thx for sharing

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
      Author

      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @AllisonsAttic: We each have our own favorites! ;-)

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
      Author

      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @goldenrulecomics: I never got started on those, myself! ;-)

    • profile image

      AllisonsAttic 5 years ago

      Great lense...I will have to think of my other favorites...a few cozy mystery ones that I just love...

    • goldenrulecomics profile image

      goldenrulecomics 5 years ago

      Sadly, my favorites are more than 30 years old -- Philip Marlowe and the Continental Op....Nice lens!

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