Janice Law books in order
Janice Law is an American award-winning author of historical mystery books.
Law is best known for writing the Lambda award-winning Prisoner of the Riviera (2013), the second book in the Francis Bacon Mysteries, as well as the Edgar nominated The Big Payoff (1975), the first book in the Anna Peters series.
She has also written contemporary fiction and short stories for various magazines, especially Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine, and Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine.
An alumna of Syracuse University and the University of Connecticut, Law served as an instructor and assistant professor of English at the latter.
She lives in Connecticut with her husband, who is a sportswriter.
Genres: Historical Fiction, Historical Mystery, Historical Thriller, Mystery
- All the King's Ladies (1986)
- The Countess (1989)
- Infected Be the Air (1991)
- The Night Bus (2000)
- The Lost Diaries of Iris Weed (2002)
- Voices (2003)
- Homeward Dove (2016)
- The Falling Men (2022)
- The Big Payoff (1975)
- Gemini Trip (1977)
- Under Orion (1978)
- The Shadow of the Palms (1979)
- Death Under Par (1981)
- Time Lapse (1992)
- A Safe Place to Die (1993)
- Backfire (1994)
- Cross-Check (1997)
Black Cat Weekly
- Black Cat Weekly #37 (2022)
- Blood in the Water and Other Secrets (2011)
- The Man Who Met the Elf Queen (2016)
- Madame Selina, The Complete Stories (2021)
- The Dictator's Double (2022)
Francis Bacon Mysteries
- Fires of London (2012)
- Prisoner of the Riviera (2013)
- Moon Over Tangier (2014)
- Nights in Berlin (2016)
- Afternoons in Paris (2017)
- Mornings in London (2017)
Detailed book overview
In 1664, Marquise Athénaïs de Montespan returned to the Court of Versailles. At twenty-three, she was young, beautiful, and highly intelligent, but burdened with a young son, a mad husband, and big debts.
The way to power and prosperity at Versailles was through Louis XIV, well known for his susceptibility to pretty ladies. Athénaïs befriended his current favorite, dazzled everyone, and bided her time. Soon Athénaïs was a power in the glittering, dangerous court, and the sinister La Voisin, abortionist, witch, and poisoner, whispered that with a little help, Athénaïs could maintain her influence forever.
A few months ago, Cath Tolland ran away from her life. Boarding a night bus with no credit cards or identification, using the last of her meager cash to buy a one-way ticket to Florida, Cath left behind her home, her friends, and a seemingly happy marriage--for reasons that not even she can remember.
But now Cath is back home in Connecticut, in the arms of her loving, if distant, husband Derek-and watched over, perhaps a bit too closely, by her critical sister-in-law, Yvonne. Told that her mysterious disappearance was merely another symptom of ongoing mental problems, Cath tries her hardest to piece together her fragmented memories and make sense of her sudden flight.
But why, if she has always suffered from mental problems, can, Cath remember ever speaking with a therapist? Why, if she and Derek have always had a happy marriage, is Cath beginning to remember evidence of "other women"? And-most terrifying-why does Cath feel that she should fear her husband? How much can Cath trust the vague terror that fills her memories now-the terror that may have bought her a seat on a night bus to Florida?
Professor Jason "Lars" Larson, a scholar at a prestigious Connecticut university, is delighted to assist the beautiful young Iris Weed with her offbeat independent study, but when Iris is killed in a vicious attack in a parking lot, Lars finds himself the prime suspect in the crime.
There are persistent whispers from the past, growing increasingly stronger. Ever since Leslie suffered a miscarriage several months ago, she’s felt as though there’s more to her childhood than she understands—or can remember. Why are there no photographs of her as a child? Why can’t she remember anything before the age of five?
On the job at a local paper, Leslie finds a small human-interest story on the wire service: Ruth Eden, three years old, kidnapped from her Connecticut home twenty-five years ago. It resonates with her in a way that can’t be just coincidence.
Memories of a meadow, a car, a sense of trouble brewing and a summer-long ride. They haunt Leslie until she decides she must seek out the Edens and find out the truth. But when Leslie finally locates the man who may or may not be her father, she finds that there is no such thing as an easy answer.
Jeff Woodbine enlivens his dead end job at the Bargain Barn warehouse by ripping off modest amounts of stock, a little larceny that leads to blackmail by a co-worker.
On the opening day of trout season, Jeff sees her pushing a toddler along the isolated riverside path. When they argue, she rams the child’s stroller into his leg, and he strikes her. She falls awkwardly, fatally hitting her head. Jeff panics and flees, leaving only a little boy too young to speak as witness. Jeff dodges police interest and curious friends when the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew opens up construction jobs in South Florida.
Months later he returns, apparently to safety, until a new job brings him into contact with Jess, a woman he has admired since high school. He falls in love with her, only to discover to his horror that Leon, her strangely silent young son, was the child who witnessed the fatal argument.
A pair of wealthy art collectors promise Arlo Howlett, an ambitious young art critic, a valuable piece from their collection if he can make an obscure sculptor famous. Arlo accepts this half joking and cynical wager, but when he sees Jean Trace’s masterwork, The Falling Men, he is horrified.
Arlo believes that all the faces resemble his own youthful features before the disfiguring accident that still haunts him, and he becomes obsessed with the work andits creator, a brusk, hard working woman who regards him with instant dislike and who proves ruthlessly determined to preserve her secrets. Arlo's desire to unearth what Jean calls " ancient history" will complicate their lives and put them into both moral – and mortal – danger.
In The Big Payoff, Peters is employed in the research department of New World Oil Company, a position that suits this now reformed blackmailer. Happy with her lover, Harry, Anna has abandoned the seductive intellectual and psychological game of blackmail for the straight and narrow.
But mysterious deaths among New World's British contacts convince Anna that something is wrong in the executive suite. Worse, she is soon blackmailed by a British secret service agent who's following the same trail.
Anna reluctantly bugs her boss's phone and copies company files, but when her British contact turns up dead, Anna finds that she—and Harry—are in mortal danger. Her old skills come in handy as she tries to keep ahead of ruthless killers, first in Washington, D.C. and then in the north of Scotland.
Anna Peters, the unorthodox New World Oil Company researcher, learns the price of the good research job she obtained after her successful adventures in The Big Payoff.
The Chairman of the Board wants her to do a little favor: track down Crystal Blythe, a feckless young woman soon to inherit the lions share of New World stock. Crystal and her twin brother Edward have been living in France, and Anna is dispatched on a working holiday to locate the missing girl. Paris, art, culture, great food the trip sounds terrific.
Unfortunately for Anna and her artist lover Harry Radford, the young Blythes have gotten themselves into bad company, including gun runners and espionage agents from two countries. Anna learns she cant trust the charming and talented Blythes, and wonders if they can even trust each other.
Anna Peters, the unorthodox New World Oil Company researcher, gets tapped for a delicate mission to pre-unification Germany: collect an East German oil chemist who has discovered how to separate oil from sea water. If genuine, the new process means huge profits. Philip McKenzie, New World Oil’s brilliant chief chemist, assures Anna and her boss that everything is on the level.
Anna thinks this may be too good to be true, and when she and McKenzie arrive in Germany she finds out that fraud is the least of her worries. The German chemist and his thuggish brother have their own agendas and some very nasty skills. And the gifted, mercurial Philip Mckenzie has a bad habit—putting himself, and Anna, in danger.
A call from Henry Brammin, Anna Peters's old mentor at New World Oil, sends the proprietor of Executive Security down to Florida's Gulf Coast for a brief working vacation. Brammin wants to know why his nephew suddenly has money for an expensive sailboat and a fancy antiques shop.
The answers involve Vlad Sebastian, a wealthy and reclusive art collector with a socially ambitious daughter, a questionable past, and some dubious employees. Anna's efforts to discover if Brammin's nephew is one of them brings danger both to her and another old friend, the newly sober and newly married John Hillary, the reporter last seen in The Big Payoff. Hillary, who has his own interests in the mysterious Mr. Sebastian, provides entree to the Sebastians' glamorous social circle—and provokes a variety of domestic complications.
Anna's attempt at a vacation is soon in ruins, as she and John Hillary find there are plenty of reptiles in the lush and glamorous gardens of south Florida.
Anna Peters has married her long time lover Harry Radford and the couple is off for a honeymoon in St. Andrews, Scotland, courtesy of Harry's commission to make illustrations of the British Open Golf Tournament.
Soon after they arrive in the famous old resort, golf, and university town, one of Anna’s former clients asks a small favor: could she possibly look into a few incidents of minor vandalism at the Old Course? A simple matter, surely, and with Harry busy sketching golfers, Anna doesn’t expect more than a few hours of work.
But minor damage at the course leads Anna to some interesting characters, including three Americans who just happen to be alumni of Anna’s old hometown college. One has just been disappointed in a big development deal in St. Andrews. One is a visiting professor with a disturbing alter ego. And one is a contender for the golf championship.
Then one turns up dead. Another is threatened, and Anna finds her honeymoon turning into a full-time, and dangerous, job.
While shooting "The Lazarus Gambit" on location in upstate New York, the film's superstar, Henry Brook, tragically drowns. Both the movie and the actor were insured by Independence Mutual, who want to make certain that everything is aboveboard before they pay out the massive settlement.
Hired to investigate the death of an action/adventure movie star, Anna Peters explores the actor's latest production site and finds that the truth is about as exciting as the victim's scripts.
Anna Peters and her artist husband arrive at the post Estates for his gallery exhibit--but murder steals the show. The victim is a 14-year-old girl found bludgeoned near her home. When another death occurs, Anna begins to put together a complicated puzzle as tragic as it is terrifying.
When a raging fire destroys the modern mansion of wealthy restauranteur Joseph Skane and kills his disabled wife, Mrs. Skane's nurse, Maria, is arrested for arson and murder. Soon afterward, a mysterious caller hired investigator Anna Peters to help with Maria's defense.
Although Anna has had her share of unusual cases, this one is her biggest challenge yet. Maria has refused to speak since running from the burning house, and even when she agrees to respond to Anna's questions in writing, Anna suspects she's hiding information that could clear her name...
Anna Peters, Washington, D.C.-based private investigator, knows little about hockey or Florida when she agrees to help Jurgen "T-Rex" Parkes, star center of the NHL-expansion Orlando Showmen, clear his name of his teammate Alf Rene's murder. She also isn't entirely sure her client is innocent. She faces an uphill battle: Parkes asked Rene to meet him the night of the murder, and he has no alibit.
The Showmen management is more concerned about the team's tarnished image than seeking the truth, and the media are swarming around Parkes and his family. As Anna digs into the case, she finds Parkes uncooperative, the victim's family and friends secretive and suspicious, and her own safety in jeapardy...
Black Cat Weekly
Another hefty issue is in hand, featuring novels and novellas by some of the greats of the mystery and science fiction fields. And, as expected, our acquiring editors have found some true gems.
Michael Bracken has selected an original suspense tale from from N. M. Cedeño, Barb Goffman has a mystery from the always-superb Janice Law, and Cynthia Ward has Naomi Kritzer’s “Evil Opposite”—a great alternate-universe tale (and our featured story this issue).
NB: Here’s the lineup by various authors:
1. Black Cat Weekly #1 (2021)
2. Black Cat Weekly #2 (2021)
4. Black Cat Weekly #4 (2021)
5. Black Cat Weekly #5 (2021)
6. Black Cat Weekly #6 (2021)
7. Black Cat Weekly #7 (2021)
8. Black Cat Weekly #8 (2021)
9. Black Cat Weekly #9 (2021)
10. Black Cat Weekly #10 (2021)
11. Black Cat Weekly #11 (2021)
12. Black Cat Weekly #12 (2021)
13. Black Cat Weekly #13 (2021)
14. Black Cat Weekly #14 (2021)
16. Black Cat Weekly #16 (2021)
17. Black Cat Weekly #17 (2021)
18. Black Cat Weekly #18 (2021)
19. Black Cat Weekly #19 (2022)
20. Black Cat Weekly #20 (2022)
21. Black Cat Weekly #21 (2022)
22. Black Cat Weekly #22 (2022)
23. Black Cat Weekly #23 (2022)
24. Black Cat Weekly #24 (2022)
25. Black Cat Weekly #25 (2022)
26. Black Cat Weekly #26 (2022)
27. Black Cat Weekly #27 (2022)
28. Black Cat Weekly #28 (2022)
29. Black Cat Weekly #29 (2022)
30. Black Cat Weekly #30 (2022)
31. Black Cat Weekly #31 (2022)
32. Black Cat Weekly #32 (2022)
33. Black Cat Weekly #33 (2022)
34. Black Cat Weekly #34 (2022)
35. Black Cat Weekly #35 (2022)
36. Black Cat Weekly #36 (2022)
37. Black Cat Weekly #37 (2022)
38. Black Cat Weekly #38 (2022)
39. Black Cat Weekly #39 (2022)
40. Black Cat Weekly #40 (2022)
41. Black Cat Weekly #41 (2022)
43. Black Cat Weekly #43 (2022)
This volume collects 22 stories from the author of the Anna Peters mystery series, many published in Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine or Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine.
Included are: "Secrets," "Lions on the Lawn," "The Summer of the Strangler," "My Life in Crime," "Lying," "Blood in the Water," "My Famous Relative," "Perfection," "The Blind Woman," "A Meeting at the Café Visconti," "Pigskill," "The Archeologist’s Revenge," "Star of the Silver Screen," "Ghost Writer," "Tabloid Press," "My Demon Lover," "The Man Kali Visited," "The View From Above," "To Beauty," "Ideas in My Head," "The Paradise Garden," and "The Helpful Stranger." Great reading from a master of the short-form mystery!
A poor highland soldier meets a woman with mysterious powers on a deserted moor in The Man Who Met the Elf Queen; a old magus who receives the dreams of others recounts the story of an emperor in The Potion of the Empress, and a woman has a fateful encounter with an angel in The Seraph.
My Madame Selina mystery stories about a post Civil War spiritualist medium in New York City have been issued as an ebook. Ten mysteries and a novella featuring Madame Selina and her useful young assistant Nip Thompkins are available on Amazon. The medium is a favorite character of mine, and her young assistant, Nip Thompkins, is the ideal recorder of the adventures of a woman who is willing to lie in small things, but who absolutely believes in Aurelius, late emperor of the Romans, her spirit contact in the other world and a frequent resource in solving her client's difficulties.
Francis Bacon Mysteries
A killer takes refuge in the blacked-out streets of wartime London, upending the world of one of Britain’s greatest painters...
Francis Bacon walks the streets of World War II London, employed as a warden for the ARP to keep watch for activities that might tip off the Axis powers. Before the war, Bacon had travelled to Berlin and Paris picking up snatches of culture from a succession of middle-aged men charmed by his young face.
Known for his flamboyant personal life and expensive taste, Bacon has returned home to live with his former nanny—who’s also his biggest collector—in a cramped bohemian apartment. But one night, death intrudes on his after-hours paradise.
When a young man is found dead in the park, his head smashed in, Bacon and the rest of London’s demimonde realize that they have much more to fear than the faraway scream of war.
In postwar France, a gambler finds that surviving his vacation may be a long shot
Peace has come to England and the blackout is over, but the gloom has yet to lift from London. One night, leaving a gambling club where he has run up a considerable tab, the young painter Francis Bacon, accompanied by his lover, sees a man gunned down in the street.
They do what they can to stanch the flow of blood, but the Frenchman dies in the hospital. Soon afterward, Bacon receives a strange offer from the club owner: He will erase Bacon’s debts if the painter delivers a package to the dead man’s widow, Madame Renard, on the Riviera. What gambler could resist a trip to Monte Carlo?
After handing over the parcel, Bacon learns that Madame Renard is dead—and the striking young woman who accepted the delivery is an imposter. The Riviera may be lovely, but in 1945, its sun-drenched beaches can be just as dark as the back alleys of London.
In colonial Morocco, a painter navigates a conspiracy of forgery, corruption, and murder.
For Francis, life with David grows more dangerous by the day. When sober, he is charming, but when he drinks, he is violent, slashing Francis’s paintings and threatening to gut the painter, too. When David leaves London for Morocco, Francis cannot help but follow this man whom he loves but can no longer trust. In Tangier, they find a thriving community of expats who guzzle champagne while revolutionaries gather in the desert. But in Morocco’s International Zone, death does not wait for rebellion.
After Francis identifies a friend’s Picasso as a fake, the police call him in to investigate the forger’s demise. If he refuses, they will throw David in jail, where inmates and the DTs will kill him within the week. Between the bustle of the city and the emptiness of the desert, Francis finds that in Morocco, even the fakes can be worth killing for.
A young Irishman finds love and danger in the shadows of Weimar Germany.
Francis Bacon has never cared much for country living, so he is overjoyed when his father sends him to Berlin as punishment for his not-so-innocent flirtations with the other boys at school. With afternoons at the cinema, dinner at the Hotel Adlon, and nights at the most outrageous cabarets in Germany—and in his uncle Lastings’s bed—he’ll fit right in.
The Great War having ended over a decade ago, and its resulting economic turmoil in the past, Germany is enjoying the “Golden Twenties”—a time of healthy fiscal growth, and creative and sexual resurgence, centered in Berlin. Yet dark clouds are gathering as Hitler consolidates power within the Nazi Party and brownshirts march through the streets.
As tensions rise, Francis finds his uncle Lastings busy welcoming countless men into his hotel room—some invited for pleasure, others to be recruited for the fight against Bolshevism. But when the Nazis send Lastings fleeing for his life, Francis is left alone, penniless, and hunted, with only his keen sense of hedonism to distract him from a city that gets more menacing every night.
During the glory days of the Roaring Twenties, budding artist Francis Bacon heads to Paris to paint, love, and spy.
Francis Bacon was having a ball in Berlin—until his uncle Lastings disappeared, leaving Francis alone, broke, and wanted by the German police as well as the burgeoning Nazi party for a political murder he didn’t commit. Luckily, for a young painter still learning his craft, there’s no better place to find refuge than the cafés of Paris. In the City of Lights, Francis can perfect his French, complete his education, and—if he’s lucky—escape with his life.
Strolling along the boulevard one lovely evening, he hears gunshots and sees a Russian émigré cut down by an assassin. Francis dashes into the night and flees to the countryside, but it’s too late—the brilliant young painter is in trouble again. And when Uncle Lastings reappears, Francis will find himself back in the thick of a deadly game of international espionage.
Artist Francis Bacon gets tangled up in murder while visiting the English countryside...
Francis Bacon awakes in a four-poster bed with a punishing hangover and a naked footman beside him. The setting and company mean he’s in the country, and that spells disaster for an up-and-coming artist whose natural habitat is the nightclubs and back alleys of swinging Soho.
But he’s put aside his distaste for the pastoral life for the sake of his favorite cousin, Poppy, a spirited young debutante who’s committed the biggest blunder a deb can make: She’s fallen in love with Freddie Bosworth—and must be rescued at all costs.
Bosworth is a cad, an accused blackmailer with a love for Mussolini and dark secrets too terrible to tell. Fortunately, Poppy comes to her senses, breaking the engagement, and Francis thinks their troubles are over. But when the cousins take a walk through the manor grounds the next day, they find a handsome young man in a pin-striped suit lying dead in the grass. Freddie’s throat has been cut, and Francis’s life is on the line.