It's a triple pleasure, a sophisticated theatre story, a knowing campus tale and a topnotch suspenseful mystery, with excellent characterizations and honest plotting." -- Judith Crist

MURDER IS ACADEMIC, a 1986 Anthony Award nominee. "A realistic look at murderous motives in academe as well as the murderers which academia attracts.."-- The Armchair Detective

The third Maggie Ryan mystery, MURDER IS PATHOLOGICAL . “The vandal is elusive. . . . the conclusion is stunning.” –– The Armchair Detective

The fourth Maggie Ryan mystery, MURDER UNRENOVATED. "Terrific characters, funny incidents, genuine suspense, and an absolutely right sense of period and place."--The Purloined Letter

The fifth Maggie Ryan mystery, REHEARSAL FOR MURDER. "A fine mix of romantic, domestic and theatre-smart drama and murder."--Judith Crist

The sixth Maggie Ryan mystery, MURDER IN THE DOG DAYS, finalist for the Edgar Award. “An ingeniously plotted, fair-play, locked-room mystery, one of the best we’ve encountered.” – The Denver Post



"A winner" Booklist

The newest Marty Hopkins mystery "A virtuoso climax" Kirkus, Starred review

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MYSTERIES

The first Maggie Ryan mystery
AUDITION FOR MURDER (Maggie Ryan 1967)
Actors Nick and Lisette O’Connor need a change. They leave New York City for a semester as artists-in-residence at a college upstate, where they take on the roles of Claudius and Ophelia, two of the professional leads in a campus production of Hamlet. Threats and accidents begin to follow Lisette, and Nick worries it might be more than just petty jealousy. Maggie Ryan, a student running lights for the show, helps investigate a mystery steeped in the turmoil of 1967 America.

This Mystery Company/Crum Creek Press edition restores to print the 1985 novel that introduced Maggie Ryan.

"It's a triple pleasure, a sophisticated theatre story, a knowing campus tale and a topnotch suspenseful mystery, with excellent characterizations and honest plotting." -- Judith Crist

"An extremely well-written tale, with a plotline that offers a jolt per page." -- CF, Booklist

"Very literate, sprinkled with surprises and offering that rarity of rarities -- fully fleshed out characters." -- Bob Ellison, Los Angeles Daily News



The second Maggie Ryan mystery
MURDER IS ACADEMIC (Maggie Ryan 1968)
Vietnam, assassinations and riots. In the spring semester of 1968, a series of brutal attacks draws campus women together to study self-defense and the psychology of rape. Graduate student Mary Beth Nelson struggles to keep the Lords of Death at bay by immersing herself in researching Mayan languages. Her new housemate, Maggie Ryan, has her own secrets. When murder strikes close to home, Maggie investigates with a little help from her friends.

This Mystery Company edition restores to print the second novel in the Maggie Ryan series, a 1986 Anthony Award nominee.

"The results [Maggie Ryan] achieves are ingenious and startling. . . . Every campus would like to have a Maggie Ryan, and readers will hope to hear more of her." -- Miriam L. Clark, The Armchair Detective

“Murder Is Academic treats violation of truth in tandem with assault and rape—true violations of person, mind, and body—and presents a cogent case for the inviolability both of persons and truth.” — Susan L. Clark, The Armchair Detective





The third Maggie Ryan mystery
MURDER IS PATHOLOGICAL (Maggie Ryan 1969)
The exploding wastebasket is a prank, but slaughtered lab rats have graduate student Maggie Ryan, Monica Bauer and the rest of the lab on edge. When the custodian is murdered, actor Nick O'Connor goes undercover to investigate, help that Maggie does not appreciate-- or does she? While Nick and Maggie search for the killer, Monica struggles to connect with a veteran who was shot in the head in Vietnam.

This Mystery Company edition restores to print the third novel in the Maggie Ryan series.

"[Carlson's] work offers a unique combination of empathy for her characters, her sense of history, and her ability to weave the social and political currents of the '60s and early '70s into the stories." –– The Drood Review of Mystery

"The vandal is elusive. When at last the mystery is solved, the conclusion is stunning."––The Armchair Detective




The fourth Maggie Ryan mystery
MURDER UNRENOVATED (Maggie Ryan 1972)
Realtor Len Trager is anxious to sell the brownstone in Brooklyn's Park Slope neighborhood, but prospective buyers don't want to deal with fierce old Julia Northrup, who rents the basement apartment. Maggie Ryan and her husband Nick O'Connor love the place and aren't scared off by Julia-- but then they find the corpse on the top floor.

This Mystery Company edition restores to print the fourth novel in the Maggie Ryan series, a 1989 nominee for the Macavity and Anthony Awards.


"Terrific characters, funny incidents, genuine suspense, and an absolutely right sense of period and place. If comparisons were in order, we'd say Maggie and Nick are as memorable a sleuthing team as Nick and Nora Charles or Lord Peter Wimsey and Harriet Vane." -- Tom & Enid Schantz, The Purloined Letter

"The reader is treated to skillful, literate writing and an engrossing, suspenseful mystery story. This is one of my favorite mysteries of all time." -- Phyllis Brown, Grounds for Murder

The fifth Maggie Ryan mystery
REHEARSAL FOR MURDER (Maggie Ryan 1973)-- Statistician Maggie Ryan's actor husband, Nick O’Connor, is rehearsing a great role in an off-Broadway musical that will star the famous Ramona Ricci. But Nick is worried by Ramona’s diva-like behavior, which enrages the cast members. And the home front is even tougher. He and Maggie adore their five-month-old daughter Sarah, but she exhausts them and leaves them no time for each other. Then they’re slammed with two more problems. Maggie, doing a favor for another frazzled parent, gets wind of a plot against that child. And someone guns down the bitchy Ramona.

This Mystery Company edition restores to print the fifth novel in the Maggie Ryan series.

“A tightly woven thriller, warm and beautifully paced with a bittersweet finale. This show must go on!” -- Dorothy Salisbury Davis, MWA Grand Master

“Seeing them again is like greeting old friends. In this way, each book is more rewarding than the last.” -- Ellen Keith, Scotland Yard Books

The sixth Maggie Ryan mystery
MURDER IN THE DOG DAYS (Maggie Ryan, 1975)
Finalist for the Edgar Award
On a sweltering summer day, reporter Olivia Kerr and her husband Jerry Ryan invite Olivia's colleague Dale Colby and his family to the beach. Accompanying them is a very pregnant Maggie Ryan (Jerry's sister) and her family. Dale remains at home to follow up on an important story. When the beach-goers return they find Dale's body in a pool of blood inside his locked office. Vietnam veteran turned police officer Holly Schreiner leads the investigation, battling Maggie–– and demons of her own.

This Mystery Company edition restores to print the sixth novel in the Maggie Ryan series, a 1992 Edgar Award nominee.

"An ingeniously plotted, fair-play, locked-room mystery, one of the best we've encountered." -- Tom & Enid Schantz in The Denver Post

The seventh Maggie Ryan mystery
MURDER MISREAD (Maggie Ryan 1977)
Maggie Ryan returns to her alma mater as a consultant to help Charlie Fielding with the statistical analysis of his reading research. Charlie, professor and film buff, wants to help children learn to read, and begins by studying the eye movements of adult readers. Maggie finds the research interesting, and she’s also happy because Charlie’s department offers good daycare for her two children, and because her actor husband Nick O’Connor is working at a summer stock theatre not far away. But the happy summer plan is disrupted when Charlie’s popular colleague and rival, Professor Tal Chandler, is found shot in a gorge near campus.
It looks like suicide. But why is the gun in the left-handed man’s right hand? And why do the town homicide detectives run up against resistance when they try to interview Charlie and other department members?
Maggie teams up with Tal’s grieving widow, French professor Anne Chandler, to get some questions answered.


This Mystery Company edition restores to print the seventh novel in the Maggie Ryan series, named to the 1990 Editor's Choice list by the Drood Review of Mystery.

"A tasty blend of irreverence and sincerity... Maggie is an engaging everywoman–– wife, mother, professional–– who conducts her crime-busting with quiet panache.” –– Entertainment Weekly

“[A] compassionate portrait of a strong woman suddenly widowed and a chilling study of criminal acts that can’t be dealt with conventionally.” –– Denver Post

The first Marty Hopkins mystery
GRAVESTONE

Deputy Sheriff Marty Hopkins has her hands full with her nine-year-old daughter, her wandering husband, an old judge raving that his long-missing daughter is trying to kill him -- and a grisly murder marked with a charred cross, the calling-card of the Ku Klux Klan. A tip from an eccentric biologist sends Marty to a cave deep in the Indiana limestone, where she's plunged into a harrowing confrontation, trapped under the earth, alone with chilling fears and shattering secrets that cannot bear the light of day.


"Quite simply, Gravestone is the best series debut I have ever read. The story is gripping and dramatic, and there is a climax in a dark, deserted cave that will hold you spellbound." Rave Reviews

"An ambitious, multilayered, richly textured novel." Denver Post

The second Marty Hopkins mystery
BLOODSTREAM

When fourteen-year-old Johnny Donato's body is found floating in the White River, Deputy Sheriff Marty Hopkins investigates local residents and also a group of newcomers, a teenage church group working on an archaelogical dig of a utopian village. Marty is a cop but she’s also a mother, and soon a second tragedy triggers every parent’s nightmare. Someone is out there, someone haunted by dreadful torments, roaming the riverbanks, stalking new prey.

"Shocking. . . .In Marty Hopkins, Carlson has created a heroine who exemplifies today's independent working woman struggling to balance the diverse and challenging demands of work and home." Park Slope Courier

"As the river and the suspense rise to a crescendo, Marty endures watery danger of her own before solving this affecting puzzle." Publishers Weekly

The third Marty Hopkins mystery
DEATHWIND

At four a.m., Marty Hopkins knows the phone calls won't be good news. First her long-gone husband threatens her with a nasty divorce, breaking her daughter's heart. Then her boss the sheriff asks her to investigate how a young woman died in the lobby of a closed, locked bank. And she's still working on the disappearance of Tom and Dee Turley's talented teenaged daughter Coral. A visiting rock star complicates the picture. To find the answers she'll have to battle PR men, lawyers, rapists, and hit men, while a murderous Midwestern tornado churns toward them.

The fourth Marty Hopkins mystery
CROSSFIRE

Midnight in wintry Indiana. Her unsupportive new boss has sent Deputy Sheriff Marty Hopkins to report on an insignificant cabin fire in a remote area near the national forest. But the investigation takes on national importance and personal anguish when she finds a local man cruelly murdered, and his murderer vanished into thin air. Her search for the killer is complicated by a visiting lawyer from New York and by two strange clowns. And how can Marty get any sleep when her teenage daughter insists on listening to that rock music?

"Marty uses her keen intelligence and hard-jawed tenacity to unearth the sad and shocking truth. A fine addition to this engaging series." Booklist


Collected Bridget Mooney stories
RENOWNED BE THY GRAVE; or, The Murderous Miss Mooney

Being an actress in the late nineteenth century can be fraught with peril. For one thing, there are the lecherous theatregoers--but Bridget Mooney can avoid them, except of course when she doesn't want to. More bothersome are the crimes and mysteries she encounters involving people like Ulysses S. Grant, Lillie Langtry, Thomas Alva Edison, and Jesse James. Two of the ten stories in Renowned Be Thy Grave were finalists for the Agatha Christie Award.

GERMAN
P.M. Carlsons Krimis in deutscher Übersetzung
Grabes Stimme (Gravestone)
Knochenstrom (Bloodstream)
Todes Hauch (Deathwind)
Miss Mooney (Renowned Be Thy Grave)

CROATIAN
Roman Patricije M. Carlson na hrvatskom jeziku
Grob u kamenu (Deathwind)

MYSTERIES & DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

AUDITION FOR MURDER (Maggie Ryan 1967)-- "Very literate, sprinkled with surprises and starring that rarity of rarities -- fully fleshed out characters." -- Los Angeles Daily News
MURDER IS ACADEMIC (Maggie Ryan 1968)-- “treats violation of truth in tandem with assault and rape—true violations of person, mind, and body—and presents a cogent case for the inviolability both of persons and truth.” — The Armchair Detective
MURDER IS PATHOLOGICAL (Maggie Ryan 1969) “The vandal is elusive. When at last the mystery is solved, the conclusion is stunning.” –– The Armchair Detective
MURDER UNRENOVATED (Maggie Ryan 1972) "Terrific characters, funny incidents, genuine suspense, and an absolutely right sense of period and place." -- The Purloined Letter
REHEARSAL FOR MURDER (Maggie Ryan 1973)-- “A tightly woven thriller, warm and beautifully paced with a bittersweet finale. This show must go on!” -- Dorothy Salisbury Davis, MWA Grand Master
MURDER IN THE DOG DAYS (Maggie Ryan 1975)-- "An ingeniously plotted, fair-play, locked-room mystery, one of the best we've encountered." -- The Denver Post
MURDER MISREAD (Maggie Ryan 1977)-- "A tasty blend of irreverence and sincerity... [Maggie] conducts her crime-busting with quiet panache.” –– Entertainment Weekly
MARTY HOPKINS NOVELS
GRAVESTONE --- "Chock full of everything a mystery reader loves: fully drawn characters, a strong sense of place, keen pacing." Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine
BLOODSTREAM --- "Carlson's characters are sharp and strong, and the story's unexpected twists and turns will leave you reeling." New Woman
DEATHWIND --- "A genuinely shocking climax. Believable characters and an unusual setting close the deal: this one's a winner." Booklist
CROSSFIRE --- "Deputy Marty Hopkins lands in the middle of an arson case that forces her to confront her own terrifying memories.... A virtuoso climax." Kirkus
SHORT HISTORICAL MYSTERIES
RENOWNED BE THY GRAVE --- "The final word on Bridget is that she's full of verve, meets fascinating people, and we hope to encounter her often again." The Drood Review
TRANSLATIONS
P.M. Carlsons Krimis in deutscher Übersetzung
Roman Patricije M. Carlson na hrvatskom jeziku