Have you met Kate Atkinson’s private investigator Jackson Brodie yet?
A former soldier and policeman, Jackson Brodie is a tough guy with a big heart. He’s unable to resist coming to the rescue and increasingly he becomes a magnet for the bereaved, the lost and the dysfunctional. His ability to connect comes from his own tragic childhood that still haunts him.
Kate’s four bestselling Jackson Brodie novels became the BBC television series Case Histories, starring Jason Isaacs, that had us glued to our screens back in 2011.
Here’s a taste of all the Jackson Brodie books in order…
Kate Atkinson’s Jackson Brodie books in order:
Cambridge is sweltering, during an unusually hot summer. To Jackson Brodie, former police inspector turned private investigator, the world consists of one accounting sheet – Lost on the left, Found on the right – and the two never seem to balance.
Surrounded by death, intrigue and misfortune, his own life haunted by a family tragedy, Jackson attempts to unravel three disparate case histories and begins to realise that in spite of apparent diversity, everything is connected…
It is summer, it is the Edinburgh Festival. People queuing for a lunchtime show witness a road-rage incident – a near-homicidal attack which changes the lives of everyone involved. Jackson Brodie, ex-army, ex-police, ex-private detective, is also an innocent bystander – until he becomes a murder suspect.
As the body count mounts, each member of the teeming Dickensian cast’s story contains a kernel of the next, like a set of nesting Russian dolls. They are all looking for love or money or redemption or escape: but what each actually discovers is their own true self.
In a quiet corner of rural Devon, a six-year-old girl witnesses an appalling crime. Thirty years later the man convicted of the crime is released from prison.
In Edinburgh, sixteen-year-old Reggie, wise beyond her years, works as a nanny for a GP. But her employer has disappeared with her baby, and Reggie seems to be the only person who is worried. Across town, Detective Chief Inspector Louise Monroe is also looking for a missing person, unaware that hurtling towards her is a former acquaintance – Jackson Brodie – himself on a journey that becomes fatally interrupted.
A day like any other for security chief Tracy Waterhouse, until she makes a shocking impulse purchase. That one moment of madness is all it takes for Tracy’s humdrum world to be turned upside down, the tedium of everyday life replaced by fear and danger at every turn.
Witnesses to Tracy’s outrageous exchange in the Merrion Centre in Leeds are Tilly, an elderly actress teetering on the brink of her own disaster, and Jackson Brodie, who has returned to his home county in search of someone else’s roots. All three characters learn that the past is never history and that no good deed goes unpunished.
Jackson Brodie has relocated to a quiet seaside village in North Yorkshire, in the occasional company of his recalcitrant teenage son Nathan and ageing Labrador Dido, both at the discretion of his former partner Julia. It’s a picturesque setting, but there’s something darker lurking behind the scenes.
Jackson’s current job, gathering proof of an unfaithful husband for his suspicious wife, seems straightforward, but a chance encounter with a desperate man on a crumbling cliff leads him into a sinister network—and back into the path of someone from his past.
There you have it – Kate Atkinson’s Jackson Brodie books in order! How many have you read? Let us know in the comments below…