72 books like Memoirs of a Bow Street Runner

By Henry Goddard,

Here are 72 books that Memoirs of a Bow Street Runner fans have personally recommended if you like Memoirs of a Bow Street Runner. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Blooding: The Dramatic True Story of the First Murder Case Solved by Genetic "Fingerprinting"

E.J. Wagner Author Of The Science of Sherlock Holmes: From Baskerville Hall to the Valley of Fear, the Real Forensics Behind the Great Detective's Greatest Cases

From my list on the beginning of crime.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a crime historian and storyteller. I study old crimes, particularly those of scientific interest, and present my findings in public presentations. Sometimes I write about them- in the NY Times, Smithsonian, Lancet, Ellery Queen. I’ve researched in autopsy suites, crumbling archives, and crime labs. I was the founder and moderator of the annual Forensic Forum at Stony Brook University. I’ve consulted on criminal matters for PBS, BBC, and commercial stations. I am fascinated by ancient crime because so much great literature derives from it - the sadly dysfunctional Oedipus family, the fraternal dispute between Cain and Abel- the unhappy Borden family of Fall River. All grist for my mill.

E.J.'s book list on the beginning of crime

E.J. Wagner Why did E.J. love this book?

The Blooding recounts a gripping true tale of murders in the picturesque English countryside-but aside from its haunting atmosphere, it is a detailed account of the beginning of DNA as a crime-solving technique. We have come a long way since the mid-1980s, and we can get much more information from newer DNA methods, but the detailed explanation of exactly how this worked as a revolutionary method is invaluable. Reading this book puts the reader at the very beginning of a revolution.

By Joseph Wambaugh,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Blooding as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Fifteen-year-old Lynda Mann's savagely raped and strangled body is found along a shady footpath near the English village of Narborough.  Though a massive 150-man dragnet is launched, the case remains unsolved.  Three years later the killer strikes again, raping and strangling teenager Dawn Ashforth only a stone's throw from where Lynda was so brutally murdered.  But it will take four years, a scientific breakthrough, the largest manhunt in British crime annals, and the blooding of more than four thousand men before the real killer is found.


Book cover of Criminal Investigation: A Practical Handbook for Magistrates, Police Officers and Lawyers

C. A. Asbrey Author Of Innocent Bystander

From my list on for writers of Victorian mysteries.

Why am I passionate about this?

I write historical mysteries, and developed an interest in early forensics when I was a police officer. I have worked in private industry, as a civilian police worker, and in a department connected to the Home Office. Historical mysteries particularly appeal to me as they present a different, and very specific, challenge. There’s no lab to process evidence, and everything needs to be double-checked for anachronisms, even down to the colour of light from gas lamps in different areas. Extensive research acted as the foundation for developing the characters in The Innocents Mystery Series. I like my mysteries twisty, complex, and intricate; through a fog of history and a touch of light humour.  

C. A.'s book list on for writers of Victorian mysteries

C. A. Asbrey Why did C. A. love this book?

Europe was at the forefront of the revolution in forensic science in the 19th century. Way ahead of the UK, and decades ahead of the USA. While most of the pioneers were doctors, Gross was a lawyer. He made the language of the law more accessible. Written over a hundred-and-fifty years ago as a textbook, the style will appeal more to the academic reader and researcher of historical forensics. The Kindle version hasn’t been transcribed well, but is a fascinating window on the past nevertheless. 

By Hans Gross,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Criminal Investigation as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Excerpt from Criminal Investigation

This Indian and Colonial edition, while omitting some portions of the original which would be of no use to the practical worker, for example, the slang words of Bohemian gipsies, thus contains much new and interesting matter, the better to adapt the book for India and the Colonies, and also to bring the last German edition of 1904 thoroughly up to date. These new passages, derived from the writings of specialists, the latest criminal intelligence, and the somewhat extensive experience of the adap tors as criminal lawyers, are interwoven with the text.


Book cover of The New Annotated Sherlock Holmes: The Complete Short Stories: The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes and the Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes

E.J. Wagner Author Of The Science of Sherlock Holmes: From Baskerville Hall to the Valley of Fear, the Real Forensics Behind the Great Detective's Greatest Cases

From my list on the beginning of crime.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a crime historian and storyteller. I study old crimes, particularly those of scientific interest, and present my findings in public presentations. Sometimes I write about them- in the NY Times, Smithsonian, Lancet, Ellery Queen. I’ve researched in autopsy suites, crumbling archives, and crime labs. I was the founder and moderator of the annual Forensic Forum at Stony Brook University. I’ve consulted on criminal matters for PBS, BBC, and commercial stations. I am fascinated by ancient crime because so much great literature derives from it - the sadly dysfunctional Oedipus family, the fraternal dispute between Cain and Abel- the unhappy Borden family of Fall River. All grist for my mill.

E.J.'s book list on the beginning of crime

E.J. Wagner Why did E.J. love this book?

Along with a complete reprinting of all the Sherlock Holmes stories, this is an incredibly well-researched account of the background from which they sprang. Leslie Klinger clarifies and defines many of the archaic terms and complex historical quirks which sometimes makes the initial reading of Sherlock Holmes difficult for newcomers to the Canon. He delineates the tales connection to the true crimes upon which Conan Doyle drew. It’s a bit like seeing an old, somewhat blurry photograph suddenly sharpened to give maximum impact. It’s simply necessary for anyone with a serious interest in Mr. Holmes.

By Sir Arthur Conan Doyle,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The New Annotated Sherlock Holmes as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The publication of Leslie S. Klinger's brilliant new annotations of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's classic Holmes short stories in 2004 created a Holmes sensation. Available again in an attractively-priced edition identical to the first, except this edition has no outer slipcase (Volume Two is available separately).

Inside, readers will find all the short stories from The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes and The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, with a cornucopia of insights: beginners will benefit from Klinger's insightful biographies of Holmes, Watson, and Conan Doyle; history lovers will revel in the wealth of Victorian literary and cultural details; Sherlockian fanatics will…


Book cover of Rebellion

Wolfric Styler Author Of Troubled Zen

From my list on action series with characters in the military.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been in various militaries for over 17 years and am proud of my service. Troubled Zen is my first foray into the publishing world and I’m proud of what I’ve achieved. I enjoy the ex-military hero-style action/ thriller novels because I find that I can understand their mindset and relate well with their characters. I found most were male, ex-special forces so I chose a female Explosive Ordnance Disposal member as I believe that there are plenty of aspects to investigate that can show how a woman can be equally tough, stubborn, ingenious, brave, and determined.

Wolfric's book list on action series with characters in the military

Wolfric Styler Why did Wolfric love this book?

This series about a Bow Street Runner piqued my interest as, like Reacher and Sharpe, he is a bit of a rogue but tries to do what is right while also breaking the rules at times. What appeals to me about his character is that he was unjustly discharged but did his best to secure another profession that tries to help people. The description and action scenes are very believable however Hawkwood isn’t as indestructible as Reacher. His vulnerability and pragmatism are features that I have molded into the main character in my novel too.

By James McGee,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Rebellion as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Rebellion is brewing in Napoleonic Paris, in the new action-packed novel from the author of the bestselling Ratcatcher

October 1812: Britain and France are still at war. France is engaged on two battle fronts - Spain and Russia - and her civilians are growing weary of the fight. Rebellion is brewing. Since Napoleon Bonaparte appointed himself as First Consul, there have been several attempts to either kill or overthrow him. All have failed, so far...

Meanwhile in London, Bow Street Runner Matthew Hawkwood has been seconded to the foreign arm of the Secret Service. There, he meets the urbane Henry…


Book cover of A Useful Woman

Susan Vaughan Author Of Primal Obsession

From my list on historical mystery with women sleuths and romance.

Why am I passionate about this?

Reading historical mysteries with a touch of romance is a delicious chocolate dessert after a day of work. I’m the author of 16 romantic suspense novels. Why not double the excitement with both romance and mystery/suspense. I began reading mysteries because my mother read them. Once I’d read all the Nancy Drews, I moved on to Erle Stanley Gardner and Agatha Christie. I wrote a few mystery manuscripts that remain in a box in the attic, but then all-grown-up me discovered romantic suspense novels and found my niche. I love throwing the hero and heroine together under extraordinary circumstances and pitting them against a clever villain.

Susan's book list on historical mystery with women sleuths and romance

Susan Vaughan Why did Susan love this book?

Another first in series, this book, set in 19th century London, introduces Rosalind Thorne.

Nearly ruined after her father abandoned the family, she makes her living by managing the affairs of society women. There are probably more murders in these stories than among the ton in reality, but the mysteries keep things lively.

And the romance? Attractions to her old love, now a duke, and an attractive Bow Street investigator add deliciously to the intrigue. I have just read book 4 and need to find the next. Enjoy!

By Darcie Wilde,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked A Useful Woman as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Inspired by the novels of Jane Austen, this new mystery series set in 19th-century London introduces the charming and resourceful Rosalind Thorne, a woman privy to the secrets of high society—including who among the ton is capable of murder...
 
The daughter of a baronet and minor heiress, Rosalind Thorne was nearly ruined after her father abandoned the family. To survive in the only world she knew, she began to manage the affairs of some of London society’s most influential women, who have come to rely on her wit and discretion.
 
So, when artistocratic wastrel Jasper Aimesworth is found dead in…


Book cover of The First English Detectives: The Bow Street Runners and the Policing of London, 1750-1840

Melissa McShane Author Of Burning Bright

From my list on touring the unfamiliar corners of Regency England.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve loved the Regency era since first reading Jane Austen’s novels, but in writing my series of 19th-century adventure fantasies, I discovered there was so much more to the period than I’d ever dreamed. Though their culture and traditions aren’t like ours, I’m fascinated by how much about the lives of those men and women is familiar—the same desires, the same dreams for the future. I hope the books on this list inspire in you the same excitement they did in me!

Melissa's book list on touring the unfamiliar corners of Regency England

Melissa McShane Why did Melissa love this book?

Captain Gronow shed some light on the darker aspects of the Regency period, which was a time before law enforcement as we know it. But it wasn’t all bad—the Bow Street Runners were the start of a new era of policing. I was fascinated by the story of how these first detectives came to be and how much truth was behind the myth, especially since the myth has become a popular one for fiction writers in recent years.

By J. M. Beattie,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The First English Detectives as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This is the first comprehensive study of the Bow Street Runners, a group of men established in the middle of the eighteenth century by Henry Fielding, with the financial support of the government, to confront violent offenders on the streets and highways around London. They were developed over the following decades by his half-brother, John Fielding, into what became a well-known and stable group of officers who acquired skill and expertise in investigating crime,
tracking and arresting offenders, and in presenting evidence at the Old Bailey, the main criminal court in London. They were, Beattie argues, detectives in all but…


Book cover of Pride and Premeditation

Candice Marley Conner Author Of The Existence of Bea Pearl

From my list on YA mysteries to channel your inner Nancy Drew.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up reading Nancy Drew books creekside in an Alabama swamp and developed a deep adoration of mysteries with atmospheric, creepy settings. I love the idea of strong female protagonists who take matters into their own hands and don’t sit idly by, so not only do I read books that have them as main characters, but I write them too. In addition to writing, I’m lucky enough to be a kidlit haint at a haunted indie bookshop, so reading and recommending the books I enjoy is literally my job!

Candice's book list on YA mysteries to channel your inner Nancy Drew

Candice Marley Conner Why did Candice love this book?

If you like your mysteries paired with retold classics—think Jane Austen meets Agatha Christie for tea—I highly recommend this one! Price superbly captured the essence of Austen's characters and made them all her own. Instead of Bingley's purchase of Netherfield starting the story, he’s accused of murdering his brother-in-law. Quick-witted and resourceful Lizzie Bennet is eager to prove her worth as a solicitor in her father's barrister office and takes on the case to the prideful Darcy's dismay. Collins' character is just as cringy, and charming Wickham is a Bow Street Runner, helping Lizzie on her case. (You want him to be good! Just this once, Wickham!)

By Tirzah Price,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Pride and Premeditation as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of BuzzFeed's best YA books of 2021!

Perfect for fans of the Lady Janies and Stalking Jack the Ripper, the first book in the Jane Austen Murder Mysteries trilogy is a clever retelling of Pride and Prejudice that reimagines the iconic settings, characters, and romances in a thrilling and high-stakes whodunit.

When a scandalous murder shocks London high society, seventeen-year-old aspiring lawyer Lizzie Bennet seizes the opportunity to prove herself, despite the interference of Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy, the stern young heir to the prestigious firm Pemberley Associates.

Convinced the authorities have imprisoned the wrong person, Lizzie vows to solve…


Book cover of Mary Finch and the Thief

Feather Chelle Author Of Stranded

From my list on children's series that are undercover educators.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been in love with the ocean, since I first visited Galveston at the age of five. The cadence of the waves and tide called to me in a way that is hard to explain, and every creature within simply mesmerized me. I read everything about the ocean that I could find, and I haven’t stopped to this day. My book is fact-checked by two marine biologists as well, just to ensure that all of the information is accurate.

Feather's book list on children's series that are undercover educators

Feather Chelle Why did Feather love this book?

This is an enthralling new mystery series for middle grades and older readers. The main character is reminiscent of a young, female Sherlock Holmes, and she has lots of fun, if dangerous, adventures. My kids love the action, and I love that they teach a lot about history. These books have sparked a lot of conversation about the class system, in particular, which I believe is a very important topic.

By S S Saywack,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Mary Finch and the Thief as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Meet thirteen-year-old Mary Finch – a bold, determined heroine, and the star of a stylish new detective series. Perfect for fans of classic crime fiction.

Mary Finch and the Thief is the first in the Mary Finch Mystery series. It is 1893 and Mary Finch finds herself on the gritty and violent streets of Victorian London trying to clear her name.

When wrongfully accused of theft, Mary Finch is determined to track down the thief and prove her innocence. Her journey takes her from Baker Street, where her friends, the famous detective Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson, live, to the…


Book cover of The Beekeeper's Apprentice

Bruce Stachenfeld Author Of Faythe of North Hinkapee: The Saga of a Young Woman’s Quest for Justice and Love in Colonial America

From my list on irrepressible, exciting and heroic female lead characters that you will never forget.

Why am I passionate about this?

I made up Faythe of North Hinkapee by being a jerk! I was ranting about how bad a "best seller" book I had read was. My wife looked at me and said, "So, could you write a bestseller?" I was challenged, and then, somehow, this book just tumbled out. It was about a girl in Colonial Timesher family burned as witchesvowing vengeance and how she gets it. My wife looked at me and said: “My God, that could be a bestseller!’ My kids also loved the story. For about twenty years, I planned to write it, and after a ton of work, I finally finished.

Bruce's book list on irrepressible, exciting and heroic female lead characters that you will never forget

Bruce Stachenfeld Why did Bruce love this book?

I was hooked in the first chapter when the protagonist, Mary Russell, meets Sherlock Holmes, who is retired. There – do I have to say more?

She is a young woman and Sherlock is, well, Sherlock, and yet she matches wits with him while they end up in the middle of a creative and a bit scary Sherlock Holmes-ish tale. I couldn’t wait to get and read the sequels.

By Laurie R. King,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked The Beekeeper's Apprentice as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In 1915, Sherlock Holmes is retired and quietly engaged in the study of honeybees when a young woman literally stumbles into him on the Sussex Downs. Fifteen years old, gawky, egotistical, and recently orphaned, the young Mary Russell displays an intellect to impress even Sherlock Holmes--and match him wit for wit. Under his reluctant tutelage, this very modern twentieth-century woman proves a deft protegee and a fitting partner for the Victorian detective. But even in their first case together, the pair face a truly cunning adversary who will stop at nothing to put an end to their partnership.


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in Sherlock Holmes, Scotland Yard, and Victorian?

11,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about Sherlock Holmes, Scotland Yard, and Victorian.

Sherlock Holmes Explore 101 books about Sherlock Holmes
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Victorian Explore 155 books about Victorian