Aaron Elkins Books

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Aaron Elkins is an American author that writes mystery novels. He stands out from many of his peers because he doesn’t write cozy mysteries or hard-boiled crime fiction. His books fall somewhere in the middle, and they are popular among both male and female readers.

Order of Gideon Oliver Series

1Fellowship of Fear 1982Description / Buy
2The Dark Place 1983Description / Buy
3Murder in the Queen's Armes 1985Description / Buy
4Old Bones 1987Description / Buy
5Curses! 1989Description / Buy
6Icy Clutches 1990Description / Buy
7Make No Bones 1991Description / Buy
8Dead Men's Hearts 1994Description / Buy
9Twenty Blue Devils 1997Description / Buy
10Skeleton Dance 2000Description / Buy
11Good Blood 2004Description / Buy
12Where There's a Will 2005Description / Buy
13Unnatural Selection 2006Description / Buy
14Little Tiny Teeth 2007Description / Buy
15Uneasy Relations 2008Description / Buy
16Skull Duggery 2009Description / Buy
17Dying on the Vine 2012Description / Buy
18Switcheroo 2016Description / Buy

Order of The Chris Norgren Mysteries Series

1A Deceptive Clarity 1987Description / Buy
2A Glancing Light 1991Description / Buy
3Old Scores 1993Description / Buy

Order of Lee Ofsted Series with Charlotte Elkins

1A Wicked Slice 1989Description / Buy
2Rotten Lies 1995Description / Buy
3Nasty Breaks 1997Description / Buy
4Where Have All the Birdies Gone? 2004Description / Buy
5On the Fringe 2005Description / Buy

Order of Alix London Series

1A Dangerous Talent 2012Description / Buy
2A Cruise to Die For 2013Description / Buy
3The Art Whisperer 2014Description / Buy
4The Trouble with Mirrors 2016Description / Buy

Order of Aaron Elkins Standalone Novels

1Loot 1999Description / Buy
2Turncoat 2002Description / Buy
3The Worst Thing 2011Description / Buy
4A Long Time Coming 2018Description / Buy
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Born in 1935 in Brooklyn, New York to a machinist and a homemaker, Elkins attended Hunter University (Bachelor of Arts), the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and the University of Arizona (Master of Arts). Along with studying at California State University, the author also spent some time at the University of California, Berkley (Education Doctorate).

Of all the careers he expected to pursue when he was young, publishing wasn’t one of them. He couldn’t imagine writing fiction for a living because it sounded like such an impossible undertaking meant for the extraordinary. From his point of view, he wasn’t extraordinary.

Elkins was fortunate enough to land a job with the Overseas Division of the University of Maryland. He was an anthropology teacher but he spent a lot of time on Nato bases in places like Spain, Sardinia, and Germany.

Elkins recorded his observations in a journal. He was 42 in 1978 when he finally came back home. The author was unemployed and he had no job prospects. So he sat down and used the observations he had made during his time in Europe to write his first novel. The book told the story of an anthropology professor that solved mysteries.

Like some of his peers, Elkins attracted interest from the publishing arena because he was writing what he knew. This allowed him to make his stories as accurate as possible. At the time, he had no idea that the forensic anthropology deductions made by his protagonist would engross so many readers. He did not expect the concept to pave the way for an entire series of novels.

Because Elkins is an anthropology professor like his hero, many of his readers have admitted that they see Aaron Elkins whenever they imagine Gideon Oliver, the fictional anthropologist. The author doesn’t mind the comparisons.

His novels are normally set in exotic locations. Elkins does quite a bit of research before writing each novel. That includes visiting some of the places his characters will inhabit and speaking to the police officers in the vicinity. Because the author is on the side of the police, he doesn’t want to besmirch their image in his books.

In many cases, once he tells the police who he is and what he wants to do, they are eager to help. People that have only read the novels he wrote alone might be surprised to learn that he has collaborated with his wife.

Charlotte Elkins started writing romance novels during her time as an American Art Librarian (de Young Museum, Francisco). She joined forces with her husband to write the Lee Ofsted novels.

While she enjoyed their collaborations, they eventually severed their partnership. By Elkins’ own admission, he was difficult to work with. They decided that they valued their marriage too much to put it at risk by collaborating on their literary endeavors.

Aaron Elkins Awards

Elkins won the Edgar Award in 1988 and the Nero Award in 1994.

Aaron Elkins Books Into Movies

The Gideon Oliver books became an ABC television series. The series lasted five episodes.

Best Aaron Elkins Books

Despite the success he attained as a writer, Elkins has continued to work as a forensic anthropologist (Olympic Peninsula Cold Case unit in Washington State). Elkins’ best novels include:

Fellowship of Fear: Gideon Oliver couldn’t wait to start his teaching fellowship at various US military bases. But the recruiting agency that got him the job had neglected to inform him that his predecessors had died mysteriously. When two men invade his hotel, Gideon comes to the realization that he has become a player in a game he knows nothing about.

A Long Time Coming: Val couldn’t wait to travel to Milan to help Sol recover the sketches Renoir had gifted his family back when the artist was still unknown. Val was determined to help the holocaust survivor regain what was rightfully his.

The fact that Val’s divorce had become final and the promotion he wanted was gone meant that he had every reason to anticipate the trip to Milan. He did not expect to become embroiled in a conspiracy involving art thieves and forgers.

When Does The Next Aaron Elkins book come out?

Aaron Elkins doesn't seem to have an upcoming book. Their newest book is A Long Time Coming and was released on August, 7th 2018.


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