James R Benn Books

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James R. Benn is an America novelist from New York City, New York is best known for the Billy Boyle World War II Mystery series. These are historical thriller mysteries set in the World War II era. A graduate of the University of Connecticut and with a Master of Library of Science from the Southern Connecticut State University, Benn started writing his first novel when he was fifty years old. He started writing in 2006 and went full-time in 2010.

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Order of Billy Boyle World War II Mysteries Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 Billy Boyle 2006 Description / Buy
2 The First Wave 2007 Description / Buy
3 Blood Alone 2008 Description / Buy
4 Evil for Evil 2009 Description / Buy
5 Rag and Bone 2010 Description / Buy
6 A Mortal Terror 2011 Description / Buy
7 Death's Door 2012 Description / Buy
8 A Blind Goddess 2013 Description / Buy
9 The Rest is Silence 2014 Description / Buy
10 The White Ghost 2015 Description / Buy
11 Blue Madonna 2016 Description / Buy
12 The Devouring 2017 Description / Buy
13 Solemn Graves 2018 Description / Buy
14 When Hell Struck Twelve 2019 Description / Buy
15 The Red Horse 2020 Description / Buy
16 Road of Bones 2021 Description / Buy
17 From the Shadows 2022 Description / Buy
18 Proud Sorrows 2023 Description / Buy
19 The Phantom Patrol 2024 Description / Buy

Order of James R Benn Standalone Novels

# Read Title Published Details
1 On Desperate Ground / Desperate Ground 2000 Description / Buy
2 Souvenir 2012 Description / Buy
3 Shard 2021 Description / Buy
4 Freegift 2022 Description / Buy

Order of James R. Benn Collections

# Read Title Published Details
1 The Refusal Camp 2023 Description / Buy

James R. Benn Anthologies

# Read Title Published Details
1 The Usual Santas 2016 Description / Buy
2 Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine, September-October 2021 2021 Description / Buy
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James R. Benn series of novels center on the adventures of Billy Boyle a detective in the Boston Police Department. “Billy Boyle” was the first novel in the series published in 2006 to critical acclaim and much commercial success. The Billy Boyle series of novels is one of the most popular historical thrillers, with a quirky character that offers spectacular insider insights on the workings of the American military during the Second World War. The novels have sold thousands of copies over the years.


James R. Benn Billy Boyle series of novels has won several prestigious awards over the years. His first novel “Billy Doyle” made the shortlist for the 2006 Dilys Award. “A Blind Goddess” the eighth novel in the series made the long list for the Dublin literary award, Ireland’s most prestigious literary honor. The 2014 published “The Rest is Silence” made the finals for the Housatonic Book Award and the Barry Award for Best Novel in 2015.


Three of James R. Benn most appreciated novels in the Billy Boyle series of mystery novels are:

Blue Madonna: The 11th novel in the Billy Boyle World War II Mysteries sees ex Boston cop and US Army detective Billy Boyle face up to one of his toughest assignments yet, as he has to infiltrate enemy lines in preparation for the Allied invasion of Normandy. His dangerous mission came about as a compromise between going to prison and losing his officers rank, after he is found guilty of black market dealings. His first stop is a petite chateau in Chaumont, first used by fleeing Huguenots in the 1600s.

But there is something eerie about the safe house as most agents that pass through it are getting murdered by an unknown killer. Parachuted into Chaumont just before D-Day as part of a three-man team, he needs to resolve the mystery of the killings before leading his team back to England with the killer and Germans hot on their heels.

The Rest is Silence: The Barry Award Winning novel is an epic historical thriller set in England’s southern coast during World War II. Lieutenant Piotr Kazimierz and his partner and friend Army Captain Billy Boyle are the case officers for the case involving a floater off the Slapton Sands. It is an important case as the dead body has been found on Devonshire Beach, the setting for the rehearsal of the D-Day beach invasion of the Normandy.

Finding a distraction when they are invited to the home of one of Kaz’s high school classmates, they suddenly find themselves with an intriguing case on their hands. Just as they are wrapping up the floater case, a tragedy hits Operation Tiger, and they now have to deal with a case involving hundreds of bodies that could point to some sinister plot.

A Blind Goddess: With the European war slowly but surely ending, US Army Lieutenant is back in England where he hopes to kick back after a tough but successful mission in Italy. But as soon as he gets back, he is saddled with two of the toughest cases of his investigations career. The first is a request from Sergeant Eugene Jackson, a longtime friend who he grew up with and served with in the military that is now facing racism as well as conspiracy in his unit.

Even as he is now on vacation, it will not be so easy to help his friend, as Major Cosgrove of British Intelligence wants his expertise on a delicate and bizarre case of the murder of a British accountant, which may be linked to some higher ups in the US Army. Cosgrove gives him very scanty information about the murder, which makes him think that maybe the army major has something to hide. But with the mysterious murder set in the village near Sergeant Eugene’s regiment, Billy Boyle may just have the opportunity to resolve both murder mysteries.

When Does The Next James R. Benn book come out?

The next book by James R. Benn is The Phantom Patrol and will be released on September, 3rd 2024. It is the newest book in the Billy Boyle World War II Mysteries Series.


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