Shirley Rousseau Murphy Books

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Shirley Rousseau Murphy is an elderly American woman of letters. Murphy, who is an octogenarian, was born in May 1928 in Oakland upon California, in the US. She developed affection for animals while still young, and this would, many years later, stand her in good stead in her writing ambitions. For instance, in her formative years, she rode and showcased horses, thanks to her father who was an equine trainer. She schooled at San Francisco Art Institute. She has done interior design, has exhibited art, and has had a stint making metallic sculptures.

Order of Joe Grey Series

1Cat on the Edge 1996Description / Buy
2Cat Under Fire 1996Description / Buy
3Cat Raise the Dead 1997Description / Buy
4Cat in the Dark 1998Description / Buy
5Cat To The Dogs 1999Description / Buy
6Cat Spitting Mad 2000Description / Buy
7Cat Laughing Last 2001Description / Buy
8Cat Seeing Double 2003Description / Buy
9Cat Fear No Evil 2004Description / Buy
10Cat Cross Their Graves 2005Description / Buy
11Cat Breaking Free 2005Description / Buy
12Cat Deck the Halls 2007Description / Buy
13Cat Pay the Devil 2007Description / Buy
14Cat Playing Cupid 2009Description / Buy
15Cat Striking Back 2009Description / Buy
16Cat on the Money 2010Description / Buy
17Cat Coming Home 2010Description / Buy
18Cat Telling Tales 2011Description / Buy
19Cat Bearing Gifts 2012Description / Buy
20Cat Shout for Joy 2016Description / Buy
21Cat Shining Bright 2018Description / Buy
22Cat Chase the Moon 2018Description / Buy

Order of Children of Ynell Series

1The Ring of Fire 1977Description / Buy
2The Wolf Bell 1979Description / Buy
3The Castle of Hape 1980Description / Buy
4Caves of Fire and Ice 1980Description / Buy
5The Joining of the Stone 1981Description / Buy

Order of Dragonbards Series

1Nightpool 1985Description / Buy
2The Ivory Lyre 1987Description / Buy
3The Dragonbards 1988Description / Buy

Order of Lee Fontana Series

1The Cat, The Devil, and Lee Fontana 2014Description / Buy
2The Cat, the Devil, the Last Escape 2015Description / Buy

Order of Shirley Rousseau Murphy Standalone Novels

1The Sand Ponies 1967Description / Buy
2White Ghost Summer 1969Description / Buy
3Wind Child 1973Description / Buy
4Poor Jenny, Bright As A Penny 1974Description / Buy
5The Grass Tower 1976Description / Buy
6Silver Woven in My Hair (Short Story) 1977Description / Buy
7Soonie and the Dragon 1979Description / Buy
8Elmo Doolan and the Search for the Golden Mouse 1982Description / Buy
9The Flight of the Fox 1983Description / Buy
10Valentine for a Dragon 1984Description / Buy
11Medallion of the Black Hound 1989Description / Buy
12The Song of the Christmas Mouse 1990Description / Buy
13The Catswold Portal 1992Description / Buy
14Unsettled (Short Story) 2011Description / Buy

Order of Shirley Rousseau Murphy Picture Books

1The Pig Who Could Conjure The Wind 1978Description / Buy
2Tattie's River Journey 1983Description / Buy

Shirley Rousseau Murphy Anthologies

1 Motherhood Is Murder2003Description / Buy
2 Christmas Cats2005Description / Buy
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Shirley Rousseau Murphy’s desire to start writing came hard on the heels of her and her husband’s relocation to Panama. She has also co-authored books with her husband called Pat J. J. Murphy, a former probation officer. Incidentally, her literary work is inspired by animals, especially pets, wherein the animal characters are anthropomorphized although they still maintain their feline characteristics.

Shirley Rousseau Murphy has authored over forty books. However, she is most notably renowned for authoring the Joe Grey series. Did you know that, one, the bond between her and animals, and, two, noticing the market gap of insufficient literary work based on humanized animals inspired her to start writing the Joe Grey series? As such, she started creating literary worlds wherein felines not only maintained their natural instincts but could also talk. The first edition of the first entry in the serialized Joe Grey was originally in 1996, titled Cat on the Edge, and this series is shelved as cozy mystery, fantasy, and animal fable genres.

In the first book in the Joe Grey series, Cat on the Edge, the featured protagonist is Joe Grey. The main character, which is an animal, is a detective tomcat. The said cat has been living a spectacular lifestyle with its owners. This sheltered life is a contrast of the circumstances under which it met its owners. By then, the cat was young, hungry and not cared for by anyone when someone chanced upon it abandoned; incidentally, this part evokes sad memories. Just like in the Molena Point streets wherein the fictitious tomcat was seen, husband Pat J. J. Murphy found the family’s real-life cat called ELT abandoned at a windswept airfield starving and distressed all the while.

Back to the fictitious Joe Grey; by a stroke of luck, Grey realizes that it can communicate pretty perfectly with other people. This rare ability stands it in good stead when it witnesses a murderer–the murderer has also seen the cat and is angling for killing the cat too– when it starts sleuthing, seeking to nab the killer.

Shirley Rousseau Murphy Awards

Shirley Rousseau Murphy is an eight-time winner of the annual book award which was proffered by the American-based and cats-oriented Cat Writers’ Association. Murphy is a five-time winner of the Dixie Council of Authors and Journalists prize. In 2006, Murphy clinched the World’s Best Cat Literary Award, thanks to her greatly liked Joe Grey series. Murphy has also been nominated for the Locus Award in the Best Art Book category.

Best Shirley Rousseau Murphy Books

In the bibliography of Shirley Rousseau Murphy, the three best books are: Cat on the Edge, Cat Under Fire, and The Catsworld Portal.

Cat on the Edge: This book has been explained previously.

Cat Under Fire This book was initially published in 1996, is the second book in the Joe Grey series. Hereby, protagonist Joe Grey, a somehow ‘larger than life’ tomcat, can communicate with people and has another friendly cat who also do so. However, the other cat is too trusting such that it trusts a person imprisoned for allegedly killing a celebrated regional artist. The inmate has stated that he is innocent and the trusting cat is on a quest for proving his innocence. Joe Grey is a curious onlooker.

Catswold Portal: A standalone book published in 1992. It features a certain Melissa and her caretaker Mag. Melissa neither recalls her infancy nor her origin. But it turns out Melissa is a past master at changing from a person to a feline.

Other Book Series You May Like

Readers awed by Shirley Rousseau Murphy’s books were also awe-struck by these book series. The first one is “Mrs Murphy” series which is penned by Rita Mae Brown; it features cat called Mrs Murphy which is owned by a postmistress-cum-Virginia resident called Mary Minor Haristeen. The second one is the Feline Wizards series authored by Diane Duane; this is all about the exploits of Nita and Kit, two youngish wizards, as they face-off an antagonist seeking to destroy the whole universe.

Another one is called “Midnight Louie” series authored by Carole Nelson Douglas. It features Midnight Louie, a tomcat detective, and PR professional called Temple Barr.

When Does The Next Shirley Rousseau Murphy book come out?

Shirley Rousseau Murphy doesn't seem to have an upcoming book. Their newest book is Cat Chase the Moon and was released on August, 28th 2018. It is the newest book in the Joe Grey Series.

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