James Lee Burke got himself into the bestselling novelists’ map when he released The Neon Rain in 1987. More books followed this one in what came to be called the Dave Robicheaux series. These mystery series feature Dave Robicheaux, a New Orleans police department officer who pursues cases as a deputy sheriff in New Iberia, Louisiana.
Order of Dave Robicheaux Series
|1||The Neon Rain||1987|
|3||Black Cherry Blues||1989|
|4||A Morning for Flamingos||1990|
|5||A Stained White Radiance||1992|
|6||In the Electric Mist with Confederate Dead||1993|
|7||Dixie City Jam||1994|
|11||Purple Cane Road||2000|
|12||Jolie Blon's Bounce||2002|
|13||Last Car to Elysian Fields||2003|
|16||The Tin Roof Blowdown||2007|
|18||The Glass Rainbow||2010|
|20||Light of the World||2013|
Robicheaux goes against the ethical code in almost every case he handles. His involvement in Vietnam War as a US Army infantry lieutenant and his difficult childhood seems to be making life hard for the recovering alcoholic, whose parents are dead. His wife Annie Ballard is murdered, rubbing salt to the already bleeding wound. He then marries Bootsie, who also dies after which he weds Molly. His best friend in the series is Cletus Purcel.
This series summarizes Detective Dave Robicheaux mysterious life. Robicheaux fights many battles, joins the world of drug barons and he is constantly haunted by his past life right from the time we are introduced to him in The Neon Rain up to the time he is mentioned for the last time in The Light Of the World.
DAVE ROBICHEAUX AWARDS
James Lee Burke’s third book in the Dave Robicheaux series won the Edgar Award for Best Novel. Being a celebrated writer, James Lee Burke is not new to winning awards. He has won two Edgar Awards and has written several novels, most of which have been rated quite high by readers.
DAVE ROBICHEAUX BOOKS INTO MOVIES
As you would expect, some books in the Dave Robicheaux series have been adapted into movies. Heaven’s Prisoners is the first movie adaptation of this series. In the book, Robicheaux is slowly recovering from alcohol, and he goes to enjoy the peace of Louisiana’s bayous with his wife. However, a young girl comes to his life through a plane crash, and with her comes the world of murder, deception and crime.
In the movie Alec Baldwin plays the ex-detective role of Dave Robicheaux. He rescues a young girl from a plane crash. Together with his wife Kelly Lynch, they adopt a girl and start bringing her up. Later, it is suspected that the initial plane crash was a conspiracy, and investigations begin. His wife passes on during the investigations and he decides to bring everyone involved to justice.
The second adaptation of Dave Robicheaux series into a movie was The Electric Mist. This movie stars Tommy Lee Jones (who plays Dave Robicheaux), John Goodman Peter Sarsgaard and Mary Steenburgen. As the story begins, Dave Robicheaux meets a dead girl’s corpse. He also meets a drunk driver, who he suspects is the murderer. Robicheaux opens rape and murder cases, and he is in the company of a new partner from the FBI.
BEST DAVE ROBICHEAUX BOOKS
Although the best book in a series is normally a personal preference, The Black Cherry Blues, Heaven’s Prisoners and The Electric are perhaps the best books in the Dave Robicheaux series. As noted earlier, The Black Cherry Blues won the Edgar Award for Best Novel. In this novel, Dave Robicheaux life is on a new page as the story begins. He opens a fishing business and focuses on bringing up his adopted girl, Alafair. He is in Montana, but unlike his initial thought that it is safer than Louisiana, he soon starts investigating a case in which two Native American activists go missing. His past haunts him as he gets into the world of Mafia and oil companies. Someone who murdered his wife is now after Alafair.
If you have watched the Heaven’s Prisoners and The Electric Mist movies, you can as well argue that these are James Lee Burke’s best works. They epitomize his prowess in storytelling and no wonder they have been adapted into the big screen for the whole world to see.
OTHER BOOK SERIES YOU MAY LIKE
If you are a real fan of series, you can enjoy the “Jake Travis” series by Robert Lane. There are three books in this series, and being very recent books, they feature all the fun you can think of. The Second Letter is the first book in the series, and it was published in 2013. It sets the stage for Cooler Than Blood and The Cardinal’s sin.
The “Harry Starke” Series will also blow your mind if you are a fan of series of this type. On a slightly different note, if you are in love with James Lee Burke’s books, you can enjoy reading his previous works such as Bitterroot, Purple Cane Road, Cimarron Rose and Jolie Blon’s Bounce, among others.