Joseph O’Loughlin Books

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Joseph O’Loughlin is the central character in the Joseph O’Loughlin series of novels authored by popular Australian author Michael Robotham. The first novel that featured the O’Loughlin character was the 2004 title “Suspect”. The novels in the series are best classified as detective crime mysteries.

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Order of Joseph O'Loughlin Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 The Suspect ( By: Michael Robotham) 2004 Description / Buy
2 Lost / The Drowning Man ( By: Michael Robotham) 2005 Description / Buy
3 Shatter / The Sleep of Reason ( By: Michael Robotham) 2008 Description / Buy
4 Bleed for Me ( By: Michael Robotham) 2010 Description / Buy
5 The Wreckage (By: Michael Robotham) 2011 Description / Buy
6 Say You're Sorry ( By: Michael Robotham) 2012 Description / Buy
7 Watching You (By: Michael Robotham) 2013 Description / Buy
8 Close Your Eyes ( By: Michael Robotham) 2015 Description / Buy
9 The Other Wife ( By: Michael Robotham) 2018 Description / Buy
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Joseph O’Loughlin is a fictional psychologist who features in his own series of crime fictions novels written by the Australian author Michael Robotham. While Robotham is an Australian author, the Joseph O’Loughlin series of books are set in London, England. Joseph O’Loughlin gives his assistance to various cases alongside Vincent Ruiz, a detective who, in stark contract to the good-natures and jocular O’Loughlin, is hard-nosed and rugged. The major differences in the personalities play a key part in the series, and Michael Robotham plays this up superbly throughout.

The best description of Joseph O’Loughlin is that of a family man, a kindhearted psychologist with a dry sense of humor, and a magnificent sense of humanity. He works alongside his best friend the former detective and hard-drinking Vincent Ruiz, whose personality could not be any more different. Nonetheless, the two characters have great chemistry and complement each other in their work.

The series of novels is set in London and introduces the chief protagonist as a London-based psychiatrist who seems to have the perfect life. He has a thriving practice in which he exerts the utmost compassion and skill, and a family consisting of a wife and daughter that he loves to bits. But the seemingly perfect life is shattered when he learns that he faces a less uncertain future blighted by Parkinson’s Disease.

Things just get more complex when the police call him in to consult on a grisly murder investigation. He immediately recognizes the murdered person as an acquaintance of his. Keeping quiet about his knowledge, O’Loughlin tells what he believes is a small lie that soon turns out to be one of the biggest regrets he has ever made. What follows is an intricate web of complications and an excellent narrative, that shows why Michael Robotham is a twice winner of the Australia Crime Novel of the Year Awards.

The first book in Michael Robotham’s Joseph O’Loughlin series of books is Suspect, which was released in 2004. We are introduced to the character Joseph O’Loughlin, his seemingly perfect family life with the loving wife and daughter. However, we are quickly introduced to the dark shadow that haunts him: Parkinson’s disease. But as well as having to juggle his family life and his medical problem, his services as psychologist are required when a young woman is found dead, covered in what appear to be self-inflicted stab wounds. O’Loughlin is brought in by the police to help them ascertain whether it is suicide, as it appears, or something much worse. When it turns out that Joseph knows the woman, it brings the case much closes to home. Can he solve the case, keep his family safe and keep his illness at bay?

The following year, 2005, saw the release of the second book in the Joseph O’Loughlin series, Lost. That was then followed by The Night Ferry in 2007, and then Shatter in 2008.

2010 saw the release of Bleed For Me, the fifth book in the Joseph O’Loughlin series. Bleed For Me deals heavily with one of the main features of the Joseph O’Loughlin: family. It starts off with Joseph O’Loughlin being encountered by a friend of his daughter one evening, when she appears at his home covered in block in a state of shock. From there, police find the girl’s father brutally murdered at home. The young woman cannot remember just how she came to be covered in her father’s blood, and does not shed a tear at his demise, either. Joseph O’Loughlin must uncovered just what has been going on both in the young woman’s home, and also in her private life, as her effervescent teacher starts to come to the fore in the investigation.


The Joseph O’Loughlin series of novels have been shortlisted and won many awards over the years. “Lost” the second novel in the series won the 2005 Award for Best Novel in the Ned Kelly Awards for Crime Writing. “Shatter” the third novel in the series has won more awards than any other novel in the series winning the 2008 Best Novel in the Ned Kelly Award for Crime Writing, and made the shortlist for the CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger Award for Best Thriller of 2008. It also made the shortlist for Breakthrough Novelist in 2008 at the ITV Thriller Awards in the UK. “Say You Are Sorry” made the shortlist for the Best Crime Novel of 2015 in the CWA Gold Dagger Awards of the Crime Writers Association of the UK.


“The Suspect” the first novel in the series was adapted into a movie for German audiences in 2014. The movie starring Ulrich Noethen as Joseph O’Loughlin and Juergen Maurer as detective Vincent Ruiz, proved so popular that it has been made into a franchise, with further editions coming out in 2016 and 2017.


The SuspectSay You Are Sorry: The sixth title in the Joseph O’Loughlin series is another highly regarded novel. A wife and husband are the victims of a vicious killer who strikes when half of London is in darkness after the worst blizzard to strike the city in a generation. The case is a complex one with the young man who reported the murders is the chief suspect, having been found in the couple’s home. While Joe O’Loughlin suspects that the young man may be hiding something, his schizophrenia combined with the methodical execution of the crime just serves to muddy the waters. Nonetheless, even if the young man may not be responsible, he still has to find the killer given that a teenage girl that used to live with the couple has gone missing.

Close Your Eyes: Another excellent novel in the Joseph O’Loughlin series of novels is “Close Your Eyes” the eighth title in the series. Joe is faced with a complex case brought to him when his former student calls him in to help solve a murder investigation that he bungled. In a case with too many suspects, Joe has to face up to a ruthless killer that murdered a mother and teenage daughter. He believes there is a link between the murders and a series of brutal attacks where victims have been choked conscious and left tattooed with an A’ on their foreheads. But as he gets closer to the killer, his fate and those of his loved ones is increasingly in danger from a deranged killer.


Joseph O’Loughlin fans also love the “Rowland Sinclair” series of novels by Sulari Gentill. Rowland Sinclair is a gentleman, young artist and amateur sleuth in the mold of Sherlock Holmes, who solves a range of mysteries in Sydney, Australia. Many Joseph O’Loughlin fans also liked the “Detective Ella Marconi” series of novels by Katherine Howell. Ella Marconi is a detective with an unusual knack for knowing when someone is hiding something, which often leads her to solve the most complex of cases.

Joseph O’Loughlin FAQs

Q: Who writes the Joseph O’Loughlin series of books?

A: The Joseph O’Loughlin series of books is written by Australian author Michael Robotham.

Q: What is the first book in the Joseph O’Loughlin series?

A: The first book in the Joseph O’Loughlin series of book is Suspect, which was released in 2004.

Q: Where are the Joseph O’Loughlin series of books set?

A: The Joseph O’Loughlin series of books are set mainly in London, England.

What Is The Next Book in The Joseph O'loughlin Series?

There doesn't seem to be an upcoming book in The Joseph O'loughlin Series. The newest book is The Other Wife and was released on October, 30th 2018.

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