30+ of Your Favorite Female Detectives in Fiction

This Riot Recommendation is sponsored by Other Press. Read The Die is Cast, the first book of the Leona trilogy, by the “queen of Nordic noir” Jenny Rogneby.

This best-selling Scandinavian thriller follows its troubled heroine as she investigates a high-profile robbery for Stockholm’s Violent Crimes Division. A hardboiled crime novel, filled with unexpected twists and turns, featuring an unusual heroine. Leona makes for gripping reading while challenging feminine norms and questioning what is behind the choices we make. Millennium Series author David Lagercrantz calls Jenny Rogneby “the new queen of Nordic noir.”


I still enjoy a Nancy Drew mystery, but I’m so glad there’s an excellent selection of female detectives in fiction today. Armed with their sleuthing hats, their magnifying glasses, and their intellects, they go where others fear to tread. They keep us turning those pages because we have to know…whodunnit? We asked you to tell us your favorite female detectives in fiction and you responded. Here are more than 30 of your favorites!

Gabriella Geovanni–Gabriella Giovanni Mystery series by Kristi Belcamino

Phryne Fisher–Phryne Fisher series by Kerry Greenwood

Flavia de Luce–Flavia de Luce series by Alan Bradley

Eve Dallas–in Death series by J.D. Robb

Gabriella Versado–Broken Monsters by Lauren Beukes

Roxane Weary–The Last Place You Look by Kristen Lepionka

Ava Lee–Ava Lee series by Ian Hamilton

Agatha Raisin–Agatha Raisin Mystery series M.C. Beaton

Miss Marple–Miss Marple books by Agatha Christie

Ruth Galloway–Ruth Galloway series by Elly Griffiths

Maureen O’Donnell–Garnethill series by Denise Mina

Claire DeWitt–Claire DeWitt Novels by Sara Gran

Kate Martinelli–Martnelli books by Laurie R. King

Kinsey Millhone–Alphabet Mysteries series by Sue Grafton

Gemma James–Duncan Kincaid / Gemma James Novels by Deborah Crombie

Barbara Havers–The Inspector Lynley series by Elizabeth George

Hazel Wong and Daisy Wells–Murder Most Unladylike Mysteries by Robin Stevens

D.D. Warren–Det. D.D. Warren series by Lisa Gardner

Eloise Norton–Detective Elouise Norton series by Rachel Howzell Hall

Cordelia Gray–An Unsuitable Job for a Woman and The Skull Beneath the Skin by P.D. James

Lady Julia Grey–Lady Julia Grey Series by Deanna Raybourn

Cassie Maddox–Into the Woods by Tana French

Precious Ramotswe–No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith

Marian Halcombe–The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins

Maisie Dobbs–Maisie Dobbs Mysteries by Jacqueline Winspear

Thursday Next–Thurday Next books by Jasper Fforde

Diana Tregarde–Diana Tregarde Series by Mercedes Lackey

Jane Rizzoli–Rizzoli & Isles series by Tess Gerritsen

V.I. Warshawski–V.I. Warshawski books by Sara Paretsky

Harriet–Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh

Juniper Song–Juniper Song Mysteries by Steph Cha

Lisbeth Salander–Millennium series by Stieg Larsson

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