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Tana French Books In Order

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Last Updated on December 24, 2022 by Mary Elle

If you love mysteries and crime writing, then you may already be a fan of Tana French. Especially the Dublin Murder Squad series. But, did you know she has written more than just the Dublin Murder Squad books? Here’s a complete list of Tana French books in order so you can sort it all out.

If you’re not already familiar with Tana French, her Dublin Murder Squad series has won many awards. The first book in that series, In The Woods, is her debut novel, and the series has been a highly acclaimed novel in the psychological suspense genre.

But she has written other books that are not part of the Dublin Murder Squad series. So, I’ve put together a complete list of all the Tana French books in order so you can see just what’s what!

stack of books on red background with tana french books in order in white box

Who Is Tana French?

Tana French is an Irish-American author who is well-known for her crime writing, and most especially for her debut series the Dublin Murder Squad series.

Her debut novel, In The Woods, was published in 2007 and catapulted this otherwise unknown author into almost overnight success when that book became an instant bestseller.

Her books are suspenseful, psychological murder mysteries, so if you like that genre, you probably don’t want to miss any Tana French books.

Tana French Books In Order – Dublin Murder Squad

The Dublin Murder Squad series is about a team of Dublin detectives called the Dublin Murder Squad. Each book in the series solves a different murder, and each has a new detective, but there is also some crossover between the books with some of the characters, so it is recommended that you read them in the order below, which is also the order of publication.

  • In The Woods – 2007 – It’s the summer of 1984 in a small Dublin suburb. Mothers are calling their children home, but three children do not return from the darkness of the nearby woods. When the police arrive, they find one child gripping the tree in terror, and the other two children have simply vanished. Rob Ryan is the “found boy” and 20 years later he is a detective on the Dublin Murder Squad. Now, a 12-year-old is found murdered in the same woods that Rob Ryan was found in 20 years earlier. Rob Ryan and his partner Cassie Maddox find themselves investigating a chilling case that is very similar to the previously unsolved one that Rob himself was a part of so many years earlier.

 

  • The Likeness – 2008 – Detective Cassie Maddox has transferred out of the Dublin Murder Squad, but an urgent phone call brings her back to an eerie crime scene. The victim looks exactly like Cassie and carries the ID that she, herself, carried in the past as an undercover cop. Cassie has to go back undercover to discover why this woman was carrying this ID, who she was, and who killed her.

 

  • Faithful Place – 2010 – Detective Frank Mackey has blocked out many childhood memories surrounding his dysfunctional family. But now, he has a brand new case that forces him to face his past. Inside a derelict building near where Frank grew up, a suitcase has been found and identified as that of Rosie Daly, his childhood sweetheart who (he thought) did a no-show and dumped him on the night they had planned to run away together. Did Rosie actually not dump him? Instead, did something terrible happen to her?

 

  • Broken Harbour – 2012 – The Dublin Murder Squad’s top detective, Mick Kennedy, always plays by the books, and that’s why he’s been given one of the biggest cases of the year. Patrick Spain and his two children have been found murdered in one of the half-abandoned “luxury” developments that litter Ireland. His wife is in intensive care. While Detective Kennedy at first thinks this will be an easy case to solve, he realizes that there are too many details that can’t be explained. Then, there is his feeling that he somehow has some sort of personal connection to this case through his past.

 

  • The Secret Place – 2014 – A year ago, a teenage boy’s body was discovered at a nearby boarding school for girls, but despite the effort put forth by the Dublin Murder Squad during the course of the year, the case has gone cold. Detective Stephen Moran has been waiting for his chance to join the elite Dublin Murder Squad, and when a sixteen-year-old girl walks into his office with a photo of the dead boy, he finally has his chance. Stephen joins forces with Detective Antoinette Conway and the case is reopened, hopefully with a better outcome this time.

 

  • The Trespasser – 2016 – Detective Antoinette Conway has been recently promoted to the elite Dublin Murder Squad. She’s dreamed of this promotion, but now that she has it she’s not so sure she wants it. Working in a male-dominated unit isn’t easy and things aren’t working out as well as she had hoped they would. But everything changes for her when she and her fellow squad rookie Stephen Moran are sent to investigate the murder of Aislinn Murray. She’s got the feeling she’s seen this victim somewhere else, and Antoinette doesn’t believe this is the open-and-shut case her superiors are trying to harass her into quickly solving, and closing.

Tana French Books In Order – Standalone Novels

  • The Witch Elm – 2018 – Toby is a happy-go-lucky charmer who’s dodged a scrape at work and out celebrating with friends when something happens that changes his life. He accidentally surprises two burglars. They beat him up and leave him for dead. Toby takes refuge at his family’s ancestral home to recuperate and to help care for his dying uncle. While there, a skull is found in the trunk of an elm tree in the garden. Detectives close in and Toby has to face the possibility that his past may not be what he was led to believe it was.

 

  • The Searcher – 2020 – Cal Hooper has left his high-stakes job on the Chicago police force. After going through a difficult divorce, he’s decided he no longer wants to chase bad guys so makes the decision to build a new life for himself in a picturesque village in Ireland. But a local boy goes missing, word goes around that Cal is a former cop, and Cal is tapped to help investigate the disappearance of the missing boy. Cal uncovers layers of darkness beneath the picturesque place he’s settled in, and he realizes that even small towns can have very large and dangerous secrets.

In What Order Do I Read Tana French Books?

If you haven’t yet read anything by this author, then you may well be wondering – exactly where do I start with Tana French?

It’s best to read the books in the order of publication. This would be the best reading order of Tana French books.

For the standalone novels, of course, the reading order really doesn’t matter since those books are not related to each other in any way.

As for the Dublin Murder Squad books, technically you could read them in any order since each book features a different detective and they are solving a brand new crime. However, the books are related to each other through a few different characters and through the Dublin Murder Squad itself. And, the characters do develop over time with each book, so in order to get the most enjoyment out of this series, I would recommend reading them in the publication order above.

Tana French Books In Order – Conclusion

If you like crime fiction at its best, then Tana French should be on your To Be Read list! I hope this list of Tana French books in order will help you stock your bookshelf with any Tana French books that you might have missed.

Her books are gripping, page-turners bringing you everything you might want in a suspenseful psychological murder mystery.

And, in case you didn’t realize it, several of her books from the Dublin Murder Squad series inspired the award-winning BBC crime-drama series called Dublin Murders!

If you’re interested in more mystery/thriller books but you’re not sure what type you would enjoy the most, check out our Guide to the Mystery Books Genre.

And if this list of Tana French books in order doesn’t give you enough mysteries to solve, you might want to check out all the Louise Penny books in order too!


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