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Ann Cleeves is one of the most popular and prolific British crime writers of recent years, and few fans of British mysteries will be unaware of her work. That doesn't mean it's easy to keep them all straight, though – especially now that she's added another new series into the mix.
In this post, we'll take a look at all of Ann Cleeves' Vera books in order. For your convenience, we include brief descriptions to help you figure out where you left off, along with links with purchasing details.
All of Ann Cleeves' DI Vera Stanhope Books in Order
The Vera Stanhope book series follows the investigative adventures of DI Vera Stanhope – an older, somewhat prickly and dishevelled police detective with a keen sense of right and wrong. Though she doesn't always show it outwardly, she cares deeply about the people around her.
Many fans who come to the book series by way of the television show find the first novel, The Crow Trap, a bit disconcerting because Vera doesn't actually appear until quite a lot of the book has passed. Still, have faith. Once she enters the picture, it gets better – and future books proceed in a more typical fashion.
Vera Stanhope Book 1 | The Crow Trap
The Crow Trap begins when three women come together to carry out an environmental survey of the Northumberland countryside…but almost immediately, there's a body. Since it appears to be suicide, it's not until the second body appears that DI Vera Stanhope enters the picture to figure out what's going on.
Vera Stanhope Book 2 | Telling Tales
Ten years after Jeanie Long was charged with the murder of 15-year-old Abigail Mantel, new evidence emerges to prove her innocence. Perhaps even more devastating than Long's false conviction is what it means for the community. There's a killer still at large.
When DI Vera Stanhope shows up to investigate, tensions mount. Are people nervous about the killer, or afraid to let something slip about their own pasts?
Vera Stanhope Book 3 | Hidden Depths
During a hot summer along the Northumberland coast, a woman arrives home to find her son murdered, laid out in a bath and covered with wild flowers. Vera is intrigued by the strangely artistic crime scene, but she'll have to work quickly. Not far off, the killer is watching and waiting for another opportunity.
Vera Stanhope Book 4 | Silent Voices
When DI Vera Stanhope finds a woman's body in the steam room of her local gym, she wonders whether it might actually be a death from natural causes. Unfortunately, it doesn't take long to find bruises on the victim's neck – kicking off another exciting puzzle.
As she investigates, she'll discover a shocking secret about the victim's past – one that reveals surprising darkness in the community.
Vera Stanhope Book 5 | The Glass Room
Though Vera Stanhope is a bit of a loner, she's formed a bond with her hippie neighbours. When one goes missing, she tracks the woman down to a nearby writing retreat. Everything would have been okay at that point, were it not for the body discovered around the same time…and the knife found in Vera's neighbour's hand.
Though she knows she should step down from the investigation, the case is too tempting. Besides, Vera's never been one to follow seemingly arbitrary rules…
Vera Stanhope Book 6 | Harbour Street
In the midst of the Christmas festivities in Newcastle, a train passenger is fatally stabbed. DI Vera Stanhope heads to the scene, delighted to have an excuse to get away from her own holiday obligations.
Just days later, another woman is murdered, and Vera realises she'll have to figure out what was troubling the first victim to get at the motive and solve the case.
Vera Stanhope Book 7 | The Moth Catcher
When a house sitter is killed while staying at a large country house, it throws the quiet community of Valley Farm into chaos. DI Vera Stanhope arrives on the scene to investigate, only to discover a second body – with a strange connection to the first. Both men were fascinated with catching and studying moths.
As the investigation continues, Vera will learn that everyone in Valley Farm seems to have a secret. The only question is which one of them has a secret that involves murder.
Vera Stanhope Book 8 | The Seagull
This chilling entry into the series sees Vera coming face-to-face with a man she helped lock up. He claims to have information about a cold case, but he's only willing to provide it if Vera will look out for his daughter and grandchildren.
When Vera's team acts on the information, they're surprised to find not one set of remains, but two. Now, she'll be dragged fully into the cold case, forced to confront old memories she – and many others – would rather forget.
Vera Stanhope Book 9 | The Darkest Evening
On a snowy winter night, DI Vera Stanhope misses a turn and gets lost while heading home. As she tries to make her way back to where she should be, she comes across an abandoned car that has skidded off the road.
Approaching cautiously to investigate, she sees the car empty and decides the owner has left to get help – until she hears a cry from the back seat and finds and abandoned toddler. She grabs the toddler and continues on, coming to the grand home where her father grew up. A party is in full swing, and outside, a woman lies dead in the snow.
Vera Stanhope Book 10 | The Rising Tide (PRE-ORDER)
50 years ago, a group of friends met on a school trip to Holy Island. Ever since, they've been visiting the island for reunions to honour their friendship and the friend they lost to the rising causeway just a few years after their meeting.
When one of those friends is hanged, Vera is called in to investigate. As she begins to learn more about his life, she realises the friends are hiding more than what she initially thought.
Will There Be More Vera Novels in the Future?
Though Ann Cleeves' Shetland books have now be wrapped up for good, there's nothing to suggest the Vera Stanhope series is done. With a 10th book on the way and no word of it being the last, there's no reason to think the series is over.
Until we hear otherwise, we'll continue to assume more books are on the way. Ann Cleeves is 67 and in good health as far as we know, so hopefully we'll all have many more Vera Stanhope novels to look forward to.
Have You Checked Out the Vera TV Series?
In the US, you can watch the Vera TV series HERE with a subscription to BritBox. For those not familiar with the service, it's a joint venture between the BBC and ITV, and it brings hundreds of quality British TV shows to audiences around the world (though specific offerings vary by country).
The TV adaptation now has 11 seasons, and as of March 2022, we can say that season 12 of Vera is on the way!
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