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Elizabeth George

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Elizabeth George
BornSusan Elizabeth George
(1949-02-26) February 26, 1949 (age 75)
Warren, Ohio, U.S.
Bachelor of Arts
Counseling and psychology
Master's of Education
Alma materUniversity of California, Riverside
GenreMystery fiction, detective fiction
Ira Jay Toibin
(m. 1971; div. 1995)

Thomas McCabe

Susan Elizabeth George (born February 26, 1949)[1] is an American writer of mystery novels set in Great Britain.

She is best known for a series of novels featuring Inspector Thomas Lynley. The 21st book in the series appeared in January 2022. The first 11 were adapted for television by the BBC as earlier episodes of The Inspector Lynley Mysteries.


Elizabeth George was born in Warren, Ohio, the second child of Robert Edwin and Anne (née Rivelle) George. She has an older brother, author Robert Rivelle George. Her mother was a nurse, and her father a manager for a conveyor company.[1] The family moved to the San Francisco Bay Area when she was 18 months old as her father wanted to get away from Midwestern weather.[2]

She was a student of English, having received a teaching certificate from the University of California, Riverside. While teaching English in the public school system, she completed a master's degree in counseling and psychology.[3] She received an honorary doctorate in humane letters from Cal State University Fullerton in 2004 and was awarded an honorary Masters in Fine Arts from the Northwest Institute of Literary Arts in 2010. She also established the Elizabeth George Foundation in 1997.

George married Ira Jay Toibin in 1971 and they divorced in 1995.[3] George is currently married to Tom McCabe.


Her first published novel was A Great Deliverance (1988). It introduces Detective Inspector Thomas Lynley (in private life, the Earl of Asherton, Oxford-educated ); his partner Detective Sergeant Barbara Havers (grammar-school-educated and from a working-class background)[4]—both from Scotland Yard; Helen Clyde, Lynley's girlfriend and later wife; and Lynley's former school friend, the forensic scientist Simon St. James and his wife, Deborah.


George's first novel, A Great Deliverance, was favorably received by the mystery fiction community.

It won the Agatha Award for Best First Novel in 1988 and the 1989 Anthony Award in the same category. It was nominated for an Edgar Award in 1988.[5][6][7]


Inspector Lynley[edit]

Whidbey Island Saga[edit]

Short story collections[edit]



  1. ^ a b Thompson, Clifford (2001). Current Biography Yearbook 2000. Bronx, New York: H. W. Wilson Company. p. 229. ISBN 978-0-8242-1004-5.
  2. ^ Stenger, Karl L. (2005). "Elizabeth George". Dictionary of Literary Biography. Detroit, Michigan: Gale. pp. 132–143.
  3. ^ a b Lindsay, Elizabeth Blakesley (2007). Great Women Mystery Writers. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 92. ISBN 978-0-313-33428-3.
  4. ^ George, Elizabeth. "Chapter 2". A Great Deliverance. As if a grammar school background and a working-class accent were social diseases that might infect him
  5. ^ "Malice Domestic Convention – Bethesda, MD". Malicedomestic.org. August 23, 1988. Archived from the original on April 12, 2010. Retrieved March 16, 2012.
  6. ^ "Bouchercon World Mystery Convention: Anthony Awards Nominees". Bouchercon.info. October 2, 2003. Archived from the original on February 7, 2012. Retrieved March 16, 2012.
  7. ^ "Best First Mystery Novel by an American Author Edgar Award Winners and Nominees – Complete Lists". Mysterynet.com. Archived from the original on April 14, 2012. Retrieved March 16, 2012.