Joanne Fluke

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Joanne Fluke (neé Gibson,[1] born 1943 in Swanville, Minnesota) is an American writer. She is best known for her cozy mystery series surrounding a small-town baker, Hannah Swensen.[2] Four movies for the Hallmark Channel have been created based on her Hannah Swensen series.[1] Fluke is also known for making chocolate chip cookies for her readers.[3] Fluke has written under the pseudonyms John Fischer, R.J. Fischer, Jo Gibson, Chris Hunter, Gina Jackson and Kathyrn Kirkwood.[4]

Personal life[edit]

Fluke has been baking since she was a young-adult and comes from a long line of bakers.[1]

According to the author's website, "While pursuing her writing career, Joanne has worked as a public school teacher, a psychologist, a musician, a private detective’s assistant, a corporate, legal, and pharmaceutical secretary, a short-order cook, a florist’s assistant, a caterer and party planner, a computer consultant on a now-defunct operating system, a production assistant on a TV quiz show, half of a screenwriting team with her husband, and a mother, wife, and homemaker."[5]

She is married and lives with her husband, children and stepchildren in Southern California.[5]


In the 1980s, Fluke began writing young adult horror stories under the name Jo Gibson.[1]

Fluke began writing her cozy mystery series starring Hannah Swensen, an "amateur sleuth and baker" in 2000.[1] The idea for the series came out of Fluke's desire to create a cookbook and her editor editor's suggestion that she write a cozy mystery series.[6] Fluke combined the two ideas by including recipes in the series.[6] Hannah Swensen lives in a small Minnesota town and Fluke feels that the stories are a welcome escape from reality.[7] Library Journal writes that the depiction of the story in Cinnamon Roll Murder is so natural, it is difficult to remember that the characters are fictional.[8] Booklist praised her plot-twists in Devil's Food Cake Murder.[9] Her most recent book, Wedding Cake Murder, sees Swensen getting married and solving a crime in the same story.[10]


As Joanne Fluke[edit]

Hannah Swensen series[edit]

For the television films based on the series, see Murder, She Baked.
  • Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder (2001)[11]
  • Strawberry Shortcake Murder (2002)
  • Blueberry Muffin Murder (2002)
  • Lemon Meringue Pie Murder (2003)
  • Fudge Cupcake Murder (2004)
  • Sugar Cookie Murder (2004)
  • Peach Cobbler Murder (2005)
  • Cherry Cheesecake Murder (2006)
  • Key Lime Pie Murder (2007)
  • "Candy Cane Murder" (October 2007) (novella)
  • Carrot Cake Murder: A Hannah Swensen Mystery (2008)
  • Cream Puff Murder (March 2009)
  • Plum Pudding Murder (October 2009)
  • Apple Turnover Murder (February 2010)
  • Gingerbread Cookie Murder (October 2010) (novella)
  • Devil's Food Cake Murder (February 2011)
  • Cinnamon Roll Murder (February 2012)
  • Red Velvet Cupcake Murder (February 2013)
  • "Joanne Fluke’s LAKE EDEN COOKBOOK" (September 2013)
  • Blackberry Pie Murder (February 2014)
  • Double Fudge Brownie Murder (February 2015)
  • Wedding Cake Murder (February 2016)
  • Christmas Caramel Murder (September 2016)

Other works[12][edit]

  • The Stepchild (1980)
  • The Other Child (1983; reprinted August 2014)
  • Winter Chill (1984; reprinted August 2013)
  • Cold Judgment (1985; reprinted October 2014)
  • Vengeance is Mine (1986)
  • Video Kill (1989; reprinted May 2013)
  • Final Appeal (1989)
  • Dead Giveaway (1990; reprinted April 2014)
  • The Dead Girl (1993)
  • Fatal Identity (1993)
  • Deadly Memories (1995)
  • Sugar and Spice (2006) (A collaborative with Fern Michaels, Beverly Barton, and Shirley Jump)

Under pseudonyms[edit]

Fluke has been published under several pseudonyms, including Jo Gibson, Chris Hunter, John Fischer, R.J. Fischer, Kathryn Kirkwood and Gina Jackson.[4]

Teen Thrillers (as Jo Gibson)[13]

Regency Romances (as Kathryn Kirkwood)

  • A Match for Melissa
  • A Season for Samantha
  • A Husband for Holly
  • A Valentine for Vanessa
  • A Match for Mother (novella)
  • A Townhouse for Tessa
  • Winter Kittens (novella)


  1. ^ a b c d e Werris, Wendy (19 February 2016). "Kitchen Crime Queen: Joanne Fluke". Publishers Weekly. 28 May 2016. 
  2. ^ Christie, Judy (23 February 2016). "Author Joanne Fluke Shares Recipes". Monroe News Star. Retrieved 28 May 2016. 
  3. ^ Ammeson, Jane (9 March 2014). "Joanne Fluke Cooks Up Another Sweet Murder Mystery in Latest Series". Northwest Indiana Times. Retrieved 28 May 2016. 
  4. ^ a b "Fluke, Joanne 1943-". Contemporary Authors, New Revision Series. Gale. 2007 – via HighBeam Research. (subscription required (help)). 
  5. ^ a b "Joanne Fluke - Cozy Mysteries and Thrillers". 
  6. ^ a b Cowles, Gregory (6 March 2015). "Inside the List". The New York Times. Retrieved 28 May 2016. 
  7. ^ Hart, Melissa (2006). "Why Readers Curl Up With Cozies: Good Always Wins Out in These Gentle Mysteries That Tease the Brain and Comfort the Soul". Writer. 119 (3): 30–33. Retrieved 28 May 2016 – via EBSCO. (subscription required (help)). 
  8. ^ Israel, Jodi L. (September 2012). "Cinnamon Roll Murder". Library Journal. 137 (14): 64. Retrieved 28 May 2016 – via EBSCO. (subscription required (help)). 
  9. ^ O'Brien, Sue (March 2011). "Devil's Food Cake Murder". Booklist. 107 (13): 31. Retrieved 28 May 2016 – via EBSCO. (subscription required (help)). 
  10. ^ "New Books Include Joanne Fluke's Baker/Sleuth". Star-Telegram. 17 February 2016. Retrieved 28 May 2016. 
  11. ^ "Joanne Fluke - Hannah Swensen Mysteries and Thrillers". 
  12. ^ "Joanne Fluke - Thriller Novels". 
  13. ^ "Joanne Fluke - Cozy Mysteries and Thrillers". 

External links[edit]