Phillip Margolin

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Phillip Margolin
Phillip Margolin cut.jpg
Born1944 (age 74–75)
New York City, New York, U.S.
GenreLegal thriller

Phillip Margolin (born 1944)[1] is an American writer of legal thrillers.


Margolin was born in New York City in 1944.[1] After receiving a B.A. in Government in 1965, from American University in Washington, D.C.,[2] he worked as a Peace Corps volunteer in Liberia until 1967.[3] He graduated from the New York University School of Law in 1970,[4] and has worked for 25 years as a criminal defense attorney, an occupation of choice inspired by the Perry Mason books.[3] He started to work in 1970 at the Oregon Court of Appeals.[5]

He published his first story, a short story titled "The Girl in the Yellow Bikini", in 1974, and became a full-time writer in 1996. He has written 12 books as of January 2007. He lists as his favourite writer Joseph Conrad, and among his favourite books War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy and Stone City by Mitchell Smith.[3]

Philip Margolin was married to Doreen Stamm in 1968. They had two children, Ami and Daniel. Doreen, also an attorney, died from cancer in January 2007.[1]

Phillip Margolin is also the president of Chess for Success, a non-profit organisation "dedicated to helping children develop skills necessary for success in school and life by learning chess".[3][6][7]


Title Year Editor ISBN Remarks
The Girl in the Yellow Bikini 1974 Short story in Mike Shayne Mystery Magazine
Heartstone 1978 HarperTorch ISBN 978-0-06-073969-0
The Last Innocent Man 1981 HarperTorch ISBN 978-0-06-073968-3 The novel has been made into a HBO movie starring Ed Harris
Gone, But Not Forgotten 1993 Doubleday ISBN 978-0-385-47002-5 Translated into more than 20 languages, sold over 1.5 million copies, made into a TV mini-series in 2004 by Warner Bros. starring Brooke Shields[1] and Scott Glenn
After Dark 1995 Doubleday ISBN 978-0-385-47548-8
The Burning Man 1996 Doubleday ISBN 978-0-385-48053-6
Smokescreen 1997 Meulenhoff ISBN 90-743-3636-1 Only published in Dutch as Rookgordijn, published by Meulenhoff
The Undertaker's Widow 1998 Doubleday ISBN 978-0-385-48054-3
Angie's Delight 1998 Delacorte Press Short story in Murder For Revenge: turned into a 13-minute movie in 2006
The Jailhouse Lawyer 1998 Short story in Legal Briefs
Wild Justice 2000 HarperCollins ISBN 978-0-06-019624-0 Amanda Jaffe Book 1
The Associate 2002 HarperCollins ISBN 978-0-06-019625-7
Ties That Bind 2003 HarperCollins ISBN 978-0-06-008324-3 Amanda Jaffe Book 2
Sleeping Beauty 2004 HarperCollins ISBN 978-0-06-008326-7
Lost Lake 2005 HarperCollins ISBN 978-0-06-073502-9
Proof Positive 2006 HarperCollins ISBN 978-0-06-073505-0 Amanda Jaffe Book 3
Executive Privilege 2008 HarperCollins ISBN 978-0-06-123621-1 Brad Miller and Dana Cutler Book 1
Fugitive 2009 HarperCollins ISBN 978-0-06-123623-5 Amanda Jaffe Book 4
Supreme Justice 2010 HarperCollins ISBN 978-0-06-192651-8 Brad Miller and Dana Cutler Book 2
Capitol Murder 2012 HarperCollins ISBN 978-0-06-206988-7 Brad Miller and Dana Cutler Book 3
Sleight of Hand 2013 HarperCollins ISBN 978-0-06-206991-7 Brad Miller and Dana Cutler Book 4
Worthy Brown's Daughter 2014 HarperCollins ISBN 978-0-06-219534-0 Stand-alone Novel
Woman With a Gun 2014 HarperCollins Stand-alone Novel
Violent Crimes Feb. 2016 HarperCollins ISBN 978-0062266552 Amanda Jaffe Book 5
The Third Victim 2018 Minotaur Books ISBN 978-1-25-011750-2 Stand-alone Novel
The Perfect Alibi 2019 Minotaur Books ISBN 978-1-250-11752-6 Stand-alone Novel

He has also co-authored Vanishing Acts (Madison Kincaid Mystery) with his daughter Ami Margolin Rome.[8]

Awards and recognitions[edit]

  • 1978: nominated for an Edgar Award for best original paperback by the Mystery Writers of America for Heartstone[1]
  • 1999: the short story The Jailhouse Lawyer is published in the 1999 edition of The Best American Mystery Stories


  1. ^ a b c d e Crimezone interview from 2004 (in Dutch)
  2. ^ "Phillip Margolin Biography". American Entertainment International Speakers Bureau. Retrieved 19 November 2011.
  3. ^ a b c d Barnes and Noble interview from 2003
  4. ^ Barnes and Noble page
  5. ^ Authorsontheweb page on Margolin
  6. ^ "Organization". ChessFor Archived from the original on 7 November 2011. Retrieved 19 November 2011. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  7. ^ "Chess for Success". 2012. Retrieved 28 June 2013.
  8. ^ Amazon Page

External links[edit]