The girl reporter of the ’60s.
What are the Ellie Stone mysteries about?
Written by American crime author James W. Ziskin, the Ellie Stone series takes us back to the ’60s for some murder mysteries.
The story revolves around Ellie Stone, a “girl reporter.” Wanting to playing by her own rules and to break some boundaries doing so, Ellie searches for the truth in order to write articles and to launch her fledging career. But it’s New York in the 1960s…
How to read the Ellie Stone Books in Order?
Every book in the Ellie Stone series works as a standalone story, but the lives of the different characters evolve from one novel to the other.
- Styx & Stone – It’s 1960, and Ellie Stone just wants to be a reporter, one who doesn’t need to swat hands off her behind at every turn. Adrift in her career, Ellie is back in New York City after receiving news that her estranged father, a renowned professor, is near death after a savage bludgeoning in his home. The police suspect a routine burglary, but Ellie has her doubts. When a second attempt is made on her father’s life, Ellie’s suspicions are confirmed. Then another professor turns up dead…
- No Stone Unturned – A hunter, tramping through a muddy wood north of the small town of New Holland, has tripped over the body of a twenty-one-year-old society girl half-buried in the leaves. Ellie Stone is the first reporter on the scene. The investigation provides a rare opportunity to rescue her drowning career, but all leads seem to die on the vine, until Ellie takes a daring chance that unleashes unintended chaos.
- Stone Cold Dead – December 21, 1960: Fifteen-year-old Darleen Hicks disappeared. New Year’s Eve, 1960: The small upstate town of New Holland, New York, is in the grips of a severe cold snap, when Ellie Stone receives a late-night caller-Irene Metzger, the grieving mother of Darleen Hicks. Irene has read Ellie’s stories in the paper on an earlier murder case and believes Ellie is her last hope.
- Heart of Stone – In the waning days of a lazy August holiday, Ellie Stone is enjoying a bright Adirondack-lake morning. Nearby, two men plummet to their deaths on the rocks below. A tragic accident, it seems. But the state police quickly establish that the two victims surely didn’t know each other. That anomaly is strange enough, but what really perplexes Ellie is the out-of-place station wagon parked twenty yards from the edge of the cliff.
- Cast the First Stone – February 1962. Tony Eberle has just scored his first role in a Hollywood movie, and the publisher of his hometown newspaper in upstate New York wants a profile of the local boy who’s made good. Ellie Stone is dispatched to Los Angeles for the story. But when she arrives on set to meet her subject, Tony has vanished. His agent is stumped, the director is apoplectic, and the producer is dead. Murdered. Ellie is on the story.
- A Stone’s Throw – August 1962. A suspicious fire claims a tumbledown foaling barn on the grounds of the once-proud Tempesta Stud Farm. The blaze barely prompts a shrug from the local sheriff. That is until Ellie Stone uncovers a singed length of racing silk in the rubble of the barn. And it’s wrapped around the neck of one of two charred bodies buried in the ashes. A bullet between the eyes of one of the victims confirms it’s murder, and the police suspect gamblers. Ellie digs deeper.
- Turn to Stone – August 1963. In Italy to accept a posthumous award for her late father’s academic work, Ellie Stone is invited to spend a weekend outside Florence with some of the scholars attending the symposium. A suspected rubella outbreak leaves the ten friends quarantined in the bucolic setting with little to do but tell stories to entertain themselves. Deciding to make the best of their confinement, the men and women spin tales, gorge themselves on fine Tuscan food and wine, and enjoy the delicious fruit of transient love. But the summer bacchanalia takes a menacing turn when the man who organized the symposium is fished out of the Arno. “Morto.”
If you like Ellie Stone, you may also want to see our Ann Cleeves reading order, or our guide to Jacqueline Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs series. Don’t hesitate to follow us on Twitter or Facebook to discover more book series.