Jonathan Kellerman

Franklin Library Jonathan Kellerman books

Billy Straight - signed first edition - 1998

Jonathan Kellerman biography

Jonathan Kellerman, born on August 9, 1949, in New York City, is an American psychologist, novelist, and bestselling author known for his riveting suspense novels, particularly the Alex Delaware series. Kellerman's literary career has spanned several decades, earning him acclaim for his psychological insight, intricate plots, and compelling characters. After graduating from the University of Southern California with a Ph.D. in psychology, Kellerman pursued a career as a clinical psychologist, specializing in treating children and adolescents. His background in psychology provided him with a unique perspective that would later inform his writing, particularly in his portrayal of complex psychological motivations and behaviors.

In the early 1980s, Kellerman embarked on a new career path as a novelist, drawing on his expertise in psychology to craft gripping crime thrillers. His debut novel, When the Bough Breaks (1985), introduced readers to the character of Dr. Alex Delaware, a forensic psychologist who consults with the Los Angeles Police Department to solve crimes. The novel was an instant success, launching the Alex Delaware series, which has since become one of the most popular and enduring series in the genre. Over the years, Kellerman has written over thirty novels featuring Alex Delaware, as well as several standalone thrillers and nonfiction works. His novels are known for their intricate plotting, richly drawn characters, and exploration of dark psychological themes. Kellerman's storytelling prowess has earned him a dedicated following of readers and numerous awards, including the Edgar Award for Best First Novel.

In addition to his success as a novelist, Kellerman has also collaborated on several books with his wife, Faye Kellerman, herself a bestselling author of crime fiction. Together, they have co-authored the Peter Decker / Rina Lazarus series, which follows a husband-and-wife detective team solving crimes in Los Angeles.

Beyond his writing, Kellerman remains active in the fields of psychology and education, advocating for mental health awareness and supporting initiatives to improve access to mental health services. He is also a passionate advocate for literacy and has worked to promote reading and literacy programs in schools and communities. Jonathan Kellerman's contributions to the world of crime fiction and psychology have earned him a prominent place in contemporary literature. Through his gripping novels and insightful exploration of the human psyche, he continues to captivate readers and challenge our understanding of the complexities of the human mind.


Billy Straight

Billy Straight is a standalone crime thriller novel. Published in 1998, it follows the story of a young boy named Billy Straight who becomes entangled in a dangerous web of crime and corruption in Los Angeles. The novel begins with twelve-year-old Billy Straight witnessing a brutal murder while hiding in a cardboard box. Fearing for his life, Billy escapes and becomes a key witness in the case. Meanwhile, Detective Petra Connor, a member of LAPD's elite Robbery-Homicide Division, is assigned to investigate the homicide.

As Petra delves deeper into the investigation, she discovers that Billy's life is in grave danger, and she must race against time to protect him from the ruthless killers who will stop at nothing to silence him. Along the way, Petra forms a bond with Billy and becomes determined to uncover the truth behind the murder and bring the perpetrators to justice. Billy Straight is praised for its gripping plot, well-drawn characters, and suspenseful atmosphere. Kellerman's skillful storytelling and keen eye for detail make the novel a compelling read, as readers are drawn into the dark underbelly of Los Angeles and the complex dynamics of crime and corruption.

The novel received positive reviews for its thrilling narrative and realistic portrayal of crime and law enforcement. It showcases Kellerman's versatility as a writer, demonstrating his ability to craft compelling stories outside of his popular Alex Delaware series. "Billy Straight" remains a favorite among fans of crime fiction and suspense thrillers for its fast-paced action and intricate plot twists.

Jonathan Kellerman's books in order

This list includes standalone novels, collaborations with other authors, and non-fiction works by Jonathan Kellerman. Reading them in publication order allows readers to explore the diverse range of Kellerman's writing beyond the Alex Delaware series.

The Butcher's Theater (1988)
Billy Straight (1998)
Twisted (2004)
Capital Crimes (2006) - Co-authored with Faye Kellerman
Double Homicide (2004) - Co-authored with Faye Kellerman
True Detectives (2009)
The Conspiracy Club (2003)
The Golem of Hollywood (2014) - Co-authored with Jesse Kellerman
The Golem of Paris (2015) - Co-authored with Jesse Kellerman
The Web (1996) - A standalone novel, not to be confused with the Alex Delaware novel of the same name.
Savage Spawn: Reflections on Violent Children (1999) - Non-fiction

Jonathan Kellerman's Alex Delaware books in order

The following are the books in Jonathan Kellerman's Alex Delaware series in order of publication.

When the Bough Breaks (1985)
Blood Test (1986)
Over the Edge (1987)
Silent Partner (1989)
Time Bomb (1990)
Private Eyes (1992)
Devil's Waltz (1993)
Bad Love (1994)
Self-Defense (1995)
The Web (1996)
The Clinic (1997)
Survival of the Fittest (1997)
Monster (1999)
Dr. Death (2000)
Flesh and Blood (2001)
The Murder Book (2002)
A Cold Heart (2003)
Therapy (2004)
Rage (2005)
Gone (2006)
Obsession (2007)
Compulsion (2008)
Bones (2008)
Evidence (2009)
Deception (2010)
Mystery (2011)
Victims (2012)
Guilt (2013)
Killer (2014)
Motive (2015)
Breakdown (2016)
Heartbreak Hotel (2017)
Night Moves (2018)
The Wedding Guest (2019)
The Museum of Desire (2020)
Serpentine (2021)

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