writers List of Famous Crime Writers

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List of famous crime writers, with photos, bios, and other information when available. Who are the top crime writers in the world? This includes the most prominent crime writers, living and dead, both in America and abroad. This list of notable crime writers is ordered by their level of prominence, and can be sorted for various bits of information, such as where these historic crime writers were born and what their nationality is. The people on this list are from different countries, but what they all have in common is that they're all renowned crime writers.

The list you're viewing has a variety of people in it, like Patricia Cornwell and Patricia Highsmith.

From reputable, prominent, and well known crime writers to the lesser known crime writers of today, these are some of the best professionals in the crime writer field. If you want to answer the questions, "Who are the most famous crime writers ever?" and "What are the names of famous crime writers?" then you're in the right place. (43 items)
Agatha Christie is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list List of Famous Crime Writers
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Dame Agatha Mary Clarissa Christie, DBE was an English crime novelist, short story writer, and playwright. She also wrote six romances under the name Mary Westmacott, but she is best known for the 66 detective novels and 14 short story collections she wrote under her own name, most of which revolve ...more

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Age: Died at 86 (1890-1976)

Birthplace: Torquay, United Kingdom

Profession: Poet, Novelist, Screenwriter, Writer Playwright

Credits: Witness for the Prosecution, Agatha Christie: Poirot, And Then There Were None, Agatha Christie's Marple

Also Ranked

#5 on The Best Female Authors of All Time

#39 on The Best Short Story Writers of All Time

#25 on The Best Novelists of All Time

#2 on The Greatest Female Novelists Ever

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Patricia Cornwell is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list List of Famous Crime Writers
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Patricia Cornwell is a contemporary American crime writer. She is widely known for writing a popular series of novels featuring the heroine Dr. Kay Scarpetta, a medical examiner. Her books have sold more than 100 million copies. ...more

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Age: 59

Birthplace: Miami, Florida, United States of America

Profession: Crime writer, Journalist, Novelist, Author Writer

Credits: At Risk, The Front, A.T.F.

Also Ranked

#34 on The Best Female Authors of All Time

#65 on The Best Gay Authors

#97 on The Greatest Female Novelists Ever

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James Ellroy is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list List of Famous Crime Writers
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Lee Earle "James" Ellroy is an American crime fiction writer and essayist. Ellroy has become known for a telegrammatic prose style in his most recent work, wherein he frequently omits connecting words and uses only short, staccato sentences, and in particular for the novels The Black Dahlia, The Big ...more

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Age: 67

Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States of America

Profession: Crime writer, Screenwriter, Essayist, Actor Writer

Credits: L.A. Confidential, The Black Dahlia, Dark Blue, Street Kings Rampart, + more

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Robert B. Parker is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list List of Famous Crime Writers
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Robert Brown Parker was an American crime writer. His most famous works were the novels about the private detective Spenser. ABC television network developed the television series Spenser: For Hire based on the character in the mid-1980s; a series of TV movies based on the character were also ...more

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Age: Died at 78 (1932-2010)

Birthplace: Springfield, Massachusetts, United States of America

Profession: Crime writer, Novelist, Writer

Credits: Appaloosa, Spenser: For Hire, A Man Called Hawk, Poodle Springs Jesse Stone: Thin Ice, + more

Also Ranked

#17 on The Best Mystery Authors

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Dashiell Hammett is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list List of Famous Crime Writers
Photo: Freebase/Public domain

Samuel Dashiell Hammett was an American author of hard-boiled detective novels and short stories, a screenplay writer, and political activist. Among the enduring characters he created are Sam Spade, Nick and Nora Charles, and the Continental Op. In addition to the significant influence his novels ...more

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Age: Died at 67 (1894-1961)

Birthplace: Maryland, United States of America

Profession: Novelist, Writer

Credits: The Maltese Falcon, Miller's Crossing, The Thin Man, Watch on the Rhine City Streets, + more

Also Ranked

#52 on The Best Short Story Writers of All Time

#72 on The Best Novelists of All Time

#5 on The Best Mystery Authors

#34 on The Best Suspense Authors

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Edgar Wallace is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list List of Famous Crime Writers
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Richard Horatio Edgar Wallace was an English writer. Born into poverty as an illegitimate London child, Wallace left school at 12. He joined the army at 21 and was a war correspondent during the Second Boer War for Reuters and the Daily Mail. Struggling with debt, he left South Africa, returned to ...more

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Age: Died at 57 (1875-1932)

Birthplace: Greenwich, London, United Kingdom

Profession: Crime writer, Journalist, Novelist, Screenwriter Playwright

Credits: King Kong, King Kong, King Kong, What Have You Done to Solange? Revenge of the Living Dead Girls, + more

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Elmore Leonard is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list List of Famous Crime Writers
Photo: Freebase/GNU Free Documentation License

Elmore John Leonard, Jr. was an American novelist and screenwriter. His earliest novels, published in the 1950s, were Westerns, but Leonard went on to specialize in crime fiction and suspense thrillers, many of which have been adapted into motion pictures. Among his best-known works are Get Shorty, ...more

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Age: Died at 88 (1925-2013)

Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States of America

Profession: Crime writer, Novelist, Film Producer, Screenwriter Author

Credits: Justified, Jackie Brown, 3:10 to Yuma, Out of Sight Get Shorty, + more

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Stieg Larsson is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list List of Famous Crime Writers
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Karl Stig-Erland "Stieg" Larsson was a Swedish journalist and writer. He is best known for writing the "Millennium trilogy" of crime novels, which were published posthumously. Larsson lived much of his life in Stockholm and worked there in the field of journalism and as an independent researcher of ...more

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Age: Died at 50 (1954-2004)

Birthplace: Skelleftehamn, Sweden

Profession: Crime writer, Journalist, Writer

Credits: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played with Fire, The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets' Nest The Girl Who Played with Fire

Also Ranked

#10 on The Best Mystery Authors

#38 on The Best Suspense Authors

#29 on The Greatest Artists With Only One Masterpiece

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