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P. D. James

From Academic Kids

Phyllis Dorothy James, Baroness James of Holland Park (born 3 August 1920 in Oxford) is a British writer of crime fiction and member of the House of Lords.

Her detective novels include:

P.D. James has also written a successful mainstream novel entitled Innocent Blood (1980) and the dystopian novel The Children of Men (1992).

Many of P.D. James' mystery novels take place against the backdrop of Britain's vast bureaucracies such as the criminal justice system and the health services, arenas in which James honed her skills for decades starting in the 1940s when she went to work in hospital administration to help support her ailing husband and two children. Two years after the publication of Cover Her Face, James' husband died and she took a position as a civil servant within the criminal section of the Department of Home Affairs. James worked for government service until her retirement in 1979, and her many years of experience within these bureaucracies add a complex stratum of insider's knowledge to her writing. Her latest work, Death in Holy Orders, displays an insightful grasp of the inner workings of church hierarchy.

It has been noted by many critics that James has upgraded and expanded the entire genre of mystery writing; and that many of her books, especially the police procedurals starring Dalgliesh, the poetry writing detective, fit the mainstream novel criteria as much as they do the detective genre. James' strengths are characterization and her ability to construct atmosphere and stories rich in detail.

James is the daughter of Sydney and Dorothy James. She married Connor Bantry White in 1941 with whom she had two daughters. She was widowed in 1964. She has been active in many fields and served as Governor of the BBC (1988-93), Member of the Arts Council (1988-92) and Board Member of the British Council (1988-93). She received the OBE in 1983 and in 1991 became a life peer. She sits in the House of Lords as a Conservative, Baroness James of Holland Park.de:P. D. James fr:Phyllis Dorothy James it:Phyllis Dorothy James ja:P・D・ジェイムズ sv:P.D. James

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