George Bellairs

Twitter Facebook Website Goodreads
Agora Books > Authors > George Bellairs

George Bellairs was the pseudonym of Harold Blundell (1902—1982). He was, by day, a Manchester bank manager with close connections to the University of Manchester. He is often referred to as the English Simenon, as his detective stories combine wicked crimes and classic police procedurals set in quaint villages.

He was born in Lancashire and married Gladys Mabel Roberts in 1930. He was a devoted Francophile and travelled there frequently, writing for English newspapers and magazines and weaving French towns into his fiction.

Bellairs’ first mystery, Littlejohn on Leave (1941), introduced his series detective, Detective Inspector Thomas Littlejohn. Full of scandal and intrigue, the series peeks inside small towns in the mid twentieth century, and Littlejohn is injected with humour, intelligence and compassion.

He died on the Isle of Man in April 1982 just before his eightieth birthday.


“One of the subtlest and wittiest practitioners of the simon-pure British detective story” — New York Times

“Mr Bellairs always gives good value” — The Sunday Times 

“Bellairs works in a comic tradition that extends from Ben Jonson… Each character has a particular trait exaggerated to the point of obsession or caricature.” — Susan B MacDougall



Littlejohn on Leave (1941)
The Four Unfaithful Servants (1942)
Death of a Busybody (1942)
The Dead Shall be Raised (1942) aka Murder Will Speak
Death Stops the Frolic (1943) aka Turmoil in Zion
The Murder of a Quack (1943)
He’d Rather be Dead (1945)
Calamity at Harwood (1945)
Death in the Night Watches (1945)
The Crime at Halfpenny Bridge (1946)
The Case of the Scared Rabbits (1947)
Death on the Last Train (1948)
The Case of the Seven Whistlers (1948)
The Case of the Famished Parson (1949)
Outrage on Gallows Hill (1949)
The Case of the Demented Spiv (1949)
The Case of the Headless Jesuit (1950) aka Death Brings in the New Year
Dead March for Penelope Blow (1951)
Death in Dark Glasses (1952)
Crime in Lepers’ Hollow (1952)
A Knife for Harry Dodd (1953)
Half-Mast for the Deemster (1953)
The Cursing Stones Murder (1954)
Death in Room Five (1955)
Death Treads Softly(1956)
Death Drops the Pilot (1956)
Death in High Provence (1957)
Death Sends for the Doctor (1957)
Corpse at the Carnival (1958)
Murder Makes Mistakes (1958)
Bones in the Wilderness (1959)
Toll the Bell for Murder (1959)
Corpses in Enderby (1960)
Death in the Fearful Night (1960)
Death in Despair (1960)
Death of a Tin God (1961)
The Body in the Dumb River (1961) aka Murder Masquerade
Death Before Breakfast (1962)
The Tormentors (1962)
Death in the Wasteland (1964)
Surfeit of Suspects (1964)
Death of a Shadow (1964)
Death Spins the Wheel (1965)
Intruder in the Dark (1966)
Strangers Among the Dead (1966)
Death in Desolation (1967)
Single Ticket to Death (1967)
Fatal Alibi (1968)
Murder Gone Mad (1968)
Tycoon’s Death-bed (1970)
The Night They Killed Joss Varran (1970)
Pomeroy, Deceased (1971)
Murder Adrift (1972)
Devious Murder (1973)
Fear Round About (1975)
Close All Roads to Sospel (1976)
The Downhill Ride of Leeman Popple (1979)
An Old Man Dies (1980)

Murder at Morning Prayers (1947)
Circle Round a Corpse (1948)
Choose Your Own Verdict (1949)
Exit Sir Toby Belch (1950)

Titles from George Bellairs