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Updated 12/4/08

P.D. James Collection

Featuring Scotland Yard's Commander Adam Dalgliesh

P.D. James is a great mystery writer and the screen adaptations based on her writings are wonderful. I especially like the stories featuring Commander Adam Dalgliesh when played by Roy Marsden. Adam Dalgliesh is an extremely competent detective who is also a brooding widower and poet. The intriguing stories accented by Dalgliesh's personal struggle make these very interesting to watch.

1983

"Death of an Expert Witness"

Part 1: Scotland Yard's Adam Dalgliesh is searching for a "back seat strangler" who has already murdered four people. When an unpopular forensic scientist is found dead in a British government laboratory, Dalgliesh discovers that almost everyone there could be a suspect. When another body is found nearby, the detective must race against time to find the killer.

Part 2: Most of the evidence points to the increasingly apprehensive staff and significant others at Hoggatt's, but Dagliesh is not yet ready to rule out one or two outsiders.

Part 3: Domenica reveals her affair with Lorrimer. Clifford Bradley has a dramatic confession to make - although it is not to Lorrimer's murder. Local detective Tom Doyle has some explaining to do.

1984

"Shroud for a Nightingale"

While on a high profile murder investigation, Dalgliesh travels to a teaching hospital to interview a possible suspect who is seriously ill. At the hospital, Dalgliesh witnesses the murder of one of the nursing students. Is this murder unrelated to his original investigation? The nursing school is run by a group of rigid, middle aged, unmarried senior nurses who find Dalgliesh's presents an assault on their orderly domain. The student nurses are bewildered by the events happening around them. The senior surgeon at the hospital is constantly at odds with Dalgliesh. This is a complex story and a study in Adam Dalglish's investigative methods.

1985

"Cover Her Face"

Part 1: Dalgliesh investigates the murder of a drug dealer found dead in the basement of a book club. Sally Jupp, a former book club employee in London with her infant son for the day, might have seen the assailant.

Part 2: Dalgliesh's determination to find out more about the hidden life of Sally Jupp and her connection with the murdered drug dealer drives fear through the Maxie family and their weekend guests. Acute questioning makes each of them nervous and evasive. There is much that needs explanation and Adam Dalgliesh does not suffer fools gladly.

Part 3: Apart from Sally's friend Derek Pullen and most of the Maxie family and friends, the list of suspects includes financier Sir Reynold Price, a man with "the habit of arrogance."

 

"The Black Tower"

Part 1: Commander Dalgliesh is shot during a drug raid and an old family friend, a priest, invites Adam to come and stay with him during his convalescence. The priest works at a private nursing home with an eccentric owner. When Dalgliesh arrives, he finds out that his friend has died of apparent natural causes and is invited to stay and help with the priest's belongings. He learns that one of the patients has recently committed suicide and that people at the home have been receiving disturbing notes.

Part 2: Commander Dalgliesh finds it interesting that those who had died either left or promised to leave money to the nursing home. He discovers that the nursing home is almost bankrupt. He also discovers a web of illicit affairs. Dalgliesh begins to understand that there are competing interests in what happens to the nursing home. Some want the home sold and others want it given to a trust who will continue to operate the home. Someone tries to kill the home owner and another patient dies of "natural causes".

Part 3: Commander Dalgliesh is sure that all the deaths are related and not natural but he has not found the common thread. The nursing home owner is in despair because everything he had worked for is crumbling around him. Then there is another suicide. Dalgliesh is determined to solve this mystery.

1989

"A Taste for Death"

Scotland Yard's Adam Dalgliesh is called to investigate when a government minister receives threatening letters. The Minister's own household is a challenge. His exquisite wife makes no secret of her adulterous affair with a fashionable surgeon. His only daughter, deeply involved in left-wing politics, has rejected her Conservative father. He is even resented by his own, strong-willed mother, whose favored son was killed in an IRA terrorist ambush. Dalgliesh has barely started on the case when a series of bizarre deaths turn the informal investigation into an urgent assignment.

1991

"Devices and Desires"

Part 1: Hoping to escape the pressure of his job, Dalgliesh retreats to Larksoken, an isolated northern town where he as inherited a windmill and cottage. His solitude is shattered with a murder and the debate about a local nuclear power plant.

Part 2: The "Whistler," the Norfolk serial killer, has claimed another victim. As the hunt continues, Dalgliesh seeks refuge from the investigation by escaping on a romantic interlude with his neighbor Meg Dennison.

Part 3: Dalgliesh discovers another body that appears to be the work of the "Whistler." Dalgleish suspects that it may be the work of a copycat killer.

Part 4: Following a suicide at the nuclear power plant, a new suspect emerges in the hunt for a killer. Spurred by the development, Dalgleish uncovers fresh evidence which leads him to question his friend Meg Dennison.

Part 5: Crisis and chaos overshadow Dalgliesh's unofficial investigation when a virus strikes the nuclear plant's central computer system. Faced with the possibility that it is a terrorist plot, the director of the plant calls in security services to investigate.

Part 6: Crisis and chaos overshadow Dalgliesh's unofficial investigation when a virus strikes the nuclear plant's central computer system. Faced with the possibility that it is a terrorist plot, the director of the plant calls in security services to investigate.

1993

"Unnatural Causes"

A mutilated corpse, its hands severed at the wrist, is found floating in a dinghy at sea. The hands are found in a package mailed to a man Dalgliesh is investigating in a currency laundering scheme. The investigation leads to a small seaside village where the murdered man lived. Is the murder associated with the money laundering or can the answer be found in a complex web of love, jealousy and potential lines of inheritance? At the same time, issues in Adam's personal life come to a head.

1994

"A Mind to Murder"

In an exclusive English psychiatric clinic where MPs crack up discreetly and movie stars dry out in style, a macabre murder has taken place. But when Scotland Yard's Adam Dalgliesh is assigned to the case, he becomes tangled in a web of political intrigue, blackmail and deceit.

1996

"Original Sin"

Scotland Yard's Adam Dalgliesh is called to the venerable publishing house of Peverell Press to look into a stream of hate mail received by some members of Peverell's Board. When a series of macabre deaths occur, Dalgliesh and his young DI team uncover a snake pit of family rivalry, sexual jealousy and dark secrets. There's a long line of suspects - and a murderer prepares to kill again.

1998

"A Certain Justice"

A brilliant attorney is found stabbed to death in her office. Commander Dalgliesh is called in to investigate. He finds that the victim was extremely unpopular and there is a long list of suspects. There are fellow attorney's whose careers where placed in jeopardy by the victim. There are family members of victims who did not feel they received justice because the slain lawyer was always more concerned with the legal procedures than finding the truth. There is an affair that ended badly. There is the estranged daughter. There are many who are not unhappy that this woman was murdered. But who was unhappy enough to actually kill her?

2004

"Death in Holy Orders"

Note: Martin Shaw as Dalgliesh

Commander Dalgliesh is asked by Sir Alfred Treeves, a successful businessman, to investigate the death of his son, one of the young ordinands of the theological college of St. Anselm's in East Anglia.

2005

"The Murder Room "

Note: Martin Shaw as Dalgliesh

A few days after visiting a small museum with a unique exhibit call The Murder Room, Dalgliesh is called back to investigate the mysterious death of one of the museum's owners. The museum was owned by two brothers and a sister who inherited from their father. The one who wanted to sell the museum is now dead. Dalgliesh discovers that their are several people with a motive. The trail could also lead to high places in the British government.

For a full list of available DVDs see below!

An Unsuitable Job for a Woman

Cordelia Gray is also a creation of P. D. James. Cordelia Gray (Helen Baxendale) is a twenty something young woman with no real personal live. Her father had taken her out of school to care for him in Italy while he was dying. She spent five year there taking care of him. Recently, Miss Gray has been working for private detective Bernie Pryde as an assistant. After a relatively short period of time she finds herself in charge of the agency. Pryde had been a police detective but had been fired for poor performance. However, he had spent a lot of time training Cordelia and although he was not the best police detective he did have a lot of experience and Cordelia was a good student. Pryde also had a secretary, Mrs. Sparshott. After Cordelia takes over the agency, she keeps Mrs. Sparshott on and after a period of adjustment they become a working team.

 

Series - 1997 thru 2001

"Sacrifice"

Immediately after Cordelia takes over the agency, she is hired by a scientist to look into the suicide of his son. He is not a particularly pleasant man. Cordelia's investigation leads her to believe that the young man may have been murdered. There are a number of suspects including her employer. Also, the victim may have uncovered a long buried secret that resulted in his death. The closer Cordelia gets to the truth the more her life is in jeopardy.

"A Last Embrace"

Cordelia is hired by a woman who owns a hotel to discover if her husband is sexually harassing the staff. The woman wants Cordelia to work undercover as temporary help. When she arrives at the hotel, she finds a completely dysfunctional family. The woman has two grown children. Cordelia finds the husband to be completely charming and begins to believes her client is emotionally disturbed. When a local man is found murdered, Cordelia suspects a member of the family. However, Cordelia's objectiveness is affected by her emotional vulnerability.

"Living on Risk"

Cordelia receives an urgent call from a man who wants her to go to the train station and track another man when he leaves the station. The caller says she must act quickly to prevent the kidnapping of a child. She tracks the man to a house. Cordelia and Mrs. Sparshott take turns watching the house. Several other men are seen coming and going from the building. A woman and small child are seen entering the upstairs flat. Mrs. Sparshott follows one of the men from the house and finds him acting very suspiciously. Cordelia becomes concerned and goes to the house to see what is happening. She finds a dead man. She feels she has been used by a murderer to find his victim. As a side note, the always emotionally vulnerable Cordelia is now pregnant and soon to be a single mother.

"Playing GOD"

To her surprise, Superintendent Fergussen hires Cordelia to investigate his daughter's boyfriend. Although he is a policeman, he feels this type of work is best handled by a private detective. Cordelia confirms DCS Fergussen's suspicions about the man's character. The job is over? During her investigation, the boyfriend's strange activities raise her curiosity and she is determined to uncover what he is doing. When a murder is committed, her continuing investigation is in conflict with the police investigation. Also to heighten the mystery, someone in the police department keeps providing her anonymous information.

 

For a full list of available DVDs see below!

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Adam Dalgliesh

P.D. James

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P.D. James

Based on the novels of

P. D. James.

P.D. James Collection

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P.D. James Collection