With Death in Holy Orders, P. D. James makes a triumphant return to the genre for which she is best known - the classic English detective story. The story is set in an Anglican theological college on a desolate stretch of the East Anglian coast. When the body of one of the students is found on the shore, his wealthy father demands that Scotland Yard should reexamine the verdict of accidental death. Dalgliesh has visited St Anselm's in his boyhood and, as he is due for a holiday, agrees to pay a visit. As the weekend brings another murder, Dalgliesh soon finds himself embroiled in one of the most horrific and puzzling cases of his career...Death in Holy Orders is vintage P. D. James with sensitive evocation of place, a complex and credible mystery, respect for forensic detail and the tension a plot that never flags.
P. D. James was born in Oxford in 1920 and educated at Cambridge High School for Girls. From 1949 to 1968 she worked in the National Health Service and subsequently in the Home Office, first in the Police Department and later in the Criminal Policy Department. All that experience has been used in her novels.
She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and of the Royal Society of the Arts and has served as a Governor of the BBC, a member of the Arts Council, where she was Chairman of its Literary Advisory Panel, on the Board of the British Council and as a magistrate in Middlesex and London.
She has won awards for crime writing in Britain, America, Italy and Scandinavia, including the Mystery Writers of America Grandmaster Award. She has received honorary degrees from seven British universities, was awarded an OBE in 1983 and was created a life peer in 1991. In 1997 she was elected President of the Society of Authors.
She lives in London and Oxford and has two daughters, five grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.