|       ||short profile|
Michael McGarrity was born in New Mexico in 1939. He worked as a deputy sheriff in Santa Fe County; he was an investigator & caseworker for the New Mexico Public Defender's Office; he worked for the New Mexico State Prisons (after the prison riot of 1980); and as a social worker, he published a number of wide-ranging professional articles. He has a bachelor's degree in English & Psychology from the University of New Mexico, a master's degree in clinical social work from the University of Iowa, and is a graduate of the New Mexico Law Enforcement Academy; he has taught at several colleges and universities as well as at the New Mexico Law Enforcement Academy. He lives in Santa Fe, NM with his wife; his son Sean Eli (who draws the maps and takes photos for the books) lives nearby.
With the success of his first novel in 1996, Michael McGarrity began writing full time; he has so far completed twelve books in the Kevin Kerney mystery series; the last two novels are not Kevin Kerney tales.
Kevin Kerney  Mysteries
browse Michael McGarrity books at Amazon
| ||listed among the 100 Best Books In New Mexico [Jan 2011]; Because of a wounded leg, Chief of Detectives Kevin Kerney is forced to retire from the Santa Fe, New Mexico Police Department. But his former partner, a Navajo Indian, asks for help when his son disappears from the top-security White Sands Missile Range in southern New Mexico. The investigation leads to a web of murder, treason & smuggling, and to a final deadly confrontation in the desert.
Pocket Star mass pb [6/97] for $7.99
W.W.Norton 8¼x5½ pb [1/2009] for $11.16
W.W.Norton 9½x6½ hardcover [4/96] for $25.00
"Mexican Hat" [#2=1997]
| ||Retired cop Kevin Kerney has taken a job as a seasonal forest ranger in New Mexico's Gila Wilderness, to make enough cash for the down payment on a small ranch. Instead of a quiet summer, he finds pipe bombing militia-men, game poachers, a murdered tourist, and a disoriented old man. He teams up with an eager Game & Fish officer, and they uncover connections among an old land war, paramilitary intrigue, and the possibly-corrupt female district attorney.
Pocket Star mass pb [6/98] for $7.99
W.W.Norton 9½x6½ hardcover [5/97] out of print/many used
"Serpent Gate" [#3=1998]
| ||Kerney has become Deputy Chief of the New Mexico State Police. A local policeman is shot and killed at the rodeo in the town of Mountainair, New Mexico and the only witness is a rambling schizophrenic. Months later, priceless art disappears from the governor's office in Santa Fe and a beautiful woman dies a violent death at a millionaire's mansion. When Kerney connects the incidents, he finds his life in danger from an old memesis.
Pocket Star mass pb [6/99] for $7.99
Scribner's 9½x6 hardcover [6/98] out of print/many used
"Hermit's Peak" [#4=1999]
| ||Kerney unexpectedly inherits a ranch of 6400 acres near Las Vegas, New Mexico. Ready to take a break from police work, he visits the land and discovers a stray dog who leads him to the butchered bones of a woman. Then the State Police find a second murder victim in a cabin beneath Hermit's Peak ...
Pocket mass pb [8/2000] for $7.99
Scribner's 9½x6½ hardcover [6/99] out of print/used
"The Judas Judge" [#5=2000]
| ||Recently-married Kerney is ready to quit his job as Deputy Chief of the New Mexico State Police and take over the ranch that he recently inherited. But somebody commits murder at six remote campgrounds in south-central New Mexico, and Kerney suspects that five of the deaths were cover for the killing of a judge. Entanglements include a stalker, a gunfight with a crooked cop, the judge's bitter son, and a secret revealed to Kerney by a proud Apache woman.
Signet mass pb [5/2001] for $7.99
Dutton 9¼x6¼ hardcover [6/2000] out of print/many used
"Under The Color of Law" [#6=2001]
| ||Kerney's new job as Santa Fe Police Chief begins with the homicide of the estranged wife of a U.S. ambassador. Federal agents, citing 'national security', run him off the case, and he is forced to watch as they sanitize the crime scene, let (or help) potential witnesses disappear, and declare the case cleared with bogus evidence.
Onyx mass pb [7/2002] for $7.99
Dutton 9¼x6¼ hardcover [7/2001] out of print/many used
"The Big Gamble" [#7=2002]
| ||The body of a woman gone missing from Santa Fe many years prior is found in an abandoned building in rural Lincoln County. Kerney teams with his recently-discovered adult son, now a deputy sheriff, and they soon have two more homicides on their hands that point to the big business of local Indian gambling and a possible prostitution racket.
Onyx mass pb [8/2003] for $7.99
Dutton 9x6 hardcover [7/2002] out of print/many used
"Everyone Dies" [#8=2003]
| ||Kerney and his wife are on leave and happily awaiting the birth of their son. The shooting of a prominent attorney leads to a bungled S.W.A.T. team assault and the deaths of two bystanders. Dead rats on doorsteps, the slaughter of a prize horse, a second victim found in bed with her throat slashed – and then the killer threatens the Kerneys and their unborn son.
Onyx mass pb [8/2004] for $7.99
Dutton 9½x6½ hardcover [8/2003] out of print/many used
"Slow Kill" [#9=2004]
| ||Traveling to California to purchase quarter horse breeding stock, Kerney becomes the prime suspect when another guest at the ranch is murdered.
Onyx mass pb [8/2005] for $7.99
Dutton 9x6 hardcover [8/2004] out of print/many used
"Nothing But Trouble" [#10=2005]
| ||An old pal, now a rodeo star, asks Kerney to act as technical advisor on a movie to be filmed in the bootheel-shaped extreme southwestern corner of New Mexico. Kerney's idea of a working vacation with his wife and three-year-old son is upended by a body found near the Mexican border, undercover federal agents, and the hush-hush search for a fugitive from military justice.
Onyx mass pb [12/2006] for $7.99
Dutton 9x6¼ hardcover [12/2005] for $16.47
"Death Song" [#11=2007]
| ||The bushwhack killing of a deputy sheriff in Lincoln County and the brutal murder of the man's wife up in Santa Fe once again bring Kerney and his Apache son to work together, and the case soon connects to the dead couple's missing son, major drug trafficking, and the vicious killings of two women in Albuquerque.
Onyx mass pb [12/2008] for $7.99
Dutton 10x7 hardcover [12/2007] for $16.47
"Dead or Alive: A Kevin Kerney Novel" [#12=2008]
| ||Kerney's partner in a horse-breeding operation is gunned down on Kerney's doorstep by an escaped convict. The killer leads law enforcement teams up and down New Mexico's desolate landscapes, until Kerney and his deputy sheriff son do battle with the cornered man, who now has nothing to lose.
NAL Trade pb [12/2009] for $10.20
Dutton 9x6 hardcover [12/2008] for $17.13
"Hard Country: A Novel of The Old West" 
| ||Set in the West Texas plains from 1875 on, an ancester Kerney's new wife dies after bearing him a son, his brother is killed by outlaws, and he abandons his hardscrabble ranch and takes to the saddle. He accepts the offer of a job trailing stolen cattle from Mexico to the New Mexico Territory, and his life is changed forever.
Kindle Edition from Penguin Publng [5/2012] for $7.99
NAL Trade pb [5/2013] for $12.61
Dutton Adult 9x6 hardcover [5/2012] for $21.64
"Backlands: A Novel of The American West" 
| ||Set in the 1920s & 1930s to World War II; rancher Patrick Kerney, ex-wife Emma, and son Matthew survive the hard life in remote New Mexico.
Kindle Edition from Dutton / Penguin Group [5/2014] for $11.99
Dutton Adult 9x6½ hardcover [5/2014] for $21.64
L i n k s
Michael McGarrity's official website
Michael McGarrity entry at Wikipedia
browse Michael McGarrity books at Amazon
Online sales in association with
top of this page    ••    back to 'Readers of the Purple Sage' Bookstore homepage