Bill Granger

aka Joe Gash, Bill GriffithBill Granger, was a newspaperman turned novelist whose fiction alternated between international spy thrillers and police procedurals set on the gritty streets of Chicago.Usually under his own name but sometimes under the pseudonym Joe Gash or Bill Griffiths, Mr. Granger wrote 25 novels, many of which evoked the rougher environs of Chicago and included colorful characters with names like Slim Dingo, Tony Rolls and Jesus X Mohammed. Mr. Granger’s favorite, and perhaps best-known, book was “Public Murders” (1980), in which the city is in an uproar as a rapist-murderer strikes again and again. Public and political pressure exacts an emotional toll on the tough, foulmouthed detectives investigating the crimes. Public Murders won an Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America in 1981. Two years before that, Mr. Granger’s first spy novel, The November Man,caused something of an international stir. It involved a plot to assassinate a relative of Queen Elizabeth by blowing up a boat. Later that year, Lord Louis Mountbatten, the queen’s cousin, was killed on his fishing boat when a bomb set by the Irish Republican Army exploded. Mr. Granger always thought of himself as more of a reporter than an author. “I can’t think of a day without newspapering in it,” he said in a 2003 interview. In his nearly 40 years in journalism, he had reported for United Press International, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Chicago Tribune and The Chicago Daily Herald. He covered the sectarian violence in Northern Ireland and wrote a series based on interviews with a veteran who had witnessed the My Lai massacre during the Vietnam War. Granger had a stroke in January 2000, and ended his writing career. From 2002 to his death he lived in the Manteno Veterans Home; the immediate cause of death was a heart attack, although he had suffered a series of strokes since the 1990s. He is survived by wife Lori and son Alec.Read more:


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