Friday, July 28, 2023

JILL CHURCHILL (Janice Carol Young Brooks): R.I.P.

Sad News. Jill Churchill (
Janice Carol Young Brooks) passed away on July 12, 2023.  (Born, January 11, 1943)

Family Obituary on

Best known nationally for her award winning Jane Jeffry and Grace and Favor mystery series, Janice is the author of 39 published books, including 12 historical fiction books written under her name, 22 mysteries published under her pseudonym “Jill Churchill” (because, as she would have explained,  “Churchill is next to Agatha Christie on the bookshelf.”), and is co-author, under the pseudonym “Valerie Vayle” of three bodice ripper romances (that her adult children still won’t crack open for a read). 

Janice’s historical fiction book Seventrees, was set primarily in Kansas City during the 1800s, and appeared on many local high school recommended reading lists through the 1980s and 1990s. 

Her World War II historical fiction book Guests of the Emperor, followed female prisoners of war captured in Singapore and was produced as an NBC movie of the week in 1993 under the title Silent Cries. 

She received the American Association of University Women’s Thorpe Menn Award in 1982 for Seventrees and Malice Domestic’s Agatha Award and Mystery Readers International’s Macavity Award, both in 1990, for her first published mystery book Grime and Punishment.

Janice loved her steaks medium-rare and her opinions expressed. Consequently, her books are filled with impressively strong, well-informed women, who never stood in anyone’s shadow – and always had more than a hint of Janice’s own personality written in between the lines.

Janice famously wrote about her mystery detective Jane Jeffry, “The most important thing she’d learned over the years was that there was no way to be a perfect mother and a million ways to be a good one.” This simple truth about “Jane” is a lasting reminder to her family that perfection is over-rated and doing “good” is enough. Her family will miss this incredibly strong-willed, opinionated, intelligent, talented, funny, good woman in a million ways and her children thank her for making them read, think, laugh, imagine, memorize poems when they said they were bored and making them generally do things for themselves.


Anonymous said...

Enjoyed her mystery books

Anonymous said...

I love her books and I’ve missed her writing new ones. She’s certainly entertained and was beloved by many readers. Condolences to her family.

Anonymous said...

I loved her Jane Jeffry’s books. She had some particularly pithy comments about teaching teens to drive that helped keep me sane. She will be missed!

Crios said...

Her Jane Jeffrey books were some of the first cozy mysteries I read, back when I didn't really know what a cozy mystery was!

Anonymous said...

Thank you everyone for your comments. I’m happy that my mom’s words and stories have touched so many. Amy Brooks Harper

Janet Rudolph said...

Thank you, Amy, for stopping by. Your mother really was a special writer. She is missed.