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Thomas Kies is the author of the Geneva Chase mystery series, the third installment of which, GRAVEYARD BAY, is now available. These books take place in Fairfield County, Connecticut, which Thomas knows very well, having spent 18 years there working for a newspaper. But there are other reasons why he chose this area, a bedroom community that is extremely affluent yet also has to deal with crushing poverty in economically challenged cities, which can lead to some horrific crimes. After reading this piece from Thomas, you will understand why Fairfield County is such a fascinating setting for a mystery series.  
Our reader Nancy Sharko was at the 19th annual Library of Congress National Book Festival on August 31st and shares her experiences with us in this blog post. Here, she talks about the panels she attended, featuring Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Beth Macy, Sara Paretsky, Laila Lalami and many more.  
Sara E. Johnson worked as a middle-school reading specialist and newspaper contributor in North Carolina, before she and her husband relocated to New Zealand for a year. This big move served as the inspiration for her series featuring forensics expert Alexa Glock, the first installment of which, MOLTEN MUD MURDER, is now available. “There are countless ways this brutal landscape can swallow a body,” Sara warns in this fascinating essay about her adventures in New Zealand, making it a perfect setting for these mysteries.
Clive Cussler is the author or co-author of more than 50 books in five bestselling series, including Dirk Pitt, The NUMA Files, The Oregon Files, Isaac Bell and the Fargo Adventures. G.P. Putnam’s Sons started publishing his work in 1999, a partnership that has remained intact two decades later. Clive turned 88 on July 15th, and his writing career is still going strong after all these years. To celebrate this momentous occasion, Michael Barson --- who worked at Putnam from 1994 to 2015, and is currently the chief publicist for Poisoned Pen Press --- has written a wonderful piece in which he recalls meeting Clive and the 1999 book tour they went on together, which, he says, “was unlike any other I had been involved with up to that time.” Click here to see a photo gallery of Clive and Michael through the years.
USA Today and #1 Denver Post bestselling author Carter Wilson has written five critically acclaimed, stand-alone psychological thrillers. His sixth and latest novel, THE DEAD GIRL IN 2A, is intensely creepy and full of his signature whom-can-you-trust paranoia. In this very uplifting and inspiring piece, Carter draws on personal experience as he encourages us to define our lives, not through time, but through the things that make us happy rather than the things that we feel like we have to do. He has a simple formula for this: PASSION + COMMITMENT = HAPPINESS.
WHO’S SORRY NOW? is the second installment in Maggie Robinson’s 1920s mystery series featuring Lady Adelaide Compton, a marquess' daughter and widow of a Great War hero. Set in the fictional Thieves’ Den --- which, according to the author, is “the place to dance, drink, drug and possibly purchase poison so one could go on a punishing killing spree” --- the novel revolves around a series of upper-class deaths in London, as Bright Young People are being extinguished in their favorite night spots. After reading this blog post from Maggie about the Twenties, you will want to experience this rollicking era --- famous for its excesses and extravagance, cocktails and music ---for yourself in the pages of her books.
How do you kill someone underwater? And how do you make the best whoopee pie? If these questions even vaguely pique your interest, then William Morrow’s Book Club Girl “Night Out” event, which took place on Wednesday, June 19th at the HarperCollins offices in New York City, would have made your night, as it did for me, a longtime reader of Bookreporter.com. The evening featured authors Joshilyn Jackson and Meg Mitchell Moore being interviewed by Carol Fitzgerald, the president and co-founder of The Book Report Network.
Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip, collectively known as Michael Stanley, have been writing the Detective Kubu mysteries set in Botswana for the past 15 years. About five years ago, they decided to take a break from their long-running series to pen a stand-alone thriller that focuses on rhino poaching and rhino-horn smuggling in Africa. In this fascinating essay, Michael and Stanley talk about their research for the book, titled SHOOT THE BASTARDS, and the numerous challenges they faced as they were getting to know their protagonist, investigative journalist Crystal Nguyen.
Randall Silvis is the author of the Ryan DeMarco Mystery series, the third installment of which, A LONG WAY DOWN, is now available. Although these books are classified as mysteries and thrillers, Silvis would prefer not to be called a crime or mystery writer: “I write stories about the relationships between people, some of whom might be engaged in actions that include murder or another crime.” He emphasizes that one of the most important things people can do for themselves is to “court and cultivate the silence that speaks…. DeMarco is learning to listen to that silence.” In this very thoughtful piece, Silvis ponders the meaning of “the silence that speaks” and explains why it is so essential to our growth as human beings.
Nancy Sharko, one of our longtime readers, attended the Third Annual Maplewood-South Orange Book Festival in South Orange, NJ on Saturday, June 8th and was kind enough to share her experiences with us. According to their website, the festival “brings together readers and authors in celebration of the joy and diversity of the written word. Our informative author panels highlight the major artistic, social and political issues of the day, while our vibrant and fun-filled children’s area allow our youngest readers to discover the importance and delight of books --- and meet many of their favorite authors!”