November 20, 7 PM ET

Join authors Rhys Bowen, V.M. Burns, Glen Erik Hamilton, and Simon Gervais along with Back Room hosts Karen Dionne and Hank Phillippi Ryan for an evening of great conversation!

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The Authors

 

Rhys Bowen is the New York Times bestselling author of more than forty novels, including The Venice Sketchbook, nominated for the Edgar Award for Best Novel; The Victory GardenThe Tuscan Child; and the World War II-based In Farleigh Field, winner of the Left Coast Crime Award for Best Historical Mystery Novel and the Agatha Award for Best Historical Novel.

Bowen’s work has won over twenty honors to date, including multiple Agatha, Anthony, and Macavity awards. Her books have been translated into many languages, and she has fans around the world, including over 60,000 Facebook followers.

Her Evan Evans series, set in Wales, is currently being reissued by Joffe Books in the U.K. A transplanted Brit, Bowen divides her time between California and Arizona. Learn more at rhysbowen.com.


V.M. (Valerie) Burns was born and raised in South Bend, Indiana. She graduated from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science and Urban Studies. Valerie later went on to get a Master of Science in Administration from the University of Notre Dame and a Master of Fine Arts in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University.

Valerie works as an Operations Manager for a major appliance manufacturer and is a mentor in the Master of Fine Arts (MFA) program for writing popular fiction at Seton Hill University in Greensburg, PA, where she earned her Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degree.

Valerie currently lives in North Georgia with her two poodles (Kensington and Chloe). Learn more at vmburns.com.


A native of Seattle, Glen Erik Hamilton was raised aboard a sailboat and grew up around the marinas and commercial docks and islands of the Pacific Northwest. His novels have won the Anthony, Macavity, and Strand Magazine Critics awards, and been nominated for the Edgar®, Barry, and Nero awards.

Hamilton’s debut novel Past Crimes won the Anthony, Macavity, and Strand Magazine Critics Awards, and was also nominated for the Edgar®, Barry, and Nero Awards. Kirkus called Past Crimes “an exciting heir to the classic detective novel.” Each of his subsequent books in the Van Shaw series have earned starred reviews from Publishers WeeklyLibrary Journal, and more, and been published in North America, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, Turkey, the Czech Republic, and Japan.

After living for many years in Southern California, he and his family have recently returned to the Emerald City and its beautiful overcast skies.

Learn more at glenerikhamilton.com.


Simon Gervais was born in Montréal, Québec. He joined the Canadian military as an infantry officer and was commissioned as a second lieutenant in 1997. Assigned to the Infantry School in Gagetown, New Brunswick, he received extensive training in advanced reconnaissance and small-unit tactics. In 2001, he became a federal agent and worked on many international drug-related cases in close collaboration with his American colleagues from the DEA. In 2009, he became a close-protection specialist tasked with guarding foreign heads of state visiting Canada. Among many others, he served on the protection details of Queen Elizabeth II, US President Barack Obama and Chinese President, Hu Jianto.

After his retirement in September 2014, Simon became a full-time writer and is now the New York Times and #1 Amazon bestselling author of Hunt Them Down (January 2019), Trained To Hunt (September 2019), and Time To Hunt (November 2020). His new thriller, The Last Sentinel, publishedws on August 9th, 2022. It will be followed by The Last Guardian in October 2023.

In 2021, Simon had the immense honor to be chosen by G.P. Putnam’s Sons (an imprint of Penguin Random House) and the estate of Robert Ludlum to write a new series within the illustrious Jason Bourne universe. The first book in the series Robert Ludlum’s The Blackbriar Genesis will be published on October 18th, 2022. Simon is presently working on a sequel that will be published in 2023. Simon also wrote the Mike Walton series: The Thin Black Line (2015), A Red Dotted Line (2016) and A Thick Crimson Line (2018).  Learn more at simongervaisbooks.com.


Authors’ Books

 

Where the Sky Begins by Rhys Bowen

London, 1940. Bombs fall and Josie Banks’s world crumbles around her. Her overbearing husband, Stan, is unreachable, called to service. Her home, a ruin of rubble and ash. Josie’s beloved tearoom boss has been killed, and Josie herself is injured, with nothing left and nowhere to go.

Evacuated to the English countryside, Josie ends up at the estate of the aristocratic Miss Harcourt, a reluctant host to the survivors of the Blitz. Awed as she is by the magnificent landscape, Josie sees opportunity. Josie convinces Miss Harcourt to let her open a humble tea shop, seeing it as a chance for everyone to begin again. When Josie meets Mike Johnson, a handsome Canadian pilot stationed at a neighboring bomber base, a growing intimacy brings her an inner peace she’s never felt before. Then Stan returns from the war.

Now a threat looms larger than anyone imagined. And a dangerous secret is about to upend Josie’s life again. Her newfound courage will be put to the test if she is to emerge, like a survivor, triumphant.

Purchase at an independent bookstore near you.

Purchase online at www.bookshop.org.


Two Parts Sugar, One Part Murder  by V.M. Burns

When Maddy Montgomery’s groom is a no-show to their livestream wedding, it’s a disaster that no amount of filtering can fix. But a surprise inheritance offers a chance to regroup and rebrand—as long as Maddy is willing to live in her late, great-aunt Octavia’s house in New Bison, Michigan, for a year, running her bakery and caring for a 250-pound English mastiff named Baby.

Maddy doesn’t bake, and her Louboutins aren’t made for walking giant dogs around Lake Michigan, but the locals are friendly and the scenery is beautiful. With help from her aunt’s loyal friends, aka the Baker Street Irregulars, Maddy feels ready to tackle any challenge, including Octavia’s award-winning cake recipes. That is, until New Bison’s mayor is fatally stabbed, and Maddy’s fingerprints are found on the knife . . .

Something strange is going on in New Bison. It seems Aunt Octavia had her suspicions, too. But Maddy’s going to need a whole lot more than a trending hashtag to save her reputation—and her life.

Purchase at an independent bookstore near you.

Purchase online at www.bookshop.org.


Island of Thieves by Glen Erik Hamilton

Van Shaw is hired to evaluate the safeguards for the art collection of eccentric business magnate Sebastien Rohner. Then Rohner reveals to Van the real reason he’s been recruited: to prevent another professional burglar from stealing the art. Rohner wants to set a thief to catch a thief.

While questioning the bizarre nature of the job, Van accepts the lucrative offer and arrives at the island estate during an international summit that Rohner is hosting. Shortly after beginning his surveillance of Rohner’s highly secure gallery wing, Van stumbles across the murdered body of one of the honored guests along the rocky shore. Wary of Rohner’s true intentions, Van knows the homicide detectives on the case—and perhaps Rohner as well—think he’s the prime suspect and will turn his life upside down in their search for proof.

Van begins to hunt for the killer himself, but scrutiny only digs his hole deeper, as one of Rohner’s own executives is then killed and the Seattle police find concrete evidence placing Van at the scene. With no other options, he goes on the run, alone and unaided. He’s hunted by the cops, the enraged Rohner, and a pair of psychopathic hitmen who chase Van from one coast to the next. To clear his name, Van Shaw will have to uncover the hidden motive of corporate espionage at a global level, even with a band of killers on his tail who are determined to add Van to their growing list of victims.

Purchase at an independent bookstore near you.

Purchase online at www.bookshop.org.


Robert Ludlum’s The Blackbriar Genesiss by Simon Gervais

A car explodes along a quiet Prague side street—among the dead is an undercover Treadstone agent. It’s not unusual for such men to meet their fates on an operation, but in this case there’s one catch. None of his superiors know what he was doing there.

Two Blackbriar operatives, Helen Jouvert and Donovan Wade, are sent to investigate. Their search for answers will take them deeper into the world of conspiracy and fake news than they ever expected.

Treadstone and Blackbriar may be two sides of the same coin, intelligence and counterintelligence, but they have one thing in common, answers can be the deadliest commodity of all.

Purchase at an independent bookstore near you.

Purchase online at www.bookshop.org.


Your Hosts

 

Karen Dionne is the USA Today and #1 internationally bestselling author of the award-winning psychological suspense novel The Marsh King’s Daughter, published by G.P. Putnam’s Sons in the US and in 26 other languages. Her follow up novel, The Wicked Sister (August 2020, G.P. Putnam’s Sons), is also an international bestseller and was chosen by Publishers Weekly as one of their Best Books of 2020.

The Marsh King’s Daughter was also chosen as one of the best books of 2017 by iBooks, Hudson Booksellers, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, The Irish Independent, Library Journal, Shelf Awareness and many other booksellers and reviewers, and is soon to be a major motion picture starring Daisy Ridley and Ben Mendelsohn.

Both The Wicked Sister and The Marsh King’s Daughter were selected by the Library of Michigan as Michigan Notable Books, and The Marsh King’s Daughter took home the Barry and the Crimson Scribe Awards for Best Novel. Visit Karen at www.karen-dionne.com

Karen’s newest novel is The Wicked Sister. “Dionne paints a haunting portrait of a family hurtling toward the tragic destiny they can foresee but are powerless to stop.”–Publishers Weekly (starred review)

Purchase The Wicked Sister at an independent bookstore near you.

Purchase The Wicked Sister online at www.bookshop.org.

Hank Phillippi Ryan is the USA Today bestselling author of thirteen novels of suspense.  She has won five Agathas, four Anthonys, two Macavitys, the Daphne, and the coveted Mary Higgins Clark award. National reviews have called her a “master at crafting suspenseful mysteries” and “a superb and gifted storyteller.” Her 2019 book The Murder List won the Anthony Award for Best Novel of the year. Her 2020 book is The First to Lie, of which the Publishers Weekly starred review said, “Stellar.” It  was a nominee for the Anthony Award  and the Mary Higgins Clark Award. Her upcoming thriller, The House Guest, will be published in January 2023.

Hank is also an award-winning investigative reporter at Boston’s WHDH-TV. In addition to 37 EMMYs and 14 Edward R. Murrow awards, Hank’s won dozens of other honors for her ground-breaking journalism. Hank is  the co-host of First Chapter Fun, hosts the online mystery interview program for the acclaimed A Mighty Blaze, is a founding teacher at Mystery Writers of America University and served as past president of national Sisters in Crime. Learn more at www.HankPhillippiRyan.com.

Hank’s current novel, Her Perfect Life, published September 14, 2021 with starred reviews from Kirkus and Publishers Weekly.  “Superlative…this is a fast-paced, surprise-packed treat.” ―Publishers Weekly (starred review)  It was chosen a Best of 2021 by The Strand magazine and Suspense Magazine, and is now  an Agatha Award nominee for Best Contemporary Novel.

Purchase Her Perfect Life at an independent bookstore near you.

Purchase Her Perfect Life online at www.bookshop.org.


 

 

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