My orientation around a school calendar remains even though I’ve not been in an academic setting for years and my children are well-past those years. Perhaps it is due to my Minnesota surroundings—August brings dog days of humidity and heat, the beginning of the end of garden blooms and the inevitable turn toward Fall. The Great Minnesota Get-Together, the State Fair, will start this week, and reminders of harvests to come echo through the ten-day event. We expect record crowds this year after the pandemic dip is behind us.

This year, August heralds a new book season for me. Behind the Lies will be published November 14th and this month signals the beginning of the run-up to the business of getting the book out there for its best start. With the help of my publicist, the book will be presented to reviewers, pitched to podcasters, radio interviewers etc. It can be wild and crazy, so this month is my last to take a deep breath and savor the end of summer.

My summer has been book-ended by house projects and travel. House projects are lots of work, expensive and require close attention—all of which I experienced and, with any luck, the final adjustments to be made by the contractor will be addressed by the end of the month.  More fun by far was the multi-generational family trip to Iceland and Denmark with my grandchildren and adult children. It was a home-coming of sorts. I lived there for a year when my then husband was on sabbatical, and our son was born there. Tivoli and Legoland are a joy at any ages, but it was a special treat to visit with my 12 and 14 year old grandkids. 

It was my first international trip in several years—and first to Iceland. I was registered to attend the Iceland Writers Retreat in April of 2020 but it was cancelled, so this was a special treat. What an interesting country it is! I was captivated by the active volcano in our midst, the creative use of geothermal energy, compelling Viking history and the spare beauty of the terrain.  I read Icelandic thrillers on this trip and since my return discovered that the Prime Minister of Iceland, Katrin Jacobsdotter has a thriller coming out in early September! The book is co-written by the well known Icelandic author Ragnar Jonasson. I have pre-ordered it!

Reading thrillers has been a life-long passion of mine, and right now, I’ve been reading mystery/suspense novels to stay in tune with the genre as Behind the Lies is my first mystery.

Each of my three novels is quite different.  A Better Next is women’s fiction featuring a career woman who is blind-sided by career and marital complications and is challenged to redefine happiness at mid-life.  Finding Grace is the coming of age story of a child born into a dysfunctional marriage who falls through the devastating schism that grows between her parents.

And now, Behind the Lies—set in the fast-paced world of biotechnology where free-wheeling ‘fake it til you make it’ culture is rampant, I’ve written a very human story about temptation and betrayal and the cost to those surrounding the players.

I didn’t set out to write a mystery, but I’m a character driven writer, so when I developed the character of Will Franklin, and put him in this setting….well, the challenges began!  Corporate intrigue, a cyberattack and betrayal come into play with some pivots and colorful characters along the way. Will is at turns a bit naive and a wunderkind in the field of biotech and I loved writing his story. I hope you enjoy reading it!