Monday, May 4, 2009
with media sponsorship by WDUQ
Doors open at 4 pm
Program begins at 5 pm
This year's Festival of Mystery will take place on Monday May 4th, our traditional first Monday in May.
We will return to the new quarters at the Greek Orthodox Church in Oakmont, 12 Washington St., about 5 blocks from the store. The Church hall gave us a much more comfortable space for our many authors and their fans at last year's Festival and this year's promises to be just as big.
Keep checking this page for updates as we begin to assemble the program.
If you are an author who would like to attend, please Contact Us.
Tickets to the Festival are available in advance for $7, at the door for $8.
You can purchase tickets online. For multiple ticket purchases you can adjust the quantity in the shopping cart before you check out.
Festival Ticket, $7
A complete bibliography of books by the Festival authors is available. (2 page pdf file)
Donna Andrews set the tone for her charming and humorous Meg Langslow series by winning the Agatha, Anthony, the Barry and the Romanic Times awards for the debut, Murder with Peacocks. For the Festival, Donna will be coming with the tenth, Six Geese a Slaying. Donna is also the author of another Agatha-nominated series featuring artificial intelligence personality Zack Turing. Most recent in that series is Delete All Suspects.
Katherine Ayres is the author of 10 books for children from toddlers to teens. She lives in Pittsburgh and teaches writing in the MFA program at Chatham University. Her recent picture book, Up, Down and Around was selected as the 2008 Pennsylvania One Book (Every Young Child). She has just been selected as the Pennsylvania Author of the Year for 2009 by the Pennsylvania School Librarians Association.
Lorna Barrett is the pen name of author Lorraine Bartlett. She honed her characterization and plotting skills as a frequent writer for romance magazines. Murder Is Binding is the first in the Booktown Mystery series and it introduces small-town mystery bookstore owner Tricia Miles.The sequel, Bookmarked For Murder, was published this year. She also writes the Jeff Resnick paranormal/psychological suspense series as L.L. Bartlett. The second book in the series is Dead in Red.
The British born Rhys Bowen now lives in California where she has written seven wildly successful mysteries featuring the feisty Irish immigrant Molly Murphy, the latest being In a Gilded Cage. She has been nominated for every major mystery award: Agatha, Edgar, McCavity, Anthony and Barry and has won both the Agatha and Anthony Award. Not resting, she’s started a new series Her Royal Spyness featuring 1920's sleuth Lady Victoria, an aristocrat fallen on hard times. Second in the series is A Royal Pain. Bowen is also the author of the award-winning Evans Evans series..
Ellen Byerrum launched the Lacey Smithsonian series with Killer Hair which introduced the fashion columnist who still had time to track a killer of hair stylists while keeping tabs on the capitals fashion do's and don'ts. Five more books followed, most recently Armed and Glamorous. Lifetime Television is filming two of the books in Ellen's series, Killer Hair and Hostile Makeover for cable TV movies. Look for them to air this summer.
Jane K. Cleland comes to the Festival with the fourth in her series with New Hampshire antiques appraiser Josie Prescott, Killer Keepsakes . Her Agatha-nominated debut Consigned to Death, an Antiques Roadshow for mystery fans, was the first in this traditional mystery series. Set on the rugged New Hampshire coast, Josie uses her knowledge of antiques to solve the crimes. “Killing Time,” a “Josie” short story published in Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine has been nominated for an Agatha Award this year. Formerly the owner of a rare book and antiques store, Jane now lives in New York City with her husband.
Jeff makes his Festival debut with the latest Double Feature mystery, A Night at the Operation. Both previous books in the series, Some Like it Hot Buttered and It Happened One Knife, were nominated for Lefty Awards as the funniest mystery of the year, and Jeff is especially proud of that. The series concerns itself with Elliot Freed, who buys an ancient one-screen movie theatre "fixer-upper" and shows a classic comedy with a contemporary one every day. At Comedy Tonight, there's always something going on besides the show, though: in the latest, Elliot has to deal with the disappearance of his ex-wife and her implication in a murder.
Meredith Cole directed feature films, including "Achilles' Love" in Pittsburgh, and wrote screenplays before writing mysteries. She won the St. Martin’s/Malice Domestic Best First Traditional Mystery competition. Her first novel, Posed for Murder, was published in February 2009. In the book, her sleuth Lydia McKenzie is an artist who recreates historic murder cases for the camera. Lydia convinces her friends to pose for her film noir style pictures, and is horrified to discover at her gallery opening that someone is killing her models just like her photographs. She is a member of the MWA NY board, and she blogs at www.thedebutanteball.com.
Before becoming a full-time mystery writer, Sheila Connolly taught art history, structured and marketed municipal bonds for major cities, worked as a staff member on two statewide political campaigns, and served as a fundraiser for several non-profit organizations. She also managed her own consulting company providing genealogical research services. Her Glassblowing Mystery Series, written as Sarah Atwell, debuted with Through a Glass, Deadly followed by Pane of Death, and Snake in the Glass will be released in September. Her Orchard Mystery Series opened with One Bad Apple last year, with Rotten to the Core coming out in July. Through a Glass Deadly has just been nominated for an Agatha Award.
Ellen Crosby launched her mystery writing career after working as a free-lance journalist, most recently with The Washington Post. After researching the wine-making business, she put her knowledge to excellent use in her Virginia wine country series which includes The Merlot Murders and The Chardonnay Charade. At the Festival you can pick up the third in the series, The Bordeaux Betrayal .
Shirley Damsgaard will arrive at the Festival with the sixth in her Ophelia Jensen series, The Witch's Grave.Her Agatha Nominated debut Witch Way to Murder kicked off this series with a paranormal twist that pairs librarian Ophelia with her Aunt Abby with entertaining results.
Casey Daniels, it can now be revealed, is also Miranda Bliss. As Casey, she once applied for a job as a tour guide at a historic cemetery. She didn't get the job, but she did get the idea for the Pepper Martin Mystery Series about a cemetery tour guide who finds she can communicate with the permanent residents. The fourth in the series, Night of the Loving Dead , came out earlier this year.
As Miranda Bliss, she is the author of four books that feature best friends Annie and Eve who give cooking classes. Most recent is Dying for Dinner.
Casey and Miranda learned to love mysteries early thanks to her dad, a Cleveland Police detective, who enjoyed Sherlock Holmes stories and spent his days off searching for stolen cars--with Casey along for the ride. Casey has a degree in English and a background in journalism and teaching. Casey lives in northeast Ohio.
Bill Davis has lived in southwestern Pennsylvania nearly all of his life. After a thirty year career at Allegheny Ludlum he has finally been able to pursue his life-long interest in writing, publishing his debut novel The Forever Man. Set in a small town in southwestern Pennsylvania it features Sheriff Clive Aliston who finds himself tracking a serial killer. The second Clive Aliston novel,Tail of the Scorpion was released in May 2008. The third book in the series The Forever Man II: The Ticketmaster is scheduled for release in summer 2009. There are a possible four more books scheduled for the Clive Aliston Series.
'Vicki Delany has been called “one of Canada's most promising new practitioners of the crime genre.” (Dick Adler, Chicago Tribune). Valley of the Lost is the second in a traditional police procedural series featuring Constable Molly Smith and set in the mountains of British Columbia. She is also the author of two novels of psychological suspense, Scare the Light Away and Burden of Memory. She has taken early retirement from her job as a systems analyst, and this is her third trip to the Festival.
Kimberly Frost loves humorous mysteries and urban fantasies and wanted to combine her favorite elements from each. The result was Would-Be Witch, the first novel in the Southern Witch series, which was released in February. The second installment of Tammy Jo Trask's misadventures in magic, Barely Bewitched, comes out in September 2009.
Pittsburgh author Kathleen George has authored three suspenseful and original mysteries, all with Pittsburgh settings: Fallen, Taken and Afterimage. A fourth book, The Odds, is due in June. When not keeping readers breathless, she's a mainstay of the University of Pittsburgh Drama Department. Kathleen will have a new novel out in the fall, Afterimage.
Keith Gilman is a cop. He was born and raised in Scranton, Pennsylvania and he’s been a police officer in the Philadelphia area for over fifteen years. He knows how cops think. He knows what cops know. He walks the walk and he talks the talk, and in Father's Day, his debut novel , he pulls back the curtain on his disturbing vision of a decaying urban world, haunted by shadows of deceit and death.
Pittsburgh playwright and actor Kathryn Miller Haines is coming to the festival with Winter of Her Discontent, the second in her WW II-set serires featuring actress and would-be PI Rosie Winters. The third in the series, Winter in June, is due out in--June.
Agatha-nominated Rosemary Harris is a former bookstore manager and video producer who writes the Dirty Business Mystery series. Her character Paula Holliday is a transplanted city girl who moves to the suburbs and finds herself digging up a different kind of dirt than she originally expected. The Big Dirt Nap is her second book following last year's Pushing Up Daisies.
Mary Ellen Hughes hails from Maryland where she has also set her Craft Corner series set in an arts and crafts shop, She even shares step-by-step directions for a project at the end. Talk about a crafty sleuth! Latest in the series is Paper-Thin Alibi . Mary Ellen has two previous mysteries featuring a vacationing math teacher.
Toni L.P. Kelner's first "Where are they now?" mystery, Curse of the Kissing Cousins, will be released just in time for the Festival. When not writing mysteries, she edits urban fantasy anthologies with Charlaine Harris. Their second, Wolfsbane and Mistletoe was released at Christmas and they’re working on a third. Kelner is the winner of a Romantic Times Career Achievement Award and an Agatha Award, and is an Agatha nominee this year for her short story "Skull and Cross-Examinations." She lives north of Boston with author/husband Stephen Kelner, two daughters, and two guinea pigs.
John J. Lamb is the author of the IMBA bestseller, The Mournful Teddy (a 2006 Dilys Award finalist), The False-Hearted Teddy, The Crafty Teddy and Echoes of the Lost Order. His latest for teddy bear collector Bradley Lyon is The Clockwork Teddy. He is a retired Southern California cop, with eighteen years of experience as a homicide detective, CSI, and hostage negotiator. John now lives in the Shenandoah Valley with his wife Joyce, a retired fingerprint expert and crime analyst.
Con Lehane’s third bartender Brian McNulty mystery, Death at the Old Hotel, was published in 2007. "Con Lehane's mysteries about a genial Irish-American bartender named Brian McNulty are as cruelly charming as those Irish saloon storytellers who make sure you're laughing before they flatten you with the sad stories of their lives," writes Marilyn Stasio in the New York Times.
Lehane grew up on private estates in Fairfield County, Connecticut, where his father worked as a gardener and his mother a cook and laundress. Over the years he has worked as a college professor, a union organizer, and tended bar at two dozen separate establishments.
Mary Jane will be coming to the Festival with the third in her professional organizer Charlotte Adams series: Death Loves a Messy Desk. She is also the author of five books in the popular Ottawa-based Camilla MacPhee series. The second of her Fiona Silk books was publsihed last year. Mary Jane has twice won the Crime Writers of Canada Arthur Ellis award for best crime short story. She is a lapsed librarian, a former co-owner of Prime Crime (Ottawa’s tiny perfect mystery bookstore), and a past president of Crime Writers of Canada. Although she is a member of the Ladies Killing Circle, in reality, she has never bumped off anyone.
G.M. Malliet is the author of Death of a Cozy Writer (chosen by Kirkus Reviews as one of the Best Books of 2008) which introduced Detective Inspector St. Just. The inspector returns in Death and the Lit Chick, here just in time for the Festival. Death of a Cozy Writer has been nominated for the Agatha Award for best first novel and the Left Coast Crime/Hawaii Five-O Award for best police procedural.
Pittsburgh writer Nancy Martin has a long and successful career of writing romance titles. Seven years ago she turned her hand to mystery with outstanding results in the first of the Blackbird Sisters series: How to Murder a Millionaire which introduced a group of Philadelphia blue bloods fallen on hard times. The seventh, Murder Melts in Your Mouth, has just been published in paperback.
Judi McCoy has published fifteen romances. She teaches the Aspiring Author course each year at Romantic Times, and gives writing workshops across the country. Hounding the Pavement, released in March 2009 is the first book in her new romantic mystery series. All royalties from the book will be donated to Best Friends, the largest no-kill animal shelter in the U.S. Judi currently resides on Virginia's peaceful eastern shore. A retired women’s gymnastic judge, she raises orchids and continues to write the next book in her unique series.
Louise Penny is the New York Times bestselling author of the Armand Gamache mysteries. Set in Quebec these traditional mysteries are mainly set in the village of Three Pines. Louise has won numerous awards internationally including the Agatha, Anthony, Arthur Ellis and UK Dagger.
The comes to the Festival for the first time with her fourth book, A Rule Against Murder.
Jason Pinter, a former book editor, is the bestselling author of three critically acclaimed Henry Parker thrillers, The Stolen, The Guilty and The Mark, which was nominated for the Barry award, Strand Critics award, Romantic Times Reviewers Choice award and optioned to be a major motion picture. His two-part Parker epic, The Fury and The Darkness, will be released this Fall. Jason lives in New York City with his wife, Susan, and their dog, Wilson.
Stefanie Pintoff became the inaugural winner of the St. Martin's Minotaur/MWA Best First Crime Novel Competition with her novel, In the Shadow of Gotham. Her debut is a turn of the century crime novel perfect for fans of Caleb Carr. A graduate of Columbia Law School, she also has a Ph.D. in literature from New York University. Her second novel is forthcoming in 2010.
Lila Shaara (top)
Pittsburgh anthropologist and novelist Lila Shaara just released her second book, The Fortune Teller's Daughter. Her previous book, also available at Mystery Lover's, is Every Secret Thing.
George D Shuman writes an exciting police procedural series with a twist, his character Sherry Moore is blind and a psychic. The debut, the Shamus-nominated 18 Seconds was followed by Last Breath and now, Lost Girls. A native of southwest Pennsylvania, Shuman served twenty years with the Metropolitan Police Department in Washington DC He now lives in the Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania and writes full time. Mr. Shuman has two children Daniel and Melissa.
Joanna Campbell Slan is the author of Paper, Scissors, Death, the first in a series featuring Kiki Lowenstein, an expert scrapbooker who plays amateur sleuth when her husband dies under suspicious circumstances. Paper, Scissors, Death has been called "an engaging cozy" with "an enjoyable mix of humor, suspense (and) a touch of romance." Joanna is the author of seven non-fiction books on scrapbooking and has taught scrapbooking in the US, on cruises, in the United Kingdom and online.
The award-winning author of more than seventy novels, Wendy Corsi Staub has penned multiple New York Times bestselling adult thrillers under her own name and over two dozen young adult titles including the current paranormal suspense series Lily Dale. As Wendy Markham, she’s a USA Today bestselling author of chic lit and romance. A 2008 recipient of the RT Bookreviews Career Achievement in Suspense Award, she released five original novels from four publishers last year and will publish three more in 2009. Wendy lives in suburban NYC with her husband and children. Readers can visit her online at www.WendyCorsiStaubcommunity.com.
Leann Sweeney is the author of five Yellow Rose Mysteries featuring adoption PI Abby Rose. She also writes a new series, the "Cats in Trouble Mysteries" with amateur sleuth Jillian Hart solving the cat problems in Mercy, South Carolina, problems that always seem to involve murder. The first, The Cat, the Quilt and the Corpse, will be available at the Festival. Leann lives in Texas with her three inspiring cats, the ADHD labradoodle Rosie and her husband Mike.
Marcia Talley returns to Pittsburgh to sign copies of her seventh Hannah Ives mystery Dead Man Dancing, just out in trade paper. She is also the editor of two collaborative novels, most recently I’d Kill For That a fascinating project involving 13 writers. This Agatha and Anthony award-winning author divides her time between Annapolis, Maryland and living aboard an antique sailboat in the Bahamas.
Pittsburgh attorney turned novelist Heather Terrell joins us with the paperback of her second book, The Map Thief. Her third book, The Book of Kildare, is due out next year.
Terri Thayer is the author of two mystery series. The Stamping Sisters series debuted in September with Stamped Out. Inked Up, the second in the series, will be out in the fall.The Quilting Mystery series includes Wild Goose Chase and Old Maid's Puzzle. The third, Ocean Waves, will be out next April.
She lives in Northern California, quilting, stamping and writing.
Elaine Viets continues working her series of dead-end jobs with the eighth: Killer Cuts, where Helen finds work at a high end salon. Elaine, who really does work all these jobs, has also begun a second series featuring mystery shopper Josie Marcus. Latest is Murder with All the Trimmings . Elaine lives in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.
Agatha-nominated author Heather Webber writes humorous mysteries featuring landscape designer Nina Quinn, who has a penchant for digging up trouble...and bodies. Nina’s latest adventure, Weeding Out Trouble , is the fifth book in the series. She lives with her husband, three children, adorable hamster and assorted aquarium creatures in southwest Ohio.