Sharing Books and Authors, with an emphasis on Mysteries.
Thursday, September 30, 2010
Hilary Davidson - Guest Blogger
There's been a lot of talk in the mystery world the last couple months about Hilary Davidson's debut as a crime novelist. I'm reading her book right now, The Damage Done. I'm so pleased that Hilary was willing to take time to introduce herself and her book. Thank you, Hilary.
I’m grateful to Lesa for giving me the opportunity to introduce myself to you. My name is Hilary Davidson and I am a crime writer. Making that admission makes me sound like I’m addressing a support group. In a way, I am, because since I started to explore the mystery reading and writing community, I’ve discovered a tightly knit group of people who are still, somehow, incredibly welcoming to newcomers.
My debut novel, THE DAMAGE DONE, is being published this week by Forge. I’m both thrilled about that fact, and still slightly in disbelief about it. The book is about a travel writer named Lily Moore who is called home to New York when she’s told that her sister, Claudia, has died under suspicious circumstances. But Lily quickly discovers that the dead body belongs to a woman who had stolen Claudia’s identity, and that her sister is missing. When a neighbor reports having seen the real Claudia in the building the day her imposter died, the police begin to hunt for her as a suspect. In spite of the fact that Claudia is a drug addict and something of a con artist, Lily is certain that her sister isn’t capable of murder, and she becomes determined to find Claudia.
One of the questions that people have been asking about the book is what my sister thinks of it. The truth is that I don’t have a sister, though I do have two brothers who I used to think about trading in for a sister. One thing that I do have in common with Lily is that we share a day job — we’re both travel writers. Lily’s life is far more glamorous than mine: she lives in Spain and travels around the world constantly, writing about exotic places. I know travel writers who do that, but I’ve never been one of them. Oh, I’ve taken some truly incredible trips to places such as Peru, Easter Island, and Turkey, but most of my travel writing has been about my hometown, Toronto, and my adopted home, New York, which I moved to in 2001.
While THE DAMAGE DONE is my first novel, it’s not my first foray into fiction. I’ve been writing short stories for several years. Getting them published seemed like an agonizingly slow process, but it was incredibly valuable in terms of both playing with voice and style and narrative, and in terms of getting to know the mystery community.
Ironically, I didn’t know for a long time that there was such a community. Over the past couple of years, groups such as Sisters in Crime, MWA, and ITW — and social-networking sites like Twitter and Facebook — have connected me with mystery authors and readers, many of whom have become friends, even though we haven’t met in person. This spring, I realized how much I’ve come to count on them. A doctor removed a mole from my arm, and the biopsy found melanoma cells. Sharing that with friends all over the country — some on other continents — seemed strange, but the messages of support I got back helped me through an anxious time. After I had some minor surgery to see how far the cells had spread — the answer was, luckily, not far — some of my crime-writing friends created a flash-fiction challenge called “How Hilary Really Got That Scar.” The results — which portrayed me as everything from a serial killer to a hired gun — are some of the best get-well gifts I’ve ever received.
I’m going to be traveling extensively this fall to promote THE DAMAGE DONE. As I go from city to city, and to my first Bouchercon, I’m looking forward to meeting this amazing crime community that I’ve gotten to know online. That includes Lesa herself, whom I’ll be seeing when I visit Scottsdale. In the meantime, please come visit me at my website, my crime blog, or at my gluten-free travel blog.
Thank you, Hilary. And, in fact, I'll get to meet Hilary even before she appears at the Poisoned Pen. She'll be appearing at the Velma Teague Library for Authors @ The Teague on Wednesday, Nov. 3 at 11 a.m. And, good luck, Hilary!
I have been a library manager/administrator for over 30 years, in Ohio, Florida, Arizona, and, now, Indiana. Winner of the 2011 Arizona Library Association Outstanding Library Service Award. I am a contributing Book Reviewer for Library Journal, Mystery Readers Journal, ReadertoReader.com and VibrantNation.com. Winner of the 2009 and 2010 Spinetingler Awards for Best Reviewer. First Fan Guest of Honor for Desert Sleuths Chapter of Sisters in Crime, Write Now! Conference.
It's an honor to be asked to review books, and I'm grateful to all the publishers, publicists, and authors who send me books. Thank you. Reviews will appear on my blog if I've had a chance to read, and finish, the book. If I do not finish a book, I won't review it, and I will not respond to emails asking when, or if, I'll be reviewing a book.
My reviews are only my opinion, and do not reflect the views of the Evansville Vanderburgh Public Library.
I will not review self-published books, and, at the present time, do not accept books in e-book format.
My Oct. 19, 2009 blog provides full disclosure that I only receive review copies of books, with no other compensation. All review copies are marked as such. If there any any questions, please feel free to contact me.