GAIL BOWEN’s first Joanne Kilbourn mystery, Deadly Appearances (1990), was nominated for the W.H.Smith/Books in Canada Best First Novel Award, and A Colder Kind of Death (1995) won the Arthur Ellis Award for best crime novel; all 14 (and counting!) books in the series have been enthusiastically reviewed. In 2008, Reader’s Digest named Bowen Canada’s Best Mystery Novelist; in 2009, she received the Derrick Murdoch Award from the Crime Writers of Canada. Bowen has also written plays that have been produced across Canada and on CBC Radio. Now retired from teaching at the First Nations University, Bowen lives in Regina.
How I got published – Gail Bowen – November 6, 2014
I’m always uneasy talking about my writing career, because so much of it simply involved being in the right place at the right time. In 1987, at the request of my friend Rob Sanders, now publisher of Greystone, I had co-written a novella titled 1919: The Love Letters of George and Adelaide for Western Producer Prairie Books. My writing partner had no interest in continuing to write, but I did. When my husband and I were doing our graduate degrees in English, mysteries were our summer reading. I wrote Deadly Appearances and sent it to Rob, who was then with Douglas & McIntyre just at the moment that Douglas & McIntyre were beginning to publish mysteries.
The manuscript was a mess, but Rob hired Jennifer Glossop an extraordinary editor and she whipped the novel into shape. When D&M decided to cut their mystery line, I’d just completed the manuscript for A Colder Kind of Death. Rob Sanders called M&S and the next day James Adams phoned and asked to see the manuscript. I’ve been with M&S ever since.
Her latest mystery was released in August 2014
Jo and Zack are both proud and a little concerned when their youngest daughter Taylor — whose birth mother was a brilliant but notoriously promiscuous artist — has two paintings chosen for a high-level fund-raising auction. One they’ve seen; the other, a portrait of a young male artist’s model, Taylor has carefully guarded in her studio. Their concern grows when it becomes clear (and quite public) that the young man is the lover of the older socialite who organized the fund-raiser — and whose husband is Zack’s old friend. Soon, an ugly web of infidelity, addiction, and manipulation seems to be weaving itself around the Kilbourn-Shreve family. Jo and Zack are doing their best to keep everyone safe, but when one of the principal players in the drama is found murdered, events begin to spiral, Taylor seems to be drifting further away, and their very darkest fears seem about to be realized