Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Celebrating Women's History Month #2: The Ladies of 2015 Series Starters

Here at Midnight Ink Headquarters, we find that the best way to celebrate Women's History Month is to talk to our authors whose books feature strong female protagonists. Every day this week, return to this blog to find out more about the ladies portrayed in our various series and stand-alone releases this year!

Check out the first in this series here.

Gigi Pandian

Gigi Pandian is the USA Today bestselling author of the Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt mystery series for Henery Press. A cancer diagnosis in her 30s taught her two important life lessons: healing foods can taste amazing, and life's too short to waste a single moment. Therefore she writes the Accidental Alchemist mysteries while drinking delectable green smoothies and eating decadent home-cooked meals.
Zoe Faust is a centuries-old alchemist. Her character came to me because I loved the themes of immortality explored in The Highlander TV show, but the experiences and challenges would be different for a woman. Living forever isn’t necessarily a blessing, and Zoe has lost many loved ones over the years. When The Accidental Alchemist (January 8, 2015) begins, Zoe has been running from human connections for years – until she’s sought out by a fellow misfit who needs her help. In helping the gargoyle who was accidentally brought to life through alchemy, she embraces her strengths and finds joy in life once again. 

Loretta Ross

Loretta Ross is a writer and historian who lives and works in rural Missouri. She is an alumna of Cottey College and holds a BA in archaeology from the University of Missouri—Columbia. She has loved mysteries since she first learned to read. Visit her online at www.lorettasueross.com

In real life, some of the strongest women I know are also some of the kindest. It was this realization that helped to define my female main character, Wren Morgan. Her strength comes from kindness and a desire to care for those she cares about.

In Death Bogart, she sees a good man broken down by war and tragedy. Letting him into her heart would be scary even if they weren't being stalked by homicidal jewel thieves. But Wren is strong and she will do whatever it takes to see them both through in Death and the Redheaded Woman (February 8, 2015).

Elizabeth Perona

Elizabeth Perona is the father/daughter writing team of Tony Perona and Elizabeth Dombrosky. Visit Tony online at www.tonyperona.com.

Our main character in Murder on the Bucket List (July 8, 2015) is Francine, based on Tony’s mother (Liz’s grandmother) Frances. Frances grew up in a very poor family in Terre Haute, Indiana during the Depression. She was the oldest child. When she was ten or eleven, she was put to work picking berries for a landowner during the summers, day after day in the hot sun. Her income was necessary to help her family survive. When she reached her teens, her parents wanted Frances to quit high school and work full time, but knowing she needed an education to get a better job, she worked long hours after school as a soda jerk until she graduated. Her determination is honored in our stories. 

Deirdre Verne

Deirdre Verne is a mystery writer, college professor, and an active college blogger. A writer for the millennial crowd, Verne regularly delivers straight-forward and often hilarious advice on her college blog. Prior to teaching, Verne worked in new product development for Time Inc., representing the magazine titles Fortune, Money, and Parenting. Visit her online at www.deirdreverne.com

I’ve been a rule follower my whole life and according to my mother, I was the easiest child to raise. I never strayed from the path, I did well in school, I got the right jobs and then I raised my own family.  If this was the start of a novel, you’d probably put the book down and so would I. That’s why I created CeCe Prentice, an unconventional, off-beat, Dumpster-diving freegan who thrives on challenging the rules. Although she does and says as she pleases, her higher power is the environment. Sure, she steps on toes along the way, sometimes even her own, but the socially conscious CeCe genuinely cares about the world and those closest to her. And when people mess with that world? Well, you can find out how far CeCe strays from the path in Drawing Conclusions (February 8, 2015).

Amanda Flower

Amanda Flower is an academic librarian and the Agatha Award-nominated author of Maid of Murder, the Appleseed Creek Mysteries and the India Hayes Mysteries. She also writes the Amish Quilt Shop Mysteries under the name Isabella Alan. Visit her online at www.amandaflower.com

Kelsey Cambridge is a single mom and the director of Barton Farm, a living history museum thirty minutes south of Cleveland, Ohio. Like all single moms, she is strong and does everything for her son. Her dream is to preserve history for all children, and she took the job as Barton Farm’s director because of her love of Ohio and American history. She is determined to help the struggling Farm succeed so that future generations can learn from the past. She brings new ideas, like a Civil War re-enactment, to the Farm, but not everyone embraces those ideas, as in The Final Reveille (May 8, 2015).

Tracy Kiely

Tracy Kiely
is the author of the Elizabeth Parker Mysteries for Minotaur Books. Murder
 with a Twist is her Midnight Ink debut.

My character Nicole “Nic” Martini is a modern-day twist on Dashiell Hammett’s iconic detective, Nick Charles. Like her predecessor, Nic is a former NYC detective who has married into wealth. Husband Nigel shares Nic’s wit, quickness, and love of a “dirty Martini.” In Murder with a Twist (May 8, 2015), the couple is in NYC for Nigel’s cousin Audrey’s birthday party. Unfortunately, Audrey’s shady husband is missing. Nic reluctantly agrees to find him and quickly realizes that there are darker forces at play. Nic’s tenacity and innate sense of justice lead her to seek the truth, even if that truth ruins Nigel’s family.

Return to this blog tomorrow to hear about the protagonists from some of our longest-running series from: Sue Ann Jaffarian, Jess Lourey, Kathleen Ernst, and Sheila Webster Boneham.

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