It’s been a minute since I checked in here. I’ve been busy, I’ve been isolated, I’m writing, I’m urging everyone to register to vote and make your voice heard. And I’ve been reading. Here’s a recent crop of fantastic novels I’ve enjoyed.
What are you all up to? What’s on your reading list?
BAD Sydney Crime Writers Festival INTO THE MIND OF A PSYCHOPATHIC KILLER Meg Gardiner in conversation with LA Larkin FRIDAY JULY 17 5PM Pacific / 7PM Central / 8PM Eastern / SATURDAY JULY 18 10 AM Sydney, Australia The event is free, but click the link to register for the video via Zoom.
A little while ago I talked to the Walmart blog, Favorite Reads, about the inspiration for my UNSUB series, the research that goes into the novels, and why mystery writers don’t necessarily make good real-life detectives.
We sat down for an exclusive interview with Edgar Award-winning author Meg Gardiner to discuss her latest release, The Dark Corners of the Night, one of the most highly anticipated thrillers of 2020, that is already garnering rave reviews as her best thriller yet. In The Dark Corners of the Night, FBI profiler Caitlin Hendrix returns to hunt down a terrifying new UNSUB—unknown subject—The Midnight Man, who Gardiner based on the real-life serial killer, The Night Stalker.
Welcome to spring 2020, when events have scrambled to move online. It has of course been hugely disappointing to cancel celebrations — like the Edgar Awards banquet, which I was supposed to emcee in New York City — but so many organizations are making the best of this situation. And that means that you can all attend.
Here’s what’s coming up in the next few weeks.
The Edgar Awards Thursday, April 30, 2020 11 AM Eastern The awards will be announced by Mystery Writers of America via Twitter: @EdgarAwards
Bay Area Book Festival Unbound Queens of Mystery: Writer to Writer with Meg Gardiner and Rachel Howzell Hall Moderated by Laurie R. King Program will air Tuesday May 5th, 7:00 PM Pacific
Noir at the Bar Queens Friday, May 8, 2020 7 PM Eastern Watch via Crowdcast Books sold by Kew & Willow
Wow, the Associated Press review of The Dark Corners of the Night has just come out, and I am insanely happy.
Gardiner weaves a suspenseful and horrifying tale that focuses on solving the crime rather than diving into gruesome and gratuitous details. Caitlin’s expertise and background bring a strong emotional hook to the story line. As the pursuit escalates, so do the surprises, right up to the shocking last page. Gardiner’s writing is lyrical and cinematic, and the final result is her best novel to date.
The Poisoned Pen bookstore put me In the Hot Seat ahead of my event in Phoenix on Monday, February 17 (with Tess Gerritsen!) where I’ll be launching my new novel, The Dark Corners of the Night. Take a look.
I’ve read this, but many readers may not have. Your UNSUB books are based on actual crimes. Would you tell us about that?
Every novel in the series takes a real crime as its starting point. The books are fiction, but grow from a kernel of fact. Partly that’s because UNSUB cases are some of the most difficult and fascinating investigations in law enforcement history. Partly it’s because I want to understand what motivates serial predators. And I want to explore what drives the people who take on the burden of stopping them. UNSUBwas sparked by the Zodiac—probably the most notorious unsolved serial murder case in America. The second novel was inspired by Ted Bundy. The Dark Corners of the Night was kindled by a killer who cast a pall of fear over Southern California: the Night Stalker.
I talk about The Dark Corners of the Night, Caitlin Hendrix, living in London, winning Jeopardy! and more.
And at the Writer Types podcast, I guest co-host with pod host Eric Beetner to interview Dana Hayes and Brad Taylor. Give it a listen.
And here’s your reminder that The Dark Corners of the Night drops February 18th, and you can preorder!
Caitlin Hendrix started out as a sheriff’s deputy too, in Alameda County, in former L.A. attorney Meg Gardiner’s blistering 2017 debut, “UNSUB.” (The title comes from what the FBI calls an unknown subject.) Hendrix — now working for the FBI as a behavioral analyst — is back for her third nerve-wracking outing in “The Dark Corners of the Night.” This time, a serial killer dubbed The Midnight Man is stealthily breaking into Southern California homes. He kills couples while they sleep, leaving traumatized small children behind to bear witness. Hearing one set of survivors’ harrowing Christmastime encounter heightens Hendrix’s clarity of purpose: “The more challenging and urgent the case, the more dangerous the UNSUB, the hotter her blood sang.”
The novel drops February 18th. And you bet, between now and then I’m going to urge y’all to preorder. Repeatedly, if the spirit moves you. Preordering really helps the book — and its publisher, and its author. So go wild.
The first review of my upcoming novel The Dark Corners of the Night is here, and I’m absolutely thrilled. From Kirkus Reviews:
“Los Angeles may not have snow at Christmastime, but it’s got the next best thing: a stone-cold serial killer who provides FBI behavioral analyst Caitlin Hendrix (Into the Black Nowhere, 2018, etc.) with her third, and perhaps most chilling, adversary. What kind of person breaks into houses when the whole family is home, executes both parents, but leaves the children alive to live with their nightmares? Only someone, as Caitlin tells her boss, CJ Emmerich, who has “deliberately created surviving witnesses.” … Determined that she won’t be outmaneuvered by a killer who’s dramatically stepped up the pace of his murderous attacks, breached his self-imposed limits, and now threatens her star witness with abduction and worse, she hunkers down to catch a quarry whom she says is “like nothing I’ve ever dealt with”—as if she doesn’t know that descriptions like that just set the bar even higher for the inevitable sequel. Gardiner has mastered the art of the serial-killer saga without an ounce of fat.
I’ll take that. With gratitude.
The Dark Corners of the Night drops February 18th, 2020. Preorder:
This year, Bouchercon, the World Mystery Convention, is being held in Dallas from October 31 — November 3. I’ll be there, because where else do I get to hang out for a few days with mystery and thriller fans, talking dawn to midnight about books and writing?
Here’s my schedule, including an off-site event at the Half Price Books Flagship store.
Hey, I have news! My next novel is now available for preorder. The Dark Corners of the Night comes out February 18, 2020. Here’s a taster:
I am the legion of the night.
He appears in the darkness like a ghost, made of shadows and fear — the Midnight Man. He comes for the parents but leaves the children alive, tiny witnesses to unspeakable horror. The bedroom communities of Los Angeles are gripped with dread, and the attacks are escalating.
Still reeling from her best friend’s close call in a bombing six months ago, FBI behavioral analyst Caitlin Hendrix has come to Los Angeles to assist in the Midnight Man investigation and do what she does best — hunt a serial killer. Her work is what keeps her going, but something about this UNSUB — unknown subject — doesn’t sit right. She soon realizes that this case will test not only her skills but also her dedication, for within the heart of a killer lives a secret that mirrors Caitlin’s own past. Hesitancy is not an option, but will she be able to do what must be done if the time comes?
Why you should be excited about it: Meg Gardiner’s scary-good new series is one of the best in crime fiction today, and after switching publishers—a move that resulted in delaying its publication to 2020—absence has surely made hearts grow fonder, making her next UNSUB book one of next year’s most anticipated new releases.
At BookExpo America last week, my publisher, Blackstone, announced my upcoming novel in exciting fashion. That’s me, standing next to a banner at the entrance to the convention, at the Javits Center in New York City.
The Dark Corners of the Night is the third novel in the UNSUB series, featuring FBI agent Caitlin Hendrix. It will be published in early 2020. I’ll have plenty more to tell you about it in the coming months. For now, know that I’m thrilled you’ll be reading it next winter.