Tag Archives: Books

Coming up: Pflugerville Book Festival

2016-04-16 Pf Book Festival Poster

April 16-17 I’ll be taking part in the Pflugerville Book Festival. It’s sponsored by KAZI FM 88.7 and will feature discussions on mystery and diversity, science fiction and fantasy, young adult fiction, and more. And it’s free!

If you’re near Austin or Pflugerville, come on down.

Pflugerville Book Festival
April 16-17, 2016
1:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Pflugerville Library
1008 W. Pfluger St.
Pflugerville, TX 78660
Contact: (512) 990-6375

Ask Me Anything: favorite books, characters, mythological creature?

I’ll finish up this round of Ask Me Anything with this question from Cathie. Although now that I’m posting it, I detect multiple queries…

Howdy Meg!

I always wonder about writers and reading, so I’m curious…
Do you enjoy reading as much as you do writing? (Obviously those two things are very related but also very separate). Care to share some favorite books or authors?

If you do also enjoy reading, what do you read the most – fiction, non-fiction? What fiction genres do you read most often?

Do you have a favorite character from your novels?

And what’s your favorite mythological creature? (Random, I know!)

Also, thank you for giving me many hours of entertainment! I’ve enjoyed everything I’ve read by you, which is almost all your novels so far!

Thanks, Meg!

Let me take this one question at a time.

Do you enjoy reading as much as you do writing?

Damn skippy.

Care to share some favorite books or authors?

This question can get me into trouble because (1) If I start listing favorite books and authors, I will inevitably leave some out, and then I’ll feel wracked with Catholic guilt, and (2) If I start listing favorite books and authors, I’ll never stop.

That said: Stephen King, Sue Grafton, Don DeLillo, Lee Child, Elmore Leonard, James Lee Burke, Jane Austen, Patricia Highsmith, Carl Hiaasen, Jon Krakauer…

See what I mean?

What do you read the most – fiction, non-fiction?


What fiction genres do you read most often?

Thrillers. And science fiction.

Do you have a favorite character from your novels?

Evan Delaney. There, I said it.

No, wait! Jo Beckett. 100%. Also: Gabe Quintana.

Actually, I’m not being honest. It’s Jesse Blackburn.

ALL RIGHT, ALL RIGHT. I’ll tell you the real truth. Mr. Peebles.

(Zoe Keller.)

And what’s your favorite mythological creature?

The raptor from Jurassic Park. The big one. “Clever girl.”

My thanks to everybody for the excellent questions.

Here’s some news about my next book

I’ve been working on a project for a while, and now I can officially announce the news. I’m writing the first novel in a new thriller series. It features a young female police detective who will be drafted by an elite group of FBI criminal profilers to help track and capture the nation’s most notorious serial killers. It’ll be published in the US by Dutton, my longtime American publisher, in June 2017.

And so you know:

  • I’m keeping the plot of the novel under wraps for now. That’s because (1) a work-in-progress is a delicate thing, and talking about it can kill the magic, and (2) my job as a thriller writer is to keep readers in suspense.
  • I’m not abandoning the heroines of my other books. Jo Beckett and Evan Delaney projects are in the works. My other heroines may turn up again as well. I plan on writing for a long, long time, and telling lots of stories.
  • I’m thrilled about this. I’m delighted that I’m continuing to work with Jessica Renheim and Ben Sevier at Dutton. I owe huge thanks to my agent, Shane Salerno.
  • I’m deep into writing the new novel. The phrase that best describes where I am in the process is, “Typing like a crazed monkey.”

I’ll keep you posted as things progress.

Wednesday, January 27: In Conversation with Alafair Burke


One of the best things about being an author is getting to know other writers. And this Wednesday, I have the chance to interview the wonderful Alafair Burke about her new novel, The Ex. 

It’s a legal thriller about a criminal defense attorney who defends her ex-boyfriend against a multiple murder charge. I’m champing at the bit to talk to Alafair about the book. If you’re in the Houston area, come on down to Murder by the Book and join the conversation.

Alafair Burke in Conversation with Meg Gardiner
Wednesday, January 27, 2016 – 6:30pm
Murder by the Book
2342 Bissonnet St
Houston, TX 77005

My favorite books, movies & TV of 2015

December is zooming like a rocket sled toward the end of the year. So how about a few Best-Of lists?

My favorite movies of 2015:

Mad Max: Fury Road
Ex Machina
Bridge of Spies
Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation
The Martian

Note that I still have a few movies to see this year, including Creed and Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Oh, who am I kidding? I’m going to add Star Wars to the list.

Favorite TV shows:

The Jinx
Better Call Saul
Game of Thrones
House of Cards

Again, I still have to catch up on Mad Men, and am just getting into some shows like Mr. Robot and The Americans.

Favorite books outside of crime/suspense/thrillers:

The Skies Belong to Us: Love and Terror in the Golden Age of Hijacking, Brendan I. Koerner
A Man Against the World: The Tragedy of Richard Nixon, Tim Weiner
Underworld, Don DeLillo
Abaddon’s Gate, James S.A. Corey
Station Eleven, Emily St. John Mandel

I read a wealth of amazing crime and suspense novels this year. So many, in fact, that I need to sort through them and post those later.

How about everybody else?

Sunday December 13: KAZI FM Austin


This Sunday, December 13th, I’ll be on 88.7 KAZI FM Austin, talking about Mystery People’s Top 100 Crime and Suspense Novels. I’m joining host Hopeton Hay and Book People’s Scott Montgomery on the KAZI Book Review. 12:30 PM Central. If you’re in Austin you can tune in to 88.7 FM. Everybody else can listen online at KAZIFM.org.

We’ll try to start a few fights over our top choices. It should be fun.

EDIT: The show’s on at 12:30 Central. Tune in!

Writers I’m thankful for


Tomorrow is Thanksgiving. It’s time to give a shout out to some writers I’m thankful for.

A.A. Milne, for taking me on lovely expotitions with Pooh and Piglet when I was a child. And for giving me the Winnie-the-Pooh stories to read to my own children when I was grown.

Walter Farley, for pulling me and my nine-year-old friends back to the library again and again to check out the Black Stallion novels.

Carolyn Keene — every damn version of her — for Nancy Drew.

Ray Bradbury, for introducing me to the world of science fiction and dark fantasy when I was twelve.

Ron Hansen, for teaching me that stories need a beginning, a muddle, and an end. And for encouraging me to send out a story I wrote in his college creative writing class. That validation gave me courage.

Sue Grafton, for opening my eyes to the possibilities available for women writing mysteries. And for Kinsey Millhone.

Stephen King, for making me love and cry for the characters in The Stand, all the while scaring me to death.

Stephen King, for everything he’s done for me.

And my everlasting thanks to the teachers who imparted their love of literature to me: JoEllen Hansen in fifth grade, Peg Harris in tenth, and, of course, my dad, Frank Gardiner, from the day I was born.

I’m lucky, and grateful.