For 20 years — from 1964 through 1984 — the Travis McGee novels by John D. MacDonald were a mainstay in the mystery genre. With each of the 21 titles including a color in their name, this was one of the first examples of books in a series having a theme. Living on a houseboat called The Busted Flush, which he won in a card game, the protagonist, McGee — who is neither a cop nor an investigator — is a “salvage consultant” for hire, regularly finding himself in a variety of mysterious predicaments. The first novel in the series, which had a major influence on Lee Child — the author of the best-selling Jack Reacher series — explains how McGee only works when his cash runs out, and his rule is simple: he’ll help you find whatever was taken from you, as long as he can keep half.
ThrillerFest is the premier conference for thriller writers and readers. ThrillerFext XIII marks my fourth time at this event and it fittingly kicked off on Friday the 13th. Over two days, numerous panels took place on a wide range of topics – everything from how to best execute a fictional character to how to handle sex scenes in thrillers. These panels were comprised of new, best-selling, and seasoned authors, all offering a unique perspective on myriad issues and trends.
As you may have heard, President Bill Clinton has teamed up with the world’s best-selling author, James Patterson, on a new novel: The President Is Missing. From what I’ve been told, this is the first time a former U.S. President has co-written a novel with a best-selling author. Both Clinton and Patterson are currently on a book tour to promote this new venture and last week they made a stop in Philadelphia.
I use Goodreads’ “Reading Challenge” feature to keep track of what I read, and in 2016 I read 50 books. I set out to read 20, so I exceeded my goal by 250%! Below is a sampling of what I read in 2016.
This fall Lee Child’s 21st installment in the Jack Reacher series, Night School, is being released. For those of you Reacher Creatures needing a Lee Child fix between now and then, check out the two videos I shot below of Lee from last year’s event at the Free Library of Philadelphia where he was interviewed by best-selling author Linda Fairstein. The first video is Linda interviewing Lee and the second one is Lee conducting a Q&A with the audience. Enjoy!
Earlier this month I attended ThrillerFest for the third year in a row. For those unfamiliar with the event, it’s hosted by International Thriller Writers, the premier organization for thriller writers, and it features an endless selection of panels, workshops and interviews for fans and writers to enjoy. Continue reading
Lee Child is the #1 international best-selling author of the Jack Reacher series, for which he’s won the Anthony, Barry and Nero awards. In addition to writing worldwide best-sellers, Child currently serves as the Co-President of International Thriller Writers – a terrific professional association that anyone interested in working in the thriller genre should join.
Child’s newest novel, Personal, just came out this week in the U.S. and is already a #1 best-seller in the U.K. It’s the 19th Jack Reacher novel and is receiving rave reviews from fans and critics alike. Lee took the time to speak with me about his illustrious career, the creative process and his belief that nothing of value is ever achieved in the morning. Enjoy!