Women Spy Writers!

Ian Fleming’s James Bond; John Le Carre’s George Smiley; Robert Ludlum’s Jason Bourne: the espionage shelves are packed with male spies by male writers. Which makes the following gripping titles and series penned by women a welcome change of pace.

Who is Vera Kelly? by Rosalie Knecht.
A different sort of spy story full of anticipation with an almost sultry atmosphere as we wait along with Vera Kelly.  Set in 1960’s Buenos Aires, Knecht captures the classic Cold War struggle between the CIA and revolutionary, nationalist communists that personified an entire era. Interwoven within the story is how Vera Kelly found herself as a lone spy observing a dangerous coup.  An utterly compelling read that is hard to put down. Continue reading “Women Spy Writers!”

Beyond “Bad Girls” – Great Antiheroines of Literature

Lisbeth SalanderGone Girl‘s Amy Elliott-Dunne; Rachel Watson from The Girl on the Train: these are just a few of the latest in a long line of compelling antiheroines stretching back to the dawn of literature. Here are some of our favorites from the past few millennia.

For all their democratic ideals, the Ancient Athenians had a terror of strong women. Witness Medea. Was Jason madly in love with her, or was it just her Golden Fleece? He learns the hard way not to leave a witch in the lurch. For two strikingly different modern takes, try Crista Wolf’s Medea: A Modern Retelling or David Vann’s Bright Air Black. And then there’s  Clytemnestra. Aeschylus’ play may be called Agamemnon, but it is his bloodthirsty wife-cum-widow who steals the show. To be fair, her husband sacrificed their daughter, and then went away for a decade; it was never going to be a warm homecoming. Colm Tóibín provides a haunting, poetic retelling in The House of Names. Continue reading “Beyond “Bad Girls” – Great Antiheroines of Literature”

They see dead people…sort of

Here are two paranormal series written on a theme, a woman who can see how and when people die, one in hindsight and other as foresight. The Harper Connelly Series is the invention of Charlaine Harris who is known for several series including Sookie Stackhouse in the Southern Vampire Mysteries. The other by Chuck Wendig is the Blackbirds Series. Wendig is also a screenwriter, blogger and game designer. Both are excellent writers, but with very different writing styles.

Harper Connelly has it rough. After being struck by lightning at the age of 15 she can find missing people’s remains. She can feel the dead and find their final resting place, and then experiences their death. The drawback is if it is murder Continue reading “They see dead people…sort of”