Friday, May 31, 2013

Lay Death at Her Door by Elizabeth Buhmann: Interview


Who is your favorite author? There are so many! And it changes over the years. My all-time favorite? Maybe Edith Wharton. I love Daphne DuMaurier and Ruth Rendell—that’s the kind of book I like to read and write—think Rebecca. Among American mystery writers, Ross MacDonald has been a huge influence—I’m naming classics. Among contemporary mystery writers, I love Sue Grafton and Michael Connelly. I thought SJ Watson’s Before I Go to Sleep was wonderful. And I love Alexander McCall Smith’s No 1 Lady’s Detective Agency series. (I like his Scotland books, too.)

What do you think makes a good story? What I like in a good book: a touch of the exotic, mystery, life-and-death situations (but on a small scale—crime, not war!), a strong voice and setting, and an element of surprise.

What book are you reading now? I’m fascinated by Arnaldur Indridason’s Reykjavik murder mysteries. The setting in Iceland is so refreshing—and the names! Valgurder, Halldora and Tryggvi! And the places—Njardvik, Grafarvogur, Thingvallavatn! Sometimes I just sit there and try saying them out loud! But also the stories are good, and the characters are fascinating.

Who should play your main character in a film?  Charlize Theron, without a doubt. She’s the perfect Kate Cranbrook. My Kate is 42, blond—they’re even both from Africa! Kate was born in Kenya and came to the US as a teenager.

Are you a morning person or a night owl? Oh, definitely a morning person! I’m such a morning person I’m almost a night owl in reverse—always up way before sunrise! As early as 4 sometimes. I wake up full of ideas for what I’m writing, sneak out of bed and take a pot of tea into my office, which is really just a little nook between the pantry and the dining room. My dog gets up with me and goes back to sleep on my feet while I work. I do all my best and most creative work in the early hours before my inner editor and critics wake up.

What do you do to unwind and relax? I love Tai Chi. I’m in my fourth year of study and have a black sash. Right now I’m learning the Chen 38. I have a big yard, with about 50 roses, a vegetable garden, fruit trees, chickens and a greenhouse. And I love to cook, especially with fruit and vegetables I’ve grown.

Twenty years ago, Kate Cranbrook’s eyewitness testimony sent the wrong man to prison for rape and murder.  When new evidence exonerates him, Kate says that in the darkness and confusion, she must have mistaken her attacker’s identity.

She is lying.

Kate would like nothing better than to turn her back on the past, but she is trapped in a stand-off* with the real killer. When a body turns up on her doorstep, she resorts to desperate measures to free herself once and for all from a secret that is ruining her life.
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Elizabeth Buhmann is originally from Virginia, where her
first novel is set, and like her main character, she lived several years abroad while growing up. She graduated magna cum laude from Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts, and has a PhD in Philosophy from the University of Pittsburgh. For twenty years, she worked for the Texas Attorney General as a researcher and writer on criminal justice and crime victim issues.

Elizabeth now lives in Austin, Texas, with her husband, dog, and two chickens. She is an avid gardener, loves murder mysteries, and has a black sash in Tai Chi.

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The Lay Death Tour
May 30 Through June 20
May 30: Review on Mallory Heart Reviews
May 30: Guest Post on A Knife And a Quill
May 31: Review on The Chaotic Reader
May 31: Interview on Laurie’s Thoughts & Reviews
June 1: Guest Post on Literary Musings
June 3: Guest Post on Comfort Books
June 3: Review on Book Wormz
June 6: Interview on The IndieView
June 7: Review on Lissette E. Manning
June 7: Guest Post on My Book And My Coffee
June 8: Review on The Coffee Pot
June 9: Review on It’s Not All Gravy
June 10: Guest Post on To Read or Not to Read
June 10: Guest Post on Melissa’s Eclectic Bookshelf
June 11: Guest Post on Workaday Reads
June 12: Guest Post on Big Al’s Books & Pals
June 12: Interview on It’s Not All Gravy
June 13:  Interview on Omnimystery News
June 15: Review on Teena in Toronto
June 17: Review on BookedinChico
June 18: Review on Big Al’s Books & Pals
June 18: Review on I’m a Voracious Reader
June 19: Interview on KBoards
June 20: Review on Colorimetry

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