About Me

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Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada
I am a lawyer in Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada who enjoys reading, especially mysteries. Since 2000 I have been writing personal book reviews. This blog includes my reviews, information on and interviews with authors and descriptions of mystery bookstores I have visited. I strive to review all Saskatchewan mysteries. Other Canadian mysteries are listed under the Rest of Canada. As a lawyer I am always interested in legal mysteries. I have a separate page for legal mysteries. Occasionally my reviews of legal mysteries comment on the legal reality of the mystery. You can follow the progression of my favourite authors with up to 15 reviews. Each year I select my favourites in "Bill's Best of ----". As well as current reviews I am posting reviews from 2000 to 2011. Below my most recent couple of posts are the posts of Saskatchewan mysteries I have reviewed alphabetically by author. If you only want a sentence or two description of the book and my recommendation when deciding whether to read the book look at the bold portion of the review. If you would like to email me the link to my email is on the profile page.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Q & A with Gail Bowen on The Gifted

In my last post I put up a review of The Gifted by Gail Bowen. It is the 14th book in the Joanne Kilbourn, now Kilbourn Shreeve, series. After finishing the book I was in contact with Gail and I appreciate her answering some questions. I am in plain text and Gail is in bold. It was exciting to learn abit about the next book in the series.

I recently finished The Gifted. My review, to be posted next week, follows this message.

The book lifted my spirits during a difficult week.

Hello again, Bill.
Here are the answers to your questions. 

If you have time to answer a few questions I would appreciate your thoughts on the following:

1.) In the book Zack thinks about running for mayor. When I look at the relationship of Joanne and Zack it has always seemed to me that she is the more overtly political partner with a long history of involvement in politics. I think Joanne would have been an excellent candidate for mayor. Did you consider making her the mayoral candidate? If you did, what led you to Zack being the chosen one for the candidacy?
I notice often that characteristics of mine show up in Joanne. I'm very political, but I am most comfortable working behind the scenes. In 12 Rose Street Joanne manages Zack's campaign. Policy and planning are the areas of politics she enjoys, and she's good at the work. Unlike Zack, Joanne doesn't enjoy the spotlight and she find being 'on' 24/7 wearying. In this case, Joanne did what I would be most comfortable doing: staying on the sidelines and calling the shots.

2.) Having visited with you I know you love art, especially contemporary paintings. Have you always had a passion for art?
The Fafard sculpture referred to by Gail
My passion for art is lifelong. I've always loved going to galleries and of course, now that we have some work that we like I love looking at it. Many of the pieces of art Joanne and Zack have are pieces I lust after. In 12 Rose Street, Zack gives Joanne a Joe Fafard sculpture of the painter Ernest Linder (an old friend of Joanne's and of mine). I would crawl the full length of Albert Street to own that piece!

3.) Taylor is a talented artist the daughter and granddaughter of equally skilled artists. Zack and Joanne are doing the best they can to provide a prodigy with a normal upbringing. What inspired you to give Taylor the gift and burden of greatness?

Way back in Murder at the Mendel, the character of Sally emerged full-blown for me. Even her name was there from the beginning. There was a favourable long review in a Catholic newspaper, the Chelsea Journal, that said "Sally Love knew everything about sex and nothing about love." That stuck with me. When I thought about how Joanne would try to raise her incredibly gifted adopted daughter that line was never far away from my thoughts.
4.) You set the book at the time of the 101st Grey Cup being held in Regina next month. Will you and Ted be at the real life CFL championship game this November?

No such luck! But if you would like lunch beforehand, we're here. Let me know.

Thank you for considering my questions.

Best wishes.

Again my very best to all under your roof from all under ours.


  1. Bill - Thanks for sharing this interview. I find it so interesting to see how aspects of Gail Bowen herself are woven into her novels (her love of art, for instance, and her fascination with politics). And it's nice to know something about what's coming up.

  2. Bill, thanks for the interview with Gail Bowen. I like the idea of reviewing a book and then interviewing its author.

  3. A lovely interview, Bill. Gail seems very nice and down to earth.

  4. Margot: Thanks for the comment. If you meet Gail you will know where Joanne orginated.

  5. Prashant: Thanks for the kind words. When I have some questions in mind I like to ask them of an author right after reading a book.

  6. TracyK: Thanks for the comment. I hope you get a chance to meet Gail. You would enjoy talking with her. My wife says Gail can visit with anyone.