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Nicola Griffith is a native of Yorkshire, England, where she earned her beer money teaching women's self-defense, fronting a band, and arm-wrestling in bars, before discovering writing and moving to the United States. Her immigration case was a fight and ended up making new law: the State Department declared it to be "in the National Interest" for her to live and work in this country. This didn't thrill the more conservative powerbrokers, and she ended up on the front page of The Wall Street Journal, where her case was used as an example of the country's declining moral standards. In 1993 a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis slowed her down a bit, and she concentrated on writing: Ammonite (1993), Slow River (1995), The Blue Place (1998), Stay (2002), Always (2007), and Hild (2013). Griffith is the co-editor of the Bending the Landscape series of original short fiction. Her multimedia memoir, And Now We Are Going to Have a Party: Liner Notes to a Writer's Early Life, is a limited collector's edition. Her essays and short fiction have appeared in an assortment of academic texts and a variety of journals, including Nature, New Scientist, Los Angeles Review of Books, and Out. She's won the Washington State Book Award, the Tiptree, Nebula, the World Fantasy Award, the Premio Italia, and the Lambda Literary Award (six times), among many others. Now a dual U.S./U.K. citizen, Nicola Griffith is married to writer Kelley Eskridge. They live in Seattle, where Griffith is currently lost in the seventh century, emerging occasionally to drink just the right amount of beer and take enormous delight in everything. From the Hardcover edition.
The careful layering of mystery and suspense in Griffith's latest Aud Torvingen thriller (after The Blue Place and Stay) gives the reader time to enter Aud's mind as she works through major changes in her life. Aud has come to Seattle to meet her mother's new husband and look into problems with the properties she inherited from her father. A film production company is leasing one of her warehouses, and after Aud is a victim of the various mishaps plaguing the group, she decides to take action. Now Aud's interest is personal-in more ways then one, since the female caterer working the set has caught her eye. Alternating chapters in current time with scenes from a self-defense class for women taught by Aud, Griffith controls the pacing with great style and nuance. Though Always is not a heart-pounding thriller, it is a stellar example of mood and tone working to engage the reader one page at a time. Highly recommended for popular fiction collections.-Jane Jorgenson, Madison P.L., WI Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.
"Dennis Lehane, Andrew Vachss and James Lee Burke have each taken crime fiction to a new level and each has expanded the possibilities of the genre. Nicola Griffith is the next name on a very short list." -The News Tribune "Griffith's prose is vivid and sure-footed, and Aud is still a compelling figure...Always is the most accomplished Torvingen book yet." -The Seattle Times "Yowza!...Fist-slamming physicality is beautifully balanced with raised emotional stakes as Griffith dares to take her lethally forceful heroine to a new level." -Booklist (starred review) "Aud's story gets better with each book...the perfect noir hero." -*Seattle Weekly
At the start of Griffith's intense third thriller to star Aud Torvingen (after The Blue Place and Stay), the stylish half-American, half-Norwegian lesbian ex-cop and self-defense teacher is still grieving over the shooting death of her lover, Julia, a year earlier. Also distraught over a recent violent incident involving one of her self-defense students, Aud welcomes the chance to leave Atlanta, accompanied by her friend, Matthew Dornan, to visit her ambassador mother, Else, in Seattle. There sabotage of a TV pilot in production that's been receiving OSHA and EPA complaints disrupts their vacation. Adding romantic tension is Victoria "Kick" Kuiper, a caterer and former stuntwoman, to whom both Aud and Matthew are attracted. Aud's ace investigation reveals political and environmental chicanery, but more importantly, leads to a surprising lesson about love. Lucid prose and great self-defense lessons are a plus. (May) Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.