Kathy: A literary conference is featured in the fourth Lila Maclean Academic Mystery. Have you ever attended any literary conferences?
CK: As a college professor, I’ve had the opportunity (or requirement, depending on how you look at it) to attend quite a few, including academic conferences, writing conferences, and mystery conferences. They’re always fascinating and educational—and I enjoy meeting new people.
Kathy: Lila hopes she'll do well on a panel presentation. Have you ever been part of a panel?
CK: Yes, I love them. The conversations sparked by interactions among the audience members and presenters can be so compelling!
Kathy: Was there a specific inspiration for The Subject of Malice?
CK: It was more a roll-up-your-sleeves-and-figure-it-out type of thing than a lightning bolt situation. From the first sketching-out of the series, I’d planned to send Lila to a conference at some point, but once I’d decided that the fourth novel would be “the conference book,” I had to consider where she was in her journey as a character and develop the issues that made the most sense, accordingly. Since conferences tend to have a great deal of activity happening on multiple levels in a short span of time, there were, happily, opportunities for various relevant conflicts.
Kathy: Are you able to share any future plans for Lila?
CK: She will definitely be involved in more mysteries!
Kathy: Will you share any other upcoming books?
CK: Currently, I’m writing the next Lila book in the series. I can’t say more because some of what happens at the end of The Subject of Malice is actually a catalyst for the fifth book...
The Subject of Malice (A Lila Maclean Academic Mystery) by Cynthia Kuhn
About the Book
Cozy Mystery 4th in Series
Henery Press (July 23, 2019)
Hardcover: 244 pages Paperback: 244 pages
The organizers have rustled up plenty of surprises for the literary conference at Tattered Star Ranch. But the murder of an influential scholar wasn’t on the program—someone has clearly taken the theme of Malice in the Mountains to heart. This shocking crime is only the beginning: Other dangers and deceptions are soon revealed.
English professor Lila Maclean has a full agenda: She must convince a press to publish her book (possibly), ace her panel presentations (hopefully), and deal with her nemesis (regrettably).
However, when Detective Lex Archer requests Lila’s academic expertise, she agrees to consult on the case. While her contributions earn high marks from her partner, it could be too late; the killer is already taking aim at the next subject.
As Lila races to keep her colleagues alive, publish or perish takes on new meaning.
About the Author
Cynthia Kuhn writes the Lila Maclean Academic Mysteries: The Semester of Our Discontent, The Art of Vanishing, The Spirit in Question, and The Subject of Malice. Honors include an Agatha Award for best first novel and Lefty Award nominations for best humorous mystery. She blogs with Chicks on the Case and is a member of Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, and International Thriller Writers. For more information, please visit cynthiakuhn.net.
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