Over 50 novels in publication, over 25 million copies sold, winner of the Edgar Award, one of the New York Times “100 masters of crime,” and an international bestselling author.
This long list of accomplishments belong to none other than the latest author set to appear as part of the Newport Beach Public Library’s “Library Live” program on June 11: Anne Perry.
Born in a suburb of London, Perry was a sickly child. Diagnosed with tuberculosis at a young age, she was sent to live in the Bahamas in hopes that the warmer climate would aid in her recovery.
During the course of the next several years, this, and subsequent health concerns, as well as moving from the Bahamas, to South Africa, to New Zealand, would cause Perry to miss quite a lot of school. By the age of thirteen, she was no longer able to attend school at all, and thus, ended her formal education.
Luckily for Perry, her mother had taught her, in her youngest years, how to read and write – skills that would help her to be able to stay on track academically with her peers, and would come to serve her incredibly well as she set out to prove herself as a writer.
As is the case with many writers, success didn’t happen for Perry overnight, and while writing was the only thing that really resonated wither, she resorted to working a series of other jobs, in order to make a living while she waited for that first book to finally break through.
That moment arrived in 1979, when Perry published the first of her Thomas and Charlotte Pitt novels, “The Cater Street Hangman.”
This past March, the 30th book in the series, and her most recent New York Times bestseller, “The Angel Court Affair,” made its debut.
As if publishing nearly a novel a year wasn’t enough of an achievement, in the ensuing years, Perry has also published 20 books in the popular William Monk series, with number 21 set to release later this year, as well 12 books in the Christmas series, about a dozen other novels, and some short stories to boot. Which begs the question: Does this woman ever sleep?
Best known for her two most prolific series, the Pitt and Monk stories, Perry’s writing takes place almost entirely in Victorian-era England. Her historical detective mysteries occupy the mid-1800s if you are reading about William Monk, and his cohort, nurse Hester Latterly, and the period just before the dawn of the 20th century, if you are indulging in one of the Thomas and Charlotte Pitt novels.
Perry has said that she enjoys to continue visiting this time period in her writing, because in addition to having fallen in love with the characters she has created, she feels that, “it is in a way the end of history and the beginning of the modern world, a time in Europe of unprecedented challenge and change, a test of who we are, and who we wish to be.”
In addition to the time-period mysteries that are now synonymous with her name, and after much urging from her fan base, late last year, Perry also released an instructional DVD, “Put Your Heart on the Page,” sharing with other writers the wisdom she has accumulated over the course of her incredibly successful career.
Now, she will share that wisdom, along with the creative inspiration behind her own works, as she discusses her new novel during her visit to the Newport Beach Public Library.
Perry will appear at the Central Library Branch, on Thursday, June 11. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., and the evening will begin at 7 p.m. with a lecture and Q&A.
Subsequent to the lecture, there will be a book sale and signing session, along with a coffee reception. Tickets are $25 each, or $20 for NBPL Foundation members.
For more information, or to purchase tickets, please visit nbplfoundation.org, or call (949) 548-2411.
Edie Crabtree is an avid reader and the mother of three active boys. She can be reached at [email protected].