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posted: 11/5/2012 2:06 PM

Meet Cozy Chicks and Edgy Broads at Schaumburg library

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Susan Miura
Schaumburg Township District Library

Murder, suspense, love, regrets, quilts, cops and bad guys. All of that and more can be found in the compelling novels of Chicago mystery authors Clare O'Donohue, Libby Fischer-Hellmann and Gail Lukasik. If you'd like to meet these intriguing women and learn more about their books and the art of writing, come to "Cozy Chicks and Edgy Broads" at 7 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 8, in the Rasmussen Room of the Schaumburg Township District Library, 130 S. Roselle Road, Schaumburg. These popular writers will discuss the grief and gratification of writing books ranging from "cozy" to graphically violent.

This special event will be coordinated by Susan Gibberman, head of Reader Services, librarian and author, who says attendees will find these writers fascinating.

"With the variety of mysteries out there, what intrigues an author to write cozies or more nail-biting thrills -- or even both? These authors will give fans and writers an insight to what draws them to their unique style of mystery," Gibberman said.

Let's begin with Clare O'Donahue, who writes both "cozy" and suspense in her "Someday Quilts Mysteries" and "Kate Conway Mysteries." Her latest title, "Cathedral Windows," will be released later this month on Kindle, just in time for the holidays. Readers will be transported to Christmas season in the Hudson Valley, where the quilting ladies of O'Donahue's Someday Quilts series are busy trying to clear the name of a beloved teacher suspected of arson. Earlier this year, O'Donahue released "Life Without Parole," which follows "Missing Persons" in her Kate Conway Mystery Series. In "Life," Kate Conway is dealing with the death of her ex-husband when she's assigned to create a documentary about lifers in a state prison. When she finds herself involved in a murder investigation, Kate must ride a treacherous psychological edge, relying on the minds of death row killers to help her solve the case.

Moving on, let me introduce you to Libby Fisher-Hellmann, whose latest release, "A Bitter Veil," is a gripping literary thriller set against the backdrop of the Iranian Revolution. Anna and Nouri, both studying in Chicago, fall in love despite their very different backgrounds. Beginning their married life together in 1978, they visit Nouri's native Iran, to be embraced by his wealthy family. But with the overthrow of the Shah and the rise of the Islamic Republic, their world is abruptly turned upside down. Random arrests and torture become the norm, women are required to wear hijab, and Anna discovers that she is no longer free to leave the country. As events reach a fevered pitch, Anna realizes that nothing is as she thought, and no one can be trusted not even her husband.

Fisher-Hellmann has written 10 novels and 20 short stories in a variety of genres.

And finally, we meet Gail Lukasik, a former ballerina with the Cleveland Civic Ballet Company with several novels under her tutu. Her newest novel, "The Lost Artist," tells the story of Chicago performance artist Rose Caffrey. Rose is desperate to sell her sister's nineteenth-century farmhouse in southern Illinois, but is haunted by her sister's death from a fall inside the house. When Rose discovers four mysterious murals in an upstairs bedroom, she becomes obsessed with deciphering the murals' meaning. As she uncovers buried secrets with the potential to shatter the very foundation of American history, she finds that beneath the layers of time lurks a truth worth killing for.

Are you ready to start turning pages yet? Come and find out more about the authors, their books, and what takes them from idea to printed word. Some of the author's books will be available for purchase and signing. Please register for this free program by calling (847) 923-3347.

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