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The writer of bestselling whodunits shares her circuitous route from lawyer to teacher to celebrated author.
By Laura Bickle
Photo: Tristan Ostler
Well-behaved. Teachers loved me.
I loved the Shakespearean tragedies — Julius Caesar, Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth (especially Macbeth) and The Merchant of Venice. I didn't like the comedies. And I loved Beowulf.
I loved reading about all the British and French kings and queens, and various revolutions. I read a lot about Russian history. But favourite historical figures? Honestly, there wasn't a lot to admire.
Right now, my real-life hero is Greta Thunberg.
Kate Atkinson, Hilary Mantel, Anthony Trollope — and too many others to name.
I wanted to be a writer when I was about nine. But I didn't really consider it as a career path. A law degree seemed like a good idea. But I never really wanted to be a lawyer.
A photographic memory would have been nice. I don't need that anymore. I wish I had a natural gift for technology, but I don't. I still struggle with it.
Hogwarts for most favourite school ever, and Snape for favourite teacher.
I had a teacher who made history and politics absolutely fascinating. His name was Mr. McWhirter, and his enthusiasm really inspired me.
I was pretty good at basketball, even though I wasn't very tall.
Probably organization and discipline. And how to make friends.
Hanging out in the halls with my best friends from high school. We still get together now.
I was a big reader from a very young age. That love of books is still a big part of my life. Also, learning to type was useful. High school and university opened my mind and stimulated my curiosity.
I loved literature and wanted to share that.