Laini grew up in the hippie mecca of Austin, Texas during the 1970s. It was a wonderful time to be a kid, and her family was solidly middle-class. Her dad was a computer programmer, and her mom was a bookkeeper. Her brother was twelve years older, so as an almost only child, she became a bookworm early on. Her dad read Winnie the Pooh Meets Gopher to her every night until she could follow along on her own, so she could read before she reached first grade.
Her mother had a collection of old 1940s Nancy Drews that she had lent to some cousins, and they were returned when Laini was about eight. From then on, it was all-Nancy-all-the-time until she plowed her way through all the books. She wanted to BE Nancy Drew. Until she realized that there might not be any escape from deadly tarantulas, scary cisterns, and bad guys with guns. This inspired her first book, a Nancy Drew rip-off with hand-drawn illustrations, completed a year later.
She put the writing aside while real life got in the way for a while, obtaining a BA in art history from the University of North Texas, and became a technical writer for her day job. Laini thinks Pop-Tarts are the world’s most perfect food.
Laini grew up in Austin, Texas, and originally wanted to be Nancy Drew. When she realized this meant fighting actual bad guys, her wimpy side took over, and she decided to write mysteries and historical biographies instead. She lives in Alberta, Canada with her husband, their neurotic Great Pyrenees, and a Maine Coon Cat who thinks she’s Paris Hilton. She thinks Pop-Tarts are the world’s most perfect food.
- She lives in central Alberta with her husband of twelve years.
- She has a Bachelor’s Degree in art history.
- She dislikes melon of any kind.
- Her most embarrassing moment was playing Pontius Pilate in the school play, Jesus Christ Superstar, in 8th grade. Making her dramatic exit, she tripped on her Roman sandal and fell flat on her face.
- She didn’t begin writing seriously until she was led back to it by beginning a genealogy of her father’s family.
- She was reading before she hit first grade, and usually finishes a book a week when she has time.
- She loves anything creative– gardening, cooking, drawing, painting, scrapbooking, or re-doing furniture. She jokes that if you stand still long enough, she’ll paint you!
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Love Lies Bleeding
When a hiker near Ithaca stumbles across an old skeleton buried with a rusty buttonhook and a locket full of pictures, Inspector Frank Conley knows he’s looking at a tough case. What he doesn’t expect is having to solve his own aunt’s murder.
In 1916, when high-society debutant Libbie Morgan decided to balance her time between Ithaca’s rich-but-dull golden boy and a heart-poundingly handsome farm boy, she unknowingly launched an ever-widening web of deception and jealousy.
Frank must peel away layers of history as he deals with his own demons and races against time to find the answer before his mother goes to the grave never knowing the truth about her sister. With the help of the town historian and an attractive aspiring writer, can he piece together a seventy-year- old mystery and discover how love ended up bleeding in a shallow grave?
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Laini’s schedule is currently open for electronic or local interviews. Please contact her by email to: lainigiles AT yahoo.com
Contact Laini: lainigiles AT yahoo.com
“The Love Lies Bleeding of the title is a plant which provides a clue to a 70 years old mystery. Make no mistake, Laini Giles has crafted an out-of-the-ordinary police procedural here. I couldn’t tell till right near the end what exactly had happened, but I knew early on the significance of the button hook tossed into the grave with the bloody corpse.
Senior Investigator Frank Conley solves the mystery of the 70 years old skeleton, discovered by a hiker. The puzzle strikes close to home – within his own family – and as he struggles with his own problems he manages to piece together what probably happened all those years ago. ‘Probably’ often has to suffice because most of those concerned are dead.
There is a ticking clock in the background, but it is not as overtly crude as in others of this genre. There’s urgency but it has to be married with the slow moving actions of a small town.
There are a lot of layers in this book, paricularly when it comes to characterization. Nobody is what they seem. LLB has been well crafted and in spite of the laid-back smalltown feel, it is not in the least unsophisticated.
Well done, Ms Giles.”
Perfectly healthy people almost never die suddenly unless something terrible happens to them. Can a 70 year old skeleton provide enough clues to finally solve the mystery of what happened to a privileged young woman who disappeared in 1916?
Imagine discovering human remains while on a long hike. As soon as I read the heartbreaking description of the skeleton that is discovered in the opening scene I couldn’t wait to find out how the victim died and why she came to be buried in a such a lonely place. My curiosity bubbled over when one of the investigators realizes the deceased is related to him. This detail added a sense of urgency to the plot and gave me sympathy for certain decisions Frank makes later on in the course of his investigation that otherwise could be construed as insensitive.
Despite the fact that they never knew one another I noticed striking personality similarities between Libbie and Frank that I wish the author would have explored in greater detail. Both characters are good looking, intelligent, and charming, but they also tend to be self-absorbed and indifferent to the emotional pain they cause others. Frank begins to show signs of self-awareness as the plot progresses, but realizing how much he has in common with his long-dead aunt would have provided an excellent opportunity for further character development.
What I liked most about this novel was how seamlessly the plot jumped between the last few months of Libbie’s life in 1916 and the investigation of what really happened to her 70 years later. Both time periods provide vital clues about Libbie’s fate and even though they both discuss the same events I was always intrigued by the subtle differences between the memories of the witnesses and what actually occurred.
Love Lies Bleeding kept me guessing until the end. This is a great choice for anyone who likes richly detailed historical mysteries set in the beginning of the 20th century.
I found myself immersed in the story of Frank’s Aunt Libbie. The attention to detail was phenomenal with Giles providing vivid images. (I even learned a few things.) This book kept me up until two in the morning as I was determined to finish it and find the answers. It’s a page turner, which good mysteries usually are. Highly recommended.
I was skeptical about the premise: could a decades old murder hold the reader’s interest? Wouldn’t the culprit be deceased at this point? If so, what’s the relevance? Let me assure you, Ms. Giles does just fine getting the reader involved in this mystery. Yes, it is imperative this case be solved – for reasons far beyond criminal justice! A thoroughly enjoyable read with a surprise ending!
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