Lyndsay Faye biography

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Lyndsay Faye
Photo: Gabriel Lehner

Lyndsay Faye

Lyndsay Faye Biography

Lyndsay Faye moved to Manhattan in 2005 to audition as a professional actress; her schedule opened up when her day-job restaurant was knocked down with bulldozers. Her first novel Dust and Shadow: an Account of the Ripper Killings by Dr. John H. Watson is a tribute to the aloof genius and his good-hearted friend whose exploits she has loved since childhood. After writing fifteen additional short stories over the next six years, she collected them in the critically acclaimed The Whole Art of Detection: Lost Mysteries of Sherlock Holmes.

Faye's fascination with the origins of the New York City Police Department led to her first Best Novel Edgar Award nomination; The Gods of Gotham, Seven for a Secret, and The Fatal Flame follow ex-bartender Timothy Wilde as he navigates the rapids of his turbulent city, learning police work in a riotous pre-Civil War political landscape. Following this trilogy, Faye turned to what she calls "satirical romance." Her Edgar-nominated Jane Steele re-imagines Jane Eyre as a gutsy, heroic serial killer who battles for justice with methods inspired by Darkly Dreaming Dexter. Her novel The Paragon Hotel follows "Nobody" Alice James as she flees the Harlem Mafia only to wind up in Ku Klux Klan-plagued Portland, Oregon in 1921.

Aside from the Edgar, Faye was nominated for a Dilys Winn Award, was featured in Best American Mystery Stories 2010, and is honored to have been selected by the American Library Association's RUSA Reader's List for Best Historical. She is an international bestseller and has been translated into 14 languages. She offers professional editorial and query letter services (contact her via this website), does a great deal of volunteer mentoring, and often creates workshops for libraries. In 2016, she was thrilled to implement the National Mentorship Program at Mystery Writers of America, and continues to serve as its coordinator.

Born in Northern California and raised in the Pacific Northwest, Lyndsay migrated back to "the Peninsula" and graduated from Notre Dame de Namur University with a dual degree in English and Performance. She worked as a professional actress throughout the Bay Area for several years, nearly always in a corset, and if not a corset then--at the least--heels and lined stockings. She has a very high pop belt and is a soprano, supposing that interests you.

Lyndsay lives in Ridgewood, Queens. During the few hours a day Lyndsay isn't writing or editing, she is most often cooking, cooing at her houseplants, nuzzling her cat (Prufrock), or sifting through thrift store racks for designer clothing. She is a very proud member of Actor's Equity Association, the Adventuresses of Sherlock Holmes, the Baker Street Babes, the Baker Street Irregulars, and Mystery Writers of America. She is hard at work on her next novel...always.

Lyndsay Faye's website

This bio was last updated on 07/30/2021. In a perfect world, we would like to keep all of BookBrowse's biographies up to date, but with many thousands of lives to keep track of it's simply impossible to do. So, if the date of this bio is not recent, you may wish to do an internet search for a more current source, such as the author's website or social media presence. If you are the author or publisher and would like us to update this biography, send the complete text and we will replace the old with the new.

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Interview

Lyndsay Faye discusses her latest book, Gods of Gotham, and the difficulties in creating such a vivid description of New York in 1845.

I think the first question is about the challenge you gave yourself with Gods of Gotham. Re-creating New York City circa 1845. The question I ask is, Why then? But what I am really asking is why you took the difficult path. Why not New York in 1945, or even now? I read this book and from the writer's standpoint, kept asking myself, Why did she take this path? Wow!
Ha! Yes, absolutely - in a certain sense, the project was very difficult. My hubris in trying to write a novel set in 1845 New York was about the fact that I specifically wanted to do day one, cop one of the NYPD. Origin stories are very compelling. And when you think about how renowned the world over the NYPD is today, for reasons both positive and negative but all of them highly dramatic, you find yourself wondering what such an organization looked like at inception. It's almost mythical, the fame they've achieved and the advances they've made, and I was deeply curious to know how they started out. I wanted to take a historical event and turn it into a legend, in the sense of making something iconic and resonant, and when I discovered that the NYPD was founded in 1845, my time period chose itself.

In another sense, I should add that I was once on a library panel ...

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Books by this Author

Books by Lyndsay Faye at BookBrowse
Observations by Gaslight jacket The King of Infinite Space jacket The Paragon Hotel jacket The Fatal Flame jacket
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Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Lyndsay Faye but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

  • Oral Lee Brown

    Oral Lee Brown

    Oral Lee Brown was selected as one of Glamour magazine's "Women of the Year" in 2002, and appeared on the Today show as part of its "People Who Make a Difference" series. She has also been a guest on The Oprah Winfrey Show, ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Paragon Hotel

    Try:
    The Promise
    by Oral Lee Brown

  • Mary Costello

    Mary Costello

    Mary Costello grew up in Galway and now lives in Dublin. Her 2012 short-story collection, The China Factory, was nominated for the Guardian First Book Award and short-listed for an Irish Book Award. Her stories have been ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Gods of Gotham

    Try:
    Academy Street
    by Mary Costello

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