Kick-ass women in history

Josephine Baker, A’isha bint Abi Bakr, and other inspirations As we wrap up Women’s History Month, I reflect on the difference the heroines in my novels have made in the world they lived in and today, including in my own life. From A’isha bint Abi Bakr, the youngest wife of the Prophet Muhammad and protagonist […]

Why I Wrote about Josephine Baker

My novels tell the lives of extraordinary women in history who overcame formidable obstacles to achieve their highest potential—which, for me, always involves making a positive difference in the world. I delve into these women’s lives in hopes of inspiring others and myself. And yet when I first considered writing about Josephine Baker, the African-American […]

Serious fiction? Waste of time? Who cares?

Eleanor Catton’s historical fiction book THE LUMINARIES is a rollicking, tongue-in-cheek parody of the overblown, overwritten, melodramatic 19th-century novel and a page-turning murder mystery, to boot. Like the gold it’s written about, the book dazzles the reader with a head-spinning array of characters and a running commentary on the darker aspects of humanity—as you’d expect. […]

French food to dine for

One thing about the French: they know how to eat. Not only do they take their time at meals, lingering over each course, drinking water, sipping wine, and finishing with espresso, but the ingredients are fresh and local and the preparation superb. Even the most mundane dish–French fries, or “frites,” as they’re called in France–taste better. […]

Writers’ Night in Paris!

For an American writer, it’s a dream come true: being invited to speak and read in Paris. On Friday, July 10, 2015, I was honored to join the very talentedauthors Reine Arcache Melvin and Heather Stimmler-Hall in a lively Q&A discussion with 40 Parisians about the writer’s life, followed by readings from our works, in the […]