About the Author
Dean James is the Agatha Award-winning author of several works of mystery nonfiction as well as two mystery series.
Ransom Notes Interview with Dean James
Ransom Notes: What made you decide to use an American main character in a classic English village setting?
Dean James: The main reason I used the English setting is because I really wanted to write the type of village "cozy" that I most enjoy reading. My Simon Kirby-Jones books are written as a very affectionate nod to that kind of mystery, with my own quirky sense of humor leavening the mix. I find using an American as the sleuth is helpful. Because he's an outsider, he can look at things with a different eye than someone who has always lived there. Plus, if I make mistakes with vocabulary or setting, I can put it down to Simon's being an American!RN: How do you think Simon's decision to tell Giles that he's a vampire will affect future books? DJ: From the very first, readers have been asking why Simon and Giles have taken so long to sort things out. I didn't want to rush it. For one thing, Simon was burned badly in his relationship with Tristan Lovelace, who made him a vampire. Of course, the more Simon becomes aware of his feelings for Giles, the more he realizes how much he risks losing by telling Giles the truth about himself. As for the impact that truth will have on their relationship in future, we'll just have to see�. RN: What inspired you to have a medieval faire come to Snupperton Mumsley in Baked to Death? DJ: When my editor suggested I try writing a culinary mystery, I thought using medieval food would be a fun twist. From that starting point, I decided to use the medieval faire and the reenactment group. My only experience with anything like this is the Texas Renaissance Festival, an annual event held near Houston. It's a lot of fun. In the beginning, Simon is very skeptical about the whole thing. The more he's around the participants, the more he realizes that while some of them are indeed a bit nuts, the rest have a sincere interest in the Middle Ages. By the end of the book, he's not so quick to dismiss them all as potty, as the English would say. RN: Do you like to hear from readers? DJ: I enjoy hearing from readers very much. They're welcome to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or write to me the old-fashioned way, in care of the publisher.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Taking the pill daily gives vampire Simon Kirby-Jones all the nourishment he needs so he doesn¿t drink human blood, is able to walks in the sunshine and has heightened senses.. The only changes are that he is immortal and is stronger and faster than humans. After he broke up with Professor Tris Lovelace, the vampire that turned him, he moved to Laurel Cottage in the English village of Snupperton Mumsley.................... He is attracted to his assistant Giles but fears disclosing his feelings in case his cherished one turns away in revulsion when Simon tells him he is a vampire. Tris arrives declaring that he wants Simon wants back. When a medieval fair comes to the village, Simon, Tris, and Giles are present in the tent of Luke de Montfort when the host suddenly dies. Tris believes he was poisoned; Simon throws himself into the investigation to stop thinking about Tris who might have caused Luke¿s death because he refuses to succumb to blackmail and change Luke into a vampire. There are other suspects who hated Luke; Simon hopes that one of them and not Tris will turn out to be the killer...................... Dean James has written an upbeat amateur sleuth mystery with a vampire as the hero. Simon has many wonderful qualities and his fear that Giles will turn away from him in horror once he learns the truth about him endears him to the audience. BAKED TO DEATH shows readers what it is like behind the scenes at a medieval fair and how it mimics the real world. Readers will find this charming entertaining and delightful mystery a book to put on the keeper shelf.................
I like the characters and the gay vampire theme. Did not enjoy this one as much as the first two in the series. The plot was a little week. However, I hope more will be written. It is a great idea!