About Author Karen Keskinen

Karen Keskinen

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Karen Keskinen: Author of the Jaymie Zarlin Mystery Series

When I meet someone new, I ask where they’re from. Then I like to see if I can uncover their passions. These two things explain a lot about a person, don’t you think? Well, turn about is fair play.

I was lucky enough to be born in Salinas, California – that’s Central California, by the way – and grew up around the block from John Steinbeck’s childhood home. Why there? My grandparents, survivors of the 1906 Quake, left San Francisco for the Salinas Valley to take up hotel keeping.

I’ve also lived for lengthy periods of time in beautiful Wellington, New Zealand, and in California’s high, wide and handsome San Joaquin Valley. My now and forever home, the incomparable little city of Santa Barbara, is located in Cen Cal too, in spite of what the maps show. I love this state-of-mine and wouldn’t choose to live anywhere else.

Passions? My work, of course. I’m a writer through and through and nothing else! At the very end, I’ll be tracing letters on a foggy mirror when they hold it up to my mouth.

Like many of you, I love animals, insects, weeds, abandoned houses and gardens, and mysterious overgrown ravines.

I’m passionate about my family, the living and those who have died.

And I’m a passionate advocate for the rights of people struggling with mental disability. Only fear keeps us from honoring their humanity, and thus our own. Only fear, don’t you agree? Fear – the opposite of love.

“Karen Keskinen is an observant, inventive writer, and with BLOOD ORANGE, she’s given us a page-turning mystery of the west… her smart, tough protagonist specializes in tracking down the missing, but finds instead a town’s ugly and tangled secrets.” -Hector Tobar, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and bestselling author of The Barbarian Nurseries

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