I've lived in Northwest Washington State for more than 30 years but grew up in rural Mason County, Michigan. I longed to be a writer but as a child believed it was impossible since I didn't live anywhere near New York City. I left Michigan and headed west after college, positive I was destined to write about the wider, more exotic, world. But curiously, nearly all my books and short stories either have a connection to, or are set in, Michigan.
My first books: Glom Gloom, The Lone Sentinel, and My Cousin the Poodle, (Atheneum) were written for my two children. Since then, I've written twelve books in the Miss Zukas (Avon/Harper) mystery series, and three books in the Ruby Crane (Dell) mystery series.
I've drawn heavily on my Lithuanian heritage and my love for the oddities of the Library world for the Miss Zukas series. Forgery, always an interest since I forged my first absence excuse in fourth grade, figures heavily in the Ruby Crane series.
I now live in Washington State.
Promotional Info - Jo Dereske
Jo Dereske is the author of seventeen published books: two mystery series and three books for young people. Farewell, Miss Zukas, published in June, 2011 by June Creek Books is the twelfth and final Miss Zukas mystery, set in the fictional town of Bellehaven, Washington. In Farewell, Miss Zukas, cChief of Police Wayne Gallant finally pops the question, only to be interrupted by robbery and murder involving Helma's mother and aunt. At the center of this crime: Aunt Ems mysterious Lithuanian carving.
The New York Times called the Miss Zukas series, "a loving sendup of the stereotype of the prim and proper librarian." The Toronto Sun said, "You're in for a good time."
Her books have been on numerous bestseller lists, including BookSense, Amazon and several individual bookstores. Bookmarked to Die spent two months as the number one paperback on the nationwide Independent Mystery Booksellers Association' bestseller list. Catalogue of Death also received the number one honor.
Jo has taught in the University of Washington Creative Writing program, and spoken at the Library of Congress in Washington, DC as part of the Judith Austin Memorial Lecture series. She also teaches writing workshops and speaks at events.
Jo lives near Bellingham, Washington and her website is www.jodereske.com