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Four Eastside authors recommend books for your summer reading list | The Scene

Stella Cameron - Kirsten Phillippe, courtesy of Stella Cameron
Stella Cameron
— image credit: Kirsten Phillippe, courtesy of Stella Cameron

Summer is the perfect season for reading, whether you’re on vacation or lounging in the backyard. But with so many books, where do you start?

Scene caught up with four Eastside authors to find out what’s on their summer reading list — and what book is fresh out of their word processors.

Stella Cameron

Kirkland resident and New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Stella Cameron has over 14 million copies of her books in print. She writes in several genres: mystery, contemporary romance, paranormal, historical romance and romantic suspense.

“At the top of my reading list (already in progress) is ‘The Silkworm’ by Robert Galbraith,” Cameron tells us. Next up, she adds, is “Waiting for Wednesday” by Nicci French.

Cameron is now turning her own pen to mysteries

“This writing business is only for the foolish or the addicted — or both,” Cameron says. “I’m embarking on the British mystery career I’ve wanted for far too long.”

She recently sold the initial two books in the Alex Duggins series to British publisher Severn House and the first, “Cold,” comes out in January. That will be followed by “Out Comes the Evil.”

Cameron is known for using her English background to add tension and allure to her stories. The book notes to “Cold” describes it as “atmospheric, deeply character and relationship driven, revealing the power of old secrets to twist the present.”

Keep up with Stella at

Robert DugoniRobert Dugoni

Robert Dugoni, of Bellevue, is another New York Times best-selling author. A lawyer, his six novels feature an attorney, five of them the popular David Sloan character.

With all his writing, he still finds much to read. “I’ve just read ‘(Destiny) of the Republic.’ “a great book about James Garfield’s aborted presidency. Incredible insight into the man, and that period in history.”

Also this summer, Dugoni has read “The Martian” by Andy Weir, “again, another terrific premise and read.”

Dugoni notes that he likes to read many books at once, “so I’m in the middle of Stephen King’s, ‘Under the Dome,’ Robert Crais, ‘Suspect,’ Edward Achorn’s, ‘The Summer of Beer and Whiskey,’ Charles Dicken’s ‘A Tale of Two Cities’ and I have Donna Tartt’s, ‘The Goldfinch’ ready to go.”

As for his own work, Dugoni has just completed the first novel in a new series involving Seattle Homicide Detective Tracy Crosswhite entitled, “My Sister’s Grave,” set to be released in October.

In the book, Crosswhite has spent 20 years questioning the facts surrounding her sister Sarah’s disappearance and the murder trial that followed. She doesn’t believe that Edmund House—a convicted rapist and the man condemned for Sarah’s murder—is the guilty party. As she searches for the real killer, she unearths dark, long-kept secrets that will forever change her relationship to her past and, as the book notes say, “open the door to deadly danger.”

Find Robert at

J.A. JanceJ.A. Jance

Bellevue’s J.A. Jance is a New York Times best-selling author of the Ali Reynolds series, the J.P. Beaumont series, the Joanna Brady series, as well as four interrelated Southwestern thrillers featuring the Walker family.

She got the writing bug while in college, but was frustrated because the professor who taught creative writing at the University of Arizona in those days thought girls “ought to be teachers or nurses” rather than writers.

That obviously wasn’t true.

She started writing in the middle of March of 1982. Her first book wasn’t successful. “For one thing, it was twelve hundred pages long,” she notes on her web page. However, by 1985 she had published the first Detective Beaumont book, “Until Proven Guilty.”

The rest, as they say, is history — and a whole lot of novels.

Jance is currently reading “The Hidden Child” by Camilla Läckberg, a psychological thriller about the chilling struggle of a young woman facing the darkest chapter of Europe’s past.

Jance’s newest book, “Remains of Innocence,” hit the bookstores on July 22. It’s the latest in the Joanna Brady series in which the Cochise County, Ariz., sheriff has to find out how two deaths, 2,500 miles apart, and a mysterious fortune discovered hidden in a reclusive woman’s decrepit home are connected before more people are murdered.

Catch up with Jance at

G. Elizabeth KretchmerG. Elizabeth Kretchmer

Issaquah resident G. Elizabeth Kretchmer's short fiction, essays, and freelance work have appeared in The New York Times, High Desert Journal, Silk Road Review and other publications.

Since she believes in buying local and reading local, "my summer reading list definitely includes some Pacific Northwest authors," she says. "I just devoured Garth Stein’s 'The Art of Racing in the Rain.' I followed that with Khaled Hosseini’s 'And the Mountains Echoed.' Right now I’m reading 'Riding with the Queen' by Seattle author Jennie Shortridge."

Next up, she says, will be "Fourth of July Creek" and "The Snow Child," by Smith Henderson and Eowyn Ivey, respectively.

Kretchmer's debut novel, "The Damnable Legacy of A Minister’s Wife," is just out. In it, a mid-life mountaineer regrets the decision she made 30 years ago to place her daughter for adoption. The biological granddaughter she’s never known desperately searches for a safe and loving home. And a minister’s wife with terminal cancer designs a plan to bring them together.

The book, she notes, is "set largely against Alaska’s unforgiving landscape and narrated from beyond the grave, this story is about love and survival, exploring the importance of attachment, place, and faith and asking the question of how far we should go to achieve our goals and at what cost."

Find out more at



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