Lori Rader-Day’s debut mystery, The Black Hour, won the 2015 Anthony Award for Best First Novel and was a finalist for the 2015 Mary Higgins Clark Award. Her second novel, Little Pretty Things, won the 2016 Mary Higgins Clark Award and was a nominee for the Anthony Award for Best Paperback Original. Little Pretty Things was named a 2015 “most arresting crime novel” by Kirkus Reviews and one of the top ten crime novels of the year by Booklist. Her third novel, The Day I Died, won the 2018 Anthony Award for Best Paperback Original and was a nominee for the Mary Higgins Clark Award, the Thriller Award, and the Barry Award. She lives in Chicago, where she is co-chair of the mystery readers’ conference Murder and Mayhem in Chicago and the national vice-president of Sisters in Crime.
The longer version: I’m the author of the Anthony Award-winning mysteries The Black Hour and The Day I Died and the Mary Higgins Clark Award-winning mystery Little Pretty Things. My latest novel, Under a Dark Sky (Harper Collins William Morrow, 2018) was published in August of 2018. My work has also been nominated for the Thriller, Macavity, and Barry awards.
My fiction has been previously published in Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, TimeOut Chicago, Crab Orchard Review, Freight Stories, and in the anthologies Dia de los Muertos (Elektrik Milkbath Press) and Unloaded 2 (Down and Out Books), and others. Bestselling author Jodi Picoult chose my story as the grand prize winner of Good Housekeeping’s first fiction contest.
Originally from central Indiana, I grew up frequenting the local libraries, reading all the Beverly Cleary, Judy Blume, and Lois Duncan I could get my hands on. Then I discovered Agatha Christie and Mary Higgins Clark. I may have wandered off the mystery writer path a few times, but I think we all knew I would get back there eventually.
I studied journalism at Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana, but eventually gave in to my dream and studied creative writing at Roosevelt University in Chicago.
Now a resident of Chicago more than fifteen years, I have a favorite deep dish pizza (Lou Malnati’s) and I’m active in the area’s crime writing community. I’m also the current national vice-president of Sisters in Crime, becoming national president in (gulp) October 2019. I’m also a proud member of Mystery Writers of America and International Thriller Writers. I am co-chair with publicist Dana Kaye of Murder and Mayhem in Chicago, a one-day mystery readers’ conference.
I’m represented by Sharon Bowers of Folio Literary Management.