Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Unseemly Pursuits: Interview with K.B. Owen

I'm so excited to host K.B. Owen! She graciously agreed to be my guest, and we're discussing her second book, Unseemly Pursuits, available now. 

Let's get to it!

1. Unseemly Pursuits is the second book in the Concordia Wells Mystery series. Set in Hartford, CT in the late 19th century, Concordia is still a professor at the university, but she has a new mystery to solve—one that determines the fate of her best friend. Did you experience any second book challenges or was it pure fun to return to the characters?

Ah, I see you’ve been there, right? It was a little of both. What a luxury it was to return to well-established characters (although a few die off or are arrested – an occupational hazard of the mystery genre) and a setting it took me a long time to build.  On the other hand, I knew I didn’t want to spend 5 years writing the second one, I didn’t want to be formulaic, and my standards were higher.

2. What new skills does the unique and clever Concordia rely on to solve this mystery?

As before, Concordia’s knowledge of literary classics will help her understand hidden aspects of human nature. This novel features her long-dead father (and his past) quite prominently. Concordia and her father liked to do a lot of brain-puzzlers together when she was a child, and she’ll need to turn to that ability again in order to discover a secret. Her physical bravery will serve her well in the story, too, as she finds herself in quite a desperate circumstance.

3. What’s next for Concordia Wells?

I’m in the second draft of a mystery tentatively titled Unseemly Secrets.  In the process of finding a missing boy to whom she’s grown close, Concordia stumbles upon the presence of a powerful secret society that will do anything to protect its own. Their reach is so great that Concordia doesn’t know whom to trust, so she turns to an old ally for help. In Concordia’s love life, the romance gets cranked up a few notches, which always makes things interesting!  

Wow, K.B., it sounds like you're busy,  busy! I love that you're raising your standards with each book--I'm the same way. And it's funny you mention brain-puzzlers. My daughter and I used to do logic puzzles. They're a lot of fun! Best wishes to you!!

Unseemly Pursuits ~

cover art by Melinda VanLone
A deadly secret that won’t stay buried…

It is the fall of 1896, and Miss Concordia Wells is hip-deep in the usual tumult of a lady professor’s life: classes, clubs, student pranks, and the unending drama generated by the girls she lives with on campus.  Complicating this normality is the new Lady Principal, whom the students have nicknamed “the Ogre.”  The woman seems bent on making Concordia’s life miserable.
And then there’s the exotic spirit medium, Madame Durand, who has befriended Concordia’s mother and has started a “Spirit Club” on campus.  Madame’s prognostications of doom are at first only mildly irritating – until events take a sobering turn.  An ancient Egyptian amulet donated to the college mysteriously disappears, the donor is found murdered, and his daughter – Concordia’s best friend – confesses to killing him.
Desperate for answers, Concordia unravels a 20-year-old secret, closely guarded by men now dead.  But such secrets can be dangerous for the daughters left behind, including Concordia herself.  Can she make sense of the mystery that has bound together their fates, before it’s too late?
K.B. Owen taught college English for nearly two decades at universities in Connecticut and Washington, DC, and holds a doctorate in 19th century British literature. A mystery lover ever since she can remember, she drew upon her teaching experiences in creating her amateur sleuth, Professor Concordia Wells. Unlike the fictional Miss Wells, K.B. did not have to conduct lectures in a bustle and full skirts.  Thankfully.  No doubt, many folks are grateful for that little fact.  :D
Dangerous and Unseemlythe first book of the Concordia Wells mystery series, was released in early 2013.  Available on KindleNookKoboSmashwords, and Scribd.  Also available in paperback.
Unseemly Pursuitsthe second book in the series, was just released in December 2013. Available on KindlepaperbackNookKoboSmashwords, and iTunes.
Thanks so much for being my guest today!
I get romantic about the past, but I'll be the first to admit I love modern conveniences. 
What is one thing about today you wouldn't want to live without?
Have a wonderful day!


  1. Jill: I would not like to live without central heat. I am a cold natured person and like the warmth of our house, Although, my Christmas present this past December was an electric space heater.

    1. I agree! Our central heat went out (along with the rest of the electricity) for two days during a snow storm. So coooolddd... ;)

  2. Whoo hoo! Secret societies! Can't wait for Unseemly Secrets!

  3. Oooh! I love a good mystery. I haven't read the first one, will I need to to understand these characters, or is this something I can still jump in to?

  4. Susan, you can totally jump in to book #2, without having read the first. Hope you enjoy it! :)

  5. What a great way to describe the benefits and challenges of writing a series, K.B. I've read Unseemly Pursuits, folks, and it will have you sitting on the edge of your Victorian-style, velvet-upholstered chair.

    1. LOL, Kassandra, thanks so much for the kind words! It's always thrilling to hear from someone who has enjoyed the book, and I really appreciate your fab support!

  6. I love a good mystery--I grew up on mysteries (anyone remember Trixie Belden?) Your series sounds full of delightful twists and turns, K.B.! Annnd- what an impressive bio! My educator son would love you-- he adores British literature! When he went to England several years ago with his Papa and Mimi, he always said he wanted to return. Loves the culture, the history, everything! (He feels he was born in the wrong era.) haha

    What's one thing I couldn't do without? Probably electricity. I was going to say water, but out where we live, without electricity our well pump wouldn't work!

    Have a great day, Jill and K.B.! Hope you're on the mend, Jill! (((HUGS)))

    1. Cynthia, thanks! (sorry for the late reply). Your son sounds like he's one of my kind, LOL. I envy him the chance to visit England. That's something I've always wanted to do!


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