Award-winning crime reporter-turned mystery novelist Gwen Florio will read from her debut novel, Montana, on Thursday, January 30.
Florio, who wrote most recently for the Missoulian, describes her new book thus: “Montana features Lola Wicks, who visits the state for some R&R after being downsized from her job as a foreign correspondent. But when she arrives, she finds her best friend murdered amid a controversy involving crooked politics, drug-running and tensions between locals and the nearby Blackfeet reservation.”
The Missoula Independent included Montana on its list of Books We Couldn’t Put Down in 2013. “Montana’s hard-boiled plot and its twists are entertaining enough, but Gwen Florio’s portraits of tough women and old-school journalism are what left a lasting impression for me,” writes reviewer Kate Whittle. “Lola and Mary Alice worked for their college paper and then moved on to rough big-city beats for dailies, packing .45s for protection and drinking Jameson, never regretting their bold career choices. They’re the kind of dogged, intrepid reporters that aspiring journalists hope to become. Fictional portrayals of journalism can be frustrating to read if the details are wrong. But Florio’s real-life experience gives the dramatic plot of Montana a realistic heft.”
Florio is a three-time Pulitzer Prize nominee, whose work has appeared in the Denver Post and Philadelphia Inquirer, among others; her short fiction earned her a Pushcart Prize nomination. Her reading at Elk River Books, 115 E. Callender St. in Livingston, will begin at 7 p.m., followed by a reception and book signing.