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Crime/Scene: Crafting Suspense with Alafair Burke, Kellye Garrett, and Alison Gaylin

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Thursday, 7:00 pm EST March 3, 2022

Online via Zoom & at
The Center for Fiction*

In-person* tickets include a $10 bookstore voucher, redeemable toward the featured event books on the night of the event. All registrants will receive a link to livestream the event.

Please Note: Because of technical difficulties, we will, unfortunately, not be able to livestream our usual quality video. We will provide a high quality recording 1 day after the event, which we will email directly to livestream registrants.

In addition, we will also be showing a much lower quality livestream over the same Zoom Webinar link, concurrently with the event, which you are welcome to join.

Three masters of suspense—Alafair Burke (The Better Sister), Kellye Garrett (Hollywood Homicide), and Alison Gaylin (If I Die Tonight)—join The Center for Fiction for a discussion of the craft of the thriller and their highly celebrated, twisting and timely mysteries. In Burke’s Find Me, the disappearance of a young woman leaves her best friend reeling and an NYPD homicide detective digging into her own past. In Garrett’s Like a Sister, no one bats an eye when a Black reality TV star is found dead—except her estranged half-sister, whose refusal to believe the official story leads her on a dangerous search for the truth. Gaylin’s The Collective plumbs the dark side of justice and the depths of diabolical revenge in the story of a grieving mother, who, obsessed with the privileged young man she believes to be responsible for her daughter’s death, is drawn into a vengeful, secret “Collective” of women. Bestselling crime fiction writer Jonathan Santlofer (The Last Mona Lisa) will moderate.

*Proof of vaccination is required to attend this event in person. Mask wearing is also required throughout the building. Accepted vaccination proofs include:

  • CDC vaccination card
  • Excelsior pass
  • a record of vaccination from the healthcare provider who administered your vaccine

If you remain unvaccinated because of a disability or sincerely held religious belief, please contact us at [email protected] for assistance or to request a reasonable accommodation.


In Conversation

  • Alafair Burke cr Nina Subin - Eliana Cohen-Orth

    Alafair Burke

    Alafair Burke

    Alafair Burke is a New York Times bestselling author whose most recent novels include The Better Sister, The Wife, optioned for a feature film by Amazon, and The Ex, which was nominated for the Edgar Award for best novel. She is also the co-author of the bestselling Under Suspicion series with Mary Higgins Clark. She currently serves as the President of Mystery Writers of America and is the first woman of color to be elected to that position. A former prosecutor, she now teaches criminal law and lives in Manhattan and East Hampton. For more about Alafair Burke, visit

    Photo Credit: Nina Subin

  • Author Kellye Garrett

    Kellye Garrett

    Kellye Garrett

    Kellye Garrett is the author of the upcoming suspense novel Like A Sister (Mulholland Books) and the acclaimed Detective by Day lightweight mysteries. The first, Hollywood Homicide, won the Anthony, Agatha, Lefty, and IPPY for best first novel. It’s also one of BookBub’s “Top 100 Crime Novels of All Time.” The second, Hollywood Ending, was featured on the Today show’s Best Summer Reads of 2019 and was nominated for both Anthony and Lefty awards. She serves on Sisters in Crime’s national board and is a co-founder of Crime Writers of Color. Learn more at

    Photo Credit: Carucha L. Meuse

  • USA Today and international bestselling author Alison Gaylin has won the Edgar and Shamus awards. Her work has been published in the US, UK, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Japan, Germany, Romania and Denmark, and she has been nominated for numerous awards, including the Macavity, Anthony, ITW Thriller and Strand Book Award. In addition to her novels, she has published many short stories and collaborated with Megan Abbott on the graphic novel Normandy Gold (Titan/Hard Case Crime, 2018). Her twelfth and latest book, The Collective, has been optioned by Yellow Bird UK (the Millennium trilogy, Young Wallander) for development as a TV series.

    Photo Credit: Michael Gaylin

  • jonathan_santlofer-2

    Jonathan Santlofer

    Jonathan Santlofer

    Jonathan Santlofer is the author of the acclaimed historical thriller The Last Mona Lisa, and six other novels, among them the international bestseller The Death Artist, and the Nero award-winning Anatomy of Fear. His memoir The Widower’s Notebook appeared on over a dozen ‘best books of 2018’ lists and was a featured segment on Fresh Air with Terry Gross. Santlofer is the editor of seven anthologies, including the New York Times notable book It Occurs to Me That I Am America. His short stories have appeared in The Strand, Ellery Queen, and many story collections. Also an artist Santlofer’s work is in major private and public collections, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Art Institute of Chicago and Tokyo’s Institute of Contemporary Art. He is the recipient of two National Endowment for the Arts grants, has been a Visiting Artist at the American Academy in Rome, the Vermont Studio Center, and serves on the board of Yaddo, the oldest arts community in the U.S. He lives in NYC where he is at work on a new novel.

    Photo Credit: Clarke Tolton