Our Favorite Authors: Carole Nelson Douglas
Posted by What The Cat Read
Carole Nelson Douglas is the author of almost sixty novels in many genres, but is best known for two popular mystery series, the Irene Adler mysteries and the Midnight Louie mystery series, and the recent Delilah Street, Paranormal Investigator, Urban Fantasy series.
Douglas was a theater and English literature major in college. After graduation, she worked as a newspaper reporter and then editor in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. During her time there, she discovered a long, expensive classified advertisement offering a black cat named Midnight Louey to the “right” home for one dollar and wrote a feature story on the plucky survival artist, putting it into the cat’s point of view. The cat found a country home but its name was revived for her feline PI mystery series many years later. Some of the Midnight Louie series entries include the dedication “For the real and original Midnight Louie. Nine lives were not enough.”
She began writing fiction in the late 1970s and is a “literary chameleon” who’s had books published in many genres, and often mixes genre elements, such as mystery and suspense, fantasy and science fiction, romance and mainstream.
When I first discovered Douglas’ books, I was just entering high school. I had long been a fan of mystery novels, so when I found her Midnight Louie series, I knew I had to get them. Ten guesses as to why. And no, it’s not because the series is set in modern-day Las Vegas, though I will admit that I enjoyed the setting immensely. If you guessed that it’s because half of the story is told by a cat’s point of view, give yourself a virtual cookie! =^.^= Yes, I am a sucker for any story that has a cat in it, so this series was perfect. To date I own all but the two newest books in the series and have read up through book 12. Given that there are currently 24 books in the series, with two more still to come, I’ve got a lot of catching up to do with this series! I’m actually looking forward to returning to them and revisiting some of my old friends. Midnight Louie, Temple, Max, Matt, the rest of the cast of characters really helped me through some difficult times. These books were the perfect escape for me.
At some point during my college education I decided to pick up her Irene Adler series. As a fan of Sherlock Holmes, this series was long overdue for an investigation. I didn’t anticipate devouring the series as fast as I did. I instantly fell in love with Irene and her companion in sleuthing, Nell, and dare I say that these books surpassed Doyle’s as my favorite Holmesian based series. Douglas does a wonderful job staying true to the characters that Doyle created, all the while throwing in her own classic touch. My two favorite books in the series are Chapel Noir and Castle Rouge because Irene must investigate events surrounding the White Chapel killings and is pitted up against Jack the Ripper. Before you ask, yes, I am a Ripper fanatic as well. What can I say, I love late nineteenth century London! Anyways, I was very sad to see this series end with Spider Dance. I keep hoping that Douglas will bring the characters back someday, but I am starting to fear that will never happen.
Recently I’ve been looking at her Delilah Street, Paranormal Investigator series. Though I haven’t picked up the first book to read, I must admit that the books look very intriguing. Unfortunately this series came out just as I made myself promise not to buy any more books unless they are already a part of a series I own. I know, stupid promise, but given how little shelf space I have left, libraries have become my best friends all over again. Only sad thing is, at the time, the first book was not available through any of my local branches. Though this has since change, I fear I’ve still not yet gotten around to requesting this series. My hope is to read the first two books before the year is out. I’m really looking forward to seeing what this series is all about!