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Leah Devlin

Authors on Characters

Penmore Press authors offer a rich and entertaining array of short reflections on characters and how they were created in the novels.  READ

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Leah Devlin

Leah Devlin is a marine biologist and neuroscientist who grew up in the Washington DC area. She has undergraduate degrees in English literature, biology, and environmental science; an MS in zoology; and a PhD in neurophysiology. In addition to being a writer, she’s a biology professor with research specializations in neuromuscular control in marine invertebrates and biological exploration in the Arctic in the early nineteenth century.

The Bottom Dwellers, Ægir’s Curse, and The Bends comprise a trilogy of mysteries and thrillers set in the scientific village of Woods Hole, Massachusetts, where Leah was a scientist at the Marine Biological Laboratory for over ten summers. The novels focus on the brilliant yet disturbed Nobel laureate Lindsey Nolan, her colleagues, and her family. Leah’s second series of thrillers, the Chesapeake Tugboat Murders, is set in the fictional village of River Glen in the upper Chesapeake Bay and include Vital Spark, Spider, and Forger’s Revenge.

Leah enjoys outdoor adventures of all kinds: motorcycle journeys along winding back roads, boating, diving, rock-climbing, skiing, and long-distance trekking. When not traveling, she divides her time between Philadelphia and her boat on the Chesapeake.

Please visit Leah Devlin’s website for more information (and terrific photos) on the author and her two series, The Woods Hole Mysteries and the Chesapeake Tug Boat Murders.

Forger's Revenge by Leah Devlin

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Forger’s Revenge

Book 3 of the Chesapeake Tugboat Murders. Beautiful art forger Ella Winston is bent on revenge. Upon her release from a women’s prison in Pennsylvania, she rumbles on her motorcycle into the sleepy Chesapeake village of River Glen to search for paintings of the Battle of Gettysburg by the Civil War painter Adam Eaton. The Eaton paintings, Ella is convinced, must be in River Glen, perhaps in the derelict, reputedly haunted, manor house on the outskirts of town once inhabited by Adam Eaton and the Civil War spies Josiah and Abigail Wedgewood-Smyth. The paintings will exonerate her . . . prove her innocence . . . prove that she was framed for art crimes that sent her to prison for years. Yet, upon her arrival in River Glen, a revered Philadelphia art professor is found dead on the shores of the Chesapeake. Then a woman biker is killed on a ghost walk. The timing is more than coincidental. Ella becomes the obvious suspect in the murder investigation. It can’t be happening again. Someone . . . again . . . is trying to frame her!

 Spider by Leah Devlin

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Spider

When Pamela Dodd arrives in the sleepy Chesapeake village of River Glen to hunt for treasure, she unleashes a summer of chaos and murder. The wake from her speeding motor yacht erodes a cliff, causing an abandoned cottage to topple off the edge–and revealing a mass grave under its foundation. The discovery sends River Glen into a panic. Was Henry Herssen, the reclusive fisherman who owned the cottage, responsible for the killings, or has someone else been burying bodies at the top of the cliff for decades? As Detective Jay Braden and his assistant Will Wilkins investigate the murder site, the clues point to Tolchester College, a small school with secrets of its own. Braden discovers a discarded animal canister with a desiccated spider in a nearby shed. Will stumbles into a hidden pit containing a chair with restraints. It seems one of the professors has been conducting experiments using poisonous Australian funnel spiders. And their version of the scientific method is deadly.

Vital Spark by Leah Devlin

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Vital Spark

After eking out a living as an adjunct professor in Washington DC, fisheries ecologist Alex Allaway lands a job running a small marine station back in her hometown. Arriving in River Glen to surprise her grandfather with her the good news, Alex is horrified to discover him dead, a bloody dagger in his heart. His clenched fist grasps a piece of pirate gold and a cryptic map with her name on it. While the police investigate the murder, Alex begins her own search for answers. Aboard the tugboat Vital Spark she sails the Chesapeake in pursuit of treasure that belonged to a distant relative, the pirate Giles Blood-hand. But descendants of a rival pirate family are also looking for the bounty that’s been hidden for over three centuries, and they’ll think nothing of dispatching Alex once they discover she’s in the way.

The Bottom Dwellers by Leah Devlin

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The Bottom Dwellers

Lindsey Nolan has it all: inventions paying large dividends, a dream job in the scientific village of Woods Hole, Massachusetts, and a stable of eager playmates. But when Lindsey wakes up in rehab with no memory of how she got there, her world is turned upside down. Her roommate, an HIV-positive teenage prostitute named Maggie, is the most volatile patient on the ward. The facility is plagued by disturbing thefts. And another theft unfolds when her competitor, an engineer named Karen Battersby, discovers and steals Lindsey’s astonishing new invention from her Woods Hole lab. Lindsey and Maggie must face the consequences of past transgressions if they hope to deal with present perils and ascend from the desolate world of the Bottom Dwellers.

Ægir’s Curse by Leah Devlin

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Ægir’s Curse

A thousand years ago, a swift-moving plague ravaged the Viking colony of Vinland. The last surviving Norseman set the encampment and his ship ablaze to destroy the contagion. In present-day Bergen, a distinguished professor is found murdered, his map of Vinland missing. Soon after, divers discover the Vinland wreck in the waters off Woods Hole. The discovery of the long ship brings with it a cargo of murder that leads back along a thousand-year-old trail of death, all the way to Ægir’s curse.

The Bends by Leah Devlin

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The Bends

Maggie May-Nolan, art student and scuba diver, has only weeks until graduation and the promise of a dream job making underwater documentaries when Edward Gripp, the benefactor-architect of her Woods Hole art college, goes missing from a campus party. The missing persons report brings an awkward young detective, Bill Bleach, to campus to investigate Gripp’s disappearance. When Bleach discovers Gripp’s mutilated body hidden in a bizarre labyrinth within the walls of the buildings, all of the evidence points to Maggie. Bleach must navigate a labyrinth of deceptions if he hopes to stop a calculating serial killer from striking again.

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