Hello, I’m Christine Knapp. After practicing as a nurse-midwife for many years, I now write the Modern Midwife Mysteries.
I have always loved to read, and mysteries, thrillers, memoirs, non-fiction, cookbooks, and children’s books compete for a place on my bedside table. Libraries and bookstores fill me with wonder and anticipation. The New York Times Book Review is always the first thing I read with a warm cup of tea on Sunday mornings. My favorite book is John Irving’s, A Prayer for Owen Meany. It’s about love, compassion, and the affirmation that life is miraculous.
l discovered Dame Agatha Christie many years ago as a midwifery student. Now, with the Modern Midwife Mysteries, I am thrilled to combine my love of midwifery and mysteries as a fiction writer. I narrate books weekly for the visually impaired.
As a nurse-midwife, I have always been very disillusioned with how nurses and midwives are portrayed in books and films. I’ve read mysteries with historical and Amish midwives but never one with a present-day practitioner. By combining a mystery with a modern-day midwife, I hoped to accurately portray current practice and demystify midwifery. To that end, the story has many obstetrical vignettes, and each chapter starts with an epigraph related to pregnancy.
My first book, Murder at the Wedding, took about five years to write. I did not use an Outline and, after many revisions, realized that, at the very least, a general outline would be helpful for me. Finally, after dozens of rejections, I signed with a great agent, Dawn Dowdle of the Blue Ridge Literary Agency. My books are published by Gemma Halliday Publishing.
For inspiration, I highly recommend, Swallowed by a Whale: How to Survive the Writing Life, edited by Huw Lewis-Jones, to fellow writers. Sixty authors offer insights into their writing process and offer both advice and encouragement. Many days, I would open it at random and always come away determined to stay the course.
Murder at the Wedding introduces Maeve O’Reilly Kensington, a midwife, her wealthy acerbic sister Meg, and their indomitable Boston Irish mother. Together, they try to solve the murder of the chief obstetrician at his daughter’s extravagant wedding in the quintessential New England town of Langford. Since Maeve’s husband, Will, is the wedding caterer. The stakes are very high. Adding to the drama, Maeve spends her days helping to bring babies into the world yet struggles with her own fertility journey.
The second book in the series, Murder on the Widow’s Walk, was written in about six months. This time, I used an outline and felt it helped me tremendously—along with revisions, revisions, revisions. My characters may veer off course at times, but at least I had a road map. This mystery finds Maeve and company trying to solve the untimely murder of Monty Livingstone, also known as the Takeover King, as he sets up shop in Langford, alienating some in the community. Maeve’s love of rowing is featured in the story, and her road to motherhood takes an unexpected course.
Book #3, Murder on the Books, will be released this fall. It also took about six months to write. Maeve O’Reilly Kensington has fully recovered from her heart-pounding escape from a murderer last summer. Now she and her husband, Will, are happily adapting to life as parents of an eight-month-old while also preparing for the birth of their second daughter. However, nothing stays calm in Langford. Just before Christmas, Maeve finds the well-loved librarian dead. Who would harm this lovely woman? Can the crime be solved before Maeve has her baby?
Murder at the Wedding was a Finalist for the IAN Book of the Year Awards and is currently a Finalist for a Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Award. Tantor Media has contracted for the audiobook version of the Modern Midwife Mysteries.
It is such an honor to be featured on George Cramer’s blog. I faced long odds of finding an agent and a publisher. My best advice is never, ever give up.
I’d love to connect with writers or fans of the cozy mystery genre. You can find me at:
Sisters in Crime
Sisters in Crime New England
ITW Debut Class Authors