Born in Salem, MA; married Joel Ross (a writer); children: Ben. Education: Attended Hampshire College.
Writer. Has also worked as a receptionist for a private detective, pizza chef, video imaging consultant, and financial aid advisor.
Tales of a Drama Queen, Red Dress Ink (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 2004.
Hand-Me-Down, Red Dress Ink (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 2005.
True Lies of a Drama Queen, Red Dress Ink (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 2006.
Lee Nichols's first novel, Tales of a Drama Queen, introduces readers to Elle Medina, a spoiled shopaholic whose life takes a sharp turn when her rich fiancé abruptly marries someone else. Elle abandons Washington, DC, in favor of a new life in Santa Barbara, California. Misfortune follows her; she gets fired from her job catching shoplifters at a department store and takes a position as a telephone psychic. But her parents and prospective boyfriends continue to make a mess of her life, and finally she realizes it is time to grow up. A critic for Publishers Weekly called the book "a delightfully silly, vivacious debut" with plenty of "clever" dialogue.
Hand-Me-Down, Nichols's next novel, is the story of Anne Olsen, the youngest of three sisters whose aversion to secondhand items—the result of a frugal childhood—extends to boyfriends. She finds herself attracted to antique dealer Ian, who has previously dated her sister Charlotte, a swimsuit model. Anne works hard to resist Ian's charms, trying to convince herself that her current boyfriend, Rip, a realtor, is much more suitable, all the while battling her obsessive-compulsive need to eat, wear, and own only that which is pristine and brand new. According to a reviewer for Publishers Weekly, the result is a "funny, utterly winning story of family, love and self-discovery."
Nichols's third novel is the sequel True Lies of a Drama Queen, in which Elle returns, dating Merrick and working as a psychic. This time, Elle's best friend, Maya, is the one in trouble. Maya's hasty engagement to Brad turns into a disaster as Elle takes charge of the wedding plans and bungles an important dinner. Meanwhile, Merrick encourages Elle to attend graduate school, but she is too busy trying to find out who posted a video online showing her dancing half-naked in a department store dressing room to consider his suggestions. In a review for Booklist, Kristine Huntley wrote that "fans of the first book will be thrilled to see zany Elle back in action."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, June 1, 2005, Kristine Huntley, review of Hand-Me-Down, p. 1765; June 1, 2006, Kristine Huntley, review of True Lies of a Drama Queen, p. 48.
Publishers Weekly, June 28, 2004, review of Tales of a Drama Queen, p. 32; May 9, 2005, review of Hand-Me-Down, p. 46.
Romance Reader at Heart,http://romancereaderatheart.com/ (June 5, 2005), Kendra Wheeler, review of Hand-Me-Down.