Vaughn, Carrie 1973–
Vaughn, Carrie 1973–
PERSONAL: Born 1973, in Sacramento, CA; father a U.S. Air Force pilot and research chemist, mother a certified public accountant (CPA). Education: Occidental College, B.A.; University of Colorado at Boulder, M.A.; Odyssey Writing Workshop, graduated, 1998. Hobbies and other interests: Fencing, horseback riding.
ADDRESSES: Home—Boulder, CO. Agent—Ashley Grayson Literary Agency, 1342 18th St., San Pedro, CA 90732. E-mail—[email protected]
CAREER: Writer and novelist. Has worked variously as an editor, a buyer at an independent bookstore, a Renaissance Festival performer, a theater usher, and an administrative assistant.
Kitty and the Midnight Hour (novel), Warner Books (New York, NY), 2005.
Kitty Goes to Washington (novel), Warner Books (New York, NY), 2006.
Contributor to anthologies, including Polyphony 1, Wheatland Press (Wilsonville, OR), 2002. Contributor of short stories to magazines, including Weird Tales, Talebones, and Realms of Fantasy.
SIDELIGHTS: Carrie Vaughn, who describes herself in an autobiography on her home page as an "air force brat," credits her parents with influencing her to become a science fiction and fantasy writer. At age eight, her mother gave her a copy of Robert A. Heinlein's novel Red Planet. A short time later, she watched the seminal motion picture 2001: A Space Odyssey with her father. Since then, "my brain just hasn't been the same," she commented on her home page.
The protagonist of Vaughn's debut novel, Kitty and the Midnight Hour, is Kitty Norville, a disc jockey with a late-night call-in show in Denver called "The Midnight Hour." The show moves along on a typical track of advice, talk, and oddball callers, until one night when a caller asks, in all sincerity, whether Kitty believes in vampires. Not only does she believe in them, but she confesses to knowing a few. Moreover, Kitty herself is a werewolf who is struggling to keep her lycanthropy a secret while living a life that is as close to normal as possible. Shortly after this fateful broadcast, Kitty's show becomes a nighttime sensation among listeners both human and supernatural, with denizens of the dark calling for advice and commiseration. However, Kitty's openness leads to conflict with high-powered vampires and werewolves who would rather not be outed on the air. An assassination attempt is made during a broadcast, and this leads Kitty to wonder who wants her dead. She seeks answers from the shadowy vampire community, the werewolf who bit her, the police, and her hordes of fans. When local police enlist her aid to help hunt down a serial killer who uses werewolf techniques, she knows she cannot abandon either her supernatural side or the community of normal people who live just outside, but within claw's reach, of the edge of darkness.
Janelle Martin, writing for the Armchair Interviews Web site, called Vaughn's book a "delightfully well-written novel," and a Publishers Weekly critic declared it an "entertaining fantasy debut." Library Journal reviewer Patricia Altner considered Kitty to be "a lively, engaging heroine with a strong independent streak," while Linnea Dodson, writing on the Reviewing the Evidence Web site, noted that Kitty is resoundingly human as a character, and "doesn't triumph over everything just because she's the heroine." Kitty displays both flaws and considerable strengths. "It all adds up to a character readers can connect to," Martin commented. Dodson concluded that Kitty and the Midnight Hour is "for everyone who likes to read about a woman coming into her own, with only her intellect and determination to keep her going against all odds."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Library Journal, September 15, 2005, Patricia Altner, review of Kitty and the Midnight Hour, p. 59.
Publishers Weekly, August 22, 2005, review of Kitty and the Midnight Hour, p. 42.
Armchair Interviews, http://www.armchairinterviews.com/ (March 13, 2006), Janelle Martin, review of Kitty and the Midnight Hour.
Carrie Vaughn Home Page, http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/CLVaughn (March 13, 2006).
Reviewing the Evidence, http://www.reviewingtheevidence.com/ (March 13, 2006), Linnea Dodson, review of Kitty and the Midnight Hour.
Wheatland Press Web site, http://www.wheatlandpress.com/ (March 13, 2006), biography of Carrie Vaughn.