PERSONAL: Born in Kunming, China; husband a tropical horticulturalist.
ADDRESSES: Home—Guelph, Ontario, Canada. Agent—c/o Acacia House Publishing Services Ltd., 51 Acacia Rd., Toronto, Ontario M4S 2K6, Canada.
CAREER: Writer, 2005–.
Deadly Slipper: A Novel of Death in the Dordogne, Doubleday (New York, NY), 2005.
WORK IN PROGRESS: A sequel to Deadly Slipper.
SIDELIGHTS: In her first novel, writer Michelle Wan weaves a tale of mystery and murder based on a trail of wild orchids, one of which is a Lady's Slipper unknown to botanical science. Her protagonist, French-Canadian interior designer Mara Dunn, is determined to discover the fate of her identical twin sister, Bedie, who disappeared in the Dordogne region of southwestern France nearly two decades before. Mara discovers Bedie's camera in a junk shop. The film it contains proves to be shots of wild orchids and Mara is convinced that the photgraphs document her sister's last whereabouts. She approaches Julian Wood, a reclusive orchid expert, and together the pair set out to find out what happened to Bedie by locating the photographed orchids. Julian also hopes the clues will lead him to the Mystery Orchid and botanical fame. On the way they encounter a variety of colorful characters, ranging from an impoverished family of noble background to an unpleasant mother-and-son couple. They also encounter resistance and danger. "Finely detailed and researched," according to a Curled Up with a Good Book reviewer, "Deadly Slipper: A Novel of Death in the Dordogne is a horticulturalist's delight, revealing the inside story of orchidologist's endeavors and the quirky personalities of the French with their petty territorial skirmishes for notoriety." "Wan gives a good read in Deadly Slipper," concluded Pat Elliott in Book Loons Online "complete with a surprise ending."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Kirkus Reviews, June 1, 2005, review of Deadly Slipper: A Novel of Death in the Dordogne, p. 609.
Library Journal, July 1, 2005, Laurel Bliss, review of Deadly Slipper, p. 59.
Publishers Weekly, May 30, 2005, review of Deadly Slipper, p. 37.
South Florida Sun-Sentinel, August 17, 2005, Oline H. Cogdill, review of Deadly Slipper.
Book Loons, http://www.bookloons.com/ (October 23, 2005), Pat Elliott, review of Deadly Slipper.
Curled Up with a Good Book, http://www.curledup.com/ (October 23, 2005), review of Deadly Slipper.