Wednesday, July 1, 2009

More on the NEW PRIME TIME!

Breaking news: On Thursday, July 2: Come say hello to Hank and get your new PRIME TIME at Borders Books on School Street in Downtown Crossing, Boston--at noon!

Today, Wednesday July 1, Hank's signing PRIME TIME at Boston's South Station Grand Concourse from 2-5 pm!

But for now:

Here's a wonderful interview in the Hartford Books Examiner...the fab John Valeri asked Hank some brand new questions to celebrate the re-issue of PRIME TIME!

Here's just a taste...and then the link to the rest of the interview.


Today, I am delighted to host bestselling and award-winning author Hank Phillippi Ryan on the re-release of her first Charlotte McNally mystery, Prime Time (Mira, $7.99), which won the Agatha Award for Best First Novel.

Ryan is an investigative reporter for the NBC affiliate in Boston. With twenty-six EMMYs to her name, along with dozens of other regional, national, and international honors for her reporting and writing, she is truly distinguished within her field. She has personally wired herself with hidden cameras, exposed corrupt politicians, and chased down crooks in the street. And she takes that insider knowledge and uses it to color the fictitious world that Charlotte (“Charlie”) McNally inhabits.

Much like Ryan, McNally is an investigative reporter. In Prime Time, she finds herself desperately seeking a story that will win both ratings and the kudos of the studio brass (who may just be looking to replace Charlie with a younger face). The answer comes in the form of what at first appears to be an innocuous piece of Spam email but ultimately turns out to hold the key to a lethal multi-million dollar fraud ring. With her life on the line, Charlie races to report the news before she becomes it.

Recently, I had the opportunity to be the one doing the interrogating. And while I didn’t go digging through Hank’s trash in preparation for our little chat, I think you’ll find my questions to be quite probing...

1) Your protagonist, Charlotte "Charlie" McNally, is a TV reporter who finds herself aging in an industry that often values beauty and youth over journalistic ideals. How much of yourself will readers find in your character? And do you ever worry that they might have trouble separating the artist from the art (or the writer from the written, as the case may be)?
HANK: Ah. Ha. Well, you get right to the heart of it, don't you? When my husband talks about Charlie McNally to me, he calls her "you". As in--"when you catch the bad guys" or "when you solve the mystery." I say--honey, it's fiction. And he just laughs.
Of course Charlie McNally is me--in some ways. She's--younger. She's braver. And although we've both wired ourselves with hidden camera, chased down criminals and confronted corrupt politicians, scarier things happen to her. (So far.) But we're both very committed journalists of a certain age. If people confuse us? Well, I guess that's okay. Happy to be Charlie.

2) As an investigative reporter, you well know the importance of getting the "sexiest" story--the one that will sweep the ratings and put you ahead of the competition. As an author, do you ever feel that same sense of urgency when formulating plot ideas?

HANK: Well, hmm.....

And here's a real deal--Free first class shipping of PRIME TIME from Mystery Lovers Bookshop!


  1. I love the new cover, Hank!


  2. Great inside, color, cover in Mystery Scene magazine this month. You look great as always! I too love the new covers and can't wait to read Air Time when it comes out in September.

  3. Great interview and I too love the new cover!

    Paula Matter

  4. I am sooo happy! After I read about this book and really wanted to buy it and read it and, and, and, it was no longer available. Rats! But lookee here--re-issue. Yay for me!

    Congrats to you, too, Hank.

  5. Oh, thanks, guys!

    Yes. I LOVE the Mystery Scene ad. I want to go buy a bunch of them and send them to relatives--but then there won't be any for real people.

    And glad you like the cover. Whew.


  6. Oh, that is a GORGEOUS cover! :)

  7. Thanks for linking my article here, Hank. What great company to be in! :)