Although PJ Vernon, author of Bath Haus, was guest host for Lev AC Rosen’s appearance at The Poisoned Pen, Barbara Peters, owner of the bookstore, talked about San Francisco in the 1950s. She mentioned that Rosen’s first historical crime novel, Lavender House, is an Agatha Christie-type country house mystery. You can find copies of books by both authors in the Web Store, https://store.poisonedpen.com/, and signed copies of Lavender House here. https://bit.ly/3MO8A1R
Here’s the description of Lavender House.
A delicious story from a new voice in suspense, Lev AC Rosen’s Lavender House is Knives Out with a queer historical twist.
Lavender House, 1952: the family seat of recently deceased matriarch Irene Lamontaine, head of the famous Lamontaine soap empire. Irene’s recipes for her signature scents are a well guarded secret—but it’s not the only one behind these gates. This estate offers a unique freedom, where none of the residents or staff hide who they are. But to keep their secret, they’ve needed to keep others out. And now they’re worried they’re keeping a murderer in.
Irene’s widow hires Evander Mills to uncover the truth behind her mysterious death. Andy, recently fired from the San Francisco police after being caught in a raid on a gay bar, is happy to accept—his calendar is wide open. And his secret is the kind of secret the Lamontaines understand.
Andy had never imagined a world like Lavender House. He’s seduced by the safety and freedom found behind its gates, where a queer family lives honestly and openly. But that honesty doesn’t extend to everything, and he quickly finds himself a pawn in a family game of old money, subterfuge, and jealousy—and Irene’s death is only the beginning.
When your existence is a crime, everything you do is criminal, and the gates of Lavender House can’t lock out the real world forever. Running a soap empire can be a dirty business.
LEV AC ROSEN writes books for people of all ages, including Camp, which was a best book of the year from Forbes, Elle, and The Today Show, among others, and is a Lambda finalist and ALA Rainbow List Top Ten. He lives in NYC with his husband and a very small cat. You can find him online at his website and on social media.
Enjoy the conversation from The Poisoned Pen.