Saturday, September 12, 2009

Lyn Hamilton: R.I.P.

It's very sad to report the death of Canadian mystery author, Lyn Hamilton. Born in 1944, she passed away on September 10 after a battle with cancer. She will be remembered in our community as the author of the Lara McClintoch archaeological mysteries.

Lyn didn't begin writing mysteries until the age of 50, when she combined her lifelong interest in archeology in her series. The Xibalba Murders was published in 1997 and was nominated for an Arthur Ellis award for best first crime novel. Her eight, The Magyar Venus, was nominated for an Arthur Ellis award for best crime novel. Her books feature heroine Lara McClintoch, the owner of an antiques story in Toronto, who travels the world for business, solving murders along the way. Lyn was a great supporter of other writers, as a mentor and teacher. She was a writer in residence at the New York Central Library in 2003 and held the same position at the Kitchener Public Library in 2004. She was honored several times at mystery conventions for her work.

Lyn visited all of the exotic sites she wrote about and in 1999 led The Maltese Goddess mystery and archeology tour to Malta to visit the scene of the crime. Like Lara, she was an antiques addict.

In her 'past' life, she was Director of Public Affairs for the Canadian Opera Company, and before that Director of the Cultural Programs Branch in the Ontario government.

There will be no funeral service at her request. A celebration with friends will be held later. Condolences may be posted at: Donations in Lyn's name to the Canadian Opera Company or the Princess Margaret Hospital.

Mystery Readers Journal was honored to have an article by Lyn Hamilton in our Cool Canadian Crime issue in Winter 2003-2004. Read the article, here. In the meantime, read an interview with Lyn at Poe's Deadly Daughters. She was also a Guest Blogger at Type M for Murder last January.

Another sad day in the mystery community.


Kiwicraig said...

Sad news. She was one of the Canadian writers (that were great, but not necessarily widely known worldwide - like a lot of Kiwi authors) that Linwood Barclay mentioned to me in our interview earlier this year.

Janet Rudolph said...

Very sad, indeed.

Janet Rudolph said...

Very sad, indeed.

Elizabeth Foxwell said...

Lyn was one of the kindest people I have ever met, and she had a playful sense of humor. We knew many of the same people in the archaeological community, because of her background and my previous position at the Society for American Archaeology; her novels raised consciousness about looting and other serious issues within archaeology. One project she wanted to do was an archaeologically themed anthology that could benefit the protection of cultural property--sadly, her health did not permit it. I'll miss her greatly.

vallerose said...

This is very sad news indeed. I enjoyed Lyn's books and I enjoyed talking with her at book conferences. She is also one of the people who thanked me for the quilts Pam and I made for the conferences. Her writing improved with each book and I always looked forward to the next one, especially since she went to places that I most likely never will. The Moai Murders, about Easter island, is an example. Highly recommended as is The Magyar Venus.