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Guests of Honor

Maureen Jennings is a Canadian writer best known as the author of the Detective Murdoch series, which has been turned into a television series, Murdoch Mysteries. Jennings said that stories of John Wilson Murray, a Victorian era detective who was appointed as Ontario's first government detective in 1875, "was an important inspiration" for her, and led to the development of the character William Murdoch. Now in its 9th season, Murdoch Mysteries remains one of the CBC's most highly rated programs, regularly watched by more than 1.4 million viewers. 

In addition to the Murdoch Mysteries, Jennings is also the author of the Christine Morris and Tom Tyler series. She has also been nominated for numerous awards including: an Anthony, an Arthur Ellis, and a Macavity. In 2011, Jennings won the Grant Allen Award, honoring Canada's crime writing pioneers. On the City of Toronto’s 180th anniversary, she was named one of the 180 people who have shaped the history of the city. 

English crime fiction writer Natasha Cooper worked several years in publishing before deciding to write full time. She started with a series of historical novels using a pen name before she discovered her passion for crime fiction.  She has written three crime series: the first featuring part-time civil servant Willow King, who moonlights as a romantic novelist; a second led by barrister Trish Maguire; and most recently the Isle of Wight sequence about forensic psychologist Dr. Karen Taylor. The latest of those, Vengeance in Mind, was shortlisted for the 2012 CWA Gold Dagger. Additionally Cooper writes book reviews for The Times, the Times Literary Supplement, and The Globe and Mail. She also has a column in Crime Time.  She chaired both the 2007 Harrogate Crime Writing Festival and the Crime Writers Association in 1999/2000.