Westerson’s “Shadow of the Alchemist” now in print

The sixth novel in the Crispin Guest Medieval Noir series by Menifee author Jeri Westerson is now in print.

A launch party for “Shadow of the Alchemist” was held Oct. 19 at Vroman’s Bookstore in Pasadena. “They had dueling knights and all kinds of stuff. It was a good show,” Westerson said.

Crispin Guest is – or was, as Westerson’s novels are set in 14th-century London – a disgraced knight who found his calling as a detective. In “Shadow of the Alchemist”, Guest is trying to locate the kidnapped wife of an alchemist.  

“He’s got to find her before something bad happens to her,” Westerson said. “It’s another existing adventure for Crispin Guest.”

“Shadow of the Alchemist” is a 320-page book containing approximately 85,000 words. Westerson spent approximately four months on the writing portion of the book.

“You have to be right on it, just do it,” she said.

Westerson has written other books besides the Crispin Guest series.  

“All my books are outlined, so you know exactly what you’re going to write,” she said.

Westerson is now a full-time book writer. She was a part-time freelance journalist for eight years.  

“I wasn’t getting published at that time,” she said.

She dropped her journalism activity to focus on books once her novels became published. Although her newspaper and magazine experience limited her time to write books, she notes that journalism enhanced her writing skills and her ability to meet deadlines.

The Westerson family moved from Manhattan Beach to Menifee in 1993. Jeri Westerson was born in Los Angeles and attended high school in Lawndale. She noted that her lifelong Southern California residence has been beneficial to her book tours.  

“I’m used to driving everywhere,” she said.

In addition to her Vroman’s Bookstore signing Oct. 19, Westerson also had an appearance in Huntington Beach that day. The following day she was in Poway for the Tournament of the Phoenix jousting competition and at Book Carnival in Orange.  

“It was crazy,” she said of her four-venue weekend.

The book launch in Pasadena also included Westerson reading portions of her book and the serving of medieval food. Her husband, Craig, began brewing mead in support of his wife’s Middle Ages interests and brewed a batch for the book launch.

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