Suzanne Kingsmill has, among other things, survived being trapped between the open ocean and shore by a shark, drowned and was resuscitated, accidentally slept with a rattlesnake, watched from a curb in Montreal as her apartment burned, been treed by a coyote in the woods late at night, been trapped in a two person tent by a lion on an African savannah, saved someone from choking to death by using the Heimlich manoeuvre, and rescued a bald eagle chick, named it Mikisi and took him to the Toronto Zoo, where he became famous. She has visited four continents and has skied all over Europe and North America, ridden her motorcycle all through the Maritimes and Quebec, and crisscrossed Canada and the US by converted sleeper van.


She is a wilderness canoeist, alpine and cross-country skier, sometime boarder, snowshoer, swimmer and bicyclist. She is a wildlife artist and she designs and builds her own furniture. She has two grown sons who have made her life amazing. All of these things have helped her in the writing of her murder mysteries, and non-fiction books, including the following.




Kingsmill has a B.A. in English literature and environmental geography from the University of Toronto, a B.Sc. in biology from McGill University and a M.Sc. in zoology from the University of Toronto. Her Master’s thesis was on sea turtles and she did her fieldwork on a little barrier island off the east coast of the USA. The setting for Dying for Murder, on the imaginary Spaniel Island, is patterned after this island. In her late teens and twenties she worked on an ocean-going car ferry, helped make a movie on the Red Chevrons, Canada’s first volunteers to WW1, worked on an acid lake reclamation project in northern Ontario, worked at an aquarium, taught alpine and cross country skiing, taught some classes on animal behaviour and comparative anatomy, was a DJ at a university radio station, and ran a drop-in shelter for schizophrenic youth.


After getting her master’s degree she spent fifteen years as a freelance writer, for the likes of Canadian Geographic, Science, The Field, Maclean’s, Discover, International Wildlife, Islands, Birder’s World, New Scientist and many more. Over the years she interviewed hundreds of scientists, zoologists, biologists, paleontologists, conservationists and even the guy next door and her own kids for articles on wide ranging topics from travel and biography to otoliths, backpacking frogs, giardiasis, biology, conservation, real estate, dinosaur art, how to build a 17 foot canoe 16 feet long and camping with kids.


During these years she wrote four non-fiction books: Beyond the Call of Duty – a biography of a war vet, Vanishing Wildlife, Endangered Species of the World, Breaking up Solvent – financial advice for women going through separation and divorce and The Family Squeeze: Surviving the Sandwich Generation. During that same time she painted wildlife art, won two magazine awards and began to build furniture. She also volunteered her time at Volunteer Ottawa for many years, helping people find volunteer work. She then turned to fiction writing and wrote the first three Cordi O’Callaghan murder mysteries, Forever Dead and Innocent Murderer and Dying for Murder. Crazy Dead is her fourth mystery.


She was born and raised in Toronto, Canada and then lived in Montreal, Canada, for five years, northern Ontario, Canada, for two and rural western Quebec, Canada, for twenty-five years, before returning to Toronto.

She has been the managing editor of the Canadian Journal of Rural Medicine since its inception in 1996.