Skip to main content

Meet the Authors

To request an in-person or virtual speaking engagement with the Friends & Fiction team of host authors, please contact Christie Hinrichs at Authors Unbound, or view our SPEAKING PROFILE.


MARY KAY ANDREWS is the New York Times bestselling author of more than 30 novels (including Summers at the Saint, The Homewreckers; The Santa Suit; The Newcomer; Hello, Summer; Sunset Beach; The High Tide Club; The Weekenders; Beach Town; Save the Date; Ladies’ Night; Christmas Bliss; Spring Fever; Summer Rental; The Fixer Upper; Deep Dish; Blue Christmas; Savannah Breeze; Hissy Fit; Little Bitty Lies; and Savannah Blues), and one cookbook, The Beach House Cookbook.

A native of St. Petersburg, Florida, she earned a B.A. in journalism from The University of Georgia. After a 14-year career working as a reporter at newspapers including The Savannah Morning News, The Marietta Journal, and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, where she spent the final ten years of her career, she left journalism in 1991 to write fiction. Her first novel, Every Crooked Nanny, was published in 1992 by HarperCollins. She went on to write ten critically acclaimed mysteries under her real name, Kathy Hogan Trocheck. In 2002, she assumed the pen name Mary Kay Andrews with the publication of Savannah Blues.

To date, her novels have been published in German, Italian, Polish, Slovenian, Hungarian, Dutch, Czech and Japanese. She and her family divide their time between Atlanta and Tybee Island, GA, where they cook up new recipes in three restored beach homes, The Breeze Inn, Ebbtide, and Coquina Cottage—all named after fictional places in Mary Kay’s novels, and all available to rent through Tybee Vacation Rentals. In between cooking, spoiling her grandkids, and plotting her next novel, Mary Kay is an intrepid treasure hunter whose favorite pastime is junking and fixing up old houses.


KRISTIN HARMEL is the New York Times bestselling, USA Today bestselling, and #1 international bestselling author of The Paris Daughter, The Forest of Vanishing Stars, The Book of Lost Names, The Winemaker’s Wife, and a dozen other novels that have been translated into more than 30 languages and are sold all over the world.

Kristin has been writing professionally since the age of 16, when she began her career as a sportswriter, covering Major League Baseball and NHL hockey for a local magazine in Tampa Bay, Florida in the late 1990s. In addition to a long magazine writing career, Kristin was also a frequent contributor to the national television morning show The Daily Buzz. Her first novel was published in 2006, and her books have been finalists for the Goodreads Choice Award and the Jewish Book Award.

Kristin was born just outside Boston, Massachusetts and spent her childhood there, as well as in Worthington, Ohio, and St. Petersburg, Florida. After graduating from the University of Florida’s College of Journalism and Communications, she spent time living in Paris and Los Angeles and now lives in Orlando, with her husband and son. She is a breast cancer survivor and the co-founder and co-host of the popular weekly web show and podcast Friends & Fiction.


KRISTY WOODSON HARVEY is the New York Times, USA Today and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author of eleven novels including A Happier Life, Under the Southern Sky, The Peachtree Bluff series, The Wedding Veil and The Summer of Songbirds. Her Peachtree Bluff series is currently in development with NBC with Kristy as co-writer and co-executive producer.

Kristy blogs with her mom Beth Woodson on Design Chic about how creating a beautiful home can be the catalyst for creating a beautiful life. Design Chic is the inaugural member of the design blogger hall of fame, sponsored by Traditional Home, and winner of Amara’s Best Luxury Blog, as chosen by Roberto Cavalli.

A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s school of journalism, she also holds a master’s in English from East Carolina University, with a concentration in multicultural and transnational literature.  She is a proud member of the Tall Poppy Writers, serves on the board of The University of North Carolina’s Library Board and the Beaufort Historical Association, and is a member of the University of North Carolina’s Women’s Leadership Council.

Kristy is the winner of the Lucy Bramlette Patterson Award for Excellence in Creative Writing and a finalist for the Southern Book Prize, and her books have received numerous accolades including Southern Living’s Most Anticipated Beach Reads, Entertainment Weekly’s Spring Reading Picks, and Katie Couric’s Most Anticipated Reads.

She lives in North Carolina with her husband and son.


PATTI CALLAHAN HENRY is a New York TimesGlobe and Mail, and USA Today bestselling author of nineteen novels, including her newest, The Secret Book of Flora Lea. She’s also a podcast host of original content for her novels, Surviving Savannah and Becoming Mrs. Lewis

She is the recipient of The Christy Award “Book of the Year”; The Harper Lee Distinguished Writer of the Year and the Alabama Library Association Book of the Year for Becoming Mrs. Lewis. She is the co-host and co-creator of the popular weekly online Friends & Fiction live web show and podcast. She’s published in numerous anthologies, articles, and short story collections, including an Audible Original about Florence Nightingale, titled Wild Swan, narrated by the Tony Award winner, Cynthia Erivo. 

A full-time author and mother of three, she lives in Mountain Brook, Alabama with her husband, Pat Henry. Her newest novel, The Secret Book of Flora Lea, is set outside Oxford and is available now.


Meg Walker is a 30-year veteran of the publishing industry and the co-founder, president, and director of marketing at Tandem Literary, a publicity and marketing firm for authors and publishers. As the managing director of Friends & Fiction, Meg is in charge of guest booking, promotion, and general cat herding. She often co-hosts F&F podcast episodes and joins Mary Kay, Kristin, Kristy, and Patti on the weekly web show.


Ron Block works as a manager at the Cuyahoga County Public Library in Cleveland, Ohio. His passion for libraries, reading and cooking have fueled non-traditional library programs and community collaborations. During the pandemic, he pivoted to hosting virtual author visits and cooking demonstrations and joined the Friends & Fiction team co-hosting the Friends & Fiction Writers’ Block Podcast.



Mary Alice Monroe was one of the five founding authors of Friends & Fiction in 2020, but she left the group in the summer of 2021 to concentrate on her writing. She still joins Mary Kay, Kristin, Kristy, and Patti for occasional special events, including 2023’s Friends & Fiction LIVE event in Charleston.

Mary Alice Monroe is the New York Times bestselling author of 27 books, including her latest instant bestseller, The Summer of Lost and Found. She has also published children’s books which complement the environmental themes she is known for in her adult novels. Monroe’s middle grade series, written with Angela May, The Islanders, debuted #2 on the New York Times in 2021. Her bestselling novel The Beach House is a Hallmark Hall of Fame movie. Nearly 8 million copies of Mary Alice’s books have been published worldwide, and she’s earned numerous accolades and awards, including induction into the South Carolina Academy of Authors’ Hall of Fame. She was one of the five founding authors of Friends & Fiction and lives with her husband in South Carolina.