Margaret Press is the author of the Salem-based mystery series featuring Detective Sergeant Gabriel Dunn (Requiem for a Postman, 1992, and Elegy for a Thief, 1993, Carroll & Graf.)
Her true crime debut, Counterpoint: A Murder in Massachusetts Bay, with Joan Noble Pinkham (Addicus Books, June 1996) was re-released in paperback by St. Martin’s Press under the title A Scream on the Water: A True Story of Murder in Salem. It is the true story of a recent murder case on the North Shore. Her book inspired an Unsolved Mysteries episode in 1996 and a documentary, part of the A&E series City Confidential, airing in the fall of 1998.
Raised in California, Press holds a doctorate in linguistics from UCLA and was an undergraduate at UC Berkeley. After extensive field work in American Indian languages, she published a descriptive grammar of Chemehuevi, a nearly extinct dialect of the Uto-Aztecan family.
For a number of years she worked as a speech and language specialist at a Boston-area school for multi-handicapped children, before moving into computer programming. Press has taught courses in linguistics and acquisition of language in children. She currently works in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
In her spare time Press is a private pilot who dabbles in aerial photography. On the ground she spends time badgering the Salem Police Criminal Investigation Division, accompanying them on stakeouts, raids, at crime scenes, in courtrooms and on donut runs since 1990. She is still working on the Dunn series, and gives occasional workshops on mystery writing. Her evening course, Mystery and Crime Fiction Writing, is offered at North Shore Community College.
Press is also an active charter member of ARTSalem, a community Arts Collaborative founded in Salem in 1993. She has lived in Salem, Massachusetts since 1987, has one daughter living in New York, and a dog who is an obedience school dropout.
Titles by this author: