I’ve been an obsessive reader for as long as I can remember. I give my brother a lot of the credit (blame?) for this. Growing up army brats, our family was always on the move. We had no sense of “home,” no long term friends. We had books. Perhaps my brother, five years older than me, gave me his books to keep me out of his hair. It worked. I remember reading Robinson Crusoe, The Swiss Family Robinson, The Three Musketeers, stories by Edgar Allan Poe, and my particular favorite, The Count of Monte Cristo. Yes, boy books. An incredible wealth of books—to this day my brother is one of the few people I know who reads as much or more than I do—flowed in my direction. But when I was thirteen, my brother went away to college, leaving me to find my own books. I remember walking through the library, pulling anything off the shelf that looked interesting. I ended up reading Henry Miller, D. H. Lawrence, Hemmingway, James Jones—my affinity for boy mind was apparently unabated or else my brother asserted his influence from afar!
Around this same time, I developed a new passion. My mother is a safari director in East Africa. I first heard about the Ngorongoro Crater and the Leakeys from her. She may have given me the first book I read on the subject of human evolution. Wherever I got it, I was hooked. I read every paleoarchaeology book I could get my hands on. Eventually I earned a degree in anthropology and became an archaeologist. I never fulfilled my dream of working on a paleo site—I discovered early that field work isn’t for me.
I’m a writer.
My twin passions came together in writing my novel, Thrall. The characters in Thrall are anatomically fully modern. It’s their minds that are at a critical point of evolution—they are making the transition from “group think” to being individual personalities, the kind of people who make art, and who will eventually go on to write the books we all love to read.
About the Author
Kimberly Todd Wade earned a degree in anthropology from the University of Miami and performed graduate studies at Tulane University. She worked as an archaeologist for fourteen years, including field work in Belize, Hawaii and Palau. In addition to writing, she is a student of American finger-style guitar and a lover of blues and ragtime music.