The second most exciting thing in life for me has always been learning something new. The first? Getting to share what I’ve learned with others. My life has given me so many opportunities to do both—as a professor (retired), as a historical novelist, and as a cruise lecturer.

My goal as a historical novelist is to provide you, the reader, with high-quality fiction about women and the forgotten and undervalued roles they played in their societies. Whether it’s the real-life physicist Emilie du Chatelet, the literary heroine Penelope, or women who have sprung entirely from my imagination, I offer you stories true to the facts of a time and place, to bring history alive for you and make you feel as much a part of other cultures as you do your own.

As a world-wide lecturer for several cruise lines, I use my career as a college professor of humanities to find the stories that make travel more exciting and memorable.

If you have either met me recently or been in my life since I was a teenager (or younger), you may know me by my birth name, Laurel Weeks.  I have been using this name in my private life for several years.

Please check back from time to time for updates on my new projects and schedule, and drop me a line at lacauthor@gmail.com to let me know you’re out there reading and traveling!

From my diary

  • Once Upon a Time
    When I was flying to England three weeks ago to begin a research trip before embarking on a cruise assignment, I found myself thinking about the most painful flight I ever took.  I was in Florence finishing a sabbatical in 1999,  when I got the nightmarish phone call that my son Adriano was dead.  The struggle to get home at the Christmas season was horrendous. There were no flights from Florence so I took an overnight train to Frankfurt, the only airport where I could find a plane going to San Diego, carrying what I could fit in two suitcases and leaving…
  • The Judgment of the Birds
    A few days ago, my ship stopped in Cabo San Lucas.  I am not a fan of the noisy, characterless places that most big tourist ports in Mexico have become, but I wanted to get off the ship for a while, so I got on a boat going for a few hours to some bays that were at least less crowded. The other guests and I were having fun on a beautiful, sunny afternoon when suddenly we heard commotion from another boat near us. A man was floating, unmoving and face down in the water, and several people had jumped in…
  • Dancing with the Daffodils
    It feels odd to be writing about daffodils, an early sign of spring in Victoria,  while I am sweltering in Panama City waiting for my cruise assignment to start tomorrow.  Here the plants change with the season by blossoming and bearing seeds or fruit, and then they move on to the green state they stay in most of the year.  I spent most of my life in Southern California so my acquaintance with seasons there came only through a home high enough in the mountains to get snow and seasonal flowers in sunny spots.  Even in San Diego, the jacarandas in the spring…