"I've met people in some very accomplished groups who make it clear it's what you yourself are doing that's interesting, not who your parents are or where you live. It's all around me in Baltimore — the excitement of history and real people doing things and not being shy to talk about their lives while still being engaged in the present."

mary.mccauley@baltsun.com

About the Book

"The Sleeping Dictionary" was published Aug. 20 by Simon & Schuster. $16; 528 pages.

If you go

Author Sujata Massey will discuss her new novel at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Ivy Bookshop, 6080 Falls Road. Call 410-377-2966 or go to http://www.theivybookshop.com

Sujata Massey

Age: 49

Home: Baltimore (Tuxedo Park)

Profession: Author of 11 novels

Best-known works: The Rei Shimura mysteries

Newspaper career: Covered food and fashion for The Evening Sun, 1986-91

Awards: Agatha Award for Best First Novel ("The Salaryman's Wife," published 1997) and Macavity Award for Best Novel ("The Flower Master" published 1999)

Born: Sussex County, England

Education: Bachelor's degree in Writing Seminars in 1986 from the Johns Hopkins University

Personal: Married to psychiatrist Tony Massey; one daughter and one son