Deborah Rice

Deborah finds phone booth in remembered traditional village of Abobo

Deborah Rice is an award-winning novelist of intelligent international suspense and an advocate for global peace and conservation. She studied with Tony Hillerman—who kindly took her under his wing—belongs to writers organizations, attends conferences, and has given workshops on writing both to elementary school children and at the university level. She has degrees from Harvard and Columbia.

Deborah grew up near Concord, Massachusetts, breathing the air of the Alcotts, Emerson, Hawthorne, even teaching swimming at Thoreau’s Walden Pond. She now lives in New Mexico with her husband, enjoying visits from their two grown daughters.




Working with Sudanese refugees in Gambela
Deborah met her husband while working with Sudanese refugees in Ethiopia.

The Global Village Mysteries


After college, Deborah went straight to Ethiopia to work with  refugees from the Sudan. In the remote border village of Gambella, on the banks of a tributary of the Nile, she taught sewing, health and English classes, did home visits for leprosy and helped cultivate experimental crops. She met her husband there.

She was left with enough imponderable questions to last a lifetime, questions she is attempting to ponder now by immersing herself in the Global Village Mysteries. (See blogs “The Global Village” and “Coming of Age”)

After recently revisiting Gambella, Deborah is immersed in writing Green Pastures, the first of the Global Village Mysteries.


Spinning Wool


Author Deborah Rice in Albania
Deborah and the grandmother of her host family at a kulla in the mountain village of Theth

A few years age, Deborah’s interest in refugees drew her to Albania and Kosovo and lead to the novel Spinning Wool. To research  Spinning Wool, Deborah trekked through Albania and Kosovo, where she met Antonia Young, ethnographer of Albania (Women Who Become Men), who commented after reading the manuscript, “This book makes you feel as if you’re in Albania, sitting in a circle of stumps under a tree sipping raki.” (See Why Albania?)

Other elements of Spinning Wool required no research, since they come from Deborah’s life experience. She taught rock climbing as a counselor at a summer camp, supervised hand-tool work crews on outdoor conservation projects for the Youth Conservation Corps in Utah and New Mexico, and was brought up skiing off-trail steeps from snow camps at Tuckerman’s Ravine in New Hampshire.