Dear Rachel Caine,
I first discovered you around 2010 when I saw the first few Morganville books in an offer I couldn’t refuse. From page one, I was hooked, and probably read the first nine books back-to-back. I was a lot younger than Claire at the time, but diving into her world captivated me for hours.
By 2012, I was a huge fan, and had the good fortune to meet you in person during your Black Dawn UK tour. Even now, I admire the tote bag — complete with a dragon drawn by your husband — given to everyone in the huge queue of people you gave up your time to meet. I used that bag every day until the straps fell apart.
Meeting you was incredible, and you were kind enough to not only sign a copy for myself, but also for my best friend at the time. To this day, I’m sure that signed book is the best gift I have ever given.
Soon enough, however, Morganville had to come to an end. To say I was sad to say goodbye to Claire, Shane, Michael, Eve, Myrnin and, yes, even Oliver, was an understatement. They had become a huge part of my life … But I am so grateful for that series. I am grateful for every page, every single word you gifted to your readers. It is a series I will never stop recommending, and one I know will stand as a testament to the richness the vampire genre has to offer.
And yet, luckily for me, you weren’t done with YA. It wasn’t long before Jess Brightwell waltzed into my life with his ink-stained fingers and soul-deep passion for books — and I haven’t been the same since. The Great Library series filled a hole inside me that I hadn’t known existed. It weaves together everything I find fascinating: the Ancient Library of Alexandria, alternate realities, the power of books and, of course, a powerful, flawed, beautiful band of teenagers determined to make things right with the world. And let’s not forget their aloof yet loveable mentor.
Reading The Great Library became an annual tradition, often serendipitously coinciding with a summer holiday which gave me the perfect excuse for sitting by the pool and reading all day. Needless to say, it quickly became a favourite of mine.
I am lucky that, having grown up with two of your YA series, there are so many more of your books for me to discover. Soon enough, I’ll need an entire bookshelf dedicated to your work, and the thought couldn’t make me happier. You will always be a favourite writer of mine.
My life has changed so much since I first picked up Glass Houses. The world itself has changed dramatically. It is with a heavy heart that I say this goodbye to you — that I acknowledge this final change you have created in the world. But your books will remain, and for that, I will always be grateful. We, your readers, will always keep a little piece of you with us — you will live on in us.
You touched so many people with your words. I know that each and every one of them thanks you for all the hard work and determination you threw into every novel. I sit here today, sending all the love I can across the miles to your family and friends that have cared for you and loved you. I hope that your pain has eased, I hope that you have found comfort. Thank you, thank you.
On the 1st November 2020, Roxanne Conrad, aka Rachel Caine, passed away after a long battle with cancer. She was 58. Her family has issued a statement to fans that can be read here.
Caine was a bestselling author of over 50 books, with millions of copies sold. Best known on Bookstacked for her Great Library series, she also wrote the bestselling Morganville Vampires series.
Aside from her Young Adult works, Rachel Caine also authored the popular Stillhouse Lake series, the fifth installment of which is due for publication in March 2021.