Elaine Coffman is a New York Times bestselling author with a large international following. She has penned novels in both the historical romance genre and suspense. A lover of history, she has penned several novels set in Scotland, Regency England, Italy and the American West. To date, she is the author of nineteen novels and five novellas.
Barbara Elaine Gunter was born in San Diego, California, to William Samuel Gunter, Jr., a naval officer and Edna Marie (née Davidson) Gunter, a homemaker. From the age of three she lived in Midland, Texas and graduated from Midland High School. She received a degree in elementary education from North Texas State University. She taught elementary school in Midland, Texas, while working on her Master's Degree and certification for Language and Learning Disabilities at Texas Tech in Lubbock.
Elaine currently resides in Austin, Texas, where her son, Chuck, also lives. She has two daughters, Lesley who resides in Raleigh, N.C. and Ashley, who lives in San Diego, California.
Always an avid reader, Elaine loved to read from the family set of encyclopedias during her grade school years, and she is sure she read every children's book in the Midland County Library. Later on, she kept a dictionary and a book of quotations in her bedside table to read at night and would jot down quotes, words and definitions she liked. While writing her first novel, My Enemy, My Love, she found herself inspired by a letter her great-great grandmother, Susannah Jane Dowell Shacklett wrote in 1920, telling about her journey from Brandeburg, Kentucky to San Antonio, Texas, and then going with an army escort to El Paso, Texas, where her brother, Ben Dowell, a veteran of the Mexican War, was El Paso's first mayor. This inspired her to trace her family history back to Charlemagne, which she registered with The College of Arms in London, England.
Elaine writes in a lyrical style, so the meter of the words is important to her, and there are times when she can spend hours on one paragraph. And she is a stickler for research, and as Publisher's Weekly said in the review for The Italian, "Coffman renders Italy's plight with the exactitude of a historian."
Three of Elaine Coffman's books have been nominated for Best Historical Romance of the Year by Romance Writers of America. She has also received the Maggie Award, Reviewers Choice Award, and Best Western Historical Award. Elaine continued to write best-selling, award-winning books until the publication of her eleventh novel, If You Loved Me, which was the last book of her beloved Mackinnon series and her first book to hit the New York Times bestseller list.
Her first suspense novel, Alone in the Dark, was published by Pocket books in 2006.