Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

The Dirty Dozen, with Sean Slater

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Sean Slater

Vancouver police officer Sean Slater is the mind behind fictional homicide detective Jacob Striker, who first appeared in 2011's The Survivor. Snakes & Ladders (Simon & Schuster Canada) sees Striker back in action, tracking a serial killer who has been covering up his crimes by framing them as suicides.

Sean chats with Open Book as part of our Dirty Dozen series, where authors are invited to share twelve unexpected facts about themselves. Read on to hear about a very tiny Christmas bonus, the social capital of ColecoVision and the best flavour of ice cream.

  1. I met my wife when we were both enrolled in the same Massage Therapy College.
  2. The first Christmas bonus cheque I ever got was for a measly $3.83. Rather than cash it, I had it framed for incentive.
  3. When I work on the final draft of my books, I always wear a long-sleeved flannel work shirt because it was my father’s and it gives me special powers.
  4. I am currently playing Max Payne 3 on the PC and am an avid gamer! I started off gaming in the age of Vic 20s and was an instant neighborhood star when my parents bought us a ColecoVision.
  5. I played goalie in ice hockey for five years as it was my dream to be a Vancouver Canuck player (On that note, my nine-year-old son tells me he is already better than I ever was.)
  6. I drink around six cups of coffee a day — which is much better than the twenty to twenty-five cups I used to drink in college. (By the way, nothing goes better with a cup of coffee than a biscotti)
  7. I have torn my knee ligaments four times. (It really hurts. Never do this).
  8. I have been pepper-sprayed and shot with a TASER (Again, it hurts. Never do this.)
  9. As a kid, I collected comic books — Spiderman, X-men, Wolverine & Daredevil.
  10. After changing my major twice in college, I quit and traveled around Europe for four months.
  11. The best flavor of ice cream is blue bubblegum.
  12. My nickname at the police department is Tickler. Don’t ask why. I will never tell.


Sean Slater is the pseudonym for Vancouver Police Officer Sean Sommerville. Sommerville works in Canada’s poorest slum, the Downtown East Side — an area rife with poverty, mental illness, drug use, prostitution and gang warfare. He has investigated everything from frauds and extortions to homicides. Sommerville has written numerous columns and editorials for the city newspaper. His work has been nominated for the Rupert Hughes Prose Award, and he was the grand-prize winner of the Sunday Serial Thriller contest. His debut novel, The Survivor, was shortlisted for an Arthur Ellis Award and was published to rave review. Snakes & Ladders is his second novel.

For more information about Snakes & Ladders please visit the Simon & Schuster Canada website.

Buy this book at your local independent bookstore or online at Chapters/Indigo or Amazon.

Check out all the Dirty Dozen interviews in our archives.

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