Colette Bancroft - Copy Desk Chief and Books Critic

Copy Desk Chief and Books Critic

I was the kid whose mother said, “Put down that book, go outside and play.” I grew up in Tampa, earned degrees in English at the University of South Florida and University of Florida, and taught literature and writing for more than a decade. Then I switched to journalism, working for the Arizona Daily Star and, since 1997, for the Tampa Bay Times as an editor, reporter and critic. In 2007, I became the Times’ book editor, writing reviews, interviewing authors and helping to direct the annual Times Festival of Reading. I served two terms on the board of the National Book Critics Circle. I live in St. Petersburg with my dog, Marlowe, and cat, Isabel. When I’m not reading, I’m traveling or painting.

  1. Richard Osman's new novel is "The Last Devil to Die."
  2. Stephen King's new novel is "Holly."
  3. Lauren Groff's new novel is "The Vaster Wilds."
  4. Michael Connelly is one of the headliners for the 2023 Tampa Bay Times Festival of Reading.
  5. Jaime Hector, left, appears as Jerry Edgar with Titus Welliver as Harry Bosch in Season 2 of "Bosch: Legacy."
  6. High school student Walter Gadsden, left, is attacked by a police dog handled by a police officer, Richard Middleton, in Birmingham, Alabama, on May 3, 1963.
  7. Michael Koryta's latest thriller is "An Honest Man."
  8. Gloria Munoz is St. Petersburg's poet laureate.
  9. Ann Patchett's latest novel is "Tom Lake."
  10. Laura Lippman's latest novel is "Prom Mom."
  11. Colson Whitehead's latest novel is "Crook Manifesto."
  12. Ana Menendez's new short story collection, "The Apartment," is set in Miami Beach.
  13. The Lincoln Lawyer. (L to R) Manuel Garcia-Rulfo as Mickey Haller, Becki Newton as Lorna in episode 101 of The Lincoln Lawyer. Cr. Lara Solanki/Netflix © 2022
  14. James Lee Burke's new book, "Flags on the Bayou," is set during the Civil War.
  15. Megan Abbott's latest novel is "Beware the Woman."
  16. Anne Hull's memoir is "Through the Groves."
  17. Kristin Harmel's latest novel is "The Paris Daughter."
  18. S.A. Cosby's new novel is "All the Sinners Bleed."
  19. Tampa Bay Times staffer Lane DeGregory is pictured in 2013.
  20. Luis Alberto Urrea's new novel is "Good Night, Irene."
  21. Bestselling fantasy author Christopher Paolini's new book is "Fractal Noise."
  22. Patti Callahan Henry's new novel is "The Secret Book of Flora Lea."
  23. T.C. Boyle's new novel is "Blue Skies."