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Romance novelist Alice Borchardt dies

Aug. 3, 2007 at 11:29 AM

HOUSTON, Aug. 3 (UPI) -- Alice Borchardt, whose foray into writing historical romance novels came after a career in nursing, has died of cancer in Houston at age 76.

Borchardt, the older sister of novelist Anne Rice, died July 24.

"Alice loved to write," Rice said in a statement to the Los Angeles Times. "She had a natural ear for beautiful language and was a natural storyteller."

Borchardt, in her mid-50s when the first of her seven novels was published, is perhaps best known for her trilogy -- "The Silver Wolf," "Night of the Wolf" and "The Wolf King" -- about werewolves in medieval Rome, the Times reported Friday.

Earlier in her literary career, Borchardt wrote more conventional historical romances. Her first novel, "Devoted," and its sequel, "Beguiled," are set in medieval France.

A licensed vocational nurse for 30 years, Borchardt was at a career crossroads when the hospital where she worked reduced its staff.

"I prayed about it," she said in a 1999 interview. "The next day the idea for a short story came to me. A door opened, and I walked through it."

In addition to Rice, Borchardt is survived by her husband, Clifford, three sisters and two nephews.

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