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'Brilliant' Thriller

Author Marne Davis Kellogg first won a loyal following with her Lily Bennett Mystery series and then penned "Insatiable," a novel about a portrait painter and scam artist.

Her latest book, "Brilliant," follows the fictional adventures of Kick Keswick, an auction house expert and jewel thief. To read an excerpt from "Brilliant," click here.

Kellogg says this is a a small departure from her earlier books that had aspects of murder.

To research "Brilliant," Kellogg told The Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith, she visited some of the most secure holding areas for expensive jewelry.

"I started with Bob Gibson at Raymond Yard here in New York. And he introduced me to the head of estate jewelry at Sotheby's. So I was able to spend the day during the magnificent jewelry auctions following her around," she said. She said she wore some Raymond Yard pieces for her interview.

"I've found as I've gotten older that I'm more interested in jewelry than murder," she said.

Her successful, independent single female friends in their 40s and 50s were her inspiration for creating her character of Kick, she noted.

She wanted readers to see that you don't have to be married to enjoy life or to be a fully realized person.

Her novel includes elements of love, lust, good food and good wine. Dorothy J. Gaiter and John Brecher, who write the wine journal at the "Wall Street Journal," selected the wines for the book. And there are recipes in the book as well.

Smith, who first interviewed Kellogg back in 1996, asked her why, after writing for "People" magazine and being a flight attendant, she decided to become a novelist

"I always wanted to do that. I always for my whole life, I wanted to do this. And finally I just said I'm doing it. And I'm still doing it," she said.

Because Kellogg loves writing, she is already at work on a sequel to "Brilliant" — saying she felt there was more to do with Kick.

Most of her books have a message in them. "Brilliant'"s is, "Enjoy your whole life. And don't worry about your weight."