Friday, June 18, 2004

The Master - James Lee Burke

Hi all,

What a way to start the Father's Day weekend. Today James Lee Burke was reading and signing his new book In the Moon of Red Ponies at Mysteries To Die For.

This book brings back Billy Bob Holland, who was last seen in Bitterroot. There were about 50 people there (at a 2:30 PM signing on a Friday afternoon, incredible!!) to meet and here Burke read. I'can't remember much of the questions that were asked because I was so caught up in him reading his book. He is one of the few authors who can read a book out loud and you enter a trance and loose yourself listening to his words.

Wednesday, June 16, 2004

Like a Charm...Billingham and Slaughter

Continuing Saturday afternoon, the dynamic duo of Karin Slaughter and Mark Billingham graced our presence at Mysteries To Die For.

The hour long book discussion focused on Like A Charm, the new serial anthology that Karin edited this year. It is a different type of serial anthology in that all the stories were written at the same time. This meant that each author had to tell the next author where to pick up the charm. For Mark Billingham this was only his second short story published. He was worried whether or not his would stand up to the rest. (Not to worry Mark, it is great!). There were a few interesting stories as to Lee Child's inclusion - he replaced Val McDermid at the last minute and was rewarded with a case of American Beer.(Karin how exactly did it get to Lee?) Child wrote his story in what is believed to be a 24 hour period. Anyway, Karin starts out this book and ends it with her stories. Next time she plans to start an anthology in the usual fashion...the authors send the story to next person to continue.

Karin's new book Indelible will be out in the UK In September.

While talking about Like A Charm, Mark was able to get a few words in too. He asked if we would like to hear him read a portion of his book, and of course we said yes. He first wanted to know if we would be upset by any profanity. HELL NO! Apparently he gets nasty emails for the use of the "F" word. Incredible.

This is the 3rd DI Thorne book and the series keeps getting better and better. Mark wanted to explore the question of what or how a detective should feel when sex offenders are being killed off. He told us a story about a similar real life killing in the UK. Apparently someone killed a pediatrician thinking or misreading the word as pedophile

His new book The Burning Girl will be out in the UK in July.

Jim Swain and the Vegas Connection

Well, last Saturday (June 12) was a busy day for writers and fans at Mysteries To Die For. To start the day

Jim Swain the author of the Tony Valentine series was out about promoting his new book Loaded Dice.

But before Jim really started talking about his book, he did show us a few card tricks and some the scams that take place at casinos around the world. He described and demonstrated one scam that worked for 18 months and cost the casino over $6 million. In addition to the card manipulations and dealing scams he also demonstrated certain devices (legal to own as long as you don't walk into a casino) that will take or give a card to you up the sleeve of your shirt.

Jim also mentioned that he has already finished the next two books and is working on the 6th book to be handed in later this year. If you haven't had time to check out this series, it is well worth it. Oh by the way when counting, well, email for the answer.

Here I am with Jim at the end of the signing...

Monday, June 14, 2004

Jennifer Apodaca and Sheryl Anderson at Mysteries To Die For

Well here is the first post of the week (well, make that last week) as I was able to visit with my good friend Jennifer Apodaca. Jen was out promoting her new book and I love this title Ninja Soccer Moms, the 3rd book in the Samantha Shaw series. Jen tells us that her publisher has signed on for two more books, so counting the one that is in the hopper, there will now be 6 Sam Shaw books to read. In addition she will be adding a short story to an anthology called Wicked Women Whodonit. The next book Batteries Required, well you figure it out. If you can't read the interview with Jen! The signing took place at one my favorite bookstores, Mysteries To Die For.

Joining Jen was first time author Sheryl Anderson. Sheryl's new book is called Killer Heels.

This was a fun signing because Jen sort of interviewed Sheryl and we found out about Sheryl life in Hollywood, the process of writing a book and getting published and family and friends.

In the end, we all had a great time and many laughs!

Well, it has been a week!

Sorry for being away for so long. The past two weeks have found me busy with a 6th grade class culmination, closing down an elementary school for the summer, gearing up for summer school, the Reagan funeral (since I work in Simi) and my own daughter graduating from 12th grade.

So now it is onto the task at hand and in the next several posts I will bring you up to date on what's happening in the So Cal area.

If you haven't noticed lately, the new SHOTS is on line and there a great story by my good friend Dave White. Check it out, seldom does he disappoint!

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