WWK--Better than ever--Look for the return of blogs by Linda Rodriguez! She's back--on 1/4. Watch for our new blogger Tammy Euliano--debuting on 1/17
Margaret S. Hamilton's short story, "Killer Weeds," appears in the January 20 edition of Texas Gardener's Seeds: From Our Garden to Yours. Congratulations, Margaret, who, if you follow Facebook know, is a superb gardener herself!
Congratulations to Jennifer J. Chow for garnering a 2021 Lefty Nomination for Best Humorous Mystery Novel. We're crossing our fingers for Jennifer!
Congratulations to Paula Gail Benson whose "Reputation or Soul" has been chosen for Malice Domestic 16: Mystery Most Diabolical anthology to be released this spring.
KM Rockwood's "Stay Safe--Very Safe" appears in this year's 2020 BOULD anthology. Congratulations, KM!
Margaret S. Hamilton's "Dealing at the Dump" appears in Cozy Villages of Death Fall 2020.
Margaret S. Hamilton's "Black Market Baby" and Debra H. Goldstein's "Forensic Magic" appear in Masthead: Best New England Crime Stories Fall 2020.
Jennifer J. Chow's Mimi Lee Reads Between the Lines (interview on WWK on 11/11) released on November 10.
Annette Dashofy signed with agent Dawn Dowdle of the Blue Ridge Literary Agency. Congratulations, Annette!
KM Rockwood's "Secrets To The Grave" has been published in the SinC Chesapeake Chapter's new anthology Invitation To Murder, released by Wildside Press on 10/6.
Susan Van Kirk's Three May Keep A Secret has been republished by Harlequin's Worldwide Mystery. The WWK interview about the book can be accessed here. We're so glad another publisher picked up this series.
Wednesday, February 27, 2019
A WALK FOR SUNSHINE
I just finished a book my sister Suzanne gave to me " A WALK FOR SUNSHINE by Jeff Alt. It was a fascinating book for me to read because it was a true story oof the author Jeff Alt walking the whole Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Mt. Kathadin in Maine, a 2160 mile journey. He hiked it for charity for Sunshine Homes where his brother Aaron was living. Aaron was born with cerebral palsy and intellectual problems.
Also, I found it interesting because my sister and her teenagers started hiking it, too, in Shenandoah National Park quite a few years ago. We continued the following year, too, with our brother and our Washington State sister and her husband as well as nephews. We also in later years hiked it a little further north as we were heading for New England.
Would I like to hike parts of it again? I'd like to, but I know I'm getting too old to hike very far on that trail. I do my hiking closer to home in my woods or a trail that is a few miles from where I live.
Do you think you'd like to hike the Appalachian Trail?
Do you hike much on any trail?
Tuesday, February 26, 2019
Tina Whittle writes the Tai Randolph/Trey Seaver mysteries. The sixth book in this Atlanta-based series—Necessary Ends—is available now. Tina is a proud member of Sisters in Crime and has served as both a chapter officer and national board member. Visit her website to follow her on social media, sign up for her newsletter, or read additional scenes and short stories: www.tinawhittle.com.
Monday, February 25, 2019
Take the example of a blooming pear tree. February is winding to a close here in the deep South, and Spring is making an unseasonably warm appearance with the trees, shrubs and flowers blooming in swift succession.
The first signs of spring are the daffodils and the forsythia bushes, better known as yellowbells. Shortly after or while they are blooming, the tulip trees burst out with their pink and white blooms, and then the pear trees.
The flowers of pear trees are white and small compared to the large tulip tree blooms but they still show up because nothing else much is blooming and because they fill up the entire tree. A pear tree in bloom throws itself into the process. It doesn’t dally, shilly-shally, or shyly peek forward a bloom at a time. It personifies the verb “to blossom.”
Pear trees always remind me of my dad-in-law, who passed away in 2001. This is an odd association in some ways, because he didn’t particularly love spring flowers or pears. Like most people, he was always glad to see signs that spring was coming, but he didn’t rejoice in the flowers the way I do, the way that makes my teenage daughter look at me sideways and say, “Mom, get a grip.”
So where does the association come from? For the five years I was in law school (I went part time, three nights a week with two summers off), he and my Mom-in-law fed me supper every night I had class – and they were happy to do so. They enjoyed having me there. One day in March in the mid-90’s during supper, Mark’s Dad mentioned to me that he had seen some of the white flowered trees blooming in a field. He said they were dogwoods, but I was pretty sure it was too early for the dogwoods to have started. So I drove by the field that afternoon on my way to school, and realized that he was talking about the wild pear trees that had colonized the abandoned field and turned what would otherwise have been an eyesore into an attractive harbinger of spring.
I don’t know what makes that memory stand out, but ever since then, when I see the pear trees in bloom, I not only celebrate the nearness of spring, but also remember fondly a man who meant a great deal to me.
What sights and sounds do you see that trigger memories in you?
Sunday, February 24, 2019
Saturday, February 23, 2019
Friday, February 22, 2019
Thursday, February 21, 2019
WHY I LOVE BOOK CLUBS
I belong to two book clubs. The first one I joined was in the fall of 2006. It was a new book club started by Carol Baker, the local librarian and we met in a cafe with lunches and antiques and crafts for sale. It was called the Brew Basket. I think the first book picked was To Kill a Mocking bird, but I didn't keep a record then.
Eventually, Carol couldn't be with us because government funding for the library was cut back. She still had another book club at the library where she worked. We met there every third Thursday for several years until the Brew Basket went out of business. Then we went to several other restaurants for awhile and finally ended up at Roby Lee's, a larger restaurant where we had more room and where we still meet at 11:00 a.m. the Third Thursday of each month except wen one of our members has us meeting up at her cottage on Lake Erie in July.
|Just one of the book shelves in my whole house.|
Then in December we meet at my house and each of our members comes with two or three books to pick from for the following year for January to November. The extra books are added to a list for anyone to read after they've read that month's book. We have a pot luck meal at my house, too.
When we meet at Roby Lee's we discuss the book of the month and then some of us stay for lunch. Some order take-out, or some like me order the meal for takeout, but stay there to eat from the salad bar which is really good and includes soup, dessert and delicious small slices of white pizza. Carol Baker is retired now and has joined us again. The waitresses who take care of us always bring coffee or tea and fresh baked bread with butter to nibble on while we're discussing the book or talking about what has gone on in our lives since the last time we met.
The other book club I joined was the Red Read Robin book club. It was started in February 2008 on the last Thursday of the month at 6:00 p.m. It's a larger book club with over half of the members related to each other and at least half of them go to the same Sunday Mass I go to and we sit together. With that one it's held in different member's homes or if they don't have room in their homes they choose a restaurant to meet in. If it's at someone's home they prepare and evening dinner for us. One of my friends who is a member has a small home and a husband with a disability so she always chooses a restaurant when it's her month to have the book club. This book club always serves wine with the meal, too.
The first book chosen for that book club was also To Kill a Mockingbird. Only three members have dropped out not because they didn't like us, but because they were too busy like Erin, who is a teacher and has two little children. Her husband is also a teacher and both of them have lots of papers to grade. Two of our members live close to fifty miles away so don't come quite as often and when it's their turn to have book club they have it on Saturday afternoon so we don't have to come home after dark and we tend to car pool, too.
My love of belonging to book clubs has so many positive aspects. First, it's interesting to hear everyone's opinions of a book you've just read. Some really liked it. Some had a few complaints and then there's one member who often hated the book which is kind of upsetting for the hostess of the book club that night who picked the book. (That member has dropped out now.)
Second, it's fun to be with fellow book lovers, who have become my friends over the years I've belonged to both book clubs.
Third, I'm introduced to books I might never have heard of or particularly wanted to read. I'm a big mystery fan and read more mysteries than anything else, but it's good for everyone to read other books, too. There have only been a few over the years that I didn't like, but that is because the person who picked the book didn't bother to read it first, too. I often pick a good mystery or a book I'd read in the other book club and enjoyed.
Today I will be at my Third Thursday's Book Club at Roby Lee's discussing the book Little Fires Everywhere, bu Celeste Ng. It's a book that will have a lot about it to discuss.
Do you belong to a book club?
If not, would you like to belong to one?