Thursday, September 30, 2010

Meredith Cole's Lydia McKenzie novels, the movie

Now showing at My Book, The Movie: Posed for Murder and Dead in the Water by Meredith Cole.

The entry begins:
Since I started my career as a filmmaker and screenwriter, people often ask me when my books will be made into films or a television show. It seems natural to other people that I would imagine my stories as both novels and films from the very beginning. But I don’t. When I set out to write something new, I choose at some point whether a story is destined for the screen or for the pages of a book. And then I write it (or direct it). And then I’m done.

I wouldn’t say “no” if someone bought up the film rights and gave Lydia a new life in a different medium. There are probably things I would find painful (they might exaggerate her vintage clothes or goofiness), and others I would find enlightening (I wrote that?). But it would be an interesting experience nonetheless.

When someone first asked me who I saw playing Lydia, one actress popped into my head...[read on]
Meredith Cole started her career as a screenwriter and filmmaker. She was the winner of the St. Martin’s Press/Malice Domestic competition. Posed for Murder (2009) was nominated for an Agatha Award for Best First Mystery Novel. Dead in the Water (2010) continues the adventures of photographer Lydia McKenzie in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

Cole teaches writing at the University of Virginia.

Learn more about the book and author at Meredith Cole's website.

My Book, The Movie: Meredith Cole's Lydia McKenzie novels.

--Marshal Zeringue

Pg. 69: Anna Elliott's "Dark Moon of Avalon"

The current feature at the Page 69 Test: Dark Moon of Avalon by Anna Elliott.

About the book, from the publisher:
She is a healer, a storyteller, and a warrior. She has fought to preserve Britain's throne. Now she faces her greatest challenge in turning bitter enemies into allies, saving the life of the man she loves ... and mending her own wounded heart.

The young former High Queen, Isolde, and her friend and protector, Trystan, are reunited in a new and dangerous quest to keep the usurper, Lord Marche, and his Saxon allies from the throne of Britain. Using Isolde's cunning wit and talent for healing and Trystan's strength and bravery, they must act as diplomats, persuading the rulers of the smaller kingdoms, from Ireland to Cornwall, that their allegiance to the High King is needed to keep Britain from a despot's hands.

Their admissions of love hang in the air, but neither wants to put the other at risk by openly declaring a deeper alliance. When their situation is at its most desperate, Trystan and Isolde must finally confront their true feelings toward each other, in time for a battle that will test the strength of their will and their love.

Steeped in the magic and lore of Arthurian legend, Elliott paints a moving portrait of a timeless romance, fraught with danger, yet with the power to inspire heroism and transcend even the darkest age.
Read the prologue to Dark Moon of Avalon, and watch the video trailer.

Learn more about the book and author at Anna Elliott's website and blog.

The Page 69 Test: Dark Moon of Avalon.

--Marshal Zeringue

Top 10 books on the ancient world

Annabel Lyon is a Vancouver fiction writer and teacher. Her books include Oxygen (stories), The Best Thing for You (novellas), All-Season Edie (juvenile novel), and The Golden Mean, her first novel for adults.

At the Guardian, she named her top ten books on the ancient world.

One book on the list:
The Centaur by John Updike (1963)

An anxious teenage boy and his depressive schoolteacher father in small-town Pennsylvania shift and shimmer in and out of Greek myths: the father becomes the tragic centaur Chiron, while the son becomes Prometheus. It's a magical feat, pulled off with Updike's signature wit, painterly vision, and keen eye for beauty in the tiniest of details.
Read about another book on the list.

The Centaur also appears among Dave Boling's five best examples of how to structure a novel.

--Marshal Zeringue

What is Patricia Gussin reading?

The current featured contributor at Writers Read: Patricia Gussin, author of And Then There Was One, The Test, Twisted Justice, and Shadow of Death.

Her entry begins:
The books I write are thrillers, but thrillers are not necessarily the book I read. Right now I’m re-reading The Burning Shore by Wilbur Smith. This was the title that turned me onto this astounding author. He brings high tension adventure, bigger than life characters, compelling plots, and a family sage theme.

Speaking of family saga, I love Barbara Bradford. A Woman of Substance is right next to me and read excerpts frequently to keep me on inspired. I love family themes because they evoke...[read on]
About And Then There Was One:
One is the loneliest number. Nine years ago, Katie and Scott Monroe were blessed beyond their wildest dreams with identical triplets, Sammie, Alex, and Jackie. Three beautiful daughters and two adoring parents formed the picture-perfect party of five. But this tight-knit family unravels when the three little girls go to see a movie, but only one emerges from the darkness of the theater. How could Sammie and Alex vanish without a trace? Plunged into the abyss of a parent’s worst fear, Katie and Scott hang by a thread—waiting, worrying, not knowing, and confronting the terrifying realization that the kidnapping may not have been a random act. Who took Sammie and Alex? Why? Where are they? When will they be found? And what if they’re never found, or not found alive? When Jackie, the remaining triplet, crumbles under the weight of grief and survivor’s guilt, Katie and Scott struggle to hold out hope and hold on to what remains of their family. Until—or unless—Sammie and Alex are found safe, this picture-perfect family can’t be put back together again.
Visit Patricia Gussin's website.

The Page 69 Test: Shadow of Death.

My Book, The Movie: Twisted Justice.

The Page 69 Test: The Test.

My Book, The Movie: The Test.

Writers Read: Patricia Gussin.

--Marshal Zeringue

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Pg. 99: Daniel K. Williams' "God’s Own Party"

The current feature at the Page 99 Test: God's Own Party: The Making of the Christian Right by Daniel Williams.

About the book, from the publisher:
When the Christian Right burst onto the scene in the late 1970s, many political observers were shocked. But, God's Own Party demonstrates, they shouldn't have been. The Christian Right goes back much farther than most journalists, political scientists, and historians realize. Relying on extensive archival and primary source research, Daniel K. Williams presents the first comprehensive history of the Christian Right, uncovering how evangelicals came to see the Republican Party as the vehicle through which they could reclaim America as a Christian nation.

The conventional wisdom has been that the Christian Right arose in response to Roe v. Wade and the liberal government policies of the 1970s. Williams shows that the movement's roots run much deeper, dating to the 1920s, when fundamentalists launched a campaign to restore the influence of conservative Protestantism on American society. He describes how evangelicals linked this program to a political agenda-resulting in initiatives against evolution and Catholic political power, as well as the national crusade against communism. Williams chronicles Billy Graham's alliance with the Eisenhower White House, Richard Nixon's manipulation of the evangelical vote, and the political activities of Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, and others, culminating in the presidency of George W. Bush. Though the Christian Right has frequently been declared dead, Williams shows, it has come back stronger every time. Today, no Republican presidential candidate can hope to win the party's nomination without its support.

A fascinating and much-needed account of a key force in American politics, God's Own Party is the only full-scale analysis of the electoral shifts, cultural changes, and political activists at the movement's core-showing how the Christian Right redefined politics as we know it.
Learn more about God's Own Party at the Oxford University Press website.

Daniel K. Williams is an assistant professor of history at the University of West Georgia.

The Page 99 Test: God's Own Party.

--Marshal Zeringue

Pg. 69: Justin Peacock's "Blind Man's Alley"

The current feature at the Page 69 Test: Blind Man's Alley by Justin Peacock.
About the book, from the publisher:
From the author of the Edgar Award–nominated legal thriller A Cure for Night, an ambitious and compulsively readable novel set in the cutthroat world of New York real estate.

A concrete floor three hundred feet up in the Aurora Tower condo development in SoHo has collapsed, hurling three workers to their deaths. The developer, Roth Properties (owned by the famously abrasive Simon Roth), faces a vast tangle of legal problems, including allegations of mob connections. Roth’s longtime lawyers, the elite midtown law firm of Blake and Wolcott, is assigned the task of cleaning up the mess. Much of the work lands on the plate of smart, cynical, and sea­soned associate Duncan Riley; as a result, he falls into the pow­erful orbit of Leah Roth, the beautiful daughter of Simon Roth and the designated inheritor of his real estate empire.

Meanwhile, Riley pursues a seemingly small pro bono case in which he attempts to forestall the eviction of Rafael Nazario and his grandmother from public housing in the wake of a pot bust. One night Rafael is picked up and charged with the mur­der of the private security cop who caught him, a murder that took place in another controversial “mixed income” housing development being built by ... Roth Properties. Duncan Riley is now walking the knife edge of legal ethics and personal morality.

Blind Man’s Alley is a suspenseful and kaleidoscopic journey through a world where the only rule is self- preservation. The New York Times Book Review said of A Cure for Night that “[Peacock] heads toward Scott Turow country ... he’s got a good chance to make partner.” This taut, topical, and socially alert thriller delivers on that promise.
Read an excerpt from Blind Man’s Alley, and learn more about the book and author at Justin Peacock's website.
The Page 69 Test: A Cure for Night.
The Page 69 Test: Blind Man's Alley.
--Marshal Zeringue

Five great books about obscure presidents

At the Christian Science Monitor, Randy Dotinga named five great books about obscure presidents.

One title on the list:
The Harding Affair: Love and Espionage during the Great War by James David Robenalt (2009)

He's best remembered today for the Teapot Dome scandal and his White House canoodling with a woman who was not his wife.

But Warren Harding's philandering had begun years before his brief stint as president. In fact, the man who looked like a senator straight from central casting had a long and tumultuous affair with a friend of this wife (who was both formidable and scandal-plagued herself.)

The mistress turned out to have troublesome sympathies toward Germany. And that was the least of it.

The president's love letters remain, and they reveal the inner life of a man of stunning – and misdirected – passion. If only he'd devoted that same energy to effectively running the country.
Read about another book on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

What is Wendy Orr reading?

The current featured contributor at Writers Read: Wendy Orr, author, mostly of books for children and young adults, including Nim's Island (the book that the film was based on), Nim at Sea, Peeling the Onion, Ark in the Park, Spook's Shack, Mokie and BIk, and The Princess and Her Panther.

Her entry begins:
On the flight home from Vancouver to Melbourne, I should have been reading The Cardturner by Louis Sachar. That was my gift voucher book from The Red Balloon Bookshop in Minneapolis (I never did figure out why I needed more gifts when they’d just thrown me a party, but who ever looked a gift book in the mouth?).

I hope that was the attitude of whoever next sat in my seat from Vancouver to Los Angeles, because, tucked into the seat pocket with the emergency instructions, they would have found a nice new hardback copy of The Cardturner. I do hope they enjoyed the surprise of it, as well as the book. (Maybe they could write the next blog!)

So, five minutes before boarding that last 15 hour leg, I finished going through all the hand luggage, realised that I truly was bookless, and bolted to the bookstore. There was no leisure for browsing for a new author. Barbara...[read on]
Among the early praise for The Princess and Her Panther:
"A warm and cozy tale of sisterly joy and sweet imagination."
--Kirkus Reviews

"Children will recognize the thrill of confronting fears when you know that cozy comforts are right there when you need them."

"Imagination is at the heart of this book as two sisters set out to camp in their backyard...This is a clever twist on the usual camping story and the fears that accompany it."
--School Library Journal
Visit Wendy Orr's blog.

Writers Read: Wendy Orr.

--Marshal Zeringue

Pg. 99: Jon Cohen's "Almost Chimpanzee"

The current feature at the Page 99 Test: Almost Chimpanzee: Searching for What Makes Us Human, in Rainforests, Labs, Sanctuaries, and Zoos by Jon Cohen.

About the book, from the publisher:
The captivating story of how a band of scientists has redrawn the genetic and behavioral lines that separate humans from our nearest cousins

In the fall of 2005, a band of researchers cracked the code of the chimpanzee genome and provided a startling new window into the differences between humans and our closest primate cousins. For the past several years, acclaimed Science reporter Jon Cohen has been following the DNA hunt, as well as eye-opening new studies in ape communication, human evolution, disease, diet, and more.

In Almost Chimpanzee, Cohen invites us on a captivating scientific journey, taking us behind the scenes in cutting-edge genetics labs, rain forests in Uganda, sanctuaries in Iowa, experimental enclaves in Japan, even the Detroit Zoo. Along the way, he ferries fresh chimp sperm for a time-sensitive analysis, gets greeted by pant-hoots and chimp feces, and investigates an audacious attempt to breed a humanzee. Cohen offers a fresh and often frankly humorous insider's tour of the latest research, which promises to lead to everything from insights about the unique ways our bodies work to shedding light on stubborn human-only problems, ranging from infertility and asthma to speech disorders.

And in the end, Cohen explains why it's time to move on from Jane Goodall's plea that we focus on how the two species are alike and turns to examining why our differences matter in vital ways—for understanding humans and for increasing the chances to save the endangered chimpanzee.
Read an excerpt from Almost Chimpanzee, and learn more about the book and author at Jon Cohen's website.

Jon Cohen is the author of Shots in the Dark and Coming to Term. He is a correspondent at the internationally renowned Science magazine and has also written for The Atlantic, The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, Discover, Smithsonian, and Slate.

The Page 99 Test: Almost Chimpanzee.

--Marshal Zeringue

Ten must-read novels of the fall

At The Daily Beast, Janice Kaplan named the ten must-read novels of the fall.

One book on the list:
Our Kind of Traitor by John le Carre

Most thrillers are quick page-turners, but the masterful John le Carre expects readers to do some work, too. In his latest, Our Kind of Traitor, a money-laundering Russian connects with an English couple on a tennis vacation and the British Secret Service wants to know why. As in the real world of spies, motives aren’t always clear and the ending doesn’t neatly tie up all the ends. As one character thinks, “Half-truths. Quarter-truths. What the world really knows about itself, it doesn’t dare say.”
Read about another novel on the list.

Learn about John le Carré's best books.

--Marshal Zeringue

Pg. 69: Ken Scholes' "Antiphon"

Today's feature at the Page 69 Test: Antiphon by Ken Scholes.

About the book, from the publisher:
Nothing is as it seems to be.

The ancient past is not dead. The hand of the Wizard Kings still reaches out to challenge the Androfrancine Order, to control the magick and technology that they sought to understand and claim for their own.

Nebios, the boy who watched the destruction of the city of Windwir, now runs the vast deserts of the world, far from his beloved Marsh Queen. He is being hunted by strange women warriors, while his dreams are invaded by warnings from his dead father.

Jin Li Tam, queen of the Ninefold Forest, guards her son as best she can against both murderous threats, and the usurper queen and her evangelists. They bring a message: Jakob is the child of promise of their Gospel, and the Crimson Empress is on her way.

And in hidden places, the remnants of the Androfrancine order formulate their response to the song pouring out of a silver crescent that was found in the wastes.
Learn more about the author and his work at Ken Scholes's website and blog.

The Page 69 Test: Lamentation.

The Page 69 Test: Antiphon.

--Marshal Zeringue

Cherish D'Angelo's "Lancelot's Lady," the movie

Now showing at My Book, The Movie: Lancelot's Lady by Cherish D'Angelo.

The entry begins:
Lancelot's Lady was the first novel I've written where actors and actresses didn't immediately come to mind. I'd completed the novel before even imagining who would play the roles--a first for me as I usually have a strong image as I write. In fact, it was a struggle at first to think of who should play my unsuspecting lovers, Rhianna and Jonathan. But now that I've thought of two names, I can't get them out of my head. I can see their scenes in my mind--intense, conflicting, passionate, super Hot with a capital H, and even humorous at times.

The actress who would be perfect as Rhianna McLeod, a young mid-twenties palliative care nurse who has hidden herself away because of a horrible past, is Canadian actress Rachel McAdams.

Rhianna is a fiery redhead, beautiful and easily flustered. She has a temper and a wicked sense of humor when provoked. I think Rachel could pull that off very easily and she'll look great as a redhead. When I think of her in...[read on]
Learn more about Lancelot's Lady and Cherish D'Angelo (aka Cheryl Kaye Tardif) at the official website and author's blog.

My Book, The Movie: Lancelot's Lady.

--Marshal Zeringue

Monday, September 27, 2010

Pg. 99: Joseph Mazur's "What’s Luck Got to Do with It?"

The current feature at the Page 99 Test: What's Luck Got to Do with It?: The History, Mathematics, and Psychology of the Gambler's Illusion by Joseph Mazur.

About the book, from the publisher:
Why do so many gamblers risk it all when they know the odds of winning are against them? Why do they believe dice are "hot" in a winning streak? Why do we expect heads on a coin toss after several flips have turned up tails? What's Luck Got to Do with It? takes a lively and eye-opening look at the mathematics, history, and psychology of gambling to reveal the most widely held misconceptions about luck. It exposes the hazards of feeling lucky, and uses the mathematics of predictable outcomes to show when our chances of winning are actually good.

Mathematician Joseph Mazur traces the history of gambling from the earliest known archaeological evidence of dice playing among Neolithic peoples to the first systematic mathematical studies of games of chance during the Renaissance, from government-administered lotteries to the glittering seductions of grand casinos, and on to the global economic crisis brought on by financiers' trillion-dollar bets. Using plenty of engaging anecdotes, Mazur explains the mathematics behind gambling--including the laws of probability, statistics, betting against expectations, and the law of large numbers--and describes the psychological and emotional factors that entice people to put their faith in winning that ever-elusive jackpot despite its mathematical improbability.

As entertaining as it is informative, What's Luck Got to Do with It? demonstrates the pervasive nature of our belief in luck and the deceptive psychology of winning and losing.
Read an excerpt from What’s Luck Got to Do with It?, and learn more about the book at the Princeton University Press website.

Visit Joseph Mazur's website and read about his five best books on gambling.

The Page 99 Test: What's Luck Got to Do with It?.

--Marshal Zeringue

Ten of the best disguises in literature

At the Guardian, John Mullan named a list of ten of the best disguises in literature.

One entry on the list:
Measure for Measure, by William Shakespeare

The Duke who governs Vienna wants to see what his underlings will get up to in his absence. So he asks his friend Friar Thomas for some monkish garb: "Supply me with the habit and instruct me / How I may formally in person bear me / Like a true friar". It works, and not even his most devoted courtiers recognise him until he finally unveils himself.
Read about another title on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue

Coffee with a canine: Randi Hutter Epstein & Ellie and Dexter

Today's featured trio at Coffee with a Canine: Randi Hutter Epstein, Ellie and Dexter.

The writer, on how the dogs joined her household:
We picked up Dexter from a breeder upstate on the day that I found out I was pregnant with Eliza, my fourth child. We got him en route to our summer vacation in the Adirondacks. It was absolutely bucketing out, and we put this soggy puppy in our car, along with three other children and a four-year-old Golden Retriever. (The Golden is no longer “with us.”) I never wanted a toy dog, but for the past three years, my daughter Martha has been begging and pleading for a little dog that she could hold and cuddle. She promised she would walk the dog every morning and that she would be happy for the rest of her life. I believed every word. I thought it would be really helpful to have my teenage daughter walking the dog before school and then gliding merrily through adolescence. So I got the puppy. We’ve had Ellie for about a year and a half. Martha has yet to wake up to walk her in the morning and while she is basically a happy kid, but I wouldn’t say there...[read on]
Randi Hutter Epstein, MD, is a medical journalist who has written for the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Daily Telegraph, and several national magazines. She is the author of Get Me Out: A History of Childbirth from the Garden of Eden to the Sperm Bank.

Among the praise for the book:
“[A] sharp, sassy history of childbirth.... The author’s engaging sarcasm, evident even in a caption of an illustration of an absurd obstetric contraption—'Nineteenth-century Italian do-it-yourself forceps. The fad never took off'—lends this chronicle a welcome punch and vitality often absent from medical histories. Roll over, Dr. Lamaze, and make room for Epstein’s eyebrow-raising history.”
Kirkus Reviews
Learn more about Get Me Out at the publisher's website, and visit Randi Hutter Epstein's Psychology Today blog, Birth, Babies, and Beyond. Read an excerpt from Get Me Out and listen to the NPR story about the book.

Writers Read: Randi Hutter Epstein.

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Randi Hutter Epstein, Ellie and Dexter.

--Marshal Zeringue

Pg. 69: Joan Frances Turner's "Dust"

Today's feature at the Page 69 Test: Dust by Joan Frances Turner.

About the book, from the publisher:
What happens between death and life can change a girl. Jessie is a zombie. And this is her story...

Nine years ago, Jessie was in a car crash and died. After she was buried, she awoke and tore through the earth to arise, reborn, as a zombie. Now Jessie's part of a gang. They fight, hunt, and dance together as one-something humans can never understand. There are darkplaces humans have learned to avoid, lest they run into zombie gangs. But when a mysterious illness threatens the existence of both zombies and humans, Jessie must choose between looking away or staring down the madness-and hanging on to everything she now knows as life...
Read an excerpt from Dust, and learn more about the book and author at Joan Frances Turner's website and blog.

Writers Read: Joan Frances Turner.

The Page 69 Test: Dust.

--Marshal Zeringue

Sunday, September 26, 2010

What is Lisa Black reading?

The current featured contributor at Writers Read: Lisa Black, author of the recently released Trail of Blood, which involves the real-life Torso Killer who terrorized Cleveland during the dark days of the Great Depression.

Her entry begins:
Believe it or not, since getting my own books published my own reading dropped off. I have not yet quit the day job at the police department, so time is always at a premium. Then last year I was randomly chosen from the International Thriller Writers ranks to be a judge for the best novel category. I had to read 22 books in the last quarter of 2009 and another 18 in the first quarter of 2010. In other words I had to make time. (I did that by pointing out to myself that much of the stuff on TV is not worth that hour of my life and by switching from the treadmill to the exercise bike at lunchtime. Helped my knees, too.)

This helped me to re-discover...[read on]
Among the early praise for Trail of Blood:
“Fans of the forensic mysteries 'CSI' TV series and Patricia Cornwell’s Kay Scarpetta novels will enjoy the emphasis on evidence. An amazing read that rivals…the best of the genre.”
—Associated Press

"Lisa Black wows us with another tense and unputdownable thriller. She is, quite simply, one of the best storytellers around."
—Tess Gerritsen

"Lisa Black writes with immediacy and unmatched authenticity, and Trail of Blood is a terrific story, too -- her best yet!"
—Jeff Lindsay, NYT bestselling author of Dexter is Delicious
View the video trailer for Trail of Blood, learn more about the book and author at Lisa Black's website.

My Book, The Movie: Trail of Blood.

The Page 69 Test: Trail of Blood.

Writers Read: Lisa Black.

--Marshal Zeringue

Val McDermid's top 10 Oxford novels

Val McDermid won the Crime Writers’ Association Gold Dagger Award for The Mermaids Singing (1995).

Her latest novel released in the US is Fever of the Bone.

For the Guardian, she named her top ten Oxford novels. One title on her list:
An Instance of the Fingerpost by Ian Pears

Set just after the Restoration, when conspiracies were rife, this epistolary novel features a quartet of unreliable narrators giving their versions of the same series of events. Cleverly constructed and completely fascinating, it's loosely based on historical happenings and is crammed with fascinating period detail. It's as much a novel of ideas as it is of character, but none the less compelling for that.
Read about another title on the list.

Learn about McDermid's hero from outside literature.

--Marshal Zeringue

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Pg. 99: Carolyn de la Peña's "Empty Pleasures"

The current feature at the Page 99 Test: Empty Pleasures: The Story of Artificial Sweeteners from Saccharin to Splenda by Carolyn de la Peña.

About the book, from the publisher:
Sugar substitutes have been a part of American life since saccharin was introduced at the 1893 World's Fair. In Empty Pleasures, the first history of artificial sweeteners in the United States, Carolyn de la Peña blends popular culture with business and women's history, examining the invention, production, marketing, regulation, and consumption of sugar substitutes such as saccharin, Sucaryl, NutraSweet, and Splenda. She describes how saccharin, an accidental laboratory by-product, was transformed from a perceived adulterant into a healthy ingredient. As food producers and pharmaceutical companies worked together to create diet products, savvy women's magazine writers and editors promoted artificially sweetened foods as ideal, modern weight-loss aids, and early diet-plan entrepreneurs built menus and fortunes around pleasurable dieting made possible by artificial sweeteners.

NutraSweet, Splenda, and their predecessors have enjoyed enormous success by promising that Americans, especially women, can "have their cake and eat it too," but Empty Pleasures argues that these "sweet cheats" have fostered troubling and unsustainable eating habits and that the promises of artificial sweeteners are ultimately too good to be true.
Learn more about Empty Pleasures at the publisher's website.

The Page 99 Test: Empty Pleasures.

--Marshal Zeringue

Five groundbreaking memoirs

Gail Caldwell is the author of Let's Take the Long Way Home: A Memoir of Friendship. The former chief book critic of the Boston Globe, she was in 2001 awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Distinguished Criticism.

For the Wall Street Journal, she named a five best list of memoirs. One book on the list:
Survival in Auschwitzby Primo Levi (1958)

From the opening sentence—"I was captured by the Fascist Militia on 13 December 1943"—this searingly quiet account by Primo Levi, an Italian chemist, of his 10 months in Auschwitz is a monument of dignity. First published in Italy in 1947 with a title that translates as "If This Is a Man," the book became a blueprint for every such story that followed, not only as a portrait of the camp's atrocities but also as a testament to the moments when humanity prevailed. On a mile-long trip with a fellow prisoner to retrieve a 100-pound soup ration, Levi begins to teach his friend "The Canto of Ulysses" from Dante. Completing the lesson becomes urgent, then vital: "It is late, it is late," Levi realizes, "we have reached the kitchen, I must finish." No candle has ever shown more brilliantly from within the caverns of evil.
Read about another memoir on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue

Pg. 69: Mike Shevdon's "Sixty-One Nails"

The current feature at the Page 69 Test: Sixty-One Nails: Courts of the Feyre, Book 1 by Mike Shevdon.

About the book, from the publisher:

A dark magic will be unleashed by the Untainted...Unless a new hero can be found. The smarter, faster brother to Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere has arrived.

The immense Sixty-One Nails follows Niall Petersen, victim of a suspected heart attack on the London Underground, into the hidden world of the Feyre, an uncanny place of legend that lurks just beyond the surface of everyday life. The Untainted, the darkest of the Seven Courts, have made their play for power, and unless Niall can recreate the ritual of the Sixty-One Nails, their dark dominion will enslave all of the Feyre, and all of humankind too.
Read an excerpt from Sixty-One Nails, and learn more about the book and author at Mike Shevdon's website.

Shevdon draws his inspiration from the richness of English folklore and from the history and rituals of the UK. His Courts of the Feyre series follows the adventures of Niall and Blackbird as Niall discovers a world of dark magic and strange creatures hidden in plain sight.

Sixty-One Nails, is now available everywhere. It will be followed by a sequel, The Road to Bedlam, available now in the UK and Australasia, and in North America on 26th October 2010.

The Page 69 Test: Sixty-One Nails.

--Marshal Zeringue

Friday, September 24, 2010

What is Don Bogen reading?

The current featured contributor at Writers Read: Don Bogen, author of four books of poetry, most recently An Algebra.

His entry begins:
I find myself reading big books right now. In fiction, Anna Karenina, in the Louise and Aylmer Maude translation from 1918--part of my "classics I've never gotten around to reading" list, but not for long, I hope. Also, One Hundred Years of Solitude in the original Spanish. I read the brilliant Rabassa translation what seems like a hundred years ago (My Bard/Avon paperback cost $1.95) and loved it. My distant memories of that are helping to guide me now, at least a little--what a beautifully dense, interwoven world it presents.

I much prefer reading...[read on]
Among the praise for An Algebra:
An Algebra registers a series of unrelenting impingements upon a sensibility that may in more guarded moments find ways to deflect them. What comes through are only the essentials, pared down to the force with which they insist on being taken account of. The movement from poem to poem is headlong but strangely not rushed. The lines are short, the diction a model of clarity, and the rhythms impeccable. It’s one of the most compelling books I’ve read in years.”
—James McMichael

"Don Bogen is a wise and playful poet who manages the political and the personal with equal aplomb. He takes hold of poetry, the shape-shifting god, and in his hands it twists, morphs, relinquishes. Bogen reinvigorates the art by defining its limits, then pushing bravely past."
—D. A. Powell

"A private, clarifying testimony refracted by sensuous moments and clawed reflections of a speaker shedding everything that isn't wanted or needed—everything except the intoxicating pull of the past bound to the deep desire to be 'always becoming.' The subtle operation of these skillfully interset lyrics makes for a consummate reunion of broken parts, an algebra."
—C.D. Wright
Learn more about An Algebra at the University of Chicago Press website.

Don Bogen is the author of four books of poetry, most recently An Algebra (University of Chicago Press, 2009). He teaches at the University of Cincinnati and serves as Poetry Editor of The Cincinnati Review.

Writers Read: Don Bogen.

--Marshal Zeringue

Coffee with a canine: Kelly Creagh & Annabel

This weekend's featured duo at Coffee with a Canine: Kelly Creagh and Annabel.

Creagh, on how she was united with Annabel:
After my first Poe-related research trip to Baltimore, I returned with the hopes of finding a dog. I searched a lot of rescue websites and no-kill shelters. Although I really wanted to take every dog home with me, I had a hard time finding just the right pooch for my small yardless downtown apartment. Finally, on a whim, I decided to visit the city pound. In one of the cages, I found a tiny puppy pinned with several larger dogs. Needless to say that she was very very excited to see me. I knew right away that, not only was she the smallest dog in the entire pound, but she also had to come home with me. I made arrangements to adopt her, but the pound would not release her to me without spaying her first. So I had to wait. When I picked her up a few days later, I was so excited! However, it quickly became evident that there was something wrong. The first night that I had her, Anna would not eat. I thought this might have been...[read on]
Among the early praise for Nevermore:
"Tender, and engrossing, so richly textured and acutely rendered.... The chemistry between Varen and Isobel is positively simmering and as necessary as breathing.... Creagh totally “gets it”, the whole painful and traumatic high school experience.... An unforgettable and graceful story.”

"Verses from Poe's poems and synopses of his stories are woven seamlessly into the story, and the ghoulish spirit Pinfeathers is memorably menacing and gory.... a creepy, otherworldly climax."

"This Gothic Romeo/Juliet story is an English teacher's jewel box, with high appeal for readers who might ignore classic literature. Veiled and overt allusions to Poe, Shakespeare, and Frost will support discussion about love, loyalty, popularity, and independence beyond the trendy, dramatic, supernatural action."
Kelly Creagh holds an undergraduate degree in Theatre Arts and Master of Fine Arts in Writing for Children and Young Adults. When not writing or curled up with a good book, she can be found teaching, learning and performing the ancient art of Bellydance.

Browse inside Nevermore, and visit Kelly Creagh's website.

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Kelly Creagh and Annabel.

--Marshal Zeringue

Stephen King's 5 best books on globalization

Stephen King is HSBC’s Group Chief Economist and the global head of economics and asset allocation research at the bank, where he has worked since 1988. He is the author of Losing Control: The Emerging Threats to Western Prosperity, and since 2001 has written a weekly column in The Independent.

For FiveBooks, he discussed five books on globalization with Tom Dannet. One novel he mentioned:
The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

This was first published in 1939 while the US was still grappling with the Depression, and what is brilliant about it – it’s a very harrowing read, of course – is that it reveals that economic problems can’t just be dealt with through some wave of the free-market magic wand. The sufferings that the family in this book go through you wouldn’t wish upon anybody, but their sufferings in part come about through a mixture of misfortune, misjudgment and bad luck. I think that this sense of people finding themselves hugely disadvantaged is something that has a modern-day connotation – the whole debate about immigration today is tied up with this. In both cases it’s about migrant labour. In The Grapes of Wrath it’s migrant labour from within the US, and it’s those people who are often the most vulnerable. This is the human aspect of that story, and I think that Steinbeck summarised much of what happened in the Great Depression far better than many economists did, because he really dealt with the true losses that came through for people who just happened to be down on their luck. It may still be possible to argue that free markets are the best option, but it’s important to realise that even if they’re the best option, they may not give you a perfect result. The danger people fall into is thinking it does.
Read about another book on King's list.

The Grapes of Wrath also appears on John Mullan's list of ten of the best pieces of fruit in literature and among Honor Blackman's six best books. It is one of Frederic Raphael's top ten talkative novels.

Also see Moisés Naím's top ten books on globalization.

--Marshal Zeringue

Mary Jane Maffini's "Closet Confidential," the movie

Now showing at My Book, The Movie: Closet Confidential by Mary Jane Maffini.
The entry begins:
A main character is like a beloved child. I think this is especially true in a mystery series where author and sleuth are yoked together for years. And as if writers didn’t have enough responsibility, we have to worry about our protagonist’s well-being too. We want the best for them: love interests, loyal friends, excellent instincts, speedy recoveries and, of course, not getting killed anytime soon. The usual. In short, we want everything to work out all the time. So I’m thinking big in considering who would play my amateur detective Charlotte Adams, currently sleuthing her obsessive little heart out in Closet Confidential, the fourth Charlotte mystery.

A little background on Charlotte: she’s just turned thirty and is running a professional organizing business in Woodbridge, NY, a historic town on the Hudson River. She’s pretty well over that lying dog of an ex-fiance and has fun hanging out with ‘the misfits’, her lifelong wisecracking buddies – think Friends with murder. That’s good because people are always getting bumped off in Woodbridge, and Charlotte always finds herself trying to unmask one villain after another. Nice work if you can get it.

A professional organizer sees into people’s homes and lives. And as Charlotte likes to say: “Show me your closets and you show me your secrets”.

All this build-up to say...[read on]
View the book trailer for Closet Confidential, and learn more about the author and her work at Mary Jane Maffini's website.

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Mary Jane Maffini & Daisy and Lily.

My Book, The Movie: Closet Confidential.

--Marshal Zeringue

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Pg. 69: Zoë Ferraris' "City of Veils"

The current feature at the Page 69 Test: City of Veils by Zoë Ferraris.

About the book, from the publisher:
Women in Saudi Arabia are expected to lead quiet lives circumscribed by Islamic law and tradition. But Katya, one of the few women in the medical examiner's office, is determined to make her work mean something.

When the body of a brutally beaten woman is found on the beach in Jeddah, the city's detectives are ready to dismiss the case as another unsolvable murder-chillingly common in a city where the veils of conservative Islam keep women as anonymous in life as the victim is in death. If this is another housemaid killed by her employer, finding the culprit will be all but impossible.

Only Katya is convinced that the victim can be identified and her killer found. She calls upon her friend Nayir for help, and soon discovers that the dead girl was a young filmmaker named Leila, whose controversial documentaries earned her many enemies.

With only the woman's clandestine footage as a guide, Katya and Nayir must confront the dark side of Jeddah that Leila struggled to expose: an underworld of prostitution, violence, exploitation, and jealously guarded secrets. Along the way, they form an unlikely alliance with an American woman whose husband has disappeared. Their growing search takes them from the city's car-clogged streets to the deadly vastness of the desert beyond.

In City of Veils, award-winning author Zoë Ferraris combines a thrilling, fast-paced mystery with a rare and intimate look into women's lives in the Middle East.
Read an excerpt from City of Veils, and learn more about the book and author at Zoë Ferraris' website and blog.

The Page 69 Test: Finding Nouf.

The Page 69 Test: City of Veils.

--Marshal Zeringue

Pg. 99: Koren Zailckas' "Fury"

The current feature at the Page 99 Test: Fury: A Memoir by Koren Zailckas.

About the book, from the publisher:
The author of the iconic New York Times bestseller Smashed undertakes a quest to confront her own anger.

In the years following the publication of her landmark memoir, Smashed: Story of a Drunken Girlhood, Koren Zailckas stays sober and relegates binge drinking to her past. But a psychological legacy of repression lingers-her sobriety is a loose surface layer atop a hard- packed, unacknowledged rage that wreaks havoc on Koren emotionally and professionally. When a failed relationship leads Koren back to her childhood home, she sinks into emotional crisis-writer's block, depression, anxiety. Only when she begins to apply her research on a book about anger to the turmoil of her own life does she learn what denial has cost her. The result is a blisteringly honest chronicle of the consequences of anger displaced and the balm of anger discovered. Readers who recognized themselves or someone they love in the pages of Smashed will identify with Koren's life-altering exploration and the necessity of exposing anger's origins in order to flourish in love and life as an adult. Combining sophisticated sociological research with a dramatic and deeply personal story that grapples boldly with identity and family, Fury is a dazzling work by a young writer at the height of her powers that is certain to touch a cultural nerve.
Learn more about the book and author at Koren Zailckas' website and blog.

Koren Zailckas is the author of the memoir Smashed: Story of a Drunken Girlhood, which appeared on ten national bestseller lists and spent twenty weeks on the the New York Times bestseller list.

The Page 99 Test: Fury.

--Marshal Zeringue

Top five historical true-crime books of the last decade

For the Christian Science Monitor, Randy Dotinga named five favorite historical true-crime books from the last decade.

One title on his list:
"For the Thrill of It: Leopold, Loeb and the Murder That Shocked Chicago," by Simon Baatz (2008)

Back in 1924, two super-intelligent young men killed a young boy in Chicago for fun. Their story, of upper-class depravity and the limits of justice, is as riveting today as ever.

The author masterfully weaves together many threads: upper-class ennui, anti-Semitism, the death penalty, the influence of psychology, the sensationalistic media, and the most masterful attorney of the time. Just as interesting is what happens to the two murderers after the Trial of the Century.
Read about another book on the list.

The Page 99 Test: For the Thrill of It.

Also see Ann Rule's five best true-crime books and Sarah Weinman's seven best true crime books.

--Marshal Zeringue

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Pg. 69: James R. Benn's "Rag and Bone"

The current feature at the Page 69 Test: Rag and Bone by James R. Benn.

About the book, from the publisher:
Billy is sent to London in the midst of a Luftwaffe bombing offensive to investigate the murder of a Soviet official. There's reason to believe that the crime could be connected to the recent discovery of mass graves in the Katyn Forest, where thousands of Polish officers were executed. If a killer is out there, targeting Soviet officials in revenge for the Katyn Massacre, the diplomatic stakes couldn't be higher with the uneasy alliance against Germany between the Soviets and the other allied powers in the balance. Further complicating matters, Scotland Yard names Billy's friend Kaz, now working for the Polish government in exile, as the prime suspect. Billy must track the killer through London's criminal underworld and save his friend.
Learn more about the Billy Boyle WWII Mystery Series at James R. Benn's website.

The Billy Boyle World War II historical mystery series began with Billy Boyle, which takes place in England and Norway in 1942. The second, The First Wave, carries on a few months later during the Allied invasion of French Northwest Africa. The third volume, Blood Alone, continues the story through the Allied invasion of Sicily; and Evil for Evil, the fourth volume, follows Billy Boyle to Northern Ireland where he is sent at the request of the British government to investigate links between the Irish Republican Army and the Germans.

The Page 99 Test: The First Wave.

The Page 69 Test: Evil for Evil.

The Page 69 Test: Rag and Bone.

--Marshal Zeringue

Pg. 99: Chad L. Williams' "Torchbearers of Democracy"

Today's feature at the Page 99 Test: Torchbearers of Democracy: African American Soldiers in the World War I Era by Chad L. Williams.

About the book, from the publisher:
On April 2, 1917, Woodrow Wilson thrust the United States into World War I by declaring, "The world must be made safe for democracy." For the 380,000 African American soldiers who fought and labored in the global conflict, these words carried life or death meaning. Relating stories bridging the war and postwar years, spanning the streets of Chicago and the streets of Harlem, from the battlefields of the American South to the battlefields of the Western Front, Chad L. Williams reveals the central role of African American soldiers in World War I and how they, along with race activists and ordinary citizens alike, committed to fighting for democracy at home and beyond.

Using a diverse range of sources, Williams connects the history of African American soldiers and veterans to issues such as the obligations of citizenship, combat and labor, diaspora and internationalism, homecoming and racial violence, "New Negro" militancy, and African American historical memories of the war. Democracy may have been distant from the everyday lives of African Americans at the dawn of the war, but it nevertheless remained a powerful ideal that sparked the hopes of black people throughout the country for societal change. Torchbearers of Democracy reclaims the legacy of black soldiers and establishes the World War I era as a defining moment in the history of African Americans and peoples of African descent more broadly.
Learn more about the book and author at the Torchbearers of Democracy website and Facebook page.

Chad L. Williams is associate professor of history at Hamilton College.

The Page 99 Test: Torchbearers of Democracy.

--Marshal Zeringue

Coffee with a canine: Elizabeth Cody Kimmel & Henry

The current featured couple at Coffee with a Canine: Elizabeth Cody Kimmel and Henry.

Kimmel, on how Henry joined her household and he possibility of telepathically communicating with canine:
The universe brought us to Henry a year after our beloved beagle Milo died. We got a call about a breeder with a whole brood of gorgeous, show-winning beagles, who had decided to part with a few 6-month-old pups. We went to have a look, and were instantly smitten.

Only someone who works at home alone all day would engage in this activity. I will swear up and down that I used to be able to get Milo up from a sound sleep downstairs and trotting up to my bedroom by mentally calling his name. Henry has not yet responded to my thought beams. I can't make him ...[read on]
Beth Kimmel's books include The Reinvention of Moxie Roosevelt (for readers age 10 and up).

Visit Elizabeth Cody Kimmel's website.

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Elizabeth Cody Kimmel and Henry.

--Marshal Zeringue

Top ten stories about sisters

Bestselling children's author Cathy Cassidy's books include Dizzy, Driftwood, Indigo Blue, Scarlett, Sundae Girl, Lucky Star, Gingersnaps, and Angel Cake. Her latest novel available in the UK is Cherry Crush, about five very different sisters.

For the Guardian, she named a ten best list of stories about sisters.

One title on the list:
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

I read many of the classics as a teenager, but this is one of the few I have returned to over the years. Five sparky sisters, but in another world – a world where manners, society and social standing dictate everything. Not just romantic but wonderfully real and believable, even now.
Read about another title on the list.

Pride and Prejudice also appears on Paul Murray's top ten list of wicked clerics, John Mullan's list of ten great novels with terrible original titles, Luke Leitch's top ten list of the most successful literary sequels ever, and is one of the top ten works of literature according to Norman Mailer. Richard Price has never read it, but it is the book Mary Gordon cares most about sharing with her children.

The Page 99 Test: Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice.

--Marshal Zeringue

What is Trish J. MacGregor reading?

The current featured contributor at Writers Read: Trish J. MacGregor, author of the new novel, Esperanza.

One book she tagged:
[Biocentrism, by physician Robert Lanza and Bob Berman], a fascinating perspective about how everything in reality originates in the mind, in consciousness. Without consciousness, Lanza contends, there’s nothing. Just a void. He makes a convincing case for his argument, beginning with one of the great Zen koans: “If a tree falls in the forest and nobody is there, does it make a sound?” From here, he takes us through various theories in quantum physics – what is time? What is space? The mysteries of consciousness – and then all the way to death and beyond. The book is infinitely readable and Lanza has a quirky sense of humor. But more than that, this book has such a human side to it that I just...[read on]
Among the early praise for Esperanza:
"Every time I start reading a scary novel, I tell myself that it can't possibly scare me. Usually, I'm right. But this time I was treated to a deliciously scary, original and just plain wonderful story. I was swept away into a world that I keep telling myself couldn't exist. Or could it?"
--Whitley Streiber, NYT bestselling author of Critical Mass

"Riveting! This book will possess you!"
--Jeff Lindsay, NYT bestselling author of Dexter

"This engrossing thriller is escapist fantasy at its best. MacGregor's visual style immerses readers in the landscape as her characters come alive. The suspense is palpable and the pace relentless as the dread grows. Even those who don't scare easily will find this bone chilling."
--Romantic Times, 4 and 1/2 stars TopPick

"I love a good ghost story, I always have. There’s something about the idea of another world full of spirits and souls watching and wanting to interact with the living that always appeals. The ghosts in ESPERANZA fill the void."
Trish J. MacGregor was born and raised in Caracas, Venezuela. She has always been interested in the hidden, the mysterious, the unseen, and in Esperanza was able to combine this interest with her love of Ecuador.

Visit Trish J. MacGregor's website and blog.

Writers Read: Trish J. MacGregor.

--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Pg. 69: Katrina Kittle's "The Blessings of the Animals"

Today's feature at the Page 69 Test: The Blessings of the Animals by Katrina Kittle.

About the book, from the publisher:
From Katrina Kittle, critically acclaimed author of The Kindness of Strangers, comes a wry and moving story of forgiveness, flexibility, happiness, and the art of moving on.

Veterinarian Cami Anderson has hit a rough patch. Stymied by her recent divorce, she wonders if there are secret ingredients to a happy, long-lasting marriage or if the entire institution is outdated and obsolete. Couples all around her are approaching important milestones. Her parents are preparing to celebrate their fiftieth anniversary. Her brother and his partner find their marriage dreams legally blocked. Her former sister-in-law—still her best friend—is newly engaged. The youthfully exuberant romance of her teenage daughter is developing complications. And three separate men—including her ex-husband—are becoming entangled in Cami's messy post-marital love life.

But as she struggles to come to terms with her own doubts amid this chaotic circus of relationships, Cami finds strange comfort in an unexpected confidant: an angry, unpredictable horse in her care. With the help of her equine soul mate, she begins to make sense of marriage's great mysteries—and its disconnects.
Learn more about the book and author at Katrina Kittle's website.

Writers Read: Katrina Kittle.

The Page 69 Test: The Blessings of the Animals.

--Marshal Zeringue

Pg. 99: James Rodger Fleming's "Fixing the Sky"

The current feature at the Page 99 Test: Fixing the Sky: The Checkered History of Weather and Climate Control by James Rodger Fleming.

About the book, from the publisher:
As alarm over global warming spreads, a radical idea is gaining momentum. Forget cuts in greenhouse gas emissions, some scientists argue. Instead, bounce sunlight back into space by pumping reflective nanoparticles into the atmosphere. Launch mirrors into orbit around the Earth. Make clouds thicker and brighter to create a "planetary thermostat."

These ideas might sound like science fiction, but in fact they are part of a very old story. For more than a century, scientists, soldiers, and charlatans have tried to manipulate weather and climate, and like them, today's climate engineers wildly exaggerate what is possible. Scarcely considering the political, military, and ethical implications of managing the world's climate, these individuals hatch schemes with potential consequences that far outweigh anything their predecessors might have faced.

Showing what can happen when fixing the sky becomes a dangerous experiment in pseudoscience, James Rodger Fleming traces the tragicomic history of the rainmakers, rain fakers, weather warriors, and climate engineers who have been both full of ideas and full of themselves. Weaving together stories from elite science, cutting-edge technology, and popular culture, Fleming examines issues of health and navigation in the 1830s, drought in the 1890s, aircraft safety in the 1930s, and world conflict since the 1940s. Killer hurricanes, ozone depletion, and global warming fuel the fantasies of today. Based on archival and primary research, Fleming's original story speaks to anyone who has a stake in sustaining the planet.
Read an excerpt from Fixing the Sky and learn more about the book at the Columbia University Press website, and visit James Rodger Fleming's "Atmosphere" website.

The Page 99 Test: Fixing the Sky.

--Marshal Zeringue

Seven books for the spiritually starved

For The Daily Beast, Spencer Bailey tagged seven new books for the spiritually starved.

One title on the list:
Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream by David Platt

In Radical, Alabama megachurch Pastor David Platt suggests something is seriously wrong with the Christian faith in America today. Christians have, as he puts it, “embraced values and ideas that are not only unbiblical but that actually contradict the gospel we claim to believe.” Most of all, Platt argues, American churchgoers skewer the biblical Jesus, rendering him as a “nice, middle-class, American” everyman ideal. “We may not actually be worshiping the Jesus of the Bible,” he writes. “Instead we might actually be worshiping ourselves.” Full of spiritual pronouncements readers of any religion can appreciate (“there are infinitely more important things in your life than football and a 401(k)”), Radical caters mostly to Christians, as a fervent manual to the faithful. If you’re stuck in the American dream of “self-advancement, self-esteem, and self-sufficiency,” as Platt describes it, then the book could be a good fit for you, too.
Read about another book on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue

Jodi Compton's "Hailey's War," the movie

Now showing at My Book, The Movie: Hailey's War by Jodi Compton.

The entry begins:
On my website and in bookstore discussions about Hailey’s War, I’ve made a lot of the fact that no major character in this book is over the age of 24. The story grew out of the circumstances in which it was written -- I was living in a college town called San Luis Obispo, which is dominated by young people, and I was surrounded by their culture, music and slang.

Unfortunately, the downside of a book with such young characters is that it’s hard to mentally cast the film. Although I enjoy youth movies, it’s been a while since I’ve seen any, which means I’m likely overlooking some gifted young actors in addressing this question. So, here’s how I’m going to handle this problem. You’ve heard of colorblind casting? This is going to be "age-blind" casting: I’m going to pick actors I think have the right qualities and not worry about the DOB -- mostly I’m using these choices to emphasize the qualities I hope a casting director would look for in filling these roles.

My protagonist, Hailey Cain, is a Texan-born ex-West Pointer: not dewy, not gamine, not pixie-ish. Not a laeta, as Hailey herself would say (laeta being her term for a certain kind of L.A. girl, from the very flexible Latin word that can mean happy, fortunate, fertile or silly). For this part, I favor...[read on]
Read the opening pages of Hailey’s War and more at Jodi Compton's website.

Writers Read: Jodi Compton.

The Page 69 Test: Hailey's War.

My Book, The Movie: Hailey's War.

--Marshal Zeringue