Friday, July 1, 2011

XLIX - July 2011

My big news is that Random House has decided that the forthcoming Under the Skin will be in trade paperback rather than mass market paperback.  And they are working on an all new cover. 

I was surprised, to put it mildly.  It will make the book more expensive (probably $15) -- but easier to read (bigger pages.) And there are many reviewers who just don't bother with mass market but will review trade. 

We'll see if this is A Good Thing. I hope so.

In other news, I am still working on the next book, somewhat distracted by the garden which, as Candide says, we must cultivate.
 If you're in the western NC area, look for the July issue of WNC Magazine -- free at bookstores and other locales. I'm pleased to say I'm one of various NC writers who were asked to do a piece on 'Why We Love Western North Carolina."  You can also read it HERE.
After a very hot beginning to the month, the weather has moderated. Ample rain has brought out the best in our day lilies-- I can't stop taking their pictures as readers of my daily blog are, no doubt, all too aware.
I have some good reads to share, if Miss Susie Hutchins will let me at them...  
Back When We Were Grownups by Anne Tyler is charming and low key in the way I expect of Tyler's novels. No one does families better and this is Tyler at her best. It begins, "Once upon a time, there was a woman who discovered she had turned into the wrong person." 

Le Divorce by Diane Johnson is a must if you've ever daydreamed of living in France. An young American woman comes to Paris to lend support to her stepsister whose aristocratic French husband wants a divorce. A comedy of manners and the conflict between French and American ways -- I was fascinated.

Lamb by Christopher Moore is my kind of quirky, wise and wisecracking humor. It's the Gospel according Biff, Christ's childhood pal. I loved this book and all the various threads it pulled on to explore where Jesus might have been between his childhood and his last years. The more you know about the Bible, the more of the allusions you'll 'get.'

A Grave Talent by Laurie R. King. A re-read - Ms. King is such a good writer! Her Mary Russell series is one of my favorites but I'm growing more and more fond of this earlier series featuring Kate Martinelli, a San Francisco police detective. Wonderful setting, characters, plotting -- small wonder this won the Edgar for Best First Novel back in 1993.

Talking About Detective Fiction by P.D. James.  A wonderful survey of the genre by a woman who is one of its top practitioners.

Time is a River by Mary Alice Monroe.  I talked about this one HERE
Pat Browning writes ... my reading is not usually what everyone else is reading -- except that I did read and love THE HELP. I just finished reading THE LAST CONVERTIBLE by Anton Myrer. Not a new book (1978) but the kind of intergenerational (is that a word?) saga I love.

Martin in England says ...thanks for flagging up 'The Book Thief', in a recent post. It's an extraordinary book. I've just finished Kazuo Ishiguro's 'Never Let Me Go', which was a good read, but this is something else.
We also have roses and clematis...
But it's the day lilies that get the attention...

A slide show with more of my favorite June pictures -- and lots more day lilies.

Have a wonderful 4th of July!

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KarenB said...

So lovely, as always, to see your pictures! I'll have to see if Mom can get a copy of the magazine as they are in Boone right now. And, the Laurie King online book club is just finishing a discussion of A Grave Talent for the month of June, but the forum thread is still open and we would be very happy if you dropped in and left some comments!
I have to wait until August to get my NC mountain fix. Sigh.

Kath said...

Congratulations on the 'upgrade' for your book!! Smart editors.
And thank you for the gorgeous photos.

Anonymous said...

It seems your publishers think you're ready for the Big Show. I hope you get reviewed! Good ones, of course.
Lamb by Christopher Moore was very enjoyable, and led me to read more of his books about vampires in San Francisco.
I just finished Moloka'i by Alan Brennert, an historical novel about the leper colony there. The story doesn't focus on Father Damian, about whom much has been written, but on the lepers and how the colony changed from the late 1800s through modern times.
Earlier this week I read "the Housekeeper and the Professor" by Yoko Ogawa, a novel about memory, math, and making a family. I highly recommend this. Deana the Queena

Kristen Haskell said...

Thank you for your kind comments about my short story "The Golden Eye." I was thrilled to read what you said. I am working on another short story that might also turn novel length. I might take The Golden Eye a little further. I am just not really sure if I know how.

If I lived closer I would beg to be in one of your classes. I have so many story ideas, I just really don't know what to do with them.

Anyway thank you for being so accessible and reading my blog from time to time. Your feedback is genuinely appreciated and respected. Kristen Haskell

Thérèse said...

True that when looking at books I rather look at trade paperbacks... except when I am looking for a specific book. More attractive I presume.