(The Real) Sexy Responsible Heart-Throbbing Heroes

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Could it be possible that our lust for the bad boys—a hunger which begets dreams that bear nightmares—begins the night we aim our reading flashlights on Rhett Butler and his ilk? Face it—who took away our breath? Who were we trained to want? Namby-pamby Ashley or the dashing Rhett?

How about the other side? The sexy good men (and aren’t the truly good and responsible ones men, not boys?) who step up for justice, or catch a killer, or save the town, without trampling on women’s hearts or bending the rules with a smirk on their faces—how many of them do we worship?

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What To Do Before Your Book Launch: A Guidebook

What to expect when you’re expecting your book? What’s going to happen first, and second, and third?  Pre-launch of my debut novel,  the breadth of information I had to learn overwhelmed me—were there an eight-day week into which I could tap.

During the 2-24 months between signing a book contract and receiving those freshly pressed books, there is much to do and little guidance available.  In 2009, For the secrets of debuting, I turned to the underground, where surreptitious bands of debut novelists come together in the shadows to share the secrets they’ve learned from already published brethren.

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Postcards from The Widow of Wall Street

 

“When Phoebe and Jake Pierce meet as teenagers, she knows he’s someone on the way up, and she wants to be there as he climbs the Wall Street ladder. He gets everything he ever wanted. When it turns out that Jake’s success rests on a huge Ponzi scheme, Phoebe has to make an excruciating choice.
New York Post ‘Must Read Books’

“ . . .as this compelling story unfolds, you realize nothing is as uncomplicated as it seems.”
Associated Press

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Another Storied Recipe: Mystery Novel Chocolate Pie Supreme

 About a million years ago I read (a now out of date) mystery, Gastronomic Murder, by Alexandra Roudybush (look for this book. I got a second-hand copy recently. Try the library. That’s where I got in back in the day. At that time, I couldn’t afford to buy books and the local Boston library was my savior.

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Armchair Adventuring: Stories of Survival

Stories of survival fill me with shivery delight. I rarely meet a story of man/woman/elements that doesn’t keep me up till all hours—it’s no doubt one of my favorite sub-genres. Below are two recent entries into my hall of fame, along with an evergreen selection.

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How Readers Discover Books

This is going to be one long post! I tried to organize the answers to my survey, “How Do You Discover Books” in a way that will be most useful, but, wow! I was overwhelmed, not by the number of people who responded to the survey—that was a respectable 213—but by organizing and reading the over 110 comments. The devil really is in these details.

First: This was an unscientific venture. I sent it to a mailing list of book clubs, writers and friends. I wrote a post with a link to the survey (that was open to the world) and asked friends to share that post, which I and others put on FB and Twitter—so most certainly this swayed the answers. But those who answered were, like me, readers to the core.

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The Before and After of Author (All?) Photos

If you love every picture of yourself, or you’re one of those naturally photogenic people, you won’t need this post. And I probably don’t want to stand next to you in any photo.

For the rest of us, there are tricks to make ourselves look less double-chinned, squint-eyed, or serial killerish in photos. I know. I am decidedly not one of those naturally photogenic people. Thus, my gathering of every bit of advice I could find before having an author photo taken. (Now I want to figure out how to outlaw people from ‘tagging’ me in candid shots they’ve taken. Isn’t there something about souls being stolen?

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Favorite Reads of August 2017

Reading. What is it good for?
Absolutely everything.
And I just can’t live without it.
I don’t think I’ve ever fallen asleep without a book in my hand since I learned my letters as a child.

My top reads this month:

The Heirs by Susan Rieger

I fell into The Heirs as though someone had made my bed up with the crispest of sheets, placed down pillows of the most perfect loft at my head and handed me a plate of divine chocolate and cheese. As written on the publishers site, yes, this “is a tale out of Edith Wharton for the twentieth century.”  “Fans of Salinger’s stories about Manhattan’s elite will enjoy this novel about privileged siblings who grapple with the state of their inheritance and long-held secrets that emerge in the wake of their father’s death.” — InStyle

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Reads (and Listens) for July 2018

“A capacity, and taste, for reading gives access to whatever has already been discovered by others. ” Abraham Lincoln

Reading keeps me sane. Highlighted here are some recent reads, some not-so-recent, but all ones that made an indelible impression on my heart and mind.

The One Man


The One Man kept my up long past midnight, pushed  my heart into my throat—Andrew Gross made real every cliche used in book blurbs. Yes. I could not put it down.

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Top 10 Reasons to Come to Belmont Books on June 28 (Wed!)

  1. Belmont Books is a dream come alive for my wonderful friends, Kathy Crowley & Chris Abouzeid—writers, dreamers, community-minded people, big-hearted, ridiculously funny (Chris) & ridiculously motherly (Kathy). Celebrate with us as we toast them.

 

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  1. Ellen Meeropol’s new novel, Kinship of Clover, was chosen as an NPR small press ‘best.’ Charles Baxter, author of The Feast of Love wrote “Midway through this wonderful novel, you will find a woman dancing in her wheelchair. That scene is one of many memorable moments in a story about young people organizing for a sustainable future, even as their once-radical elders try to hold on to a gradually disappearing past. This is a book about time and love, politics and family, and it is sharply observant and deeply compassionate.”
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