Saturday, July 25, 2009

News and Other Such Stuffs...

I have so much to share with you that I'm not even sure where to start! First, how did it get to be the end of July already? Someone is stealing my summer and I'm none too happy about it. It does take us a little closer to Bouchercon in October, though. Official countdown: 82 days! And the other thing about this summer? I've read a lot of GREAT stuff. I just finished Michael Lister's DOUBLE EXPOSURE, which you'll hear about soon, but it was fantastic. Just brilliant. And now I'm in the throws of Ridley Pearson's KILLER SUMMER. Good stuff, good stuff!

First up on the list for today is an announcement for my audiophile friends. Michael Koryta's new book THE SILENT HOUR will be available from Blackstone Audio read by Scott Brick. You can listen to a sample of it here. In addition to that, Michael informs me that ENVY THE NIGHT has been recorded for I don't have more details on that one, but when I do, I'll pass them along.

I've spoken before about The Mystery Bookstore in Los Angeles. These are the folks who so generously allowed me to attend their Festival of Books pre-party back in April. Well, I have to tell you that their customer service continues to astound me. Assistant Manager Linda Brown maintains Mystery Bookstore's Twitter account (@mysterybooks) and whenever possible she tweets during their book events. So, from across the country, I was able to join in the release party for Brett Battles new Jonathan Quinn novel, SHADOW OF BETRAYAL, and was able to attend Gregg Hurwitz's event where he signed my book for me, see:

@jenforbus, these are for you... on Twitpic

@jenforbus... on Twitpic

Linda posted these pictures to TwitPic for me so I could see them in real time during the event. And I got a "hi from Gregg at the author's table." Now that's amazing customer service! And it totally made my weekend. I just love these folks. They have some more great events coming up too if you're interested. If you're in the area, of course nothing tops seeing the authors live. But, this is a great alternative for when the authors aren't close enough to you. And Mystery Bookstore will gladly save books and have them personally inscribed for you if you can't make the event (like me).

You can see the link here for their August events, but I wanted to point a few out to everyone. On August 1st a debut author by the name of Kwei Quartey will be signing his book WIFE OF THE GODS. Kwei will be here on my blog the following week. August 15th they will host Linwood Barclay signing his book FEAR THE WORST. Linwood will be a 6-word memoirist, so he'll be making an appearance here soon, too. And you all know how much I adore Poke Rafferty. Tim Hallinan will be signing BREATHING WATER on August 21st. I haven't posted my review of this book yet, but I'll tell you that you should NOT miss it. Call and order your copy now! And the last event I want to point out to you is the following day and it's called A DEADLY COMBINATION. MBS will host three talented female crime fiction writers, one of whom is Sophie Littlefield. I am SO excited to get my copy of A BAD DAY FOR SORRY, which is coming out this week. I really am looking forward to this debut novel. Sophie will also be one of our upcoming memoirists and she's one of the bloggers over at Seven Criminal Minds.

I've been meaning to mention this for awhile and haven't gotten around until now. I won what I think is the most creative contest from a book blogger. Jennifer over at The Literate Housewife held a contest awhile back to win a membership in the bookmark of the month club. Each month she MAKES a book mark for the folks who won this membership, and these bookmarks are absolutely wonderful!! I wanted to post a picture of a few so you can see. This was just a superb contest. She's a thinker, that lady is.

And another cool book-related item I want to share with you is this gift my boss gave me. It's called the Porta Book and I guess it's been advertised on TV. My boss (who is awesome by the way) bought a case of these to use as graduation gifts. I wanted to know if she was keeping one for herself and if she would tell me how it was for reading in bed because I wanted something since I do that so often. She reached in and pulled one out and said "happy graduation." And let me tell you that this basic little gadget is heaven for reading in bed. I use it literally every night now. I keep a pencil in the tray for making my notes while I read, and it folds up when I'm not using it so it isn't an inconvenience to store. Honest, I'm not trying to do a commercial - "the blogger has not been paid for these comments," I just really love this thing. It has made my evening reading 100 times more comfortable. I love that it props my book up for me and I don't have to hold it - and it weighs nothing. Thanks Candace!!

Really quick I want to remind you that the nominations are still being accepted for Book Blogger Appreciation Week. They will be open until August 15th and EVERYONE, blogger or no, can vote in the nominations - there are quite a few categories. So make sure you get over and recognize your favorite bloggers. If you are an author, publisher, publicist, whatever and you'd like to donate a prize to the BBAW, you can find a form to do so here.

Alright, hopefully that covers everything I wanted to mention...oh wait! One more thing. It's official now (I saw it with my own eyes) so I can mention it. Two of my reviews are printed in the new edition, #31 July/August, of CRIMESPREE magazine! I'm officially published! I don't think I could be more thrilled because I love this magazine. It is all about highlighting the amazing world of crime fiction literature. Every edition I pick up is packed with great stuff. I read about authors I enjoy, I learn about new authors and events. And they have tons of contests for you contest lovers. I am beyond humbled to have my name appear in this magazine. O.k., what are you waiting for? Go buy it!! ;)

Alright, now I really am done. That's all the news for this Saturday. Hope you have a wonderful last week of July 2009. Happy Reading.


BEAUVALLET July 25, 2009 at 8:35 PM  

Huge and hearty congratulations! Crimespree -- that's some pretty high tone company you're keeping these days. I don't know anyone who deserves such a good thing more than you.

Michael Phelps July 25, 2009 at 10:24 PM  

Boy, a lot happening with you, Jen!
Thanks for the lively Update.

Lesa July 25, 2009 at 11:16 PM  

Good stuff, Jen! Congratulations on your reviews in Crimespree! And, I want a Porta-Book! I have a great wire stand for reading at a table, but I want a Porta-Book, too. I'll have to go look.

Anonymous July 26, 2009 at 2:37 PM  

As far as I'm concerned, the bigger the audience that sees your book reviews the better. They are that good.

Steve Weems

Corey Wilde July 26, 2009 at 5:12 PM  

No, no, no, there has to be a better narrator for Silent Hour than Brick. Aside from I just don't like his reading, there's a nasal quality to his voice that grates on my ear.

Hm, that thing allows for a pen/pencil in the tray... I may have to give that some thought. I fell asleep two nights ago with a blue highlighter in my hand - capped, fortunately.

Jen July 26, 2009 at 5:47 PM  

Thank you for the congrats everybody! I'm so excited. I took my magazine over to my parents' house today to share it with them; I felt like I was in school bringing home an award! :)

And Steve! You're making me blush!

Kristie July 26, 2009 at 10:18 PM  

Congratulations Jen! Your reviews deserve being published... I love reading them!

Thanks for this lovely update. I had to take notes... I need to look for that bed book thing and want to look into a subscription to Crimespree magazine. Do you subscribe or buy it at a store? If you buy it at a store, which one? Thanks in advance!

Jen July 27, 2009 at 6:04 AM  

Hi Kristie,

Thank you so much. It's always wonderful to hear someone likes the reviews. I'd probably do it just to hear myself talk about books, but the fact that others benefit from them makes my day!

You can subscribe to CRIMESPREE at the link in the post. You can also pick up individual copies of CRIMESPREE at various stores. I know that The Mystery Bookstore in L.A. carries it, Aunt Agatha's in Ann Arbor, MI, carries you can probably find it in most any indie mystery bookstore. Beyond that, I'm not sure.

Literate Housewife August 18, 2009 at 7:10 PM  


Thanks for spotlighting my bookmarks, too. I'm so glad that you enjoy them!

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