November Book News

 

november 2019 used

Glacier National Park

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my kingdom

Janice McCaffrey

I’m pleased to announce that my alter-ego’s debut novel will be available on Amazon.com by the end of November.

Plans Interrupted by Madge Wood.

Here’s what Madge says about it: Have you ever been disappointed because your major plans were interrupted or have you willingly given up your plans for someone you loved? If so, have you ever wondered if it’s too late to revise past plans? Yeh, I have, too.  plans book cover 2

And now here I am a sixty-something widow with only one major plan left—a trip to Monaco, a ride up the “To Catch a Thief” cliffside road , wearing a long, pink, Grace Kelly-like scarf that catches the sunlight as it flies in the wind , and a visit to Princess Grace’s Palace.

My last plan. What could possibly interrupt it? You’re not going to believe it. I wouldn’t either—except I lived it.  madgewoodauthor.com    facebook/madgewoodauthor

 

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all too human book cover 2

In 1905, Rebecca Bryan, the first woman to practice law in Kalispell, Montana, is sent by her uncle/ senior partner to a remote hunting lodge near the Canadian border. She’s to find the missing will of his deceased longtime love, the wealthy artist, Lucinda Cale. 

After a broken coach wheel forces her to set out in the winter forest at night, she meets Lucinda’s compelling son, Bretton. Next morning he takes her to Eagle Mountain where she meets the rest of the dysfunctional Cale family. There Rebecca also discovers Lucinda’s hidden diaries which tell of a naive bride’s victimization that hardened her into a manipulative, murderous matriarch. Lucinda’s estate is large. Each heir is desperate. Those involved reveal themselves to be All Too Human.

All Too Human  by Karen Wills was released September 18, 2019 by Five Star Cengage. Now available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, & Five Star Cengage.

Midwest Book Review calls “‘All Too Human’ a simply riveting page-turner of a read from cover to cover. ‘All Too Human’ showcases author Karen Wills’ genuine flair for originality and a distinctively reader engaging narrative storytelling style that will make her deftly crafted and thoroughly entertaining novel an immediate and popular addition to both personal reading lists and community library collections.”

Karen's author photo apr 2019

                                                  For more books by Karen Wills     including information on her other or upcoming historical novels or to arrange a book signing or interview visit karenwills.com

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All mysteriesLESLIE BUDEWITZ:  Thrilled to celebrate Janice and Karen’s new books! Me, I’m happy to say I’ve just submitted the fifth Spice Shop mystery to my publishers. THE SOLACE OF BAY LEAVES will be out in June 2020 from Seventh St. Books. Pepper investigates when an old friend is shot, and discovers the surprising link to the unsolved murder three years ago of another friend’s husband.

We’re heading into a busy cooking and baking season, and I’ll be helping kick it off at the World Spice Merchants Outpost just north of Glacier Park International airport, between Kalispell and Columbia Falls, on Saturday, November 9, from 10-4. The spice merchants will be serving up tasty treats, and I’ll be signing and selling books, from both my Spice Shop mysteries, set in Seattle, and my Food Lovers’ Village mysteries,  set in Jewel Bay, Montana, a fictional version of Bigfork. If you’re in Seattle, the World Spice flagship store in the Market will also be celebrating, with guests and treats — and a few signed copies of CHAI ANOTHER DAY and other books of mine.

Wishing you a warm and wonderful autumn, with good friends, good food, and good books!

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Betty Kuffel MD, Author

Decades of studying the science of prion disease after the U.K. epidemic of mad cow disease raised my interest in this inexorable always fatal disease. A related prion is now spreading in wildlife across 26 states, three Canadian Provinces and countries around the world. My interest evolved to writing Fatal Feast, a biothriller, set in Montana. In this work of fiction, young researcher Callie Archer works in an NIH high-risk lab in the mountains of Montana protected from radical animal rights activists. Instead of safety, she faces sabotage, a sexist lab director and an obstructionist rancher, risking her life to stop the disease. With forces mounting against her, can Callie save mankind and herself?

Released 11/6/19 after recent edits.

 

 

August Book News

mt river rafting

Courtesy of Glacier Guides and Montana Raft

 

Both Don’t Mess With Mrs. Sedgewick and Blame the Car Ride now are available in an audio version. Ratham Creek is in the producer’s hands now and also will be ready soon.  It has been a fun adventure to listen to my words being read aloud by talented Becky White.

I have codes available by Audible for free downloads if anyone is interested in receiving a free copy. I have eight codes left for Blame the Car ride and 12 codes for Mrs. Sedgewick. I will pass them out on a first come/first served basis. When they’re gone, they are gone. If you want one, please email me at mariefmartin312@hotmail.com

LESLIE BUDEWITZ: chai another day (cover without quote)Summer may have been late coming to NW Montana, but it’s gloriously beautiful now! And in these parts, we love our outdoor festivals. I’ll be at the Bigfork Festival of the Arts, Sat-Sun, Aug 3-4, from 9 to 4, selling and signing books, including my newest, CHAI ANOTHER DAY, the 4th Spice Shop mystery. Join me and 150 artists — potters, photographers, painters, jewelers, soap and candle makers and so much more — in the village of Bigfork! Plus tasty food and great live music.

And I’m pleased to report that my historical short story, “All God’s Sparrows,” winner of the 2018 Agatha Award for Best Short Story, is nominated for a Macavity Award for Best Short Story, given by Mystery Readers International. It’s set in Montana Territory in 1885, featuring real-life historical figure “Stagecoach Mary” Fields, and a young Ursuline nun who meet a woman and her daughter in trouble and devise an inspired solution. Read it free on my website or listen to me read it in a free podcast, courtesy of the publisher, Alfred Hitchock Mystery Magazine.

A Bolt from the Blue is here! Bennett Sisters Mystery #9 – by Lise McClendon

Exciting, like a thunderbolt! Or just a new book, always exciting at least for the author!

My latest is the ninth installment in the Bennett Sisters Mystery series, out August 1. This one follows last year’s BLAME IT ON PARIS, both featuring Francie Bennett, one of five sisters who are all lawyers. 

Francie is back in Paris, with her boyfriend this time, helping him with an annoying client. Axelle Fourcier left France after the student protests of 1968 and vowed never to go back. But now an elderly beloved aunt has died and left her an inheritance so she has no choice.

A Belle Époque apartment is only the beginning of Axelle’s discoveries. Her aunt collected pop art in the ’50s and ’60s. It seems the apartment might be the least of the inheritance that she must split with a cousin she’s never met. When a break-in and a murder occur, her worry that the French state is out to get her may be more than a little plausible.

Available on Amazon, KOBO, Nook, and Apple Books

AMAZON      NOOK        KOBO         iBOOKS

Find me at the Montana Book Festival in Missoula, September 12 – 15!

All my best,

Lise McClendon

PS: Like to cook? Get the Bennett Sisters French Cookbook free when you sign up here: SIGN UP

What’s in a name?

By Janice McCaffrey

According to Orson Scott Card’s Characters and Viewpoint (2010) characters’ names have “many associations” for readers. Surnames signify ethnicity and family connections. Given names can identify where and when a character was born. A name can help with the character’s physical description or hint at their personality. (pgs. 54-55)

So how do authors choose names for their characters?

Dickens is probably the most famous for creating names that convey a character’s looks, personality, or place in society. In Bleak House Mr. Nemo is an unkempt looking man who owes six-weeks rent, has no friends and is found dead from an opium overdose. Accident or suicide? No one knows for sure. When readers are told that nemo is Latin for ‘no one’ they understand that people did not acknowledge him. And learning it was not his legal name tells them how he felt about himself.

Icelandic storytellers refer to historical figures that same way. A prime example is a woman in one of the sagas whose name is Aud the Deep Minded. Then from other sagas there’s men known as Helgi the Lean and Bork the Stout.

Card advises that authors vary the first letter, number of syllables and sounds of characters’ names in a manuscript. The example he gives is how “monosyllables like Bill, Bob, Tom, Jeff, Pete lead to boredom and confusions.” But he also cautions against using “a lot of flamboyant, bizarre names unless that’s an important part of the story.” (pg. 56) Of course, when writing historical novels authors can and should use full names of real people. However, that does get confusing when families have used the same given name for two or more generations.

Anyone who has read a Russian novel will understand another of Card’s points. Simplify characters’ names and use only one name per character. I find stories easier to read and identify with their characters when I can pronounce their names. Easily knowing and remembering who’s who also helps. Not like Anna Karenina where her husband is Alexei Alexandrovitch Karenina and her lover is Alexei Kirillovich Vronsky. I’ve wondered why Tolstoy used the same given name.

Then I read the Introduction in a Barnes & Noble edition (2013) written by Amy Mandelker. She says that one of the themes throughout the novel is mirror images. Besides Anna’s two men having the same names Anna itself is a mirror since it is spelled the same frontwards and backwards. Her maid is Annushka which is a nickname for Anna. The daughter’s name is Annie and Anna adopts a protégée by the name of Hannah which is the Hebrew form of Anna. Tolstoy knew how to get the most out of a name!

Another suggestion from Card is not to have all the characters in a story have names that “mean something” . . . unless it’s an “allegory and [you, the author] deliberately want them tagged with symbolic names.” (pg. 56) My comment to that is if the meaning  of the name is important to the characters’ back story or description be sure to include the meaning some way or other to inform your reader.

As we search for creative names for our characters we should remember that over the years, for better or worse, characters’ names have become part of our cultures’ mindset. Thanks to Dickens we know that a person who is selfish and/or doesn’t like the Christmas Spirit is a Scrooge. Hearing the phrase “Double Oh Seven” conjures up a picture perfect version of Ian Fleming’s James Bond. (For me that will always be Sean Connery). How about Norman Bates, Jo March, Darth Vader, Lolita or Mr. Darcy? Novelists have given us characters whose personalities and deeds will never be forgotten. A challenge to every fiction writer.

What’s in a name? Evidently a lot!!