Sunday, November 23, 2014

Via CNC Books Blog-- A Christmas Novella Giveaway

As posted elsewhere earlier today.....

The holiday stories are beginning to take hold of our reading consciousness
and I'm giving a new one away on Buried Under Books. If you'd like to have
a taste of Sharyn McCrumb's Ballad books or if you're already a fan, NORA
BONESTEEL'S CHRISTMAS PAST may be just the one for you---

Come on by for a chance to win a hardcover copy of this pleasing little
novella---it will make a dandy little gift for yourself or for a lucky
someone in your life 


Lelia Taylor
Creatures 'n Crooks / Buried Under Books

Via Anne R. Allen's Blog: 8 Bogus "Rules" New Writers Tell Each Other

Anne R. Allen's Blog: 8 Bogus "Rules" New Writers Tell Each Other: by Anne R. Allen W e get lots of questions from new writers who have spent time in forums and online writers' groups where they'v...

Via Smashwords: Ebook Publishing Gets More Difficult from Here - H...

Smashwords: Ebook Publishing Gets More Difficult from Here - H...: First the good news.  For indie (self-published) authors, there’s never been a better time to publish an ebook.  Thanks to an ever-growi...

Via Bookblog of the Bristol Library: Death, Snow, and Mistletoe by Valerie Malmont

Bookblog of the Bristol Library: Death, Snow, and Mistletoe by Valerie Malmont: Reviewed by Jeanne Christmas time’s a-comin’ to the little town of Lickin Creek, an Appalachian town in Pennsylvania and preparations...

Saturday, November 22, 2014

KRL This Week Update-- Sandra Balzo, JoAnna Carl, Elaine Faber, Marilyn Meredith, Thanksgiving mystery short story & much more in KRL

As posted elsewhere earlier today....

Up this morning in Kings River Life Magazine a review & giveaway of a Thanksgiving mystery, "Hit and Run" by Sandra Balzo

Also up, reviews & giveaways of three food related mysteries, perfect for Thanksgiving when we have food on the brain- "By Cook or By Crook" by Maya Corrigan, and "Chorus Lines, Caviar and Corpses" by Mary McHugh, and "The Chocolate Book Bandit" by JoAnna Carl

We also have a never before published Thanksgiving mystery short story by Gail Farrelly

And a review and giveaway of the "Black Cat and the Lethal Lawyer" by Elaine Faber

Also a review & giveaway of "The Anthology of Cozy-Noir" edited by Andrew MacRae with stories by Bobbi A. Chukran, John Haas, and several others

And in honor of Thanksgiving being a time for families, Deborah Harter Williams looks at mystery TV shows featuring families, such as "Blue Bloods"

We also have a review & giveaway of the latest Deputy Tempe Crabtree mystery, "River Spirits," by Marilyn Meredith

And for those who enjoy fantasy with their mystery, a review and giveaway of "Spells at the Crossroads" by Barbara Ashford

Lastly, over on  KRL Lite, reviews & giveaways of "Ensconced" & "Purged" by M.E. May

Via The Education of a Pulp Writer: The Last Kind Words Saloon

The Education of a Pulp Writer: The Last Kind Words Saloon: Larry McMurtry  mentions in his brief introduction to  The Last Kind Words Saloon , “I had the great director John Ford in mind when I wrot...

Via Mystery Fanfare: Thanksgiving Mysteries / Thanksgiving Crime Fictio...

Mystery Fanfare: Thanksgiving Mysteries / Thanksgiving Crime Fictio...: Thanksgiving . I have a lot to give thanks for -- my family, my friends, and the wonderful mystery community. Once again we'll b...

Friday, November 21, 2014

Via The Practicing Writer-- Friday Finds for Writers

Friday Finds for Writers

Via Books and Benches: Books and Benches Monthly Giveaway: STONE MOUNTAIN...

Books and Benches: Books and Benches Monthly Giveaway: STONE MOUNTAIN...: November 2014 Giveaway Author Caroline Clemmons is this month's Books & Benches featured author! Enter to win one of ...

FFB Review: "Kings of Colorado" by David E. Hilton

It is Friday and that means Friday’s Forgotten Books. In my post chocolate cake haze it seemed like a good idea to run my review of David E. Hilton’s Kings of Colorado. As I said in the review that appeared back in 2011 it isn’t easy to label this book. Suffice it to say, you should read it if you have not already done so. After you read the review make sure you check out the complete list over at Patti’s blog. Surely something will catch your eye…

Austin, Texas resident David E. Hilton's debut novel Kings of Colorado is in turns heart breaking and uplifting. A novel that is not easy to describe while filled with tragedy and ultimately redemption. At its core, it is the tale of one man finally finding peace with a very brutal past decades later.

It was the summer of 1963 when the abusive world William Sheppard knew changed forever. He was thirteen and one time too many his father came home in a drunken rage and started terrorizing his family. When it was over, his father was near death because his thirteen year old son William Shepard had stabbed him multiple times with a pocket knife.

By September, thanks to the order of the court, William Sheppard was on his way from Chicago to the Swope Ranch Boy's reformatory in Colorado. The legendary reform school located near Gunnison, Colorado in a high mountain valley isolated from the world is to be his home for the next twenty four months. That is if he can survive the altitude of over thirteen thousand feet, the extreme weather, the other inmates, and the guards.  Of all the threats the guards may be the worst threat as, with a couple of exceptions, they exist to abuse the boys in every way possible. The ranch sustains itself by using the boys as a cheap labor source to break and take care of the wild horses that are shipped in at regular intervals. The threats are many but the reality of life is put very simply by Warden Walter Barrow: 

“We'll break you, Mr. Sheppard. Just like we break each of the animals outside.  One step at a time.” (Page 22)

Those in charge use the natural environmental elements of the ranch being located in a valley above thirteen thousand feet, intimidation, weapons, and other factors to control the population. Days away from anywhere, knowing that to resist means being shot, etc. means that nobody is going anywhere. This prison may have beauty around it and nothing in terms of walls or guard towers but it is a lock down prison in every sense that matters.

What follows is a tale of William Sheppard during those brutal 24 months and the aftermath of his ordeals decades later. It is a harsh and unforgiving world that bears a striking resemblance to Lord of the Flies in a far different location. One wonders if it was pitched as that when the author was seeking representation and publication. If so, it was a truly perfect fit that encapsulates well what this novel is about.

An emotionally powerful book with both humor and sheer tragedy often mere lines of text apart, Kings of Colorado is a complex book that is very hard to define or explain in great detail without destroying the very story lines that serve as the fabric of the novel. It reads like a memoir with a voice far older than the author would appear, and yet there are elements of any good mystery fiction story. Crimes have been and are committed, there are several mysteries, and other elements could easily move the book into the mystery field.

Not for the squeamish or faint hearted, the graphic moments in this story of language and description fit well into the story. They are not added for shock value or to pad the word count. They are in there because they fit seamlessly into the text as a whole.

By the end of the book you will wonder if these events really did happen?

Kings of Colorado: A Novel
David E. Hilton
Simon & Schuster
January 2011
ISBN 978-1-4391-8382-3
Hardback(paperback, audio, and e-book versions available)
288 pages

Material supplied by the good folks of the Plano Texas Public Library System.

Kevin R. Tipple © 2011, 2014

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Anthology Market Call-- Submissions for an anthology of historical crime and mystery fiction

As posted elsewhere earlier today......

Subject: Submissions for an anthology of historical crime and mystery fiction

Submissions remain open for an anthology of historical crime and mystery fiction

Darkhouse Books seeks stories for an anthology of historical crime and mystery fiction. For the purpose of this anthology we are defining historical fiction as, those works set more than a few decades prior to the present and written by someone without direct experience in the setting and events of the story. But should a truly superb story happen to stray from the above strictures and cross our threshold, we would happily consider it.

The submission period is now open and will remain open through 11:59pm (PST), December 31st, 2014.

We are seeking stories in the 2500 to 7500 word range, though if it’s knockout material, we’ll consider any length.

The anthology will contain between twelve and twenty stories, depending on the overall length. Authors will share equally fifty percent of royalties received.

We accept MS Word .doc and .docx files. Submissions must be in standard manuscript format. Links to formatting guides are available here.

Previously published work will be considered, provided the author has the power to grant us the right to publish in ebook, audio, and print versions, and that it has not been available elsewhere more recently than January 1st, 2014.

Submissions may be sent to submissionsATdarkhousebooksDOTcom
Please leave “Submission-“ in the subject line and add the name of your story.

Andrew MacRae
Darkhouse Books
Now available "The Anthology of Cozy-Noir"!

Via Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: Another Little Update

As I said on Bill's blog this is encouraging news for Bill and his lovely wife Judy. Our thoughts and prayers continue.....

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: Another Little Update: And this time it's relatively good news.  All the biopsy results have come in, and it appears that Judy's non-Hodgkin lymphoma has &...


Interestingly enough, I share my birthday today with comedians Richard Dawson and Joel McHale as well as Dick Smothers, V.P. Joe Biden, actress Bo Derek (she always ran on the beach better than me and looked way better doing it), astronomer Edward Hubble, author Don Delillo, Mark Gastineau (he ran and played football better than I could too) and Journalist Judy Woodruff, among many others.

I also share the date with friend and fellow Ravens Mavens writing buddy Jan Christensen. If you have seen her picture, you know she wears big hats way better than I do as well as being quite prolific book wise.

In history on this date, the British using tanks, which were thought to be more trouble than they were worth, as well as air support attacked German forces near Cambrai, France.  The Nuremberg Trials began in 1945. And, among other things on this date, in 1923 Garret Morgan patented the revolutionary three step traffic signal which included a “warning” between stop and go (equivalent of today’s yellow light). It is unknown exactly when humans evolved to interpret the warning signal as a reason to accelerate to beat the stop signal.  

Thank you one and all for the birthday wishes expressed here and elsewhere. Nobody has to be anywhere today---yeehaw!!!!—so the plan is to hang out at home and have a quiet day. There will also be serious consumption of chocolate cake.

*****Jinxed It*****

Not five minutes after I posted the above, it became clear I would be running errns as Sandi had an urgent need for her insulin and a couple of other things had to be done. At least it is a stunningly beautiful day here before possible severe weather rolls in late tonight thru Saturday.

And so it goes......

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Via Variety--- Netflix Picks Up ‘Longmire’ for Season 4 (EXCELLENT NEWS EDITION)

Netflix Picks Up ‘Longmire’ for Season 4

Via My Life Called So: Reviewer Bias Revisited

For the record I was the member who sparked this off yesterday by pointing out that reviewing a story in the same book your own story is published in is simply not done. I did say it was beyond a bad idea and way worse than a veiled sale pitch. Not surprisingly the only ones who disagreed all had a connection to the book in question.

I never mentioned friendships--the focus of Gerald So's post--as that had nothing to do with the group topic at hand.

My Life Called So: Reviewer Bias Revisited: © by Gerald So | | 4:00 A.M. The topic of reviewer etiquette came up yesterday in Short Mystery Fiction Society d...


I am buried in books and am pretty much closed to submissions unless you are an author I have read and enjoyed before. Having written my last column for the Senior News Newspaper books specifically aimed for that market are no longer needed.

If you do query have some freakin idea what I read.

For the record---  I am not reading anything billed as a "medical thriller." With a spouse dying of terminal cancer, I am certainly not going to read a soon to be published medical thriller where a dying cancer stricken woman gets some sort of treatment that turns her into a homicidal manic and she unleashes a reign of terror upon big pharma because they want folks to die from cancer.

I kid you not.

Hey, You! Three Horned Face!!

Like westerns, I have always had a thing for dinosaurs. I think they are very cool. Awesome, in fact, and would love to have the ability to do the time travel thing. Of course, while folks can land things on comets now (so very cool), time travel is still not possible. Instead, I have to settle for really good books such as CarnosaurWeekend (Kyler Knightly and Damon Cole Book 1) by Garnett Elliot (somebody you should be reading in all his flavors) and live vicariously.

Fortunately, at this point in my life, I have big time skills in living vicariously.

I recently wrote about those three horned face dinosaurs known as Triceratops for Tapir And Friends Animal Store. No one knows what they went through on the dino playgrounds, but it could not have been easy.  While I did not address that issue at the link above, I did address a few other things including the fact they apparently did not have jet packs and were not used by space aliens in galactic rodeos. 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Via Mike Monson-- More about ALL DUE RESPECT BOOKS!!!!!!!!!!!

Via The Onion-- Paleontologists Determine Dinosaurs Were Killed By Someone They Trusted

Paleontologists Determine Dinosaurs Were Killed By Someone They Trusted

Market Call: The Human

Special Issue on "Crime Writing" 
The Human is now inviting submissions for a special issue to be published in June 2015. The special issue will be devoted to crime writing (fiction and non-fiction) in all of its diverse forms and multiplicity of cultural situations. The topic, for instance, may cover journalistic reportage, online fansites for aficionados of crime, detective fiction broadly construed, crime writing for children and young adults, hacking, true crime writing, historical crime writing, and other subjects. Interdisciplinary approaches are encouraged, as are treatments that deal with global (non-Western) writing or that bridge East and West. Less-covered subjects are most welcome. Successful submissions will demonstrate rigor, originality and persuasive argumentation for the significance of the thesis. 
Completed essays of 4500-5500 words will be due no later than March 1, 2015, to guest editor, Rebecca Martin (

Monday, November 17, 2014

Via At The Scene Of The Crime--- Gone Baby Gone

Via WELCOME TO HELL ~ by Glenn Walker: TCM Cruise 2014

WELCOME TO HELL ~ by Glenn Walker: TCM Cruise 2014: This was a dream come true, and the best birthday gift I think I've ever gotten, but for my fiftieth, The Bride got us tickets on the...

Via Do Some Damage: Five recommended crime graphic novels

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Via Writers Who Kill: Advice About Publishing Your Novel by Linda Rodriguez

Writers Who Kill: Advice About Publishing Your Novel: I receive emails regularly from people who’ve read one of my novels, such as Every Hidden Fear , or have even just read about them, i...

Via Monday Markets for Writers: No Fees, Paying Gigs

Monday Markets for Writers: No Fees, Paying Gigs

Review: "Vengeance At Sundown: A Lucas Fume Western" by Larry D. Sweazy

As in these times, just after the Civil War there were men in prison for crimes they did not commit. Lucas Fume is one such man serving time in the Tennessee State Prison. Convicted of the murder of his business partner, John Barlow, Lucas has done a lot of questionable things over the years. This was especially true during the Civil War. His guilt on that is one thing, but he never murdered anyone.

Fortunately, Lucas Fume is a better than average good fighter and has earned a reputation of being one of the toughest guys in the prison. A reputation that somebody is looking to take down a notch as there was no other reason for the stranger to come after him. Lucas has taken some shots, but given as well as he has gotten and is holding his own against his latest attacker. As the fight rages on while prisoners place bets on the outcome, a fire has begun elsewhere close by in the prison. That fire and the commotion it has caused have turned what was a simple fight between two prisoners into a free for all between many of the men.

It also means others that Lucas has no idea who they are have moved into range of Lucas. That includes a former slave and fellow prisoner by the name of Ezekiel “Zeke” Henry. He has come looking for Lucas for a reason as he started that fire as part of a plan to free Lucas from prison. There really isn’t time to ask questions though Lucas tries as the fire increases and guards beginning to respond to take control of the prison back from the inmates and quell the violence.  Why he is being sprung now is just one of the many questions in Lucas’ mind as he takes a chance and follows Zeke in the unknown.

First of a new series featuring Lucas Fume, this western is a good one. Like most of author Larry D. Sweazy’s main characters, Lucas is a flawed human being who has done a number of things that others would question and quite possibly hang him for. He is a complicated human being, but his word means just about everything to him.

Couple that with a strong mystery component which is usually present in the author’s westerns, a compelling secondary storyline, and other ingredients and you have more of the quality read that worked so well in The Devil’s Bones and the Josiah Wolfe, Texas Ranger series. When you read a Larry D. Sweazy book it isn’t surprising why the author collects so many awards for his work. He has done it again with Vengeance At Sundown: A Lucas Fume Western.

Vengeance At Sundown: A Lucas Fume Western
Larry D. Sweazy
Berkley Western Novel (A penguin Radom House Company)
August 2014
Paperback (also available in e-book and large print formats)
320 Pages

Material supplied by the author in exchange for my objective review.

Kevin R. Tipple ©2014