Monday, September 30, 2013

Lesa Latest Contest

 As posted elsewhere......

This week, I'm giving away books by two award-winning authors. I have an ARC of Louise Penny's #1 bestselling mystery, How the Light Gets In & a copy of G.M. Malliet's A Fatal Winter. Details available on my blog, Entries from the U.S. only, please.

Lesa Holstine 

Little Big Crimes: The Wentworth Letter, by Jeff Soloway

Little Big Crimes: The Wentworth Letter, by Jeff Soloway: "The Wentworth Letter," by Jeff Soloway, in Malfeasance Occasional: Girl Trouble, edited by Clare Toohey. The folks at Crimi...

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: New Poem at The 5-2

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: New Poem at The 5-2: The 5-2 | Crime Poetry Weekly, Annual Ebooks - Gerald So, Editor : Nancy Scott AT HOME IN ABBOTTABAD, PAKISTAN

September 2013 Reads and Reviews

In addition to interviews, news, market calls, free book alerts, and lots of other things on the blog, this is the complete list of the “September 2013 Reads and Reviews.” All reviews are mine unless otherwise noted.

Strip For Murder by Richard S. Prather-- (FFB Double Take Review by Barry Ergang and Patrick Ohl

Billboard Man by Jim Fusilli

The Lord Of Misrule by Paul Halter (FFB  Double Take Review by Barry Ergang and Patrick Ohl

Paleo Fitness Primal Training And Nutrition To Get Lean, Strong And Healthy by Darryl Edwards, Brett Stewart, and Jason Warner

Like a Bone in the Throat (A Tale From The Dark Side) by Lawrence Block

Beat To A Pulp: Hardboiled 2 Edited by David Cramner and Scott D. Parker

Keller On The Spot by Lawrence Block

THE CASE OF THE BAKER STREET IRREGULARS by Anthony Boucher (Double Take FFB Review --Barry Ergang and Patrick Ohl)

Hell Up In Houston: A Jack Laramie Beat by Garnett Elliott

Long Fall From Heaven by George Wier and Milton T. Burton

Storm Front: A Virgil Flowers Novel by John Sandford

Strangers On A Train by Patricia Highsmith (FFB Review--Patrick Ohl)

That was September and that should mean cooler weather, the return of the Great State Fair of Texas (which we shall have to miss yet again--- unfortunately) and some rain to put a dent into the drought…..

Sunday, September 29, 2013


Worked on a review much of the evening tonight and am reminded what Earl Staggs recently said to me. Paraphrasing greatly it was along the lines of your time is so limited you should be working on your own stuff. Doing a review right takes time and certainly isn't as easy with my physical issues now as it was a few years ago.

Of course, I could really simplify things if I just skipped reading the book and crafted a two sentence review each time instead.


 Radine has a theory. I am not sure she is right, but, her idea probably does play a role in things.....
MAKE MINE MYSTERY: BOOK SALES DOWN? WHO DID THIS TO US?: In the writing field I am most familiar with--mystery and suspense--author after author has been telling us on the Internet, and in conversa...

Want A Funny Read? Barry Has Books To Sell

I have mentioned before that Barry is selling off his personal library of books as he is getting closer to moving into a smaller place. He recently sent me the scans of the covers for a number of books he has for sale in the "humor" category.

 These and more are in addition to several Woody Allen books.

 As has been mentioned here before, his prices are lower these days. Barry has added more books having sold a bunch of stuff in recent weeks. So go here and check it out as he has got some good ones. 

Amazon Shopping?

In addition to the donation widget on the left side, I am an Amazon Associate. What this means is if you click on one of the book links on this blog to buy a particular book or to shop on Amazon and you buy something, I get a few pennies on the sale. It does not affect the price you pay at Amazon or have any impact on you financially at all.

What it does do is generate a small referral fee that is paid into my Amazon Associate account a few pennies at a time. Those pennies add up each quarter. When enough pennies add up to ten dollars, usually once or twice a year, I can cash out with an Amazon giftcard.

So, if you are going to shop at Amazon anyway, please consider going through me to do your shopping. Every little bit helps and I do appreciate it very much.

And, if you are going to buy a book, may I suggest........

Sunday Morning On The Back Porch

Being Blocked

Barry sent this along this morning and I thought it was funny.....

Event: "The Writer's Chatroom Presents C Hope Clark"

 Always worth your time.....The Writer's Chatroom Presents C Hope Clark

The Writer's Chatroom
Chat with C Hope Clark
(Glenn Walker will be moderating)
C. Hope Clark is founder of, a well-known writer's reference for grants, contests, markets, publishers and agents for the serious writer. The website and newsletters have existed for fourteen years, and been recognized by Writer's Digest Magazine in its 101 Best Websites for Writers for thirteen of those years. 42,000 writers receive her newsletters each week.
She's published in Writer's Digest, Writer's Market, Guide to Literary Agents (by Writer's Digest), The Writer Magazine, as well as multiple trades, glossy mags and numerous Chicken Soup books. She's interviewed often by both writing and business websites and speaks to writing conferences throughout the United States. Her book The Shy Writer: An Introvert's Guide to Writing Success, continues to sell steadily.

She is also author of The Carolina Slade Mystery Series. Lowcountry Bribe is the first in the series published by Bell Bridge Books. The mysteries describe federally employed Carolina Slade's sleuthing abilities throughout rural, rarely seen South Carolina settings, facing crimes not found in your typical mystery. Her follow-up, Tidewater Murder, is now available too. The third book in the series will be released in 2014.
Read more about Hope and Carolina Slade at , Hope's beautiful website.
Sunday, September 29, 2013
Eastern USA Time.....7 PM
Not sure what time that is wherever in the world you are?
The Writers Chatroom at:
Scroll down to the Java box. It may take a moment to load. Type in the name you wish to be known by, and click Login. No password needed.
Please note:  The chatroom is only open for regularly scheduled chats. 
Don't forget the topic chats on Wednesday nights, 8-10 pm EST!

Please feel free to pass this announcement on to anyone or any groups who may be interested.  Thank you.
The place Audrey trusts to tune up her computers!
Please check the Chatroom Schedule for information on upcoming guests and writing-related chat topics. Visit our Previous Guests page to catch up on what you've missed.
The Team
Copyright © 2013 The Writer's Chatroom. All Rights Reserved.
The Writer's Chatroom, PO Box 353, Marion Center PA 15759

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Rights Grabs

Kristine Kathryn Rusch has another excellent post up on her blog that pertains to the business of writing. Her piece is on the various ways publishers are trying to grab more rights. You can read it here and you should.

Dallas MWA Meeting---Saturday, October 5, 2013

From James Gaskin and with his permission.....

This month, our own LaRee Bryant brings us "Confessions from Killer Nashville" as she spills about what she learned at the recent convention. Hear what presenters and agents said, what attendees talked about between sessions, and new considerations for authors contemplating ebooks, either through the industry or self-published.

LaRee is the author of 7 historical novels and 2 non-fiction books, and has recently finished the second book in a new cozy mystery series. She's been a writing teacher and professional editor for over 20 years and has served on the boards of several national and local writers' organizations, overseeing committees such as "Agents Standards of Practice" and "Published Authors Network."

The Dallas MWASW group meets the first Saturday of each month at Texas Land & Cattle, 812 South Central Expressway, Richardson, TX 75080. Meeting time is 9:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m.There is a $5.00 door fee, cash only. All who attend are invited to remain for lunch. Contact info:

James E. Gaskin
Writer / Consultant / Speaker
Latest book: Texas Hysterical Society
 More info at the website

Friday, September 27, 2013

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: Yes, Another Forgotten Book

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: Yes, Another Forgotten Book:  Vintage Treasures: The Best of Philip K. Dick

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: Two More Forgotten Books

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: Two More Forgotten Books: A Point of Transition: Andre Norton’s Witch World And the there's this one:  Three Against the Witch World by Andre Norton

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: Forgotten Books: Master of Life and Death -- Rober...

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: Forgotten Books: Master of Life and Death -- Rober...: Sorry, folks, no Patricia Highsmith here today.  One reason is that I just can't leave a book in the store.  The other day I was in ...

Sandi Update

Finally back home. Sandi is still relatively stable. Somethings went down, others went up, and medications are being adjusted again. We do it all again next week.

FFB Review: "Strangers On A Train" by Patricia Highsmith

Friday means Friday’s Forgotten Books hosted by Patti Abbott here. Last week in this spot there was a double take review on The Case of the Baker Street Irregulars by Patrick and Barry. With Patti declaring this Patricia Highsmith day for FFB, Patrick offered the below review. Clearly, Patrick is far less than impressed…

Strangers on a Train was Patricia Highsmith’s first published novel, and it was a smash hit. So big, in fact, that a film adaptation was quickly made by the master of suspense himself, Alfred Hitchcock. And the first script was written by Raymond Chandler – although venom-filled “creative differences” ended up getting Chandler dismissed from the project. The final product is one of Hitchcock’s finest thrillers. But how does the novel compare?

Fans of the film are warned that the book is very, very different from the film. I suspect that many of the differences arose thanks to the Hollywood censors, but if that was the case I can only say “Thank God!” In the past, I’ve remarked that Hitchcock could take the silliest stories and turn them into terrific thrillers. Sadly, Strangers on a Train is one of those silly stories, and I have no idea why it has such a high reputation.

Story first: Guy Haines and Charles Anthony Bruno meet on a train. Guy is a promising young architect who is on his way to get a divorce from his wife, who is pregnant with another man’s child. Bruno, meanwhile, is very busy doing nothing whatsoever, and he tells Guy about his father, who controls Bruno’s purse strings and keeps him on a tight leash. Bruno tells Guy that he has an idea for a perfect murder: they will swap murders. There’s no reason to suppose that Guy and Bruno know each other, so there’s no way their murders will be connected. Guy doesn’t take Bruno seriously and is only too glad to leave the train, but Bruno is fascinated with Guy. So Bruno decides to grant Guy a twisted favour: he hunts down Guy’s wife Miriam and murders her at an amusement park.

So far so good. Fortunately for Guy, he has a sturdy alibi, and the police are left puzzled. Guy suspects that Bruno may have had something to do with Miriam’s death, but he doesn’t want to find out. Then, Bruno gets in touch with Guy, admits he’s responsible, and tells Guy it’s his turn to uphold his side of the bargain. Guy refuses. And so Bruno insinuates himself into Guy's life, planning out his father’s death and hounding the architect until finally Guy breaks down and commits the murder.

And here, ladies and gentlemen, is where the train is derailed. From this point on, the track lead towards insanity. I’m afraid that I simply have no sympathy for spineless, cowardly idiots, and that’s what we have in this novel. Guy Haines is, to use a childish term, a sissy. Here the moron gets letters from Bruno—handwritten, presumably signed letters, which probably have fingerprints all over the place!!!—which map out the proposed murder, tell Guy what to do, give tips on how to escape the murder scene, etc. Bruno even sends him a gun!!! And what does our hero do, ladies and gentlemen? Surely he would call the police, for presumably, coercion into murder was illegal in the 1950s, even if there were no laws against stalkers? Hell, no! He does the only reasonable thing: destroy the evidence!

No question of it: Guy Haines wins the Darwin Award for 1950. The entire novel is a situation of Guy’s own making. You can make the argument that it makes for a compelling character study, an allegorical novel of the good and evil within each man. I make the argument that Guy is a moron whose own stupidity is his undoing. Here he is with physical proof that Bruno has killed his wife and is trying to get him to commit a murder—he’s in the position of strength! But he destroys the evidence and then whines about how his guilt haunts him. In the Hitchcock film, Guy had a reason for being frightened of Bruno, who threatened to frame Guy by placing false evidence at the crime scene. Furthermore, he left no leverage that Guy might have used against him. The movie Guy is a likeable hero, caught in a perilous situation. The book Guy? I say he can go straight to hell.

And it’s a shame too, because the book does start out quite well. Bruno never makes a good villain — he sounds like a snivelling twelve-year old momma’s boy and I desperately wanted to slap him — but the situation is original and at first quite compelling. Guy ruins everything, but he doesn’t do it singlehanded. In fact, I say he couldn’t have done it without Bruno. Bruno commits the greatest sin a character can commit: he’s annoying.

In the Hitchcock film, Bruno at first seems to be a charming fellow, and his proposed murder scheme sounds like a joke. That’s how Guy and the audience choose to take it at first, and that makes the murder shocking. But in the novel, Bruno is an obvious psychopath—you can spot his insanity at twenty paces. He’s never charming—he’s an annoying little brat. You have no idea why Guy would have a conversation with him in the first place. Not even Guy understands it, although he’s the one who follows Bruno to his compartment in the first place, leading to the novel’s events! When Bruno demands that Guy commit his murder, it isn’t the demand of a dangerous murderer but the petulant tantrum of a spoiled child. I had a hard time finding the suspense that is supposed to permeate this novel.

And the book, incidentally, drags on and on and on!!! The pace is snail-like and things get extremely boring. After the two murders are committed, you simply have no idea why Guy and Bruno would keep seeing each other. No, wait—if they didn’t see each other you couldn’t have any obvious SYMBOLISM!!! The entire novel feels like the author is trying to write Literature with a capital L, but she doesn’t succeed in the slightest. There isn’t a shred of subtlety to be found in this novel—the author has to explain every instance of blatantly-obvious symbolism to you instead of letting you draw your own conclusions. I give you this piece of sparkling, inspired writing:

“Guy felt a boyish, holiday delight in having Bob with him. Bob symbolized Canada and the work there, the project in which Guy felt he had entered another vaster chamber of himself where Bruno could not follow.”

But wait – there’s more! I sure hope you like twisted psycho-sexual character studies! Because in this book, Bruno’s fascination with Guy is given a very unsubtle homoerotic context. This made me uneasy because of its possessive and obsessive nature. But it didn’t make me sympathise with Guy— I stopped rooting for him at page 101. Instead, Strangers on a Train became a nasty story about nasty characters being nasty to each other for no reason other than “the plot says so”. Oh, and Bruno? Not only is he an obsessive homosexual with clear psychological issues, he’s also in love with his mother. (How the hell does that work???)

I didn’t like either of the two male leads, and nobody else is worth talking about. Miriam is a manipulative little pig, an empty-headed bimbo who appears for maybe fifteen pages and makes you want to strangle her for 14 pages before Bruno does it for you on the 15th. Bruno’s father is just there, although the book’s blatantly obvious symbolism is sure to tell you that that’s the whole point. Bruno’s mother is also just there, except because Bruno is in love with her, it makes you want to run away screaming whenever she appears. There’s nothing to distinguish her—she’s another moron who can’t tell that her son is an obvious psychopath. Finally, there’s the love of Guy’s life, Anne… who again, is just there and does nothing! Only an idiot could be this oblivious: but that doesn’t surprise me.

Patricia Highsmith was not a happy person, and it shows in this book. Many people admire her writing, but it personally made me shiver with revulsion. The author comes across as a very miserable, cynical, and unpleasant person, i.e. precisely the kind of person I would avoid in real life. The writing gives you unique insight into the mind of such an unpleasant individual, but for me it was not even remotely interesting, just a nasty experience I wished to put behind me. Briefly put, instead of making me interested in her characters, Highsmith made me want to get them all in a secluded alleyway and open fire on them with a tommy gun.

There’s only one way to sum up my thoughts on Strangers on a Train and Patricia Highsmith in general. In his work Bloody Murder, Julian Symons praises Patricia Highsmith as “the most important crime novelist at present in practice”, who takes a fascinating central idea and “in Highsmith’s hands they are starting points for finely subtle characters studies”. However, Symons also says that she “is an acquired taste, which means a taste that some never acquire”. He goes on to tell readers this story:

When I was reviewing crime fiction regularly, Victor Gollancz used to write to me before going on holiday asking me to recommend the best books of the year published by other firms than his own. … He then bought these books and took them away with him. At my insistence he bought one year The Two Faces of January, which he disliked intensely. To his letter in the following year he added a postscript: ‘Please – no Patricia Highsmith.’

Strangers on a Train is a massive miscalculation which I thoroughly hated, although the beginning is quite strong. It’s a pretentious, annoying little book which is convinced that it is being Real Literature. The characters are either bland or nasty, and Bruno’s twisted psychology and sexuality is seriously alarming. It’s poorly written and full of obvious SYMBOLISM!!! It gives you unique insight into the mind of an author you would probably avoid in real life. And, most annoying of all, the entire book is unnecessary. It’s a situation fabricated by one character being a complete moron. You can perhaps argue that makes the whole thing so much more fascinating, but I concur with Victor Gollancz.

Patrick Ohl ©2013
The nineteen-year-old Patrick Ohl continues to plot to take over the world when he isn’t writing reviews of books he reads on his blog, At the Scene of the Crime. In his spare time he conducts genetic experiments in his top-secret laboratory, hoping to create a creature as terrifying as the Giant Rat of Sumatra in a bid to take over the world. His hobbies include drinking tea and going outside to do a barbecue in -10°C weather.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Karl and the Kroger 581 Lawsuit

Karl won in his lawsuit in federal court regarding what happened nearly two years ago at Kroger 581 in Plano. He has been vindicated! There should be a press release coming soon from his law firm who did a wonderful job in all aspects.

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: How to Write a Book

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: How to Write a Book: Scott Adams Blog: How to Write a Book

Carmen DeSousa: CREATUS, the reason we believe in fairy tales--and...

Carmen DeSousa: CREATUS, the reason we believe in fairy tales--and...: After years of searching for the mysterious stranger who saved her life, twenty-two-year-old Kristina is alone and desperate. Seeing...

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: Free for Kindle for a Limited Time

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: Free for Kindle for a Limited Time: DMQZ eBook: Quinn Fleming: Kindle Store : In the wake of the global pandemic known as the "little dormouse," the line ...

Senior News---September 2013 Column

For some time now I have been writing a monthly book review column for the Senior News newspaper. The Senior News is aimed to the 50 and over crowd with news relevant to seniors regarding various issues, humor pieces, and my review column among other things. The newspaper is a giveaway at doctor offices, stores, etc. and can be received by mail via a paid subscription. There are multiple editions across the state of Texas and therefore there is some fluctuation in content in each edition.

My column every month focuses on books of interest to the Texas audience. Therefore the books selected for the column, fiction or non-fiction, are written by Texas residents, feature Texans in some way, or would have some other connection to the Texas based readership. At least two books are covered each month in the short space I am given.

Below is/was my September 2013 column with the addition here of the relevant book covers…

Dying Voices: The Carl Burns Mystery Series
Bill Crider
Crossroad Press
E-Book (estimated print length 196 pages)

Professor Carl Burns starts the fall semester at Hartley Norman College preparing again to teach the sophomore level course on American Lit.  He has also dreading the upcoming Edward Street Seminar as their most famous alumni, Edward Street, triumphantly returns to the small Texas campus. As it turns out, he has good reason as soon Street is dead and the suspect pool includes Burns.

What follows is highly entertaining story of academic politics, crime, murder and a hint of romance as Burns works to solve this case and other issues. Following One Dead Dean this long out of print second book of the Carl Burns series is a comfortable cozy mystery story from Texas author Bill Crider. If you like his excellent Sheriff Dan Rhodes series, you will like these as Burns shares many of the same traits as Sheriff Rhodes. Like in the Rhodes series, Carl Burns quickly becomes a character readers relate to and feel is an old friend in this very good book.

Private Spies: A Jesse Morgan Mystery
PJ Nunn
Tidal Wave (division of Breakthrough Promotions)
ISBN# 978-0615832562
E-Book (also available as a paperback)
212 Pages

For the last five years Jesse Morgan Jackson and Joey Catronio were partners in a private investigation business in the Dallas, Texas area. Joey did the leg work while Jesse handled computer stuff and Bernice did secretarial work for them. Now, Joey is dead, Jesse is devastated and struggling to keep the business afloat.  When Beverly Gafford calls looking for somebody to find her ex-husband, Lawrence James Gafford, Jesse works hard to land what clearly is going to be a difficult client. A client who wants her child found, but isn’t acting right from the beginning.

Reminiscent of Janet Evanovich’s long running Stephanie Plum series, Private Spies: A Jesse Morgan Mystery is highly entertaining and occasionally laugh out loud funny. The slowness of the pace at the beginning provides the author time to develop the Jesse Morgan character for readers before the action significantly intensifies on many fronts. Published under the author's own name and though her publicity company, “Breakthrough Promotions,” this debut novel of the series is a complicated and well done effort from start to finish.

Kevin R. Tipple ©2013

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

At the Scene of the Crime: Of Gangsters and Outlaws

At the Scene of the Crime: Of Gangsters and Outlaws: Private eye Nate Heller is now in his second year of operations. His first year was described in detail in the novel True Detective , and...

Review: "Storm Front: A Virgil Flowers Novel" by John Sandford

Virgil Flowers is on a case about fake antique lumber when his boss Lucas Davenport calls him with another assignment. An Israeli investigator is on the way and needs to talk to a professor who lives in the area. In addition to being a professor the man, Elijah Jones, is also a Lutheran minister. The investigator wants to talk to the professor who apparently stole an important artifact from a dig in Israel and smuggled it back home.

The investigator, Yael Aronov, isn’t telling Virgil everything she knows and Virgil knows it. He also quickly figures out that far more is going on than what he has been told or what Lucas led him to believe. It isn’t the first time Virgil has had to work two cases at the same time and he does it again here with both the lumber situation and the missing artifact.

At least the lumber does not involve Mossad, Hezbollah, and even worse---Texans.

Co-written with his partner, Michele Cook, the latest novel in this series from John Sandford is what one expects in a book featuring Virgil Flowers. His investigative actions are sometimes unorthodox; he will have a vigorous sexual fling with at least one character as well as the occasional fantasy about at least one other female, and the will be plenty of action and use of occasionally graphic language. Storm Front: A Virgil Flowers Novel is a fast, fun read that is not meant to be taken seriously or break new ground in terms of character development. The multiple storylines featuring fraud and deceit at home and abroad gradually weave together to a satisfactory and rather surprising conclusion. It’s another good, if not spectacular, read in the series which can be read as a stand alone or as part of the overall series.

Storm Front: A Virgil Flowers Novel
John Sandford
G. P. Putnam’s Sons (Penguin Group, USA)
October 8, 2013
ISBN# 978-0-399-15930-5
Hardback (also available in e-book and audio book)
384 Pages

I received an ARC of this title due to my participation in the “LibraryThing Early Reviewers” group for my use in an objective review. As such, my above review appeared there first last Saturday before appearing here on the blog.

Kevin R. Tipple ©2013

Monday, September 23, 2013

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: It's National Banned Books Week

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: It's National Banned Books Week: 7 Reasons Your Favorite Books Were Banned

Review: "Long Fall From Heaven" by George Wier and Milton T. Burton

Cueball Boland, owner of NiteWise Security Company as well as a couple of other things in Galveston, Texas has a very unpleasant task when he knocks on Micah Lanscomb’s trailer.  Cueball needs Micah’s help because a fellow guard, Jack Pense, is dead. Jack was on the job in the Demour warehouse when somebody hit him on the head, tied him up, and then beat him to death.  Cueball wants Micah to go have a look at the crime scene before they have to call the cops.

Jack Pense died in a warehouse owned by the legendary Demour family. They are old island money with plenty of power and connections and a desire to keep things quiet. Having a night watchman killed in their warehouse is not going to sit well with them or those that do their bidding. It also doesn’t sit well with either Micah or Cueball, both of whom have extensive law enforcement backgrounds and distaste for local law enforcement.

That means they intend to make it their case and will work it as they see fit. Wrongs have to be set right, as best as they can, in a case that will has links to crimes decades old that still reverberate with modern consequences. The truth may not set them free, but there can still be justice, not just for Jack Pense, all these many years later.

Featuring twin Texas story lines with one set in the late 1980’s and the other in the mid to late war years of World War II, Long Fall from Heaven is a powerful novel co-written by George Wier and the late Milton T. Burton. Rich in Texas history and details, the book is a complex multilayered read that is not easily summed up in any review without revealing a vast number of spoiler details. Suffice it to say that Long Fall from Heaven is incredibly good and very highly recommended.

Long Fall From Heaven
George Wier and Milton T. Burton
Cinco Puntos Press
ISBN# 978-1-935955-52-8
Paperback (also available as an e-book)
224 Pages

Reviewer note---As I said last August when I reviewed These Mortal Remains here I knew Milton Burton and was honored to have been his friend. Before he passed away far too soon, Milton would call me on a regular basis a couple of times a month from his home in Tyler, Texas. His gravelly voice would boom across the miles as he inquired as to my family and my fiction writing. Writing, history, and many other topics deeply interested Milton who never stopped teaching. I deeply miss those talks and the man I never got to sit with in person. I have a feeling that somewhere Milton is still cackling with derision at the politicians and writing yet more great stories.

Review copy was provided by George Wier for my use in an objective review.

Kevin R. Tipple ©2013

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: New Story at BEAT to a PULP

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: New Story at BEAT to a PULP: BEAT to a PULP :: The Heist :: Fred Zackel

Shamus Awards Announced

The Private Eye Writers of America have announced the 2013 award winners here as well as the other nominees in each category.

Sample Sunday: "FEEDWAY" from "PUN-ishing Tales: The Stuff That Groans Are Made On" by Barry Ergang

For a number of Sundays now, I have inflicted upon you samples from my own books. As I said last week, enough is enough of that. It isn't like I have 12 books out and can rotate a ton of samples at you. So, I am opening up things starting this Sunday with other stuff. 

Today, Barry gets a turn and offered the below sample with this intro: "No, it's not about BDSM, S&M, or anything kinky. PUN-ishing Tales: The Stuff That Groans Are Made On is a book of groaners, humorous short stories (some very short) that are sometimes peppered with puns throughout but which always end with them. If you enjoy word play, or just enjoy something to groan about, you'll have fun with this collection."

by Barry Ergang

            “What’re you thinking?” the resort owner demanded. “I ask for a first-class chef and you hire a race-car driver.”

            Retired race-car driver,” his president of operations said, “who’s studied at some of the world’s finest culinary institutes.”

            The owner snorted. “Yeah— he’ll give the customers gas, right?”

            “The customers’ll be revved. Racing’s popular all over the world. Drivers are superstars— including our boy. The novelty’s a great shift for us because we can  
advertise a five-star restaurant featuring a dual-celebrity chef.” He snapped his fingers. “We could rename the restaurant Grand Prix!”      

            “Which of you do I spin out of here first?”

            “Neither. At least, not till you’ve lapped the fare. You don’t know heaven till you’ve tasted his Lamb Borghini.” 
Barry Ergang © 2013

PUN-ishing Tales: The Stuff That Groans Are Made On is one of a number of Barry Ergang's e-books available at Amazon and Smashwords.