Thursday, January 29, 2015

There are still a few spots left for Hoover Southern Voices!

February 24 - 28th

Wally Lamb on the 27th is sold out, but there are some Plaza Seats left for the next day's author event. 

Doesn't a weekend in Birmingham, surrounded by beautiful art (by Melanie Morris), fantastic books and wonderful authors - never mind the brilliantly delightful Hoover Library itself - sound like something you want to experience?

Year FIVE for me - I LOVE it.

Click on the link below to go directly to the Southern Voices Site where you can see the list of authors attending this year.

Hoover Southern Voices Site

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

The Reluctant Psychic - a Memoir

Author: Suzan Saxman with Perdita Finn
St. Martin's Press
January 27, 2015


Sadly memoirs are often written in a clunky tone and this is no different.  The story itself is different but the "reading tone" is not.  

Suzan claims to be a psychic from birth.  Scary eyeless men over her bed, the dead walking through her life, the living asking for help.    Her mother is suspicious and not supportive.  She becomes on edge and guarded early on.  

The story could be interesting, but the tone takes away.  It is as when you are watching a cop show and the victim or criminal turns toward the camera and begins relaying in a deadpan voice the crime.
I do believe readers with a strong interest in psychic events will gravitate toward the book regardless.  


Book Description:
We all, as children, had our imaginary friends and monsters in the closet. But for Suzan Saxman, those friends and monsters didn’t go away—and they weren’t imaginary.

From an early age, Suzan knew instinctively that she had to hide her true self. She couldn’t talk about the specters who haunted her, waking and dreaming. In bed with a childhood fever, winged beings guarded her; bullied and friendless at school, she ate lunch silently under the steps of St. Theresa’s with the ghost of a nun; paralyzed with fear, she woke each night to see a man with no eyes, watching her; and she kept watch at the window, every day, while her real father was at work and Steve, her other father, was with her mother. It was the 1960s in suburban Staten Island and she tried to hide it all—to silence the spirits, ghosts and her own developing abilities to tap into people’s futures. She tried to be a daughter her mother could love.

Now, with Perdita Finn, Suzan tells the story of her journey in The Reluctant Psychic, and tries to make sense of her mother’s own personal buried secrets that were never acknowledged. She tells of the joy and terror in seeing things others couldn’t and understanding what no one else expected—and the loneliness and sadness of possessing a tremendous gift. Through powerful readings of others’ destinies interwoven with compelling narrative, a reluctant psychic emerges into the light.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

An Appetite for Violets - Shout Out

Martine Bailey
Thomas Dunne Books
On-Sale: January 13, 2015
ISBN: 978-1-250-05691-7
$26.99; Hardcover

That’s how it is for us servants. No one pays you much heed; mostly you’re invisible as furniture. Yet you overhear a conversation here, and add a little gossip there. A writing desk lies open and you cannot help but read a paper. Then you find something, something you should not have found.

Irrepressible Biddy Leigh, under-cook at the forbidding Mawton Hall, can’t wait to settle down with her sweetheart and set up her own tavern. But when her elderly master marries the young, enigmatic Lady Carinna, Biddy is unwittingly swept up into a world of scheming, secrets, and lies.

Forced to accompany her new mistress to Italy, Biddy takes with her an old household book of recipes, The Cook’s Jewel, in which she records her observations. When she finds herself embroiled in a murderous conspiracy, Biddy realises that the secrets she holds could be the key to her survival – or her downfall . . .

AN APPETITE FOR VIOLETS is an utterly compelling story of food, obsession and mystery, introducing a brilliant new voice in historical fiction.


Go Here to read a Preview/Excerpt