Friday, January 27, 2012

A January Collage: Carl Hiaasen on Florida, Snow in Vermont, Hints of Hollywood

Modern noir actor Sanam Erfani
It's a weather day up on the ridge here in Vermont: We got three inches of fresh snow, then three hours of rain, which iced things up and then made them very, very wet. Had to wear rubber boots to splash through the slush to get the mail. Somehow that leads to a collage of tidbits that I've wanted to mention.

First, I must be a bit slow connecting the pieces, but I just realized that the Carl Hiaasen I've heard for a long time on NPR is the same one whose Florida mysteries grace the shelves here at Kingdom Books. Duh! Oh well, I know more than I did a few hours ago. If you'd like to watch a 4-minute video of Hiaasen reflecting on Florida politics and the economy, check this out.

Next, "Uncle, Uncle!" to all the people who've asked me whether I've read The Book Thief, a young-adult novel set in Germany during World War II; I'm halfway through, so please don't spoil the plot!

Coming up in reviews: Helene Tursten's first mystery, Detective Inspector Huss -- I laid hands on a copy just in time to fill in the gaps before I review the newly translated Tursten title Night Rounds, coming out from Soho Crime in February (which is almost here). I'll be writing (with delight) about both of these titles in the next few days.

Also, I'm excited about the new title from Graeme Kent, One Blood. Kent's "Sister Conchita and Sergeant Kella" mysteries are set in the Solomon Islands and I could devour one per month if only there were more. This too is being released in February. I'm glad that Soho sends some of their advance reading copies up here -- it's a treat to get to read these before publication. On the other hand, I usually try to wait until the week before release, or the week of, so readers won't get frustrated by reading about a book they'll want, then having to wait to purchase it. I'd value your comments on whether this seems the right timing. (Books that Kingdom Books is purchasing in hardcover tend to get reviewed the week after release. Or thereabouts.)

Last but not least, Dave and I are happy to be hosting our family's pro filmmakers/actors, Alexis Savino and Sanam Erfani, for a long weekend. Today Alexis released his third in the "homevideo" series (jazzy!) he's creating for W Hollywood, an amazing residential hotel in Los Angeles. The four-minute film reminds me so strongly of those early noir mysteries that I'm putting a link to it here. If you enjoy it, you may want to look at numbers 1 and 2 as well (you'll see links to them on the side after you watch this one). Today's release and number 1 feature Sanam Erfani as actor. Gotta love the way she shows on film and in the photo up above ...

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