I sat down to write this evening's blog, glanced over towards the living room, and despaired. There sat my suitcase, still waiting to be unpacked from my Malice Domestic trip. And I got home late Sunday night.
I decided I'd open 'er up, pull out the books I brought home with me, and say a word or two about some of them before moving on to the conference's "Editors and Agents" panel.
Okay, books first. For those who haven't attended mystery cons such as Malice, one of the major joys is receiving the "bag o' books" that seems to be requisite perk of attending. (?Is this a common practice for conferences of other genres? Romance readers: Do you get a big bag of freebie books at romance conferences?) In any case, after receiving the bag, I hurried up to my hotel room and sorted through the books within (feeling like a small child at Christmas). Four days later, I lugged them home along with the few that I had bought (very few, as I'm on a budget these days) from the conference booksellers. In no particular order, here are a few of the volumes that make the cross-country trek in the belly of JetBlue:
- Deadlier than the Pen by Kathy Lynn Emerson, #1 in the Diana Spaulding series —Oh boy! Big score here! I've read #2 and #3 in this historical mystery series, but not this one. Can't wait to dive in.
- Generation Loss by Elizabeth Hand—A complete unknown, but it was in the bag, and I was intrigued by this Publishers Weekly blurb on the back: "Hand explores the narrow boundary between artistic genius and madness in this gritty, proundly unsettling literary thriller...."
- Wobble to Death by Peter Lovesey—Another freebie from the bag. I was won over by the Author's Note at the start, which says, "... Six day 'Go As You Please Contests'—or 'Wobbles'—were instituted by Sir John Astley in March 1878, and became very popular on both sides of the Atlantic in the eighties. An Englishman, George Littlewood, set the record of 623-3/4 miles in New York in 1888, in spite of his foot being burned during the race, when his alcohol bath caught fire..." Wow! How can I resist???
- Still Life by Louise Penny—I bought this paperback. Louise Penny is one of those "genuine" authors who is a pleasure to talk with and listen to. I haven't read anything by her yet, so was resolved to buy the first in her series and give it a shot.
- The Sex Club by L.J. Sellers—There was a stack of these on the giveaway table with the invitation to "take one." I've heard some buzz about this book (and a friend recommended it), so I grabbed a copy.
- Night Kill by Ann Littlewood—Ann L. is a fellow Poisoned Pen Press author. We had a grea time chatting at the conference. I bought Night Kill and got Ann to sign it. :-)
- In the Shadow of Gotham by Stefanie Pintoff—Bought this as a result of the Malice-Go-Round mentioned in my previous post. It's an historical set in 1904 New York and is compared to early Caleb Carr (think: The Alienist). Stefanie was one of those "genuine" low-key people. That, along with the subject matter, convinced me to plunk down my hard-earned change on a hardback by an "unknown."
- The Cat, the Quilt, and the Corpse by Leann Sweeney—Boy, does the cover look cozy, never mind the references to cats and quilts! Still, it was "in the bag," and I know Leann is an accomplished writer, so why not?
Now, for those of you who patiently persevered through this post to find out about the "editors and agents" panel, I'm going to pull a fast one and point you to a great post by Sandra Parshall on Poe's Deadly Daughters right here. She says it all, and very well, so go read it. In fact, I'm going to go Twitter about her post right now! :-)