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December 12, 2013

2014 Golden Globe Nominations: Books on Screen

Posted by emily
The 2014 Golden Globe nominations are in! The Hollywood Foreign Press Association must be a doing a lot of reading, because books on screen are dominating in both film and television categories. Netflix's "House of Cards" and the HBO overnight sensation Behind the Candelabra are leading the TV nominations, which also include a nod to TBRN favorite Taylor Schilling for "Orange is the New Black." American Hustle and 12 Years a Slave are poised to clean up in the film categories, so fingers crossed that we'll get another classic Jennifer Lawrence awards show moment. Here are all the books on screen nominated this year:
Bestselling author Anne Perry has written two acclaimed series set in Victorian England, as well as a number of holiday novels. Her latest, A CHRISTMAS HOPE, is a holiday murder mystery in which Claudine Burroughs must save a poet wrongfully accused of murder from the gallows in time for Christmas. Here, Anne writes about a real-life poet --- Rupert Brooke --- whose poetry has meant a lot to her through the years, and how the book of his poems she received as a gift from her father helps her slow down and appreciate life.
Melanie Benjamin is the author of the nationally bestselling ALICE I HAVE BEEN and THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF MRS. TOM THUMB. Her latest novel, THE AVIATOR’S WIFE (now available in paperback), pulls back the curtain on one of America’s most extraordinary and complicated couples: Charles Lindbergh and Anne Morrow Lindbergh. Although Melanie grew up in a family of avid readers, she well knows the perils of giving books as gifts to loved ones. Here, she shares stories of book-gifting gone wrong and some tips for getting it just right.
Preston & Child know a thing or two about co-writing a successful thriller. They’ve written 20 books together, 14 of which feature Special Agent A.X.L. Pendergast. The latest in the Pendergast series, WHITE FIRE, is hardly what they would call a “nice, heartwarming Christmas book,” but that doesn’t mean they don’t have plenty of spirit. In this Holiday Author Blog, Preston (Doug) & Child (Linc) use their natural chemistry to their advantage in a conversation in which they discuss everything from the inspiration behind WHITE FIRE to writing about the things that frighten them most.
Nancy Thayer is the author of THE HOT FLASH CLUB, among many other bestselling novels. She currently lives in Nantucket, which makes her the perfect authority on the magic of the holiday season on the small Massachussetts island. Her latest book, A NANTUCKET CHRISTMAS, is about Nicole Somerset, newly married and new to Nantucket, who must win over her icy step-daughter in time for Christmas. In her Holiday Blog post, Nancy talks about her family's love of books, and recalls the first Christmas they spent with her daughter's fiancé, Neil, a chemical engineer she worried would not share the family's passion for reading. That Christmas, though, she learned that a good thriller could make a bookworm out of even the most serious scientist.
December 7, 2013

Ann Hood’s Love Story

Posted by emily
Ann Hood is the bestselling author of THE KNITTING CIRCLE, THE RED THREAD and THE OBITUARY WRITER, among others, as well as the recipient of mutiple awards, including two Pushcart Prizes. Her latest book, KNITTING YARNS: Writers on Knitting, is a collection of essays by 27 popular authors --- curated and edited by Ann --- about the transformative magic of yarn and a pair of needles. Here, Ann writes about the magic of another seemingly ordinary object: a book. She recalls how her mother dismissed books as "the greatest waste of money around," and how splurging on a hardcover was her first small but significant step toward independence.   
December 6, 2013

Lynn Cullen: The Gift

Posted by emily
We're kicking off this year's Holiday Author Blogs with Lynn Cullen, the author of numerous award-winning books for both children and adults. Her latest novel, MRS. POE, is about Frances Osgood, the married poet who inspired the love of Edgar Allan Poe and the ire of his vengeful wife. In this inaugural post, Lynn recalls an almost-encounter she had with a young couple who was searching for a children's book for the man's grandfather, whose mind was muddled by Alzheimer's, at the bookstore where Lynn was working. She wistfully admits that it wasn't apathy, but her own "hushed grief and sympathy for the young man's sorrow" that kept her from helping the couple and sharing her own similar experience. 
The past is a foreign country, as L.P. Hartley famously observed in THE GO BETWEEN. But unlike other exotic destinations, it’s one you don’t have to leave home to visit. All you need is the right kind of passport: historical fiction... The ability to transport the reader through time as well as place is one of the reasons the genre has always enthralled me, and now --- being married to historical novelist Tasha Alexander --- I’m doubly fortunate: Not only do I love reading her finished books, but I get to watch them being created. It’s fascinating to see a bygone era being reconstructed before my eyes --- with its delicate tapestry of distinctive clothes, food, technology, vocabulary, class distinctions and social conventions --- but that’s only half the story, because the driving force of any novel is really its protagonist. In Tasha’s case, of course, that’s the wonderful Lady Emily. And that begs the question: Living in the present-past with Tasha-Emily, how much are these two captivating ladies alike?
This year, the 44th Bouchercon --- the world's leading convention for crime fiction readers, writers and others ---  was held in Albany on September 19-22. Wendy Webb, the award-winning mystery author of THE TALE OF HALCYON CRANE (2010, Holt), THE FATE OF MERCY ALBAN (2013, Hyperion) and THE VANISHING (2014, Hyperion), was kind enough to answer a few questions about her experiences as a panelist and an attendee. In this interview with, she talks about all the interesting things she did and saw, including the "liars"-themed panel she herself was on, as well as some of the other authors she most enjoyed listening to --- including Louise Penny and Marcia Clark.