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July 30, 2004 Newsletter July 30, 2004
This Week on
Reading Texas Style
Author Talk: Marcia Muller, Author of THE DANGEROUS HOUR
Our New Suspense/Thriller Author: Steve Berry, Author of THE ROMANOV PROPHECY
DISSOLUTION by C.J. Sansom is Now in Paperback
Announcing Our New Debut Suspense/Thriller Author: David Wolstencroft, Author of GOOD NEWS, BAD NEWS
Author Talk: Leslie Schnur, Author of THE DOG WALKER
This Week's Book Reviews and Features
Poll: Books To Be Read
Question of the Week: Book That Kept You Up All Night
Word of Mouth: Tell Us What You're Reading -- THREE Prizes!
On The Book Report Network
Past Reviews
Can't See the Graphics? Read This Newsletter Online
Past Poll: Do you give books as hostess gifts?
Past Question of the Week: What book would you like to receive as a hostess gift if someone came to visit you?
Reading Texas Style
Yee haw...I am writing this note from Texas where I am at the Romance Writers of America Convention. Last time I was in Texas I went to Houston where in between doing fashion shows, I went to the rodeo. I kid you not, and I have the cattlehorns in my son's bedroom to prove it. I was reading the guide from the hotel here last night and learned that in the evenings cowboy hats, boots and spurs are optional. I liked the sound of that! Fashion question: Does one buy a cowboy hat to match an outfit, or is this not necessary?

My last few days have been filled with author events --- speeches, presentations and yes, parties and lunches and dinners. In the last few days I have attended presentations given by James Patterson, Lisa Gardner and Kate White and a host of others. I have had the chance to talk books with Kristin Hannah, Carly Phillips, Julie Garwood, Linda Lael Miller, Debbie Macomber and others too many to mention. There was an author signing Wednesday night with more than 450 authors in attendance.

We have a nice lineup on this week including interviews with Marcia Muller, whose new one is a Sharon McCone mystery called THE DANGEROUS HOUR and Leslie Schnur, a debut author, whose novel, THE DOG WALKER is one that dog lovers everywhere will enjoy!

July's roundup of New in Paperback titles includes bestsellers from two popular authors: Sandra Brown and Nicholas Sparks. In HELLO, DARKNESS, Brown tells the gripping story of a late-night radio personality who must identify one of her callers before he commits murder --- and then comes after her. THE WEDDING is the sequel to Sparks's debut novel THE NOTEBOOK and follows the travails of Wilson Lewis, who wants nothing more in life than to save his marriage of 30 years. Highlighting our nonfiction selections are LIES: AND THE LYING LIARS WHO TELL THEM, Al Franken's "Fair and Balanced Look at the Right," and Jeffrey Archer's memoir A PRISON DIARY, in which the internationally bestselling author faces the harsh reality of prison life.

One quick note....I work really hard here to keep politics off our pages. I keep joking that this is the Campaign News Free Site so for any of you who are looking to escape politics and instead just read prose, keep your mouse clicking here the next few months. I confess I am finding the retro campaign ads on TVLand very amusing. They are featuring ads from past campaigns. Listening to the slogans and remembering what happened post-election with these candidates is quite humorous.

Have a great week...and to all you Texan readers...I am having a great big old time here.

Carol Fitzgerald (
Read our New in Paperback feature here.
Author Talk: Marcia Muller, Author of THE DANGEROUS HOUR
Marcia Muller, whose newly released THE DANGEROUS HOUR is her 23rd mystery novel featuring San Francisco P.I. Sharon McCone, discusses her entire body of work and the prevailing theme that runs through her books. Muller also shares her thoughts on being labeled as too prolific, talks about dealing with good and bad reviews, and mentions those in the publishing world, including her husband, who have influenced her life and work over the years.

THE DANGEROUS HOUR by Marcia Muller (Mystery)
Reviewed by Judy Gigstad
San Francisco P.I. Sharon McCone is stunned to learn that a favorite employee has been charged with credit-card fraud. She thinks there must be a mistake --- until she finds the goods charged to the stolen credit card in the firm's mailroom. As she starts probing the facts of the case, McCone realizes that someone is out to ruin her business, blacken her reputation and harm those close to her. For more information on Marcia Muller, visit
Read an interview with Marcia Muller and a review of THE DANGEROUS HOUR here.
Read more about our Suspense/Thriller authors here.
Our New Suspense/Thriller Author: Steve Berry, Author of THE ROMANOV PROPHECY
Steve Berry, who wrote THE AMBER ROOM, which was one of my favorite books of 2003 is back with THE ROMANOV PROPHECY. Want to be one of 20 advance readers of this book? Then send an e-mail with your name and your mailing address to by Friday, August 6th.

New This Week:
-Read Fast Facts About Steve Berry

Here's more about the book:

Following the collapse of Communism and a series of weak governments, the Russian people have decided to re-instate the monarchy with a distant relative of Nicholas II, and it is Miles Lord's job to perform background checks on the Tsarist candidates. But after he is nearly killed by a gunman, Miles flees from his assassins and stumbles upon the mysterious writings of Rasputin. They reveal a cryptic message, implying that someone may have survived the bloody Romanov massacre, the effects of which could be life-altering for the future Tsar and mother Russia.
Read more about our Suspense/Thriller feature here.
DISSOLUTION by C.J. Sansom is Now in Paperback
The exciting and elegantly written debut of a new historical series starring Matthew Shardlake, "the sharpest hunchback in the courts of England," Dissolution by C. J. Sansom is an utterly compelling first novel and a riveting, suspenseful portrayal of a Tudor England beset with sexual misconduct, embezzlement, treason, and murder. P. D. James calls it "a remarkable debut," and Colin Dexter raves, "extraordinarily impressive . . . the best crime novel I have read this year."
Read more about DISSOLUTION by C. J. Sansom here.
Read more about our Debut Suspense/Thriller feature here.
Announcing Our New Debut Suspense/Thriller Author: David Wolstencroft, Author of GOOD NEWS, BAD NEWS
Our newest Debut Suspense/Thriller author is David Wolstencroft, author of GOOD NEWS, BAD NEWS. What happens when two intelligence agents are assigned to kill --- each other. What commences is a globe-trotting story where the protagonists join wits.

New This Week:
-See our advance winners

Here's more about the book:

GOOD NEWS, BAD NEWS by David Wolstencroft
Two friends in the spy business are directed to assassinate each other during their last mission in the Agency. Realizing that some orders aren't meant to be followed, the two traverse Europe and America to find out why their bosses want them dead --- and in the process unearth a web of secrets that could destroy the Agency itself.
Read more about David Wolstencroft and GOOD NEWS, BAD NEWS here.
Author Talk: Leslie Schnur, Author of THE DOG WALKER
In this interview debut novelist Leslie Schnur, author of THE DOG WALKER, talks about the development of her characters, drawing parallels between them and the people she knows in real life. She also explains her love of New York City, the challenges of being a fiction writer, and what she would like readers to take away from her book.

THE DOG WALKER by Leslie Schnur (Fiction)
Reviewed by Jocelyn Kelley
Manhattan dog walker Nina Shepard is uncertain about her future and confused over who she is --- until Daniel enters her life. He seems perfect in every way, and she immediately falls in love with him. Unfortunately, though, appearances can be deceiving, and this is precisely the case with Nina's mysterious new beau. For more information about Leslie Schnur's work, visit
Read an interview with Leslie Schnur and a review of THE DOG WALKER here.
This Week's Book Reviews and Features
SHADOW DIVERS: The True Adventure of Two Americans Who Risked Everything to Solve One of the Last Mysteries of World War II, by Robert Kurson (History/Adventure)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
In 1991, two recreational scuba divers discovered a sunken German U-boat sixty miles off the New Jersey coast. No historian, expert, or government had a clue as to which U-boat the men had found. In fact, the official records all agreed that there simply could not be a sunken U-boat and crew at that location. Over the next six years, an elite team of divers embarked on a quest to solve the mystery.

LOST CITY by Clive Cussler with Paul Kemprecos (Suspense)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
An enzyme that will dramatically prolong life has been discovered two thousand feet down in the North Atlantic. But why are the people attempting to harvest it getting killed? Why are the scientists in a remote Greek laboratory disappearing one by one? Kurt Austin, leader of NUMA's Special Assignments Team, and his colleague, Joe Zavala, clearly have their work cut out for them.

SUMMER BY THE SEA by Susan Wiggs (Romance)
Reviewed by Marie Hashima Lofton
A childhood friendship blossoms into love, but the romance ends before things get serious. Years later Rosa and Alexander find each other again, but now their relationship is full of doubt and mistrust.

MY LIFE WITH CORPSES by Wylene Dunbar (Fiction)
Reviewed by Stephen M. Deusner
The dead walk the earth in MY LIFE WITH CORPSES --- Wylene Dunbar's long-awaited follow-up to her 1997 debut MARGARET CAPE --- about a Kansas girl raised by a family of dead people.

BLOOD ON THE LEAVES by Jeff Stetson (Suspense)
Reviewed by Andi Shechter
Is a college professor responsible for the deaths of men who were accused of murdering black people years ago? James Reynolds, Mississippi's only black deputy district attorney, knows that this case will be more disturbing than anything he has ever faced.

THE GIRL NEXT DOOR by Patricia MacDonald (Thriller)
Reviewed by Maggie Harding
Patricia MacDonald has produced a riveting thriller about a young woman who finds her life threatened when she returns to her picture-perfect suburban hometown where a brutal crime shattered her family when she was a teenager.
Read the reviews and features here.
Read Author Bibliographies here. Search here Read about the Light Wedge reading light here.
Poll: Books To Be Read
How many books are on your "to be read" pile right now?
5 or more
Answer the Poll here.
Browse through forthcoming books here. Read about books that have won awards here. Read more about Books Into Movies here.
Question of the Week: Book That Kept You Up All Night
What was the last book that kept you up at night reading long past your bedtime?

Our next question update will be on August 6th.
Answer the Question of the Week.
Read more about UNLUCKY IN LAW. Read more about GARDEN OF BEASTS. Read more about THE DANGEROUS HOUR.
Word of Mouth: Tell Us What You're Reading -- THREE Prizes!
Tell us what books YOU are reading and loving --- or even those you don't.

This week we have some great prizes: FIVE readers each will win a copy of UNLUCKY IN LAW by Perri O'Shaughnessy, GARDEN OF BEASTS by Jeffery Deaver and THE DANGEROUS HOUR by Marcia Muller. Please note that our next Word of Mouth update will be on August 6th.
Need more details about Word of Mouth? Click here.

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--- Carol Fitzgerald (

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