The Cozy Mystery of Spirited Ex-Pats & Other Happenings

Recently, we watched the first episode of Murder in Provence, a cozy mystery series produced by ITV, airing on BritBox. A Cozy Mystery Worth Watching Set in Aix-en-Provence, France, the scenery will leave you drooling, nose pressed against the television, as cars wind through breathtaking lavender fields, or pull up in front of 16th-century chateaus. Then there’s the restaurant scenes where middle-aged characters (yay!) drink rosé and eat charcuterie during long lunchtime meetings, while the sun beams beatifically on the […]

Want To Get Away? Try The Turquoise Perfection of Exuma

The Exumas are a chain of 365 cays over 130 miles in The Bahamas, starting thirty miles southeast of New Providence. Great Exuma, at 60 kilometres long, is the largest and most populated island (about 7,000). Much of the beaches and sea in the area are preserved by the government under the Exuma National Land and Sea Park, protecting underwater limestone and coral reefs, drop-offs, blue holes, caves, and marine life. I snapped this picture […]

When Is Life Stranger Than Fiction? Let’s Discuss…

Recently I wrote about Anthony Broadwater, a man convicted of the rape of bestselling author Alice Sebold, the experience of which she wrote about in her celebrated 1999 memoir, Lucky, was exonerated. And in a stranger-than-fiction twist, the Executive Producer of the Netflix film adaptation of Lucky played a supporting role in the exoneration before he himself was fired from the production for raising questions. In a plot twist worthy of an Oscar, the project was then subsequently killed, […]

Book Birthday (🎂🥳) + Belfast

Two years after I signed the publishing contract for Pull Focus, and 10 years after I wrote the first few pages, my book officially published last week. I’m grateful to everyone’s enthusiasm in the early reviews of the book, in sending comments, in entering the swag giveaway contest and blogging about it, and of course, to my publishing and publicity teams. If it takes a village to raise a child, it takes a small army of bibliophiles to […]

My Own Private Edinburgh. Here’s My Journey of Discovery.

In a normal year, mid-July would find me busily preparing for my journey to Edinburgh.  I’d be readying to get up at 3:15 am (8:15 am BT) to buy my Book Festival tickets as soon as the box office opened. Scour @lyngardner’s Twitter feed for Fringe Festival suggestions. Pour over the International Festival catalogue for opera and theatre choices.  This year, for the second time, I’ll join some events by Zoom. But I long for the journey of personal discovery that my days wandering that […]

Is It Time To Start Traveling Again? Let’s Go!

How time flies. Like everyone else, my imagination runneth over with images of travel that seem tantalizing closer as more and more of us get our second dose, Air Canada travel offers come fast and furious, and friends ask, sandwiched somewhere between FOGO and FOMO, ‘where will you go first?’ So, I’ll unspool my Top 10 wish-list of bookish + filmish travel over the next several posts. Some are old favorites I’ve revisited many times in my head the past […]

Walking the Red Carpet of Book Covers.

Momentum is building for Pull Focus, and I’m excited. The edit, copy-edit, layout and the proof-read are complete. In a couple months, Pull Focus goes off to the printer.  In the meantime, publicity has started. Advance reading copies are being pitched to long-lead media and trade journals; in April, digital ARCs will be posted to the two industry sites where book reviewers and bloggers access them. While fall events will be subject to the Covid protocols that are […]

California Dreaming 😎🌴

When I was in my 20s, my mom and I set out on a road trip to attend the annual Santa Barbara Writers Conference, held in Montecito, California, a small and wealthy community now home to Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, not to mention the Queen (Oprah Winfrey). We’d seen an advertisement in Writer’s Digest magazine and were drawn by its list of speakers, as well as the ‘regulars’ who hung out at the conference such as Ray […]

Walk with me.

Willesden in Zadie Smith’s White Teeth. Pepys Road in John Lanchester’s Capital. St James Park in Virginia Woolf’s Mrs Dalloway. Fitzrovia in Ian McEwan’s Saturday. Brick Lane by Monica Ali. Smithfield’s Market in Charles Dicken’s Great Expectations. The National Theatre in Bernadine Evaristo’s Girl, Woman, Other. Notting Hill – okay, not a book, but it’s a hard heart who doesn’t love that movie. Cities are fertile terrain for books and movies. They’re inherently dramatic, people tumbled on top of each other, chasing survival or wealth, love or escape, buzz or tranquility, safety or disruption.  In big cities, […]

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