Monday, July 19, 2010

Bits and pieces

In case anyone's wondering where I've been over the last little while... I spent quite bit of time here over a long weekend:

Behind me is Lake Cadillac, in the town of Cadillac, Michigan. I sat by the water, I went for a swim, I visited the local used bookstore, I finished three novels. Life was good. Now I'm back in hot, sticky, and tornado-prone Illinois, trying to ignore the fact that the students return in a month and my fall schedule is filling up. Sigh.

Here are some bits and pieces, including new publishing deals.

The public libraries in the North West of England are organizing a special promotion, Pages Ago, for historical fact and fiction. Many author talks and reading groups are being scheduled throughout the region, as well as a short fiction-writing competition. The Pages Ago website (see the book lists on the right-hand side) contains paired history and historical fiction titles by era, and they have a frequently updated blog that discusses the latest news and events. If I lived in the region, I'd be attending as many of these as I could.

Novelist C.C. (Chris) Humphreys (Vlad, The French Executioner, etc) is offering a 2-day hands-on workshop on writing the action-adventure novel. It takes place on August 7-8 in Vancouver. Details at his website.

Lucille Turner's novel GIOCONDA, described as "the first literary evocation in fiction of Leonardo da Vinci’s life," sold to Bella Lacey at Granta via Anna Webber at United Agents, for publication in July 2011. [Via The Bookseller and PM]

In another deal, this time for nonfiction: author of American Jezebel and cousin of Louisa May Alcott Eve LaPlante's MARMEE & LOUISA, the true story of Louisa May Alcott and her mother, based on recently discovered Alcott family papers and Abigail May Alcott's unpublished and unexplored letters and journals, sold to Hilary Redmon at Free Press, in a pre-empt, for publication in November 2012, by Lane Zachary and Rachel Sussman at Zachary Shuster Harmsworth Literary Agency (World). [via PM]

Kimberley Freeman's WILDFLOWER HILL, spanning half the globe and several decades, intertwining the lives of a disappointed young woman and her grandmother who hides a painful secret, each of whom must return to their Australian sheep farm to overcome loss and discover that happiness and love may be where you least expect it, sold to Trish Todd at Simon & Schuster, in a pre-empt, for publication in summer 2011, by Airlie Lawson at Hachette Australia (NA). [via PM]

A historical novel with an Australian setting comes to the US for a change. How often does that happen? According to a bookseller site, this one is jointly set in the 1920s and the present day. The Australian cover - it's out in August there - is at right. Perhaps one of the blog's Australian readers will obtain a copy and report back! Kimberley Freeman is the pseudonym that author Kim Wilkins uses for her women's fiction novels.


  1. I'll keep an eye out for this one coming out. I don't read enough Australian authors, especially historical fiction.

  2. Anonymous1:55 AM

    What a lovely reading spot :)

  3. I love all those little lake towns in Michigan--I grew up near southern Michigan's lakeshore and there's nothing more relaxing than a book by the water!

  4. I don't know if it was the peaceful setting or the books (probably some of both) but everything I read on my short vacation was very good!

  5. Kimberley's book looks really good.
    Having written the odd Aussie historical myself, I look forward to buying it to support the genre.
    It's so rare a Aussie book goes to America. It's great to see!

  6. I think so too! I'd love to see more novels with Australian settings published here.

  7. OMG. I'm excited about the LMA one and her mother. They were so much alike, more so than anyone knows. This will be an interesting book.

  8. I took a wild guess you'd be interested in the Alcott bio, YA Librarian :)

  9. I am such a huge fan of Nemirovsky. Suite Francaise is one of my top favorites. I haven't gotten to Fire in the Blood, yet, but thanks for the reminder. I might dust that one off the shelves this weekend!