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| Dear Readers
It may be Hallowe'en, but this is a ghoul-free newsletter. Packed instead with news of all things Bywater.
This month, we're celebrating the publication of A Field Guide to Deception, the second novel by Jill Malone. To find out more–about the book and about Jill–see Hot Off the Press and Author Profile below.
What happens in P-town stays in P-town … but we'll be spilling just a few of those beans. And here's a very advanced preview for next year: we had so much fun with Kate Clinton that we decided we'll be teaming up again. And for those of you who missed this year's panel discussion, great news: we recorded it, and will be setting up a link to it soon. As soon as it's ready, we'll let you know.
As always, we at Bywater strive to bring you the finest in
lesbian romance, mystery, and literary fiction.
Till next time!
Marianne K. Martin
|A Field Guide to Deception
by Jill Malone
Everybody longs for a happy ending.
The day the kid fell in the river–that was the moment for Claire and Liv. The first inkling of a possibility of something to pull them together, away from grief, back from despair.
Following the death of her aunt, Claire struggled. For years, their lives had been bound together, with Claire happily writing the brilliant field guides whose covers carried her aunt's name. Now she was alone. With no way to move forward.
Until she looked at Liv with new eyes. Liv, the carpenter, the whirlwind, the beautiful danger. Liv, suddenly here.
But sometimes the possibility of love is too much to bear. As opportunities slowly unfurl like the petals of a flower, Claire and Liv negotiate love's challenges as well as its rewards. And on one terrible winter night, they confront the true cost of loving.
Everybody longs for a happy ending. Don't they?
Jill Malone lives in the state of Washington. Her first novel, Red Audrey and the Roping/span>, won the Bywater Prize for Fiction. This is her second novel.
Praise for A Field Guide to Deception:
"Malone is back with another story that takes us deeper into the shadowy depths of the mind and heart with every twist of its plot … keeping the reader rapt all the way to the unforeseeable conclusion."
—Jane and Jane magazine
Praise for Jill Malone's debut novel Red Audrey and the Roping:
"Finely tuned, daring, and perceptive, Malone's auspicious debut leaves us wanting more." —Booklist
"With its lyrical dialogue, complex characters, and atmospheric setting, this is a dazzling and dramatic debut."
–Richard Labonte, Book Marks Reviews
"Red Audrey and the Roping is a magnificent debut. The novel is accomplished on nearly every level–engaging character lyrical prose, and a mystery that is certain to keep you turning the pages."
"A lyrical, passionate novel about desire, about danger, and about the need for self-forgiveness. A wonderfully impressive writing debut."
–Sarah Waters, author of The Night Watch and
Tipping the Velvet
"Jill Malone's Red Audrey and the Roping is a terrific debut novel–a sharply-written, entertaining tour of the landscape between longing and regret." –Jess Walter, author of The Zero and Citizen Vince
Lesbian Fiction 272pp ISBN 978-1-932859-70-6
At fine bookstores everywhere
or order directly from Bywater Books.
Accountants. No-one expects them to be able to write. Let alone write a book described as "terrific" (Jess Walter), "wonderfully impressive" (Sarah Waters), and "One of the best books I've read this year" (Ellen Hart). Jill Malone, it turns out, is an accountant who doesn't pay much attention to expectations.
She's been writing since the age of six, when she gave the world the story of Mac the Mouse with the Mighty Ears. (Can't help thinking Walt Disney may deserve a co-credit there.) At college, she wrote the songs she sang in her all-girl band, and she continues to write music to this day. She's also taught English–to high school students and to prisoners (guess which ones actually did their homework).
Her own writing begins with a single image. An image that she knows she has to explain. For Red Audrey and the Roping, she saw a woman dangling from a plane. For A Field Guide to Deception, it's not a plot spoiler (more like a plot tease) to reveal that she saw a door opening on a bleeding woman and a voice saying, "What have you done?".
As she figures out the story behind each image, Jill is careful to tie each story to a specific place. Place, she reckons, "is its own character." So Red Audrey and the Roping belonged to Hawaii. And A Field Guide to Deception is set in Spokane, where she's lived since 1996; during the writing process, she says, "I realized how much I like the weirdness of this place."
While writing, she's not afraid to let the story take her where it wants to go. A Field Guide to Deception evolved from "a notion I had about self-sacrifice being the highest form of love."
"Turns out," she says wryly, "I don't believe that."
Right now, Jill is working on her third novel, Giraffe People. About which this singer-songwriter turned accountant turned novelist says only that music plays a prominent part. I guess we should just let her get on with it…
When she's neither counting nor writing, Jill can be found in the company of three dogs, a five-year-old son, and a partner who specializes in exercise science. (Does she have more than 24 hours in her day?)
Every month Bywater
holds a prize draw. To enter, just answer a simple question — it's always about our authors or our books.
All of the correct answers are thrown into a hat. The first one to be picked out wins!
This month's question is:
In Red Audrey and the Roping, what kind of car did Jane's mother drive?
The winner will receive a DVD of Jennie McNulty, the comic who entertained us nightly in P-town. In 2006, her show at The Dinah Shore event was a smash hit, as was her appearance in the 2007 Toronto Gay and Lesbian Comedy Festival. For the last several years, she's been a regular act at Harrah's Casino in Las Vegas. Jennie can currently be seen on the LOGO TV special "One Night Stand Up."
Send answers to us by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by post to the address in the righthand column above — see To Order Books.
Congratulations to our previous winners: Gail from Texas, who won an autographed set of Marianne K. Martin's books; Harriet from Missouri, who won Stella Duffy's Mouths of Babes; and Jennifer from Cornwall, UK (yes, we have an international readership!), who won Val McDermid's Fever of the Bone.
| Val McDermid
appeared on Open Book
on BBC Radio 4. The program invited 10 authors to champion a book they believe has been unfairly neglected. Listeners are invited to listen to all 10 nominations and then choose the book they feel deserves to be remembered; the winning title will be dramatised on Radio 4 in 2010.
To hear Val discussing Patricia Highsmith's The Price of Salt, also published as Carol, listen on the internet via the BBC i-Player. Simply follow the links to Radio 4, and then to Open Book. The program will be available for listening until Sunday November 8, 4:00 p.m. (GMT).
But you have only until midnight (GMT) on November 3 to register your vote. For more information, go to:
The winner will be announced on Open Book on Sunday November 8. The program will air at 4:00 p.m. (GMT) and will then be available for a week via the BBC i-Player.
An adaptation of Val's thriller A Place of Execution will be showing, in two parts, on PBS on November 1 and 8 at 9 p.m.:
A 13-year-old girl vanishes from an English village, and the mystery deepens 40 years later when a journalist arrives to make a film about it. What she finds shatters the lives of all involved. Starring Juliet Stevenson and Greg Wise.
will be reading and signing in the Distinguished Author Series
at the Stonewall Library & Archives
, on Thursday, January 7
at 7 p.m.
The venue is wheelchair accessible.
1300 East Sunrise Boulevard,
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33304
For more information: 954 763-8565
· will read from her latest novel, A Field Guide to Deception, at Auntie's Bookstore on November 4 at 7 p.m.
· will host the GLBT Film Festival in Spokane on November 6-7.
Events kick off on November 6 at 7 p.m. at
Riverpoint EWU Auditorium,
Phase I Classroom Building,
668 North Riverpoint Blvd, Spokane, WA 99202.
She will also read from A Field Guide to Deception and sign books.
| Bywater Books
made a huge splash on Cape Cod this year at the 25th Anniversary celebration of Women's Week
For three days we set up shop at the wonderful Womencrafts. Along with the great hospitality of the staff at Womencrafts, our authors greeted and entertained the many patrons that came through their doors. Marianne K. Martin, Bett Norris, Mari SanGiovanni, Marcia Finical, Cynn Chadwick, and Z Egloff shared stories and laughter with many avid book readers. Our third annual Thursday evening of wine and cheese and chocolate turned into a great literary dance party and is becoming a not-to-be-missed event.
Saturday morning brought a packed house to the Crown and Anchor for the first annual Laugh Out Loud panel. Bywater authors shared the stage with comedian Kate Clinton to talk about their experiences in today's book biz. An hilarious exchange between the writers was followed with an illuminating Q&A session. Even the consummate professional Kate Clinton had to wipe her eyes from laughing so hard.
This year was a great success and we thank you for your continuing support. Plans are already underway for an expanded Bywater presence at the Women's Week 2010.
For more information on Women's Week in P-town, go to: www.womeninnkeepers.com.
Onward and upward we go!
| Cynn Chadwick
has created an author page on Facebook
and would like to start discussions with readers and writers. She says "I love hearing from readers, many of whom have been sharing memories inspired by my stories …" So please visit Facebook: Novelist Cynn Chadwick
. And invite others along too!
Val McDermid features in The New Yorker, discussing crime fiction. Is it a genre that brutalizes women? And should women, especially feminists, allow themselves to write about violence? For Val's no-nonsense perspective, visit the New Yorker blog.
We're also really excited to announce that Val has also just been inducted into the Crime Thrillers Hall of Fame. Click here to see a video of her talking about her work.
| Win! Win! Win!
With every newsletter, you have a chance
This month we're giving away an i-Tunes gift certficate — to the
value of $20.
Everyone who orders books from us during November — whether online, by mail order, or by phone — will be entered into a
Congratulations to our previous winers: Fran from Ohio, and Sherry from Indiana.
| To Order Books
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