Tag Archives: Books

Go, Tell Michelle: You’ve Read the Book, Now See the Play

Posted by Audiegrl

“When you and your family go to the spot under the shadow of the Lincoln Memorial, where Barack Obama will be sworn in as the 44th President of the United States, you will take with you our history of dreams deferred; however, you will also take with you our prayers and hopes for an America that is ready to build and dream anew.”~~Excerpt from a letter to Michelle Obama

Go, Tell Michelle: African American Women Write to the New First Lady was first published in January 2009. In December 2009, “Go, Tell Michelle” was named by book and movie critic Kam Williams as one of the 10 Best Black Books of 2009. My daughter gave this to me as my Mother’s Day present last year, and I highly recommend it. I thought it would be a great way to start off the new year (and new decade), to introduce the book to those who have not read it yet, and also give me a chance to provide a photo slideshow of our First Lady during the first year.

Go, Tell Michelle: African American Women Write to the New First LadyGo, Tell Michelle: African American Women Write to the New First Lady”, the award winning volume of 100 letters to Michelle Obama written shortly after the 2008 election of President Barack Obama has been adapted as a dramatic production. Drs. Barbara Seals Nevergold and Peggy Brooks-Bertram, co-authors and editors of the book, have been working with Dr. Robert Knopf, chair of University at Buffalo’s Drama Department on this dramatization. The outcome of this collaboration is Dr. Knopf’s adaptation, a one hour play that features three readers.

Dr. Knopf describes “Go, Tell Michelle: the Play” as more than a dramatic reading: “It is a montage of lost voices, personal stories, and heartfelt emotions unleashed by the tide of history that has swept the nation.” Under Dr. Knopf’s direction, storyteller Karima Amin, Brooks-Bertram and Seals Nevergold will give voice to the stories and poems in this dramatic adaptation.

The play will debut on January 19th at University at Buffalo’s Allen Hall on the South Campus on the eve of the first anniversary of President Obama’s historic inauguration. Performance time is 7:00pm and Jericka Duncan, reporter from WIVB-TV will act as Emcee. A second performance will take place at the Frank E. Merriweather Jr. Library on January 20th. Both performances will be free and open to the public.

The Warmth, Style, and Grace of First Lady Michelle Obama

This is the short biography of Michelle Obama that introduced the Obama family to families across America. It originally played the first night of the 2008 Democratic National Convention.

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more about "Michelle Obama: South Side Girl", posted with vodpod

Drs. Barbara Seals Nevergold and Peggy Brooks-Bertram on C-SPAN Book TV (03/28/09)

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Filed under African-Americans, Art, Barack Obama, Books, Change, Chicago, IL, Children, Christmas at the White House, Culture, Education, Entertainment, Fashion, First Daughters, First Lady Michelle Obama, History, Media and Entertainment, Plays, Politics, Pop Culture, Pres. Barack Obama, Presidents, Toys for Tots, Uncategorized, United States, Video/YouTube, Washington, DC, Women's Issues

44-D Book Diaries with Audiegrl: Chelsea Cain’s Evil at Heart

NYT Best-selling author Chelsea CainToday’s interview features New York Times Best-selling author Chelsea Cain, discussing her profoundly addictive and disturbing new novel, Evil at Heart.

If you think Hannibal Lechter is scary? Check out serial killer Gretchen Lowell who is beautiful, brilliant, and cunning. This fall, Cain will carve out a place for herself on bookshelves everywhere with her new novel.

Evil at Heart is the third novel in Cain’s highly praised Gretchen Lowell/Archie Sheridan series, which heralded the birth of the new captivating face of evil and psychological suspense.

In my interview with Chelsea, I got to ask her some questions her fans dying to know.

AG: So serial killers and journalism: Are these two of your top interests?

CC: Right up there with infanticide and cannibalism. I’m kidding, of course. I wouldn’t include either serial killers or journalism in my top interests. Though if I did, serial killers would be way higher on the list. I just really like thrilling stories and these seem to lend themselves to that genre.

AG: Your inspiration for the book came from the Green River Killer case, but how did you come up with Gretchen Lowell? She’s pretty twisted.

CC: I actually remember reading stories as a kid about the Green River Killer in the Bellingham Herald. The idea of this unidentified killer being pursued by a task force of cops really captured my attention. I wanted my killer to be a woman because it made the obsessive nature of the cop-killer relationship instantly more complicated. But I wanted her to kill violently, like a man, because she enjoys it. Culturally we demand an explanation from our female killers. We want to blame their motives on a man – a bad father, a bad boyfriend. I didn’t want to provide an easy explanation for Gretchen’s homicidal tendencies. It’s way scarier to not understand her.

AG: How did you do the research for this book? Did you talk to any serial killers?

CC: No, and I hope I never do. I also didn’t actually torture anyone, though it probably would have lent some verisimilitude to the narrative. Maybe I’ll consider it for the sequels. I did read a lot of case studies about psychopaths. There is a great cannon of interviews with jailed psychopaths that is incredibly disturbing and illuminating. I also read a lot of forensic pathology texts, visited a billion web sites, talked to doctors, and read police handbooks. But the great thing about fiction is that if you find a few details that ring especially true, readers tend to go along with all the stuff you make up. (She says, fingers crossed.)

AG: It seems like you have a few things in common with the character of young reporter Susan Ward. How alike are you two?

CC: Susan and I share some of the same insecurities and preoccupation with fashion. She writes for The Oregon Herald. I write for The Oregonian. But she is way, way, way more damaged than I am. And my past is not nearly as complicated.

AG: The first thing I thought about when I read the first book Heartsick was Hannibal Lector. Are you hoping to turn Gretchen Lowell into a movie star any time soon? Who do you think could play I her?

CC: Heartsick has been optioned to be a movie, so there is a production company working very hard to get it made. They’ve got a script in development right now. Honestly, I’m pretty open-minded in terms of casting. Anthony Hopkins? Sure! The names that readers most often suggest are Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman and Angelina Jolie. Any of those actresses would be terrific. I also really like Storm Large (the performer who portrays Gretchen on the website). She looks exactly like the Gretchen of my imagination. Which is sort of scary.

AG: I love the Gretchen Lowell fan site. Especially all the Gretchen sightings. What kind of response are you getting from fans?

CC: The people who find it really seem to like it. I’ve always thought of that site as a sort of DVD extra – readers who take the time to look up the url that’s mentioned as a plot point in Evil at Heart get rewarded with this funny and twisted ode to Gretchen. For the Gretchen sightings, our designer just went downtown and photographed blond women with their faces turned. In about an hour she had all the photos we needed.

AG: I’m a huge fan of HBO’s True Blood series. During one of the last episodes, Maryanne was sitting at the kitchen table reading a copy of Heartsick! I was so surprised…true story…I got up and did a victory dance. Please give me the scoop, were you as surprised as the rest of us, or was this something HBO contacted you about in advance? How has being featured on the show affected the book?

CC: That was pretty fucking awesome. I had no idea. We TIVO it so weren’t watching it live, but my husband’s mother called and left a message saying that she’d seen the book on True Blood, and my husband told me and I was like, no way, she’s wrong, she just thought she saw it. And then my husband’s father called (they’ve been divorced for thirty years, but apparently still watch the same TV shows), and he said the same thing. So we ran home and watched it, and sure enough there was Maryanne reading Heartsick! I peed my pants a little. As for sales, I have no idea. There was definitely increased web chatter about the book. And people continue to see it and bring it up to me. I love True Blood, so it was a huge thrill to be a tiny part of that show for a moment.

AG: Finally, what do you hope to do after this series is over?

CC: Over? I plan to write these suckers until someone makes me stop. But I am planning on starting another series to juggle along side it – more thrillers set in Portland. So stay tuned.

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Chelsea CainIf you would like to learn more about Chelsea Cain and her books please stop by ChelseaCain.com. For the hard-core Gretchen Lowell fans among you, since her escape, she’s been spotted in Oslo, Munich, Shanghai, and Ontario. Please stop by I Heart Gretchen Lowell if you need to send her a message or report a sighting.

Heartsick by Chelsea Cain

Heartsick by Chelsea CainDet. Archie Sheridan led the Beauty Killer Task Force for ten years, before the Beauty Killer (Gretchen Lowell) caught him, tortured him for ten days and then mysteriously let him go and turned herself in. Now it’s two years later and Archie, addicted to pain pills and still obsessed with Gretchen, is called off medical leave to hunt a second serial killer. Pink-haired girl journalist Susan Ward is assigned to profile Archie. She knows he’s hiding something. But what? (It’s bigger than a breadbox.)

“In her dynamite first thriller, Cain introduces one of the most seductive and original psychopaths since Hannibal Lecter.”–Entertainment Weekly

Read an Excerpt
Watch the trailer

Sweetheart by Chelsea Cain

Sweetheart by Chelsea CainWhen the body of a young woman is discovered in Forest Park, Archie is reminded of the first corpse he discovered there a decade ago: it turned out to be the Beauty Killer’s first victim, and Archie’s first case. Then, the unthinkable happens: Gretchen escapes from prison, and once the news breaks, all of Portland goes on high alert…but secretly, Archie is relieved. He knows he’s the only one who can capture Gretchen—and now he has a plan to get out from under her thumb once and for all. Even if it means becoming her last victim…

“We’ve been down Hannibal Lecter Avenue many times, and these two books shouldn’t work . . . but they do. Chalk it up to excellent writing and Cain’s ferocious sense of humor. The Portland (Ore.) setting is refreshing too.”—Stephen King

Read an Excerpt
Watch the trailer

Evil At Heart by Chelsea Cain

Evil at Heart by Chelsea CainGretchen is still on the loose and Archie is still hospitalized after his ploy to catch her went spectacularly wrong. They’ve entered a detente of sorts: Archie agrees not to kill himself if she agrees not to kill anyone else. But suddenly there’s something else to contend with that might be worse – a zealous fan of Gretchen’s, paying homage to the Beauty Killer by luring Archie and reporter Susan Ward to the scene of a grisly murder. At least they hope it’s the work of someone new, for the prospect of Gretchen breaking her promise is more than Archie can bear.

“Cain delivers her usual blend of organ-ripping, blood-soaked gore and compelling flawed heroes—and antiheroes.”–Publishers Weekly

Read an Excerpt
Watch the trailer

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Filed under Book Diaries Series, Chelsea Cain, Crime, Culture, Entertainment, Forensics, Hollywood, Law, Media and Entertainment, Movies, Oregon, Police, Pop Culture, Uncategorized, Video/YouTube, Violence

44-D’s Haunted Library


hauntedlib

Welcome to the 44-D’s Haunted Library. Just in time for Trick-or-Treat the Scary Scribes Scream-Out. The selections here are guaranteed to make you sleep with the lights on!

Please feel free to nominate books in the comments section. I had to cut myself off at some point~~Audiegrl 😉


Hellbound HeartsHellbound Hearts by Clive Barker, et al…

As editor/author John Skipp says in the foreword of the newest zombie short stories collection, there is just something scarier about the horror genre in the written word. That something is the reader’s imagination. This anthology celebrates Hellraiser creator Clive Barker and the merciless world of the demonic Cenobites he created.
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Strain-Book-One-TrilogyThe Strain-Volume One by Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan

They have always been here. Vampires. In secret and in darkness. Waiting. Now their time has come. In one week, Manhattan will be gone. In one month, the country. In two months — the world. (yes, that Guillermo Del Toro)
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wwzthumb2World War Z by Max Brooks

An ‘oral history’ of the global war the evil brain-chewers came within a hair of winning. Zombies are among us—turn on your television if you don’t believe it. But, Brooks reassures us, even today, human fighters are hunting down the leftovers, and we’re winning. Look for the movie in 2010. If this guy is not the conceptual artist for the film, there is something wrong in the universe.
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evilatheartthumbEvil At Heart by Chelsea Cain

Chelsea Cain’s novels featuring Portland detective Archie Sheridan and serial killer Gretchen Lowell have captivated fans through two nail-biting entries, Heartsick and Sweetheart, both of them multiweek bestsellers in The New York Times, USA Today, and Publishers Weekly. Hey, when characters from True Blood start reading your books, its on…
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blackhousethumbBlack House by Stephen King and Peter Straub

Follow up to The Talisman, Retired cop Jack Sawyer takes on the territories again when strange murders start happening. If you are familiar with a turn of the century serial killer named Albert Fish, then you will be prepared for this chilling story.
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floatingdragonthumbFloating Dragon by Peter Straub

The quiet suburban town of Hampstead is threatened by two horrors–one is natural, the unstoppable creation of man’s power gone mad. The other is not natural at all–and makes the first look like child’s play. This one is a yearly must-read for me.
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iamlegendthumbI Am Legend by Richard Matheson

A survivor of a modern apocalypse kills vampire like creatures during the day and barricades himself in at night for protection. Ok, maybe you caught the cheesy Charlton Heston version or the Will Smith hi-tech version of the movie. Doesn’t matter. This is the guy who wrote the book back in the 50’s. He influenced Stephen King and the horror genre. Anything written by Matheson is bank.
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everylastdropthumbEvery Last Drop by Charlie Huston

Just imagine a world where New York City is divided by vampire clans who each have different reasons to hate PI Joe Pitt. Huston creates a world that is at once supernatural and totally familiar, imaginative, and utterly convincing. Just think Elmore Leonard with fangs.
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thestandthumbThe Stand: Expanded Edition by Stephen King

The Stand…you either love it or hate it, but you can’t ignore it. Stephen King’s most popular book, according to polls of his fans, is an end-of-the-world scenario: a rapidly mutating flu virus is accidentally released from a U.S. military facility and wipes out 99 percent of the world’s population, thus setting the stage for an apocalyptic confrontation between Good and Evil. Remember folks, this is just fiction.
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thehistorianthumbThe Historian by Elizabeth Kostova

A motherless 16-year-old girl stumbles upon a mysterious book and papers dating back to her father’s student days at Oxford. The unnamed heroine uncovers an academic quest that begins with her father’s mentor’s first research into the history of Vlad Tepes (Dracula) and reaches a kind of conclusion many years later.
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thegirlnextdoorthumb2The Girl Next Door by Jack Ketchum

The books introduction is written by Stephen King who said, “The Girl Next Door is alive…in a way most works of popular fiction never attain; it does not just promise terror but actually delivers it.” Also, the fact that its based on a true story makes it even more disturbing.

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reddragonthumb2Red Dragon by Thomas Harris

Lying on a cot in his cell with Alexandre Dumas’s Le Grand Dictionnaire de Cuisine open on his chest, Hannibal “The Cannibal” Lecter makes his debut in this legendary horror novel, which is even scarier than its sequel, The Silence of the Lambs. Why? you may ask…Just one word…teeth

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heartshappedboxthumbHeart-Shaped Box by Joe Hill

Before you crack open this chilling thriller, you might want to rethink your nighttime habits… Hill’s story about an aging rock star (with a penchant for macabre artifacts) who buys a haunted suit online will scare you silly. But don’t take my word for it… Oh, did I mention that his dad is Stephen King? Enough said.

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thestorethumbThe Store by Bentley Little

The novel builds paranoia by starting with simple descriptions of the picturesque landscape and the deceptively banal Western town that is Juniper, Arizona. Then The Store arrives. The pattern of delight and worry in the citizens, as The Store spreads its tentacles into local concerns, is believable–disturbingly so. Trust me, after reading this, you will never look at WalMart the same again.

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Dan Brown’s ‘The Lost Symbol’ Sells A Million Copies

Associated Press

AP/HuffPost—Dan Brown does it again, on paper and on the screen.

NYT Best-selling Author Dan Brown

NYT Best-selling Author Dan Brown

Doubleday announced Wednesday that “The Lost Symbol,” Brown’s first novel since “The Da Vinci Code,” has already sold more than 1 million copies after being on sale for one day in the United States, Canada and Britain. That total includes preorders for the book, which has been at or near the top of Amazon.com for months.

An additional 600,000 hardcover copies have been ordered, bringing the total print run to 5.6 million copies. “The Lost Symbol” came out Tuesday.

Brown’s book was well short of the all-time debut, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows,” which in its first day sold more than 8 million copies in the U.S. alone.

The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown

The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown


Doubleday initially said the sales were for hardcover alone, but spokeswoman Suzanne Herz said the number also includes the digital edition, which Doubleday released at the same time despite industry concerns that the standard $9.99 e-book price might hurt sales for the more expensive hardcover.
Thrillers have been especially popular as e-books and no thriller writer is hotter than Dan Brown. Since coming out, “The Lost Symbol” has been the top seller on Amazon.com’s overall list and on its list for books downloaded on Amazon’s e-reader, the Kindle. On Amazon’s list for top thrillers and mystery novels, the Kindle edition was No. 1 as of Wednesday afternoon, followed by the hardcover.

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Publisher’s Are Bringing Out the Big Guns


In a tough year, publishers are betting on Dan Brown, Philip Roth and Vladimir Nabokov

Posted by TheLCster

Wall Street Journal–This season, many publishers are counting on star-studded fall catalogues to turn around a dismal year. Battered by the drop in consumer spending, most major publishing houses have cut staff and trimmed costs in recent months.

Publishers often save their splashiest works for the autumn months, but this year’s crop of fall books is unusually heavy with big names. The releases run across the literary spectrum, from Dan Brown’s sequel to “The Da Vinci Code,” which kicks of with a massive first printing of 6.5 million copies, to a final, posthumous work by Vladimir Nabokov.

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