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Texas-born writer Julia London is an award-winning romance writer of more than 20 books, including the acclaimed historically based ‘Hadley Chase’ series. A former public administrator, who worked at the White House, before returning to her native Texas, London has recently been nominated for the RITA 2014 best romance novella for The Bridesmaid (2013).   … Continue readings

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Award-winning American writer Caroline Linden‘s first book, What a Woman Needs, was published in 2005 by Zebra. Since then, she has written 12 novels and several short stories/novellas, mostly Regencies. ’50 ways to sin’ SERIES: Love and Other Scandals (2013); It Takes a Scandal (2014)   Q&As/INTERVIEWS: ‘Caroline Linden – 50 ways to write a … Continue readings

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Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man is one of the most influential pieces of 20th-century literature, as well as being a masterpiece in its own right. Since its original publication, it has been reprinted, translated, repackaged and reformatted countless times in striking editions, with just as striking jackets. For me, though, the first Random House book, published … Continue readings

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  Love Safe Comforting Understanding Lodestar Liberal Fearless Pugnacious Dignified Bright Interested Interesting Engaging Funny Giggling Beautiful Luminous Fantastic Cultured Stubborn Proud Shy Amiable Liked Bon vivant Tired Life-shocked Frustrated Sad Alone? Lonely? Frightened? Fighter Daughter Sister Woman Mother Loved. Loved. Loved.   Also of interest: ‘The not-so-invisible woman: 150 greats in words‘     … Continue readings

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    Captain Wentworth’s love letter to Anne Eliot, Persuasion – the most beautiful love letter in literature surely?   Even better than Darcy’s to Elizabeth…   I can listen no longer in silence. I must speak to you by such means as are within my reach. You pierce my soul. I am half agony, … Continue readings

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  A rare bit of footage featuring an interview on Arlene Francis’s ‘Home’ with Charles Eames (with Ray in the background). In it, he discusses their various chairs and introduces the Eames Lounge Chair for Herman Miller. Ray is very much treated as ‘Mrs Eames’, Charles’s ‘helper’. Oh, you wouldn’t get away with that today. … Continue readings

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  Bright star, would I were stedfast as thou art – Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night And watching, with eternal lids apart, Like nature’s patient, sleepless Eremite, The moving waters at their priestlike task Of pure ablution round earth’s human shores, Or gazing on the new soft-fallen mask Of snow upon the … Continue readings

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  Iconic American folksinger and civil-rights activist Pete Seeger sadly passed away on Monday evening. Seeger, who was 94, was key to the development of the 20th-century folk–political music movement, influencing musicians ranging from Bob Dylan and Don MacLean to Billy Bragg and Bruce Springsteen. The latter’s 2006 album We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sessions … Continue readings

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  ‘I have no words for you, my dearest … You are mine, I am yours’ – Letter No 1   Sunday. I have no words for you, my dearest, – I shall never have – You are mine, I am yours. Now, here is one sign of what I said: that I must love … Continue readings

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  Rex Stout’s Nero Wolfe is famous for his interest in food and all things to do with his stomach. There’s even a Nero Wolfe Cookbook (Rex Stout; 1987), made up of recipes mentioned in Rex Stout’s novels. In this clip from the first episode of the 2001–2 TV adaptation, Nero and Fritz debate the … Continue readings

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‘They drove by the level road along the valley to a distance of a few miles, and, reaching Wellbridge, turned away from the village to the left, and over the great Elizabethan bridge which gives the place half its name. Immediately behind it stood the house wherein they had engaged lodgings, whose exterior features are … Continue readings

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  ‘Detective Mallory just called. She shut down the play.’… Axel Clayborne scanned his new lines. ‘Did she say why?’ ‘Bad behavior,’ said Cyril. ‘Too many dead bodies in the audience.’ The actor nodded. ‘I suppose last night was overkill.’ –It Happens in the Dark, p. 120   Modern crime fiction is a wondrous thing. … Continue readings

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  EDITOR’S CHOICE I absolutely love American crime writer Carol O’Connell. Since I first read Mallory’s Oracle (1994), which introduced the extremely odd and emotionally challenged Kathy Mallory, these books have literally grabbed me by the throat and I pace around until the next book is published. O’Connell’s standalone titles are also chillingly brilliant in … Continue readings

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The pseudonym of English husband-and-wife team Nicci Gerrard and Sean French, who write psychological thrillers together, the entity that is Nicci French is an award-winning author. Titles include: Blue Monday.   See also: Tami Hoag

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American-born Donna Leon has lived in Venice, Italy, for more than 30 years and this is where she has set her extremely successful series of books featuring Commissario Guido Brunetti. Famous for her elegant prose and lyrical style, Leon carefully evokes the Venice of contemporary times, while revealing through her language her very strong love … Continue readings