Round Rock New Neighbors is a social organization of women welcoming women in the Round Rock area since 1978. Both "new" and "old" neighbors are welcome. For more information: rrnewneighbors.org [Barnes & Noble requires that RRNN's book club be open to the public, so you do not need to be an RRNN member to attend book club, and both men and women are welcome and do attend. ]

Literary Events

The Friends of the Georgetown Public Library’s Hill Country Authors Series events will be listed here. Next event:

PRESS RELEASE: JEFF ABBOTT, JANUARY 31, 2018, GEORGETOWN PUBLIC LIBRARY

Austin novelist, Jeff Abbott, will return to the Georgetown Public Library to speak at the Hill Country Authors Series on Wednesday, January 31st at 2 PM. Abbott’s first appearance here was in 2012; this time he’ll discuss his fourteenth novel, Blame, published July, 2017, to critical acclaim. Known as one of the best thriller writers in the business, his latest effort was described by fellow thriller author, Harlan Coben, as “the perfect blend of complex characters, plot twists galore, and great psychological suspense."

Bestsellers around the world, Jeff's novels are thrillers that center on ordinary people caught up in sudden, unexpected nightmares, often related to secrets in their past. They combine high-stakes intrigue with emotional punch.

In Blame an amnesiac accident victim has to investigate her own past in Abbott’s tense psychological thriller. Froom Kirkus Review: “The Austin, Texas, suburb of Lakehaven is shaken when two teenagers drive off a cliff; driver Jane Norton survives while high school hero David Hall is killed. Jane comes out of a coma with part of her memory lost. After a note is found at the accident scene that suggests Jane caused the accident in a suicide attempt, she becomes an outcast; as Jane pieces together her own history, she becomes convinced she wasn’t trying to kill herself, and the accident starts looking more like murder. The unconventional plot, the constant surprises, and above all the psychological depth of the characters all make this a first-rate crime novel. “

A Rice University graduate with a degree in History and English, Abbott worked as a creative director at an advertising agency for more than eleven years, as he continued to write novels. He left that job in 2005 in order to write full-time after the success of his thriller, Panic. Three of his novels have been optioned for film, and are in script development.

He is a three-time nominee for the Mystery Writers of America’s Edgar Award and a two-time nominee for the Anthony Award. Jeff’s first novel, Do Unto Others, won both the Agatha Award and the Macavity Award.

The event begins at 2 pm at the library located at 402 W. 8th Street in Georgetown; the doors open at 1:30 pm. Tickets may be purchased online (link here) beginning December 1 at the special online price of $13.00. Tickets will go on sale in the Second-Hand Prose bookstore on the second floor of the library on January 2, 2018 for $15.00, $18 at the door. Tickets are also available from the Wow!mobile, the bookmobile that services Georgetown. Contact Marcy Lowe at 512-868-8974 for more information.

A dessert and beverage from the Red Poppy Café in the library will be served.

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The Nobel Prize in Literature was given to author Kazuo Ishiguro.
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Amazon is planning a video series based on stories by Philip K. Dick. Date of release is not yet announced.
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Click here to see the trailer for Stephen Spielberg's Ready Player One, currently scheduled to debut March 30th. Look for the DeLorean. (Hint-it's moving quickly and is black and you're more likely to find it if you watch one of the explanatory videos that elaborates on the trailer.) If you want to, stay on the YouTube page and see lots more about Ready Player One. After all, it's a movie about the native online generation.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Her Name was Falon, not Ellen

Everyone enjoyed reading My Name is Falon, by Kim Wiese, although most of us had some reservations and some criticisms of the book. The author is local. Although she couldn't attend our group, she sent some historic information. She said the Highland "clearances" took place beginning around 1740 and going on for some decades.

Although the author researched extensively to write the book, several of our astute members found errors or limitations to the historical material. Dennis mentioned the most blatant anachronism, that rifles were not around at the time of the story; "muskets" would have been more appropriate. There was some agreement that the story might have been richer if the author had researched more. Many of us felt that the story was simple, thin, and lightweight; with shallow, somewhat stereotyped characters and some interactions and story lines not fully developed or concluded. Although we noticed these weaknesses, rather than disliking the book, we wanted more.

It seemed that this meeting brought more observations than conversations. We didn't have much of arguing or going off on tangents. There wasn't much discussion centering on how the book relates to today (which is often where the tangents begin), although Carla did mention that she could relate this story to today's immigrants.

Observations:

Several of our longstanding members noticed that this story reminded them of a book we read in 2002, True Women, by Janice Woods Windle. I didn't think of that, though I did read both books; there are always admirable surprises from our members!

Emily, our newest member, noticed that there was a lot of redemption in the story - all the characters were redeemed in some way after their errors. We thought this might have stemmed from the author's earlier writing inspirational stories.

The point of view of this book differed from most, in that the Alamo aspect was experienced by people far from the Alamo and receiving the news days later by word of mouth, rather than the story taking place at the Alamo.

Janice suggested this book might be better for a high-school student, and someone suggested junior high. This is not meant to be silly; the book had a lot of merit as a historical novel but was a little light for us.

This brings me to the Texas Book Festival...because I volunteered there at an event for an author who writes historical novels for preteens/teenagers: Laurie Halse Anderson. How's that for changing the subject? I wanted to say that at our meeting we had some interesting sharing about experiences at the TBF. At least 6 of us had been there, all going to different discussions. This TBF had beautiful weather and a huge attendance! We hope it was a huge success for all concerned!

The TBF discussion was actually at the beginning of the meeting. At the end, we brainstormed as to the best books about Texas. Here are a few:

Lone Star Nation - H.W. Brands
Raven's Bride: A Novel of Eliza Allen and Sam Houston - Elizabeth Crook
Texas - James Michener
Capture - Scott? Pam, please let me know and I'll put in the author
Gates of the Alamo - Stephen Harrigan
Lonesome Dove - Larry McMurtry
Anything by J. Frank Dobie

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