Author Archive

PODCAST: Wallace Stroby Interview

January 25, 2016 Leave a comment

Devils ShareEnclosed is a broadcast from an interview with Wallace Stroby, author of the crime fiction novel THE DEVIL’S SHARE.  His bad girl protagonist, Crissa Stone, is a thief and one of my favorite anti-heroes in crime fiction. 

Publisher’s Summary of The Devil’s Share

It should be an easy job: Hijack a truckload of priceless Iraqi antiquities before they’re repatriated to their native land – with the cooperation of the wealthy art collector who stole them. Crissa assembles an expert team of thieves, and puts together a heist that requires split-second timing. But what’s supposed to be a “give-up” robbery with few complications quickly turns deadly.   Soon Crissa is on the run again, with both an ex-military hit squad and her own partners-in-crime in pursuit. And what should be the simplest job of her career – robbing a man who wants to be robbed – might just turn out to be the most dangerous ….


About the Author

Wallace Stroby is an award-winning journalist and the author of seven novels, four of which feature professional thief Crissa Stone.  A Long Branch, N.J., native, he’s a lifelong resident of the Jersey Shore. His first novel THE BARBED-WIRE KISS, which The Washington Post called “a scorching first novel …full of attention to character and memory and, even more, to the neighborhoods of New Jersey,” was a finalist for the 2004 Barry Award for Best First Novel. In 2012, the Crissa Stone novels were optioned by Showtime Networks for development.

A graduate of Rutgers University, Stroby was an editor at the Star-Ledger of Newark, Tony Soprano’s hometown newspaper, for 13 years.

KAZI Book Review First Order of 2016: Interview Jeff Abbott

January 2, 2016 Leave a comment

imageTune in Sunday, January 3 at 12:30 p.m. CST to KAZI 88.7 FM for a live interview with Austin thriller writer and New Orleans Saints fan Jeff Abbott, author of THE FIRST ORDER, the fifth Sam Capra novel.

Publisher’s Summary

The darkest day of Sam Capra’s life was when he watched his brother, Danny, executed by extremists on an online video. But now, evidence has surfaced that Danny may still be alive—leading a secret, hidden life for the past six years while the world believed him to be dead. What’s more, Sam discovers that Danny may be plotting a murder that could change history: assassinating the Russian president. Determined to stop his brother from committing a murder that may cause a war, Sam goes undercover in a one-man mission to save the world-and to save his brother.

Author Bio

Jeff Abbott

Jeff Abbott

Jeff Abbott is the international-bestselling, award-winning author of ten mystery and suspense novels. Jeff is a native Texan and graduated from Rice University with a degree in History and English, and worked as a creative director at an advertising agency before writing full-time. He lives in Austin with his wife and two sons. You can visit his website at and follow him on Twitter @JeffAbbott.

James Lee Burke Discusses Latest Novel on KAZI

December 19, 2015 Leave a comment

imageJames Lee Burke talks about the influence of the quest for the Holy Grail, the biblical story of Ishamel, and World War 1 in a discussion of his latest novel, HOUSE OF THE RISING SUN, on the Sunday, December 20 edition of KAZI Book Review at 12:30 p.m. CST  on KAZI 88.7 FM.

Book Summary From the Publisher

From its opening scene in revolutionary Mexico to the Battle of the Marne in 1918 to the bordellos and saloons of San Antonio during the reign of the Hole-in-the-Wall Gang, House of the Rising Sun is an epic tale of love, loss, betrayal, vengeance, and retribution that follows Texas Ranger Hackberry Holland on his journey to reunite with his estranged son, Ishmael, a captain in the United States Army.

After a violent encounter that leaves four Mexican soldiers dead, Hackberry escapes the country in possession of a stolen artifact, earning the ire of a bloodthirsty Austrian arms dealer who then places Ishmael in the crosshairs of a plot to recapture his prize, believed to be the mythic cup of Christ.

Along the way, we meet three extraordinary women: Ruby Dansen, the Danish immigrant who is Ishmael’s mother and Hackberry’s one true love; Beatrice DeMolay, a brothel madam; and Maggie Bassett, onetime lover of the Sundance Kid. In her own way, each woman will aid Hackberry in his quest to reconcile with Ishmael, to vanquish their enemies, and to return the Grail to its rightful place.

Author Bio

James Lee Burke was born in Houston, Texas, in 1936 and grew up on the Texas-Louisiana gulf coast. He attended Southwestern Louisiana Institute and later received a B. A. Degree in English and an M. A. from the University of Missouri in 1958 and 1960 respectively. Over the years he worked as a landman for Sinclair Oil Company, pipeliner, land surveyor, newspaper reporter, college English professor, social worker on Skid Row in Los Angeles, clerk for the Louisiana Employment Service, and instructor in the U. S. Job Corps.

He and his wife Pearl met in graduate school and have been married 48 years. They have four children: Jim Jr., an assistant U.S. Attorney; Andree, a school psychologist; Pamala, a T. V. ad producer; and Alafair, a law professor and novelist who has 4 novels out with Henry Holt publishing.

Burke’s work has been awarded an Edgar twice for Best Crime Novel of the Year. He has also been a recipient of a Breadloaf and Guggenheim Fellowship and an NEA grant. Two of his novels, Heaven’s Prisoners and Two For Texas, have been made into motion pictures. His short stories have been published in The Atlantic Monthly, New Stories from the South, Best American Short Stories, Antioch Review, Southern Review, and The Kenyon Review. His novel The Lost Get-Back Boogie was rejected 111 times over a period of nine years, and upon publication by Louisiana State University press was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.

Today he and his wife live in Missoula, Montana, and New Iberia, Louisiana


PODCAST: Austin Authors Discuss New Children’s Books on KAZI Today

December 6, 2015 Leave a comment

Listen to the podcast of my December 6 interview on KAZI Book ReviewSimel E.J. Bey, author of THE MYSTERIOUS ONE OF KAPWERA ENGOLO and Willie S. Anderson, author of WYNTER, TAKE A BOW!:


The Mysterious One of Kapwera EngoloBased on the true story of Mestre Benedito, one of the innovators of the unique and beautiful martial art Capoeira, MYSTERIOUS ONE OF KAPWERA ENGOLO celebrates the life of a young man named Besege taken from his home and sold into slavery in the New World. Swiftly escaping to a multi-racial community of freedom fighters, Besege survives to witness turbulent times, including the birth of capoeira from a mix of African and native Brazilian arts, the abolition of slavery in Brazil, and the rise of Afro-Brazilian culture as an enduring force.

Simel Bey

Simel Bey

Author Simel E.J. Bey is a Licensed & Board Certified Acupuncturist and teacher. Simel earned a bachelor’s degree in Radio, Film, and Print and his master’s degree in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. He is the CEO of Bey Acupuncture, a thriving and accolade-winning practice specializing in Oriental Medicine. He made his publishing debut in 2010 with Children’s Initiatic Tales: Stories from The Immortal Light, a collection of six original tales inspired by traditions of myth, spiritual folklore, and ancient fairy tales.


Wynter, Take A BowEvery child is gifted. Wynter, Take a Bow poetically illustrates the creative genius and exuberant spirit of one amazing little girl. Featuring phenomenally vivid art by Keturah Ariel, each illustration is simply beautiful. Wynter, Take a Bow is Willie S. Anderson’s first published children’s book. Though written primarily for youngsters, this brilliant “work of heart” is sure to inspire and rejuvenate the child in each of us. Keep the pages turning!

Willie Alexander

Willie Alexander

Willie S. Anderson, M.Ed., is an educator, visionary, writer, speaker, sojourner, and community advocate. Blessed to live her passion through service, Anderson firmly believes that we must use our God-given talents to uplift our community. Ms. Anderson is abundantly blessed with supportive family and friends. She is especially grateful for her magnificent mama, two lovely, dynamic daughters; a dedicated, sensational son-in-law; and three energetic, brilliant “baby grands.” A native of Henderson, Tennessee, Anderson resides in Pflugerville, Texas.

Author’s Novel Shares Haitian-American Experience

November 16, 2015 Leave a comment
Elsie Augustave

Elsie Augustave

Tune in at 8 a.m. CST for my interview with Elsie Augustave, author of the 2013 novel THE ROVING TREE, on KAZI Book Review.  THE ROVING TREE follows a young Haitian adoptee, Iris Odys, through various journeys across the world. Odys is the rejected daughter of a Haitian maid and of the middle-class Haitian man who employs her. In addition to the struggle for identity of cross-cultural adoptees, the book explores themes of class, color and religion in Haiti.

Bert Ashe Memoir – Twisted: My Dreadlock Chronicles

November 15, 2015 Leave a comment

TwistedTune in today at 12:30 p.m. CST for my interview with Bert Ashe, author of TWISTED: My Dreadlock Chronicles, on KAZI Book Review on KAZI 88.7 FM.  The interview originally broadcast on August 24.  To read a full description of book click:

Early Morning Reading: The Ethics of Swagger

November 11, 2015 Leave a comment

The Ethics of SwaggerI just finished reading a chapter about Ernest Gaines prizing winning novel, A LESSON BEFORE DYING, in Michael DeRell Hill’s book, THE ETHICS OF SWAGGER: Prizewinning African American Novels, 1977-1993.  Set in rural Louisiana in the late 1940s, A LESSON BEFORE DYING is about a black teacher recruited by his aunt to educate a young black man wrongfully accused of murder on deathrow on how to be a man.  It deals with the racial conflicts of the deep south and how despite the main character’s education, it doesn’t preclude him from bring treated as a second class citizen.  I’m taping an interview with Hill Saturday.  Here is a footnote from page 88 in THE ETHICS OF SWAGGER that caught my attention:

“Gaine’s responses to wrongful conviction and black middle class impotence featured humility as potentially edifying…For evidence of both popular and bourgois rebellion, see, respectively, Public Enemy’s classic album It Takes A Nation of Millions (1988) and the April 1990 Ebony  cover story, “Success is the Best Revenge,” about Vanessa Williams…This portrait of bourgeois bliss engaged a specific triumph over racial prejudice, but the story’s title phrase emerged as a generic slogan of affluence as activism.”

In his book, Hill examines how prizewinning African American authors dealt with white literary expectations and incorporated black traditions in their novels including TonI Morrison’s BELOVED, Alice Walker’s THE COLOR PURPLE, Charles Johnson’s MIDDLE PASSAGE, Gaines’ A LESSON BEFORE DYING, and others.


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