Author Archive

PODCAST of Interview With CEO of Girl Scouts of Central Texas

January 27, 2015 1 comment

10671282_10204725811457155_6407888897948417042_nLynelle McKay, CEO of the Girl Scouts of Central Texas, was interviewed by Brownie Girl Scout Maya Hay in addition to the host about the Girl Scouts Cookie Program on my other talk show, Economic Perspectives on KAZI 88.7 FM.  We discussed how the Girl Scouts Cookie Program helps girls develop their money management and entrepreneurial skills.  To listen to the interview click here:







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Review of Robert B. Parker’s The Bridge by Robert Knott

January 10, 2015 Leave a comment

imageBy Tim Chamberlain

The third installment of the Cole and Hitch series by Knott is his best so far, and it shows that he’s making the series his own.

Lovers of a fast-moving western yarn will be pleased with Robert Knott’s latest effort–Marshall Virgil Cole and his deputy (and our narrator) Everett Hitch are busy in Appaloosa after a quiet few months.

The action centers around Cole and Hitch’s investigation into the destruction of a nearly-completed bridge, one that would have crossed the nearby Rio Blanco River and changed the way anyone moved through the area. People are dead as a result, and Cole and Hitch realize that their brief time of quiet is over.

At the same time as this news is coming to light, a traveling troupe of entertainers makes its way into Appaloosa and riles up the whole town, especially Cole’s longtime paramour Allie French. She is taken with the idea of Appaloosa making a good impression on the troupe, and she is quite taken with the head of troupe, Beauregard Beauchamp, and his wife Nell.

These two disparate stories don’t seem like they would work together at first. The story of Cole and Hitch’s investigation into the bridge is pure detective work done in a classic western style, while the troupe’s arrival is nearly all comic relief. However, Knott is able to tie the stories together in such a way that it not only makes sense, but it’s hard to imagine the stories separately.

Knott also introduces a bit of a supernatural element in this book, a departure from earlier installments. While I won’t get into spoilers here, it involves the troupe and a love interest for Hitch, and it helps keep the novel from becoming merely a western procedural. Again, I was a bit surprised that this worked, but Knott was able to keep it believable because he has come to own the Cole and Hitch characters and is obviously getting more and more comfortable with taking them in new directions.

As with the other installments in this series, THE BRIDGE is a quick read with a plot that moves briskly. In his third go as a stand-in for Parker in this series, it is quickly apparent how well Knott knows his inherited characters. He also has an obvious love for research–he has a good eye for authentic detail and the schemes he dreams up for Cole and Hitch to solve feel very plausible–not always a simple task when attempting to come up with 19th century crimes.

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PODCAST of Interview of 2014 Edgar Award Winner Erik Dussere

January 10, 2015 Leave a comment

America is Elsewhere COVERThe Mystery Writers of America honored Erik Dussere with the 2014 Edgar Allan Poe Awards for the BEST CRITICAL/BIOGRAPHICAL book published in 2013 for AMERICA IS ELSEWHERE: The Noir Tradition in the Age of Consumer Culture.  To listen to his interview click here: .

The Most Fascinating Books Being Published In 2015 By W.W. Norton

December 31, 2014 Leave a comment

Here is a list of the books I found most compelling being published by one of my favorite publishers, W.W. Norton:

Joseph E. Stiglitz, THE GREAT DIVIDE: Unequal Societies and What We Can Do About Them, April 2015
Rosabeth Moss Kanter, MOVE: Putting America’s Infrastructure Back in the Lead, May 2015
Richard H. Thaler, MISBEHAVING: The Story of Behavioral Economics, May 2015
Susan Wise Bauer, THE STORY OF SCIENCE: From the Writings of Aristotle to the Big Bang Theory, May 2015
Peter C. Whybrow, MD; THE WELL TUNED BRAIN: Neuroscience & the Life Well Lived, May 2015
Kevin M. Schultz, BUCKLEY AND MAILER, The Difficult Friendship that Shaped the Sixties, June 2015
Thomas J. Christensen, THE CHINA CHALLENGE: Shaping the Choices of a Rising Power, June 2015
Matthew Battles, PALIMPSEST: A History of the Written Word, July 2015
Guru Madhavan, APPLIED MINDS: How Engineers Think, July 2015
Raghu Karnad, THE FARTHEST FIELD: A Story of India’s Second World War, August 2015
Barry Yourgrau, MESS: One Man’s Struggle to Clean Up His House and His Act, August 2015

Victoria Shore, BACKLANDS, May 2015 – in this Bonnie and Clyde story of love and betrayal, a band of outlaws fight for control of the brutal Brazilian outback
Vu Tran, DRAGONFISH, August 2015 – a thrilling work of sophisticated suspense set amid the Vietnamese underworld in Las Vegas

Categories: Fiction, Nonfiction Tags: ,

Interview Monday With Lalita Tademy

December 28, 2014 Leave a comment

IMG_0286Tune in to KAZI 88.7 FM on Monday at 8am CT (immediately after the news) for my interview with Lalita Tademy, author of CITIZENS CREEK. Tademy, the New York Times bestselling author of CANE RIVER, tells “an evocative story of a once-enslaved man who buys his freedom after serving as a translator during the American Indian Wars, and his granddaughter, who sustains his legacy of courage.” Evelyn Martin Anderson cohosted the interview.

Lalita Tademy

Lalita Tademy

Lalita Tademy is the New York Times Bestselling author of three historical novels. Her debut, CANE RIVER, was Oprah’s summer Book Pick in 2001, translated into 11 languages, and became San Francisco’s One City, One Book in 2007. Stanford University recently selected Cane River as assigned reading for all incoming freshmen in 2015. Her second novel, Red River, was released to critical acclaim in 2007.  Born in Berkeley, California, far from her parents’ southern roots, both her mother and father made sure their household (Louisiana West) maintained a definite non-California edge, including a steady supply of grits, gumbo, cornbread, and collard greens, and a stream of other transplanted southerners eager to share their “back-home” stories. Some version of those tales seem to steal their way into whatever she writes.

Live Interview With North Texas Mystery Author Rodman Goode on December 28

December 27, 2014 Leave a comment
Rodman Goode

Rodman Goode

Tune in Sunday at 12:30 p.m. CT for my live in studio interview with Rodman Goode, author of the JACK BEST CHRONICLES, on KAZI Book Review on KAZI 88.7 FM in Austin, Texas. In this three mystery book series, THE JACK BEST CHRONICLES features Jack Best, a thrice divorced, quick witted deputy constable based in Dallas, who solves murders murders while navigating through a metroplex full of eccentric characters. A graduate of Prairie View A & M University and Texas Southern University, Rodman Goode lives in North Texas and has 25 years experience as a peace officer.

Top 10 International Crime Novels of 2014

December 6, 2014 Leave a comment

If you’re looking for an international flavor to your mystery novel reading, here is a list from the mysterypeople blog of Austin’s independent bookstore, BookPeople:

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