Monthly Archives: January, 2014

The Boy in the Suitcase

The Boy in the Suitcase by Lene Kaaberbol and Agnete Friis, narrated by Katherine Kellgren

Rating:  * * * *

Desperation permeates this fascinating, tense thriller that races between Lithuania and Denmark, following the path of a little boy found in a suitcase in Copenhagen.  Where does he come from, and how did he come to be in a suitcase in a train station?

Narrator Katherine Kellgren enhances the intensity of the presentation as she speeds up in tense moments and slows down as realization sets in.  She ably presents accents for each of the multitude of characters of various ethnic and monetary backgrounds.

Every character in this book is desperate:  the women desperately afraid and unhappy and frail, the men self-centered and short-sighted and insecure.  I hung on every word of the narration, rather desperate myself to hear the resolution, while also hoping reality does not include this much everyday despair.

What I Would Do If I Weren’t So Afraid

I bought the book List Your Self:  Listmaking as the Way to Self-Discovery by Ilene Segalove and Paul Bob Velick as a means to gather some tidbits for a memoir.  I got through no more than two lists (including the title of this blog post) before I started writing fictional short stories based on the lists.  A very useful book!

Why are book covers reversed?

Example 1:

The Innocents by Francesca Segal.  One cover shows a woman running away from the camera wearing a light-colored dress, another shows a woman running toward the camera wearing a red dress.  Why the reversed/opposite images?  See

Example 2:

All In:  The Education of General David Petraeus by Paula Broadwell.  One cover shows him facing the camera, another shows him facing away from the camera.  See

Why?  I’d like to hear your thoughts.

I’ll Be Seeing You

I’ll Be Seeing You by Suzanne Hayes & Loretta Nyhan

Rating:  * * * *

A novel in letters between two women whose husbands are off at war during the 1940s.  Nostalgic, sentimental, sometimes funny, this is a celebration of women who uphold each other, scold and keep each other in line, laugh and cry together, and form a firm bond despite having never met each other in person.

My Year In Review

Love the studio as much as the blog! In agreement about early morning being the best time to write. Fernweh Productions

Live to Write - Write to Live

My greatest achievement this year has been consistency: I’ve walked out to my studio and written in solitude almost every day, sometimes only for a couple of hours, and sometimes from dawn until dark.

This year, I’ve put drafting Ellen ahead of everything, including sculling, one of my summer passions. But rowing requires the same early morning hours as writing, though for different reasons: The water is flat early in the morning, and there are rarely any motorboats out at that hour. Most of all, though, rowing is hot work once the sun rises.

All told, driving to the river and rowing takes a bit more than two hours. But these are the same early hours when I’m best able to tap into the fictional world I’m creating. I decided that entry into that world was more important even than sculling –for this year, at least.

All year, I protected…

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