The Whole Town’s Talking and Some at the Cemetery Are Too

The Whole Town’s Talking

By: Fannie Flagg
Publisher: Random House
Publication Date: 2016

Forrest Gump said, “Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re going to get.” And this story is like that. It is an easy and fun read.

If you are a fan of the movie Fried Green Tomatoes, well Fannie Flagg is the author of that book.  And you will love this one!

The story follows the town from the date it is established, 1880 to the year 2016, followed by an Epilogue of 2021. Characters live and characters die. Children grow up, get married, and have children of their own. Some folks are happy and some are miserable.

The Whole Town’s Talking takes place in the small town of Elmwood Springs, Missouri. It begins in 1880 with the founder, Lordor Nordstrom.  At age twenty-eight, Nordstrom left Sweden to travel to the United States. He settled in Missouri and cleared land for a farm.  Soon he advertised in the Swedish-American newspapers for young farmers to come and help him start a community.

By 1889, the community was growing and known as Swede Town, even though two Germans and one Norwegian lived there. It was this year that Nordstorm donated land for a cemetery. The cemetery was on top of a hill that overlooked the town and Nordstorm named it Still Meadows.

Nordstorm decided he needed a wife and with the lack of unmarried women in the community, he advertised for a mail-order bride. Katrina Olsen, a Swede living in Chicago, answered the advertisement and in 1890, the two got married.

While Nordstorm is a main character in the book, he and Katrina are by means the only ones. After all, there is a whole town!

As the years go by, the name of the town is changed to Elmwood Springs. Children are born and a school is built. In 1901, Miss Lucille Beemer is hired as the first school teacher.

Flagg’s colorful description of the small bucolic town puts the reader right there on the spot. She draws the reader into the lives of each character and shows how their lives are intertwined. Some characters are very likable and others not so much. Flagg keeps you guessing as to what is going to happen and to whom it will happen.

Some of my favorite scenes in this story take place at Still Meadows, the cemetery.

I invite you to read The Whole Town’s Talking and meet the Lordor and Katrina Nordstorm and their children. Get to know folks by the name of Swensen, Knott, Eggstrom, Tildholme, Shimfissle, Hendersen, Warren, and others. Meet Miss Beemer and Sweet Potato, the pig.

The book has sections titled such as, “And So It Begins…,” “The 1900s, a New Era,” “The Twenties, All the Wonderful Things in Store,” “The Thirties, The Show Must Go On,” and other amusing titles for each decade.

Chapter titles are just as much fun such as “A Change of Address,” “Reunited,” “More Good Friends,” “Fun at Still Meadows,” and “It Don’t Mean a Thing if It Ain’t Got That Swing.”

Read this book to learn who goes off to war, who marries whom, who gets murdered and how the murder gets solved, and which colorful character meets Bonnie and Clyde and Harry and Bess Truman.

You will be pleasantly surprised as to how this story develops and ends.

 

Some other books by Fannie Flagg:

Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café (1987)

Welcome to the World, Baby Girl (1998)

A Redbird Christmas (2004)

Can’t Wait to Get to Heaven (2006)

The All-Girl Filling Station’s Last Reunion (2013)

 

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Book Review: Echoes of the Storm by Charlene Newcomb

New Release, Echoes of the Storm by Charlene Newcomb

A spell-bounding space saga…

Charlene Newcomb has found her niche: male/male romance whether it be historical fiction as in her Battle Scars series (12th Century) or this new sic-fi release, Echoes of the Storm. (24th Century)

Excerpt:

Is this how it ends?

Jack Gamble swiped away the dark stray hairs clinging to his forehead. This defeat by Galilei-unimaginable. His people-dead, wounded, gone underground. The only thing worse? Fleeing with a small band of resistance fighters when he should have stayed behind to pick up the pieces.

His stomach tightened with guilt. He stared out the viewport from the jump seas as Encompass veered toward clouds tinged red by Torredo’s rising sun. Far below, a column of armored vehicles smoldered on the roadside, twisted, blackened scraps of metal. Fires in the capital created an eerie show of shadows and light across the early morning skies. The ship jinked through black, acrid smoke, which splattered the reddish canvas of clouds like brush strokes, a death mark for Jack and his comrades.

Book Review:

If you are a fan of Star WarsStar Trek, Battle Star Galactica, etc., you will enjoy this book. If you are not familiar with these stories and shows you might find yourself wondering about some of the terminology and acronyms.

This book is for an older audience, not suitable for young children. It contains violence, although not overly graphic and some sexual content and suggestive sexual content.

The story is set in the 24th Century. Jack Gamble’s home planet Torredo has been invaded by Galilei, and more specifically, Ari Norse, who wants to rule the galaxy.  Norse and Gamble were lovers. For Norse, it is all about power. For Jack is was about love. Now his mission is to free Torredo from the grasp of Galilei.

Newcomb does a good job of placing the reader inside the story. The characters and scenes come alive and the pace keeps the reader turning the pages. The story is filled with love, betrayal, secrets, politics, power, violence, death, destruction, and friendship.

About the author:

Charlene Newcomb lives, works, and writes in Kansas. She is an academic librarian by trade (recently retired), a U. S. Navy veteran, and has three grown children. Newcomb loves to travel and enjoys quiet places in the mountains or on rocky coasts. But even in Kansas, she can let her imagination soar.

Newcomb is also the author of the Battle Scars Series – Men of the Cross, For King and Country, and Swords of the King – about three knights in King Richard the Lionheart’s army.

 

*Note – I received an Advance Reader’s Copy (ARC) for an honest review.

 

 

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Released Today! Red Zone by Luke Murphy

Title: Red Zone

By: Luke Murphy

Publisher: ANM Books

Published: 15 July 2020

 

Back Cover Text:

The prodigal son…

Calvin Watters hasn’t been back to USC since the day his scholarship and humility were stripped from the former running back. Calvin had cut all ties to the school but now finds himself pulled back when a woman’s dead body is found on the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum football field.

returns home

Detective Charlene Taylor’s new homicide case, a freshman cheerleader’s murder at USC, is complicated. Charlene knows that the USC football team is a close-knit family, and getting inside the trusted circle, as a cop, is unlikely.

Calvin Watters is a game-changer…

When Calvin and Charlene meet up on the Coliseum turf, Charlene sees an opportunity to use Calvin to penetrate the Trojan family circle. Little does the detective know, Calvin is now an outsider at USC, no longer welcome–with many who will go a long way to see the former football star fail.

Can Calvin and Charlene work together to uncover the truth, or will their egos interfere with what could be a powerful partnership?

 

Bio

Luke Murphy is the internationally bestselling author of two series.  The Calvin Watters Mysteries: Dead Man’s Hand (2012) and Wild Card (2017). The Charlene Taylor Mysteries: Kiss & Tell (2015) and Rock-A-Bye-Baby (2019).

Murphy played six years of professional hockey before retiring in 2006. His sports column “Overtime” (Pontiac Equity), was nominated for the 2007 Best Sports Page in Quebec and won the award in 2009. He has also worked as a radio journalist (CHIPFM 101.7).

Murphy lives in Shawville, Quebec, Canada with his wife and three daughters. He is a teacher who holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing, and a Bachelor of Education (Magna Cum Laude).

Red Zone is Murphy’s fifth novel.

For more information on Luke and his books, and to sign up for his newsletter visit:

www.authorlukemurphy.com

‘Like’ his Facebook page:  www.facebook.com/AuthorLukeMurphy.

Follow him on —

Twitter:   www.twitter.com/AuthorLMurphy 

Instagram:  www.instagram.com/AuthorLukeMurphy

Be the first to know when Luke Murphy’s next book is available! Follow him at:

www.bookbub.com/authors/luke-murphy to receive new releases and discount alerts.

 

 

 

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Filed under Authors, Book Launch, Books, Crime Fiction, Fiction, Genre

Pre-Order Red Zone by Luke Murphy today!

Pre-Order RED ZONE ebook today!  Ebook Release date: July 15, 2020.

Back Cover Text:

The prodigal son…

Calvin Watters hasn’t been back to USC since the day his scholarship and humility were stripped from the former running back. Calvin had cut all ties to the school but now finds himself pulled back when a woman’s dead body is found on the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum football field.

…returns home

Detective Charlene Taylor’s new homicide case, a freshman cheerleader’s murder at USC, is complicated. Charlene knows that the USC football team is a close-knit family, and getting inside the trusted circle, as a cop, is unlikely.

Calvin Watters is a game-changer…

When Calvin and Charlene meet up on the Coliseum turf, Charlene sees an opportunity to use Calvin to penetrate the Trojan family circle. Little does the detective know, Calvin is now an outsider at USC, no longer welcomed—with many who will go a long way to see the former football star fail.

Can Calvin and Charlene work together to uncover the truth, or will their egos interfere with what could be a powerful partnership?

 

Review Blurbs:

“Luke Murphy ramps up the thrill factor with RED ZONE—an awesome, gotta-know-what-happens-next thriller.”—Linda Castillo, NYT & USA Today bestselling author of the Kate Burkholder series

“Well-drawn characters and an interesting premise—Luke Murphy is a mystery writer to watch.”—DV Berkom, USA Today bestselling author of the Leine Basso series

“Red Zone is another winner for Murphy! Thrilling…riveting…a stay-up-all-night-read.”–Kim Cresswell, bestselling author of Deadly Shadow

“Luke Murphy creates a gritty and compelling murder mystery with ‘Red Zone’.”—S.L. Shelton, bestselling author of the Scott Wolfe series

“Richly developed characters, snappy dialogue, and a plot to keep the reader guessing.”–Peter Clement, bestselling author of the Earl Garnet series

 

Bio:

Luke Murphy is the International bestselling author of two series. The Calvin Watters Mysteries: Dead Man’s Hand (2012) and Wild Card (2017). The Charlene Taylor Mysteries: Kiss & Tell (2015) and Rock-A-Bye Baby (2019).

Murphy played six years of professional hockey before retiring in 2006.

His sports column, “Overtime” (Pontiac Equity), was nominated for the 2007 Best Sports Page in Quebec and won the award in 2009. He has also worked as a radio journalist (CHIPFM 101.7).

Murphy lives in Shawville, QC with his wife and three daughters. He is a teacher who holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing, and a Bachelor of Education (Magna Cum Laude).

Red Zone is Murphy’s fifth novel.

For more information on Luke and his books, and to sign up for his newsletter, visit: www.authorlukemurphy.com

‘Like’ his Facebook page: www.facebook.com/AuthorLukeMurphy.

Follow him on Twitter: www.twitter.com/AuthorLMurphy and Instagram: www.instagram.com/AuthorLukeMurphy.

Be the first to know when Luke Murphy’s next book is available! Follow him at www.bookbub.com/authors/luke-murphy to receive new release and discount alerts.

 

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Filed under Authors, Books, e-books, Fiction, Genre, Thriller

Hello, Summer!

I have not posted since March.  Blame it on the pandemic and the fact that I was placed on Administrative Leave for almost three months before I began working from home.

The Administrative Leave time gave me lots of time to do home projects and little else.

I hope everyone is well and has many projects you are working on.

Here are a couple of upcoming new releases:

Luke Murphy, a former hockey player and writer, has a new release coming out soon titled Red Zone.  I will have a post about this in the next few days.  For now, know that the Ebook pre-order date is July 1, and the Ebook release date is July 15.

Charlene Newcomb is a retired librarian and author of the fantastic historic Battle Scars series has a new book, Echoes of the Storm that will be released on July 26.  While the Battle Scars series is about knights in King Richard the Lionheart’s army, Echoes of the Storm will take us to the stars.

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Book Promotion Tip

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March 23, 2020 · 9:06 am

Book Promotion Tip

Decorate your front yard by creating a poster of your book cover, laminating it and placing it in your front yard.

 

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Is your book about a virus or pandemic?

The World Health Organization announced the Coronavirus (COVID-19) is now a global pandemic.

When I first heard about COVID-19, my thoughts went immediately to the movie Outbreak starring Dustin Hoffman.

Does your book deal with a virus, a pandemic, a plague, etc.?  If so, brainstorm ways you can tie it to COVID-19.

Is your book categorized as a health genre? Can you tie it to COVID-19 and what people should be doing to prevent the virus?

Maybe you wrote a zombie story. Did zombies come about because of a virus?

While this pandemic is not something to celebrate, it is at the forefront of customers’ minds.

Just sayin’…

 

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Filed under Authors, Books, Fiction, Genre, Non-Fiction

Book Promotion Tip

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March 9, 2020 · 6:33 am

Book Promotion Tip

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March 2, 2020 · 6:17 am