Monday, November 18, 2013

Faces at the Kentucky Book Fair

The ever-popular Sue Grafton. Fans lined up all day to get her autograph in her latest Kinsey Millhone mystery, W is for Wasted.

Poet, essayist, and novelist Wendell Berry has a faithful following. He was kept busy all day long signing many of his books. I met him at last year's Book Fair. This year I just waved as I walked by.

Mystery writer Duffy Brown looked great in her 'Crime Scene Do Not Cross' scarf. She was signing her entertaining puzzlers set in Savannah, Iced Chiffon and Killer in Crinolines. Her next mystery starring amateur sleuth Reagan Summerside, owner of the consignment shop, The Prissy Fox, is due out in March. This time Reagan will be investigating a crime involving Pearls and Poison. Ms. Brown is very friendly and genuine. I met her last year and have become a fan.

Alecia Whitaker is the author of Queen of Kentucky which I wrote about here. I was delighted and surprised to meet her as she was not listed in the online brochure of authors who would be attending. She was so gracious and like 14-year-old Ricki Jo, the girl on the cover, she had on her cowboy boots. Her new book is Wildflower, a story of a young songwriter/singer's experiences with fame.

Alison Atlee is the author of The Typewriter Girl, the story of Betsey Dobson who is trying to make her way as an independent woman in Victorian England. I wrote a bit about the book here. I spoke with Ms. Atlee about the clever chapter headings in her book concerning the rules of typewriting that she culled from an 1890's book How to Become an Expert in Typewriting. I found the advice to be applicable in life as well as when sitting in front of the typewriter.

 Deidre A. Scaggs is author of The Historic Kentucky Kitchen: Traditional Recipes for Today's Cook. I will be seeing her and her taste-testing co-author, chef Andrew W. McGraw, at another book event tonight. She highly recommended the Parrish Family's Lemon Custard Pie, circa 1850s, and assured me it is a recipe that even I - a non-cook - could follow. "It's super easy!"  Sure enough, the recipe has only five ingredients. I may have to dig out my apron!

This dapper fellow is Dan Andriacco, writer of the Sebastian McCabe-Jeff Cody series. His latest, The Disappearance of Mr. James Phillimore takes place in London, a favorite location of mine. Mr. Andriacco has been a Sherlock Holmes fan since he was nine and incorporates some of that famous detective's methods in his mysteries. 

Bryan S. Bush is a local historian and lecturer on The Civil War. His book, Louisville and The Civil War, takes a look at the role of my hometown in that conflict. Mr. Bush partipates in reenactment events as a Confederate artillery soldier and leads tours through the portion of historic Cave Hill Cemetery where Union and Confederate soldiers are buried. He told me the fascinating story of accused Confederate spy Elizabeth Temms who died in a Union prison in Louisville. She is the only woman buried with the Confederate soldiers in Cave Hill.


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks, Penny. It was a fun day and I so enjoyed chatting with so many creative folks.

  2. How delightful. I've never gotten so close to any authors, and fear I'd be completely tongue tied if I did. Come to think of it, I did once get Judith Viorst's autograph after she did a reading at the Pasadena Public Library...and I was tongue-tied, as I recall.

    1. Kathy, these authors were more than willing to spend time talking to me and others who attended the Book Fair. I usually just start with a smile and a hello and let them take it from there. They were anxious to talk about their books and I was anxious to hear about them. Great combination!