Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Rebecca Steele, you've won Janet Evanovich's new novel

I heard last week from lots of readers who said they'd love a copy of Janet Evanovich's "Sizzling Sixteen," the newest novel in her Stephanie Plum series.

Rebecca Steele was my winner. But hey, Rebecca, I need an email with your address so I can mail your book. If I don't hear from Rebecca by next week, I'll choose another winner from the entries.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Historical novel explores the Radium Dial painters

Hard to to believe, but starting in 1920s, an Illinois company called the Radium Dial Co. encouraged its workers to lick the tips of their paint brushes, which were dipped in radium, to create perfectly pointed lines on the watch and clock dials they painted. As years passed, scores of women died of radiation poisoning and related cancers as a result of ingesting the glow-in-the-dark paint.

When Charlotte's Shelley Stout learned about these women years ago through a documentary, she remembers being "stunned and horrified," but also fascinated.

Stout's recent novel "Radium Halos" (LibriFiles Publishing; $9.99) is a fictional take on this sad piece of history. Her story begins in Belmont in 1923, where two sisters convince their father to let them travel to Illinois to take jobs with the well-paying Radium Dial company.

Stout, who describes herself as mostly self-taught, works by day in a sales job. But she's obviously a born writer, as her engrossing first novel shows. She'll sign copies at Joseph Beth Booksellers at SouthPark 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 10.

Friday, June 25, 2010

We've got a winner for Janet Evanovich's new novel

Wow, you folks do love your Janet Evanovich. I got lots of entries for my book giveaway.

Our winner is Rebecca Steele. Send me an email, Rebecca, and I'll mail you your copy of Janet Evanovich's "Sizzling Sixteen," the newest novel in her Stephanie Plum series.

Thanks all for entering, and check back for more giveaways.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Janet Evanovich visits Charlotte Thursday; Win her new book

Janet Evanovich fans take note: The New York Times bestselling author will sign books at 6 p.m. Thursday, June 24, at Borders at Stonecrest Shopping Center, 7836 Rea Road.

But wait, there's more: I'm giving away a copy of her new novel, "Sizzling Sixteen,"(St. Martin's Press; $27.99).
To enter the giveaway, leave a comment on this blog with your name, or some way to identify you, not just "anonymous." I'll randomly pick a winner and post your name on Friday, June 25.

"Sizzling Sixteen," out today, June 22, is the latest in Evanovich's long-running mystery series featuring New Jersey bounty hunter Stephanie Plum.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Check out Judy Goldman in Real Simple magazine

Charlotte author Judy Goldman has a piece in the July issue of Real Simple magazine, on sale Friday, June 18. It's an excerpt from the book she's now working on, "Unreliable Hearts: A Sister's Memoir."

In the piece, Goldman, a poet, teacher and author of the novel "Early Leaving," explores what she calls her "close but sometimes ragged relationship" with her sister.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Charlotte-Mecklenburg library launches summer reading clubs

Kids can win prizes, reduce overdue-book fines or give back to the community through the Charlotte-Mecklenburg library's summer reading clubs.

The clubs start Monday, June 14, and run through Aug. 9. Sign up and pick up your reading record at any location, except the Main Library and Checkit Outlet.

For each hour of reading, kids can earn "book bucks." Book bucks can be redeemed for prizes once you reach 10 and 20 hours, or you can use them to erase your fines. You can also donate them to provide books to local centers in need.

Go to the library's summer reading Web site for more information.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

"Queen of Palmyra" author at Joseph-Beth on June 12

UNC Chapel Hill's Minrose Gwin will read from her debut novel, "The Queen of Palmyra", 2 p.m. June 12 at Joseph-Beth Booksellers, 4345 Barclay Downs Drive.

I wrote about Gwin and her new novel in my column in Sunday's Observer, but I misstated the time. It's a good book, and I don't want readers to miss out because of my mistake. So: 2 p.m. Saturday, June 12.