Monthly Archives: November 2013

Who’s the sexy guitarist at the Hard Rock Bahrain?

Author Garry Craig Powell during his years in the Middle East. Read about his novel, Stoning the Devil, below.

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Ex-pats and natives mix it up intimately in a Dubai that is almost a character in Garry Craig Powell’s Stoning the Devil, a novel that in my opinion should be a NY Times notable, for the quality of its prose and the significance and timeliness of its portrait of women in the United Arab Emirates.

It shouldn’t be surprising when boys raised isolated from girls and taught they’re superior grow up to become adult sexual monsters (sometimes even unwilling monsters). What is surprising is how Garry Craig Powell gets under the skin, into the hearts and minds, of … Continue reading

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Here are three questions for Garry Craig Powell, author of Stoning the Devil.

Q: You’ve hooked me on wanting the feel of being an ex-pat in Dubai. Imagine that you and I are sitting in a Dubai hotel bar. (You’re buying, because that sweetens the fantasy for me; I’m cheap.) Who would be … Continue reading

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After being told that guests at a party were “ducking for apples,” Dorothy Parker replied, “There, but for a typographical error, is the story of my life.”

Quotation from The Algonquin Wits, Robert E. Dennan, ed., via The Yale Book of Quotations, Fred R. Shapiro, ed. The 1953 photo above is from the book A Journey into Dorothy Parker’s New York by Kevin C. Fitzpatrick. “In these challenging … Continue reading

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Another Dorothy Parker

While looking in the Library of Congress photo archives for a picture of the Dorothy Parker, I stumbled onto this photo of a Dorothy Parker and thought it too good to go unposted.  It was captioned: “Miss Washington” Washington, D.C., Aug. 4. Miss Dorothy … Continue reading

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Fat Chance by R.J. Leahy: laughs and light mystery. A likeable, smart aleck NY detective gets stranded in a small New Mexico town and partners, sort of, with a crotchety Japanese-American widow there to visit her husband’s grave. Together they search for a missing special-needs local nicknamed “Fat Chance.”

I often read in bed, and Fat Chance passed the toothbrush test: that is, while brushing my teeth, I found myself looking forward to getting into bed with Fat Chance (the book, not the character). Half the books I buy don’t … Continue reading

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Clarence Darrow: “Most men haven’t killed anybody but they have read obituaries with pleasure.”

I like to read and write about people implicated in crime. Say you see in your small town weekly that your 60-year-old lesbian mother’s friend Clara, an electrician, died in a work-related accident. You wonder why your mother didn’t tell you when you dropped … Continue reading

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A vintage crime scene: classic cars await the steam-pulled Chippewa at Coleman, WI, 1938.

I love shots like this because I love vintage crime (and I love trains). Photo from Trains magazine archive, reproduced in The Hiawatha Story, Jim Scribbons.

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A different kind of web: black and yellow argiope or garden spider

Common to North America, this one was in our garden and new to me. Todd is the gardener, not I.

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Saying good-bye to summer

Reblogged from, one of the first blogs I found and one I return to frequently. (There this photo was reblogged from With Twelve Notes.) Looking at Nelson Carpenter’s blog is like sipping wine: nothing is required of you but pure … Continue reading

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