writers -- fiction

Word After Word After Word

By Patricia MacLachlan

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"Every school day feels the same for fourth graders Lucy and Henry and Evie and Russell and May. Then Ms. Mirabel comes to their class-bringing magical words and a whole new way of seeing and understanding. From beloved author Patricia MacLachlan comes an honest, inspiring story about what is real and what is unreal, and about the ways that writing can change our lives and connect us to our own stories-word after word after word."
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The Left Bank Gang by Jason

The Left Bank Gang by Jason

The Left Bank Gang opens with a dog shuffling down the streets of 1920's Paris, keeping mostly to himself. He ignores a panhandler, but then sees another dog that he recognizes. They shake hands. One dog's name is Ezra Pound. The other's is Ernest Hemingway.

Gang is a clever nugget of alternate history fiction. Rather than focusing on complex geopolitical questions like "What if the Germans won World War II?"  Norwegian cartoonist Jason turns to the zeitgeist of expatriate writers such as Pound, Fitzgerald, Joyce, and Hemingway. His hypothesis is "What if all of these starving geniuses just got fed up and turned to crime?"

Canapes for the Kitties

By Marian Babson

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The cat's out of the bag: dead bodies are piling up in Brimful Coffers, a picturesque English village. Among the deceased is Boswell, a pet white rat. His killers were caught: Had-I and But-Known, two mischievous felines belonging to Lorinda Lucas, mystery writer. Unfortunately, the other victims were all too human-and their killer remains at large... The danger in Brimful Coffers was unforeseen when several authors created an informal writers' colony in this lovely town outside of London. In act, the location was heaven until the undesirables-critics and scholars-began to show up. Soon Lorinda and her friends feel as if they're living in a fishbowl. Worse, they're getting chilling threats, supposedly from their fictional characters! But when fatal "accidents" begin to claim the colony's residents, death isn't make-believe. And unless Lorinda can sniff out the killer, even a cat's nine lives might not be nearly enough...

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The Making of Toro: Bullfights, Broken Hearts and One Author's Quest for the Acclaim He Deserves

By Mark Sundeen

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"Mark Sundeen needed to stage a comeback. His first book was little read, rarely reviewed, and his book tour was cancelled. So when a careless big city publisher calls with an offer for a book about bullfighting, Mark assumes this is his best and last chance to follow the trajectory of his literary heroes.

"To be sure, Sundeen has never been to a bullfight. He doesn't speak Spanish. He's not even a particularly good reporter. Come to think of it, he's probably one of the least qualified people to write a book about bullfighting, even in the best of circumstances. But that doesn't stop Mark Sundeen.

"After squandering most of the book advance on back rent and debts, Sundeen can't afford a trip to Spain, so he settles for nearby Mexico. But the bullfighting he finds south of the border is tawdry and comical, and people seem much more interested in the concessions and sideshows. There's little of the passion and artistry and bravery that he'd hoped to employ in exhibiting his literary genius to the masses.

"To compensate for his own shortcomings as an author, Sundeen invents an alter ego, Travis LaFrance, a swashbuckling adventure writer, in the tradition of his idol, Ernest Hemingway. But as his research falters, his money runs out, and the deadline approaches, Sundeen's high-minded fantasies are skewered by his second-rate reality. Eventually, Travis LaFrance steps in to take control, and our narrator goes blundering through the landscape of his own dreams and delusions, propelled solely by a preposterous, quixotic, and ultimately heartbreaking insistence that his own life story, no matter how crummy, is worth being told in the pages of Great Literature."

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The Accidental Tourist

By Anne Tyler

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The narrow, orderly life of a travel guidebooks author is hilariously disrupted by his estranged wife and an eccentric dog trainer

On Film:
The film adaptation of Tyler's novel was originally released in 1988 and stars William Hurt, Kathleen Turner, Geena Davis.

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Angle of Repose

By Wallace Stegner

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Wallace Stegner's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel is a story of discovery--personal, historical, and geographical. Confined to a wheelchair, retired historian Lyman Ward sets out to write his grandparents' remarkable story, chronicling their days spent carving civilization into the surface of America's western frontier. But his research reveals even more about his own life than he's willing to admit. What emerges is an enthralling portrait of four generations in the life of an American family.

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The Man Who Wrote the Book

By Erik Tarloff

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"Ezra Gordon's life is falling apart. His job as an underpaid literature professor at a small Baptist college in California is in jeopardy because he can't get his act together to write any articles for academic journals, he has a ferocious case of writer's block and hasn't written a poem in years, and he is in a lukewarm relationship with the icily disapproving Carol, daughter of the fearsome college trustee, the Reverend Dimsdale. And his doctor has just told him that, physically, at the age of 35, it's all downhill from here.

"To escape a dreary spring break on campus, Ezra heads to Los Angeles to visit Isaac Schwimmer, an old college friend. There's nothing wrong with Isaac's life -- he's a fabulously successful publisher of pornographic books, his social life is a bachelor's fantasy, and he lives next door to a Penthouse model as smart as she is beautiful (well, almost). When Isaac proposes that Ezra write a dirty book for a little fast cash, Ezra takes him up on the offer. Little does he know that his book, Every Inch a Lady (by "E.A. Peau") will radically change his life, and throw the campus into chaos."

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Blackberry Wine

By Joanne Harris

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Jay Mackintosh, a best-selling novelist, has published nothing in the last ten years. Impulsively, he decides to leave his urban life in London and, sight unseen, purchases a farmhouse in the remote French village of Lansquenet.

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Naked Once More

By Elizabeth Peters

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She may be a bestselling author, but ex-librarian Jacqueline Kirby's views on the publishing biz aren't fit to print. In fact, she's thinking of trading celebrity for serenity and a house far away from fiendish editors and demented fans when her agent whispers the only words that could ever make her stay: Naked in the Ice.

Seven years ago, this blockbuster skyrocketed Kathleen Darcy to instant fame. Now the author's heirs are looking for a writer to pen the sequel. It's an opportunity no novelist in her right mind would pass up, and there's no doubting Jacqueline's sanity...until she starts digging through the missing woman's papers and her past. Until she gets mixed up with Kathleen enigmatic lover. Until a series of nasty accidents convince her much too late that someone wants to bring Jacqueline's story--and her life--to a premature end.

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Pasta Imperfect

By Maddy Hunter

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The discount travel package to Italy seemed like a great deal: Emily Andrew could lead her globe-trotting Iowans on the trip of a lifetime and bring her family to boot. Maybe she should have read the fine print....Sharing their itinerary with a group of hyper-competitive aspiring romance writers is just a prelude to more Machiavellian drama than an Italian opera.

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