Monday, July 25, 2011

Booksigning Loads of Fun

The big day, July 23rd, dawned bright and clear. Kerrisdale Village hummed with activity, but even so I was able to grab a parking spot only two blocks from Hager Books. Proprietor Andrea Davies and her dellightful staff arranged a heap of "Soldiers" near the front door, and I propped up my laptop to show a few images of  WW I's Canadian Cavalry Brigade.
The very first customer to buy a copy of "Soldier of the Horse" was Ian Slater. By an amazing coincidence, I had met Ian years ago when I took a one-day Saturday writing course from him at Langara College. Ian is a writer of thrillers, at least two of which I have read.
Hager Books has an obvious following of book-lovers; it was a real pleasure to meet and chat with some of their regulars. One was a high school student who had just last year studied the First World War in grade 11; and another was a teacher who has led classes on battlefield tours in Europe.
In short--great fun, at a great book store.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Signing 23 July at Hager Books--nothing but pressure!

Many thanks to my long-time family friend Susila Bryant, who called CBC's Almanac today and suggested "Soldier of the Horse" for summer reading. Susila has gone out of her way to talk up the signing event which takes place tomorrow, the 23rd, at 2167 W 41st in Vancouver. Proprietor Andrea Davies has been a pleasure to deal with.
Seriously--looking forward to the event, and if I get to chat to a few people about my book it will be a great experience.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

"Soldier of the Horse" Signing

In my efforts to get with the times, my book marketing for "Soldier of the Horse" has been limited to mainly online promotion but for a handful of reading events. That is about to change, however, as I will be signing books at Hager Books, 2176 W 41st Ave, Vancouver, on Saturday July 23rd from 1 to 2pm. The great folks at TouchWood Editions (my publisher) have produced a poster, a couple of copies of which are now displayed at the bookstore; extra copies of "Soldier" have been ordered; and I have been practising my signature.
I am very much looking forward to the occasion. Will the lineups extend around the block? Will late arrivals, missing the deadline to get to the signing table, riot in the streets? How many policemen will the mayor mobilize to protect the good burghers of Kerrisdale? They can't say they weren't warned.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Dennis Bolen's "Anticipated Results"--the man can write

I recently read Dennis E. Bolen's "Anticipated Results". Dennis's boomer-age characters seem to live in a miasma of booze and cigarette smoke, much as their parents did a generation before them; the difference being that their parents have been labelled the "Greatest Generation". The people in Anticipated Results are boomers who will not be labelled "great". They are the dropouts who never amount to anything, living in the underlayer of society where they try to find traction in careers, in relationships.
 Anticipated Results marks a change in that Bolen's previous books have generally featured serious criminality, one way or the other. As Bolen put it himself in an interview with Sean Cranbury of Books On the Radio, "My characters here are suffering the prosaic, they are enduring the mundane, and are exhibiting the exhaustion of boredom and spiritual stasis. Alcohol, sex, and car-love are the salves they generally resort to, but nary a dishonest thought typically enters their minds."

Dennis Bolen can write. His dialogue is crisp, abrupt, and efficient. Recent reviews in Qull & Quire and the National Post confirm a book worth reading.

Monday, July 4, 2011

World War I Horses of Interest

My friend Spider loaned his copy of "Soldier of the Horse" to his step-father. Spider commented as follows:

"This one's from my step-father who will be 101 years old in
September. I just talked to him on the phone this morning and almost
the first words out of his mouth were "I finished the book you lent
me." He tells me that he really enjoyed it and when I commented that
it's an entertaining read he replied "yes, it is entertaining but it's
more than that - it's very informative." He was quite interested in
the role of horses in WWI. This, of course, led to a long discussion
on horses in the war."

As far as I know, that makes him my oldest reader. Let's hope we can all read, and learn, at 101!