Reader's Exchange

Hardboiled novel, scrambled blog

When my husband phoned from his seminar in Seattle last night, I'd already been asleep so was mostly noncommittal.  Lucky for him.  I'd been reading about a hardboiled private eye earlier; had I been more alert, he might have heard this: Hardboiled detective cover

"So you wanna know the score, huh?  Here's the lowdown.  Telemarketers made a move and I was right there with the "do not call" list song and dance.  Betcha they never saw it coming.  Those terriers are still at it--you know the ones: bushy eyebrows, short legs, rap sheet a mile long: barking, digging, marking the storage shed.  Sure, they figure to have the upper hand for now, but I've got my eye on ‘em.   We'll buy ‘em off with new dog toys if we have to..."

I'm really enjoying the advance copy of Ariel S. Winter's The Twenty-Year Death, due out in August. However, I don't typically choose hard-boiled or noir fiction, so this one may be infiltrating my psyche--rather like one drink going straight to the head of someone who doesn't usually touch alcohol.

As I consider Leila Meacham's new Tumbleweeds (which is neither hardboiled nor a mystery), remember: I'm still under the influence...

Leila has the goods on Texas characters, all right.  Bet she raked in a lotta cabbage on that Roses book last year. Readers didn't grouse if they had to line up for it and didn't beef about her stringing 'em along for hundreds of pages to get the final dope.  It was A-OK.

As for Tumbleweeds, you'll get your mitts on it if you know what's good for you.  Meacham has eyeballed the Texas high school football racket and also knows all about small burgs in the Panhandle--how folks like to jaw about things that aren't their business but all of a sudden clam up when they oughta be singing. 

Tumbleweeds coverIn Tumbleweeds, what you've got is three kids--Trey, John, and Cathy-all three orphans or may as well be.  The two guys are big cheeses at school on account of they're football heroes.  The girl is a real dish, also plenty smart.  But her old man was living on borrowed time and money, so the only lettuce she has is what she puts into burgers at the local greasy spoon.

Why is she slingin' hash if she's such a big deal?  And what about the good town folk?  Do they act like saps or end up being swell after all?

Hey, don't grill me!  Glom onto a copy and figure it out yourself.

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