Paper or popcorn?

by | Oct 16, 2021 | Newsletter

At the moment I’m writing a Hennessey novella that, in its rough state, is sitting around 16 500 words. My plan is to use it as a promotional tool. It still needs a bit of tweaking and polishing but my thoughts have turned to the cover. Of course, the importance of an arresting cover cannot be underestimated, but with typical Libran indecisiveness I’m vacillating between going in two directions. I’m not sure whether to paint a portrait of Hennessey, or go with a simple cover with only her name across the page.

So, question of the day: Do you like a picture/photo of a book’s protagonist on the cover, or do you prefer to build a picture of them in your head? As an aside, if a movie based on a book is released and you see who is playing the lead – a character you love – do you ever groan and cry, “What on earth were they thinking?”

I have read Longmire books and watched the Netflix series, which is a favourite. I’ve watched it twice, and Robert Taylor is entrenched in my mind as the taciturn sheriff – to me he is perfectly cast. But it’s a fine line.
(Confession time. Sometimes I troll Pintrest et al searching for those special someones I think could play Hennessey and Raff when Hollywood comes calling).

Below are ten of my fave detectives in no particular order. All appear in print, with some of them making the transition to celluloid. Which is your favourite medium?

1) Longmire: Craig Johnson (author)
   A small Wyoming town, a stoic sheriff, murder and double-dealing. Excellent.
2) Kurt Wallander: Henning Mankell (author)
    A crime series featuring a tortured Swedish detective.
3) Dave Robicheaux: James Lee Burke (author)
    No one, and I mean no one writes like James Lee Burke. ‘Nuff said.
4) Bryant and May: Christopher Fowler (author)
    Quirk personified. Elderly English detectives investigate unusual murders.
5) The Monkeewrench crew: P.J. Tracy (author)
    A group of highly intelligent misfits help Minneapolis police solve homicides.
6) Rebus: Ian Rankin (author)
    Part of the bedrock of Scottish crime novels.
7) Bosch: Michael Connelly (author)
    I haven’t seen the series but if they’re half as good as the books . . .
8) Inspector Montalbano: Andrea Camilleri (author)
    Deceptively simple from the outside, complex and funny on the inside.
9) Stephanie Plum: Janet Evanovich (author)
     Without fail Stephanie Plum and her sidekick Lula have me laughing out loud.
10) The Nancys: R.W.R. McDonald (author)
    See above. These characters have me in stitches. And the books are set in New Zealand.

Happily – to my mind at least – most of these stories that made the transition off the page to the screen did so with flying colours (though don’t get me started on the casting of One for the Money, which I think is Stephanie Plum’s lone venture onto film).

Buy one. Buy both!
A reminder gentle reader that DYING GRASS MOON reveals the dastardly villain from ONE FOR ANOTHER.
Check my website for links to your preferred purchase site.


Did you know . . .

  • If the little burrowing owl feels threatened it hides in its burrow and makes a noise like a rattlesnake.
  • There are 500 million books by Nora Roberts- that total is not a misprint – and 800 million by Danielle Steel drifting around the world. All I can say is ‘Wow!’
  • Robert Taylor, the actor who plays Walt Longmire, is actually Australian.

Take care and happy reading,

P.S. I’d love to hear from you, so feel free to drop me a line.

On my bedside table at the moment  is MISS BENSON”S BEETLE, by Rachel Joyce.

England, 1950. Margery Benson is a lonely, middle-aged women obsessed with beetles, particularly one shrouded in mystery; the Golden Beetle of New Caledonia. Is it real, or a legend? When her life goes awry Margery travels to the other side of the world to search for this beetle, intending to return triumphant with specimens to gift to the National History Museum. She advertises for an assistant to accompany her and hires Enid Pretty.
The offbeat characters are delightful in their own way, the friendship that grows between the two woman is both heart-warming and heart-wrenching, and their story is compelling, sad, and beautifully written.

Miss Benson’s Beetle

“You will never be able to escape from your heart. So it’s better to listen to what it has to say.”
Paulo Coelho

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