Nirvana Bites

Nirvana Bites by Debi Alper.

Janet Evanovitch gets political. (That sentence is a David Montgomery blurb machine sentence.) The magnetic (or do I mean charismatic? both, I think) Debi Alper has written a crime caper with a sharp edge, in which sexual perversions are mashed up with a South London commune to create a mystery that zings along. I have lived a very boring life for many years now, so can’t remember if communes really exist like the idyllic and supportive group portrayed here — the couple of times I have lived that way people kept nicking the milk out of the fridge — but one can hope that in an alternative universe to the one I find myself in,  young people abandoned or abused by their biological families can find this kind of home.

Social comment aside, Nirvana Bites features a witty detective story with a difference (stapled fish, anyone?), a client with a serious metal fetish, an appealing heroine and assorted bizarre London lowlife. I have my serious doubts about those south Londoners after reading this book — no wonder taxis are reluctant to go there after 11 p.m.

Debi’s second book, Trading Tatiana, has just been reviewed very positively in Mystery Woman magazine.

Books, bards and gadgets

Racing against the clock here, a few little gems from the blogs:

Google has a Shakespeare page! You can search the full text of some of his plays (or "books" as Google and friends call them), and link to some resources. One of said resources says "To watch Shakespeare in action, check out Google video". The mind boggles.

Moving smartly from the ancient to the modern, gadgets, smadgets, which to choose? If you are me it is easy, don’t bother. An Internet connection is all you need — for the rest, pen and paper is just fine.  However, I appreciate that others differ and love all the many shiny little things on offer these days, but which actually work? One person who knows is the Editor in Chief of Wired Magazine, Chris Anderson, who has revealed on his blog The Long Tail what is in his gadget bag. I don’t notice any of those computer-folded-up bits of paper in there, but I reckon Chris is a pretty reliable guide as to what’s in and what works.

Finally, from this post, some readable musings on Chekhov’s Mistress about that perennial topic, making money out of your blog vs the love of writing, in a post called "Get Rich Quick: Litblog Amazonia". There is a book promotion involved, but even so the post is worth a read, I think.

David Montgomery’s favourites

If you like crime fiction (aka mystery or detective fiction), and are too spolit for choice, or if you haven’t tried it before and want some solid recommendations, the estimable David Montgomery has put together a list of his favourite reviewers on his blog Crime Fiction Dossier.

David is also inviting people to email him with their own favourite reviewers and websites, so please visit his blog if you have any interest in the topic. While you are there, check out his blurb machine!

David does not post on his blog that frequently, but when he does his posts repay reading. The other day he wrote about authors who publish their books under pseudonyms. He’s discovered that Lee Child (creator of Jack Reacher) isn’t really called Lee Child, and is wondering what to call him when he next bumps into him. To me, Skint will always be Skint and Minx always Minx, however famous they become, as doubtless they will.

Polygon 14 June

Polygon puzzle
Apologies for lack of polygon yesterday. It got too late and, er…I forgot.
Using the given letters no more than once, make as many words as possible of four or more letters, always including the central letter. Capitalised words, plurals, conjugated verbs (past tense etc), adverbs ending in LY, comparatives and superlatives are disallowed.
You can make one word using all the letters.
How you rate: 11 words, average; 14, good; 18, very good; 22, excellent.
Answers in the comments.
Source: The Times

If you would like some more detailed rules and tips about this game, please visit this link. Douglas, the page at the link includes some information on acceptability of words.