No time for a long-winded missive, I’m afraid — that will come later in the day — but I wanted to give Seattle-area members of the Author! Author! community a quick heads-up that one of the great local public readers, brilliant fiction stylist and cookbook author Bharti Kirchner, will be reading from her fifth novel and eighth book, Tulip Season, this evening at Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park at 6:30 p.m..
Why slip you the info? Really gifted authors who also happen to be wonderful at reading and speaking in public have become as rare as dodo birds riding on unicorns in recent years. The indirect result: many, many first-time authors have been finding themselves standing gape-mouthed before crowds of fans in recent years, unsure what to do or what to say. All too often, they’ve simply never seen it done well.
How might one avoid this dreadful fate? How about seeking out good local authors and seeing how they pull off this difficult high-wire act? Like, say, this evening, or on June 12 at Wide World Book & Maps (7 p.m.)? Or even on June 29 at Seattle’s Couth Buzzard Bookstore (7:30 p.m.)?
Oh, and just between us: Bharti is a well-known writing teacher as well. If I had a literary question on anything from mystery writing to literary fiction to how to whip up a fabulous vegetarian ragoût, I might want to creep up to her gently after a reading and murmur my concerns. But that’s just me.
And did you think I would recommend an author’s talk without giving you some indication of her latest work? Perish the thought. Here’s the publisher’s blurb for Tulip Season:
Kareena Sinha, an Indian-American domestic-violence counselor, disappears from her Seattle home. When the police dismiss suspicions that she herself was a victim of spousal abuse, her best friend, Mitra Basu, a young landscape designer, resolves to find her. Mitra’s search reveals glimpses of a secret life involving her friend and a Bollywood actor of ill repute. Following the trail, Mitra is lured back to India where she uncovers the actor’s ties to the Mumbai underworld and his financial difficulties –- leading her into a web of life-threatening intrigue where Mitra can’t be sure of Kareena’s safety or her own.
Best of luck with it, Bharti, and everybody, keep up the good work!