Sunday, August 30, 2009

Armchair Interviews

Connecting Authors to Their Readers...

If You Love to Read ... How do you learn about new authors and great books?

Armchair Interviews is the answer. We introduce you to new authors, "old friends" who've written a new book, or even a new genre.

Our Great Reviews are divided by genre and give you lots of choices about what to read/buy next. We pride ourselves on introducing emerging authors -- and if we love them, we want you to, also.

Connie Anderson and Andrea Sisco, Minnesota residents, Armchair Interviews hosts and interviewers, have a long-time love of books, reading, talking about books, recommending good reads to book clubs, and hand-selling their newest favorite read.

Armchair Interviews came to life in fall of 2004. Connie Anderson had attended a seminar on Internet marketing and was telling Andrea about an idea she had for a business. "May I join you?" Andrea asks--and as they say, the rest is history. Andrea suggested this perfect name for our company, and her graphic artist son-in-law Alan Pranke (see our guys for contact info) designed our awesome and so-perfect logo. Then Connie met this "nice young man" at a networking event--and Paul Larsen of CreativeArc (see our guys for contact info) became our webmaster, designing our perfect web site and helping us launch it January 25, 2005. Notice overuse (no, not really) of word PERFECT?

Four Times in a Row 2006, 2007, 2008 and now 2009 -- and We're Thrilled!

In April 2006, we were thrilled beyond words when Writers Digest honored our site as one of 101 Best Websites for Writers. Then we were so pleased to receive the same honor in 2007, again in 2008 and 2009! Wow, did we feel proud to be recognized for our efforts in "Connecting Authors to their Readers."

Because both Connie and Andrea have done a lot of interviewing when they were hosts of their own TV author interview shows (Connie's was "Author/Author" and Andrea's was "Book Talk"), they obviously love to ask authors questions.

Connie interviewed Jacquelyn Mitchard the day before she was Oprah's Book Club selection for "Deep End of the Ocean"--certainly changing her writing life as that book was on the bestseller list for several months and then made into a movie.

Now for Armchair Interviews, Andrea and Connie pride themselves on being very prepared so that the author feels they know their book and their writing. Such wonderful guests that we've conducted audio interviews with and posted on our site over the years. Hopefully their interview guests feel that the time was well spent and it was an enjoyable experience.

Perhaps the best part of Armchair Interviews is all the wonderful people we "have met" that are our dependable and much-appreciated reviewers. Their commitment to writing quality reviews and meeting our deadlines is much appreciated. We know about their lives and have laughed and cried along with them as life has sent many challenges their way. THANK YOU ALL!

Both Andrea and Connie have been guest bloggers as well as guests on teleseminars on various subjects like: getting reviews for your book, being interviewed, and more. Andrea has been interviewed several times by author Mayra Calvini and those interviews have "gone around the Internet world."

Our "backstory": Connie and Andrea met in 1976 when they were building their families through adoption. Friends since then, they have been involved in various events related to adoption, including working with Amerasians (American fathers/Asian mothers), running a national adoptive parent organization and publishing OURS, the organization's bi-monthly magazine.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Jess Lourey - September Fair

September Fair

by Jess Lourey

Midnight Ink

ISBN: 0738718726
ISBN-13: 9780738718729

Lourey's lively fifth murder-by-month mystery (after 2008's August Moon) finds Mira James, assistant librarian and part-time reporter for the Battle Lake Recall, covering the beauty pageant to elect Milkfed Mary, Queen of the Dairy, at the Minnesota State Fair. Unfortunately, “drop dead gorgeous” Ashley Pederson, a native of Battle Lake, Minn., turns up poisoned to death in the refrigerated room where, as winner of the contest, she was having her head sculpted in butter. Mira, in her effort to solve Ashley's murder, uncovers small-town jealousies, secret love affairs, embezzlement and a big dairy concern engaged in dubious practices.

May Day
June Bug
Knee High by the Fourth of July
August Moon

August 29, 2009
Once Upon a Crime Bookstore
12 Noon to 2:00 PM

Jess Lourey is the author of the Lefty-nominated Murder-by-Month mysteries set in Battle Lake, Minnesota. August Moon, the fourth book in the series, was released June 2008 and earned a starred review from Booklist, which called it "hilarious, fast-paced, and madcap!" September Fair hits bookshelves the last week of August 2009.

Jess has been teaching writing and sociology at the college level since 1998. When not raising her wonderful kids, teaching, or writing, you can find her gardening, traveling, and navigating the niceties and meanities of small-town life. She is a member of Sisters in Crime, The Loft, and Lake Superior Writers, and serves on the national board of the Mystery Writers of America.


Barnes and Noble
Midnight Ink


"...hilarious, fast paced, and madcap!"
Booklist (starred review)

"Jess Lourey, the literary love child of Agatha Christie and Garrison Keillor, gives us September Fair, an entirely engaging novel with pathos, plot twists and quirky characters galore. Beautifully written and wickedly funny."
Harley Jane Kozak
Agatha, Anthony, and Macavity-award winning author of A Date You Can't Refuse

"An edge of your seat mystery that is fun, funny, and so cleverly written, you'll be guessing until the very end."
Gemma Halliday
best-selling author of the High Heels series

South of Contrary - Poetry by Larry Christianson


by Larry Christianson

North Star Press

ISBN: 13:978-0-87839-337-4

“South of Contrary” is a companion to “Beyond Time: Poems from North of the Tension Line” – with poems telling stories about interesting people and intriguing places from up north to the tropics. A down-to-earth and real style of relaxing reflections on mellow edges south of contrary.

I am a Minnesota poet living in Waconia in the west metro area of the Twin Cities – and describe myself as an early retiree pastor now refiring as a nursing home chaplain, and author in search of honestly making meanings and keeping memories alive. Writing in public hangouts feels more than natural to me and enhances my folksy, down to earth, straightforward style of simplicity in playing with words, images and metaphors in poetic expressions of the experiences and relationships of life. All for the creative purpose of being real and more real. For me, poetry is about paying attention as life rolls along. Observation and reflection. Insight and vision. Storytelling and self-discovery – all the while giving voice to memories and meanings in a stripped-down style that aims to open many doors for readers to enter into their own stories and hopes and dreams.


North Star Press

Obama Rising: Realtime Reflections from the Heart of a Poet, North Star Press of St.
Cloud, 2009. ISBN 13: 978-0-87839-315-2

Beyond Time: Poems from North of the Tension Line, North Star Press of St.
Cloud, 2008. ISBN 13: 978-0-87839-292-6



September 12, 2009: Noon
Signing and Reading
Apple Days Festival
Excelsior Bay Books
36 Water Street
Excelsior, MN

September 17, 2009: 6:30 p.m. Signing and 7:30 p.m. Reading
The Mocha Monkey
115 S. Olive St.
Waconia, MN

October 10, 2009: 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Signing and Reading
Twin Cities Book Festival
Minneapolis Community and Technical College
Minneapolis, MN

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

This Sold House by Diane Keyes

This Sold House

Staging Your Home To Sell In Today’s Market

by Diane Keyes

ISBN No: 978-0-9767999-0-0


Diane Keyes has combined twenty years of staging experience and her expertise as a published author to create This Sold House, a do-it-yourself staging guide for homesellers. Written to entertain as well as inform, this fun and easy-to-use, award-winning book is designed to help homeowners sell quickly and for the best possible price in today’s tough market. Keyes has perfected an approach even the most design-challenged homeowner can use successfully because there’s no decorating savvy needed! Based on the psychology of light, space and color, along with a healthy dose of common sense, her techniques work by drawing buyers’ attention to the best features of a home. She explains how to eliminate distractions, increase buyers’ comfort level and enhance homeowner equity. Filled with hundreds of quick, easy, low- and no-cost tips and techniques, This Sold House gives sellers the keys to a quick sale, the secrets to successful staging, a detailed checklist, and all the information they need to sell their home fast with the least amount of money, time and effort.

One of the country’s first staging professionals, Diane Keyes has been bringing her innovative approach to the real estate industry for over twenty years. Her unique talents have brought her to four-star restaurants, multi-million-dollar island get-aways, and thousands of private homes. And when they needed someone to prepare the state mansion for the Swedish royal family, the governor’s wife called Diane. She first began teaching classes in 1988 and has since taught her staging methods to many realtors seeking to fulfill their continuing education requirements.
Along with consummate staging advice, Diane brings understanding and insight to the complex psychological issues surrounding the sale of a home, a much ignored but vitally important facet of real estate sales.

Her children’s book, Spirit of the Snowpeople, was released by DownEast Books last fall and sold out its first printing within three weeks of its official publication date. Writing This Sold House was a natural step for Diane as she continues to find better ways to help homeowners sell their homes quickly and profitably.

Diane has recently appeared on KSTP’s Twin Cities Live, and on KARE’s Saturday Morning and Showcase Minnesota and on the Charlie Boone radio show on WCCO am.

She will be making a presentation for Edina Realty at the Acapulco Restaurant in Stillwater on Wednesday September 3rd at 6:30pm

Diane will also be presenting at the Midwest Realtor Expo on Wednesday September 23rd from 11:00am till noon.

The book can be purchased at Barnes & Noble Borders, on Amazon, or the website

“Tops on my wish list for Diane Keyes’ This Sold House is that it had been published about a year sooner. My family spent over a year trying to sell a home. If I'd had this incredible expert's wisdom to call on, we might have saved ourselves money, time, and a fair amount of anxiety! Diane entertains and educates in this easy-to-read book. If you want to dive into the real estate pool, consider this book a life preserver!”—Joan Steffend, host of HGTV's Decorating Cents

“Pay close attention to the advice that Diane Keyes gives in This Sold House. Our own house sold for full price in three days after following Diane’s suggestions! You will find no one better qualified and with more experience to help you prepare your home for sale. Homeowners, real estate professionals, and investors alike will benefit from the insight and common sense in This Sold House.”
—Andi Saylor, CRP and author of ON THE MOVE: The Complete Guide to Relocating

“After having our condo for sale for a year, we got This Sold House and followed Diane’s advice. We spent around $100, borrowed a few items from friends and spent a week getting it ready. Although there were six other units for sale in our building—and lots of new construction around us—we sold our home after the first showing! We highly recommend taking Diane’s advice. It sold our house, and we’re sold on This Sold House!”
—Will Harpest, teacher and Chicago homeowner

“If you’re planning to sell your home in this difficult market, you should grab this book, read it cover to cover, and implement all Diane Keyes’ ideas, tips, and techniques. Unlike most such books, This Sold House is written for common folk with limited money and little time to make elaborate changes. After reading the Curb Appeal chapter, I found several ways to make my own home more appealing and create a better first impression. Darn good ideas make this book worth your reading time and no doubt will be the ticket to a quicker and more profitable sale.”
—Connie Anderson, president, Armchair Interviews,

Monday, August 24, 2009

Linda Morganstein-My Life With Stella Kane

In 1948, Nina Weiss, a snobby college girl from Scarsdale, goes to Hollywood to work at her uncle’s movie studio. She’s assigned to help publicize a young actress named Stella Kane. Nina is immediately thrown into the maelstrom of the declining studio system and repressive fifties Hollywood. Adding to her difficulties is her growing attraction to Stella. When a gay actor at the studio is threatened by tabloid exposure, Nina invents a romance between Stella and the actor. The trio become hopelessly entangled when the invented romance succeeds beyond anyone’s dreams. This is the “behind-the scenes” story of the trio’s compromises and secrets that still has relevance for today.

Linda Morganstein is an award-winning, overeducated fiction writer who happens to be the product of a Borscht Belt childhood in the Jewish hotels of the Catskills. In the seventies, she dropped out of Vassar College and drove a VW van to California, where she lived in Sonoma County for many years. Later, she studied creative writing with Jane Smiley in Iowa. She currently resides in the Twin Cities of Minnesota with her understanding partner and intrepid dog, Sherman.

Linda’s mystery series features Alexis Pope, self-defense instructor and recovering cynic. The first of the series, Ordinary Furies, was published in April, 2007 (Spinsters Ink).

You can order directly from the publisher and at a discount!

My Life With Stella Kane REVIEWS

Just About Write

Ordinary Furies REVIEW
“The murder doesn’t even happen until the middle of the book, but the writing is so vivid, the character development so careful, and [Alexis] Pope so intriguing, readers won’t care... Ordinary Furies would be perfect for readers who think they don’t like mysteries...”
--St. Paul Pioneer Press

Saturday, August 22, 2009

A Deadly Habit - Andrea Sisco Mystery Writer

A Deadly Habit
A Penelope Santucci Mystery
by Andrea Sisco
Five Star
ISBN: 978-1-59414-795-1

When Probation Officer, Penelope (Pen) Santucci was a child, she dreamt of being a nun. She dressed in bed sheets and roller-skated regularly into the confessional of Father Daniel Kopecky. There she bared her soul, fabricating sins only a precocious eight-year-old could invent. As a twenty-seven-year-old woman, she's doing the same thing, sans the roller skates and bed sheets. Only this time, she isn't inventing stories. She's confessing her involvement in a murder; a murder she didn't commit, but one in which she is the most promising suspect.

Wisecracking, safecracking Pen lures an elderly priest and a young nun into committing felonies on their wild search for the truth. Hardly appropriate behavior for the dedicated probation officer, but while Pen believes in her job, she has little faith in the justice system. Unfortunately, Pen digs herself deeper into trouble and straight into a muddy grave, dragging her sexy attorney in with her. If they ever get out of it alive, he plans to wring her neck himself.


Andrea has had an eclectic career as a probation officer, television host, flight attendant, book reviewer and adoption activist. The charge that the character of Penelope Santucci is autobiographical is only partially true. It is true, however, that Andrea’s husband consented to his murder, but only if it took place on the pages of a book. She has kept her promise. Andrea is the co-founder of, a web site that reviews books and interviews authors–and was honored by Writers Digest as one of the “101 Best Web Sites for Writers” in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009. A Deadly Habit is her first mystery. She is currently coauthoring a Young Adult Fantasy series. Her website is

A Deadly Habit can be purchased at book stores (if they don't have it on the shelves they will order it for you) or from, Barnes and or any online bookseller.


Booklist Review

Meet Penelope “Pen” Santucci, 27-year-old Minneapolis probation officer, estranged wife, and murder suspect. When she breaks into her house to get some belongings (because her husband, attorney Paul Preston, changed the locks after they separated), Pen finds Paul’s body and envisions herself, the soon-to-be ex-wife, in a prison jumpsuit. For help, she turns to Father Daniel Kopecky, the neighborhood parish priest to whom she made exaggerated childhood confessions even though she wasn’t Catholic, and to her sister, Germaine, who converted to Catholicism and became a nun. Pen has soon involved these two people of the cloth in various felonies while trying to avoid conviction. Meanwhile, she uncovers mounds of dirt about Paul, including the fact that a sizable number of people wanted him dead. Pen, who seems to be an equally smart-mouthed but less-disciplined version of Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum, may exasperate some readers with her flightiness; still, the religious angle adds interest, and Sisco’s deft storytelling, slick prose, and well-crafted characters should win a following for this smart and sassy new series. — Michele Leber

Kirkus Review
When she finds her husband murdered, a probation officer who's been planning divorce must make other plans.As she tells Father Daniel Kopecky, the old friend she confesses to even though she isn't Catholic, Penelope Santucci didn't kill her philandering husband Paul Preston, a criminal attorney in both senses of the term. She just stumbled on his corpse after she broke into his house to grab some of her possessions before he could boost them. Father Kopecky is willing to give her the benefit of the doubt, Sgt. Clifford Masters of Minneapolis Homicide somewhat less so. When he shows up at her apartment to ask questions, Pen skedaddles. Sisco's debut is less a mystery than a chase/adventure with both eyes focused like a laser on Stephanie Plum. Pen has a nose for trouble, an overbearing mother, bad luck with the men who flit through her life, self-esteem issues, enough resilience to bounce back from repeated beatings by goons seeking Paul's ill-gotten gains, and a habit of running her mouth, though her irrepressible repartee is mostly PG. Her insouciant lack of self-control takes her from Paul's interment, where his current mistress shoves her into his grave, to a convent, a law office and a judge's chambers, most of which she's entered under false pretenses.

Precious little detection, but the energy level never dips below the red zone. Fans who want something to read during the three months per year that lack a new Janet Evanovich title may have found their fix.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Stillwater Author Greg Schulz

The Green
and Virtual
Data Center
by Greg Schulz

ISBN-10: 1420086669
ISBN-13: 978-1420086669
January 2009 by CRC press

(Taylor & Francis Group)

376 pages, with more than 100 figures and tables, 11 chapters plus appendices, as well as a glossary, hardcopy, English.

The book focuses on the idea that IT infrastructure resources configured and deployed in a highly virtualized manner can be combined with other techniques and technologies to achieve a simplified and cost-effective delivery of IT services in a clean, green, and profitable manner.

“The Green and Virtual Data Center” sets aside the political aspects of what is or is not considered green to examine the opportunities for organizations trying to grow their business while being environmentally friendly in an economically efficient manner. Addressing multiple technology domains and disciplines, it looks at design and implementation tradeoffs using various best practices and technologies to sustain application and business growth while maximizing resources, such as power, cooling, floor space, storage, server performance, and network capacity.

Throughout the book’s pages, savvy industry veteran Greg Schulz provides real-world insight addressing best practices, as well as server, software, storage, networking, and facilities issues that current or next-generation virtual data centers are facing today.

Some of the topics include:
• Energy and data footprint reductions
• Cloud-based storage and computing
• Intelligent and adaptive power management
• Server, storage, and networking virtualization
• Tiered servers for storage, network, and data centers
• Energy avoidance and energy efficiency


Greg Schulz is founder of the Server and StorageIO (StorageIO) Group, an IT industry analyst and consultancy firm. Mr. Schulz has worked with various server operating systems along with storage and networking software tools, hardware and services. Greg has worked as a programmer, systems administrator, disaster recovery consultant, and storage and capacity planner for various IT organizations. He has worked for various vendors before joining an industry analyst firm and later forming StorageIO. In addition to his analyst and consulting research duties, Schulz has published over a thousand articles, tips, reports and white papers and is a sought after popular speaker at events around the world. Greg is also author of the book Resilient Storage Network (Elsevier).




Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Candace Simar - Poet, Novelist, Inspirational Writer


by Candace Simar

ISBN-13: 978-0878393190


"Abercrombie Trail, Candace Simar's first-rate debut novel, beautifully captures the wild unpredictability of nineteenth-century immigrant life out on the Great Plains." Diana Ossana is an American Academy Award-winning writer who has collaborated on writing screenplays, teleplays, and novels with Pulitzer Prize-winning author Larry McMurtry. Diana and Larry received the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay for Brokeback Mountain.

"Endlessly fascinating….The ultimate ‘I was there’ book. I have read many books about Scandinavians coming to America in the turbulent 1860s, but thanks to author Candace Simar, this is the first time I was ever transported from my easy chair right into the book to experience it with them. The images of courage, cruelty, intolerance, discovery, and simple pleasures have stayed with me. This is one book I won’t forget." Jack Koblas, author of Let Them Eat Grass Trilogy.

Candace Simar is a writer and poet from Pequot Lakes, Minnesota. Her work has appeared in Chicken Soup for the Soul, Ultimate Christmas, Dust & Fire, Talking Stick, Lake Country Journal, Her Voice Magazine, Bylines, and numerous online publications. As a life-long Minnesotan and the grandchild of immigrants, Candace nurtures a passion for Minnesota history. One sultry Fourth of July, she was shocked to learn how little her adult children knew about the 1862 Minnesota Sioux Uprising. Her children, all born and educated in Minnesota schools and universities, thought it a minor skirmish in New Ulm... "You ought to write a book," her son said.

As a result, Candace started researching primary and secondary sources for 1862 Minnesota. She didn't have to go far. Her great-grandfather drove the stagecoach from St. Cloud to Fort Abercrombie in the years directly after the Sioux Uprising. ABERCROMBIE TRAIL is the story of Evan Jacobson--the story that might have been her great grandfather’s had he arrived sooner.

Visit Candy's website at to see her other fiction and poetry books.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

J. O'Donoghue Books

J. O’Donoghue Books

1926 2nd Ave

Anoka, MN 55303

Ani Sorenson and John Campisi have owned J. O’Donoghue Books for three years. The store has been in business since 1972. J. O’Donoghue Books is an old-style bookstore with wood floors, tin ceilings, dust, and cat hair and features books dating as early as the 1600’s all the way to new releases.

Their cat Friday is a huge attraction. People stop in all day long to visit her and she loves to follow shoppers around the store. They also have an open door policy for dogs and have several who are regulars. They like to think they can find just about any book people are looking for and have tracked down books from all over the world for their customers. Their list includes about 5000 books online on ABE books as well as Alibris.

Ani is the self-proclaimed Stephen King expert, but is knowledgeable in other areas as well. John specializes in the Fantasy area and both owners are well-versed on sci-fi and mystery. Ani previously worked many years for former Minnesota Governor Elmer Andersen, and learned a ton about rare books. Governor Andersen was a major book collector with two libraries named after him. He donated over 15,000 volumes of his personal collection to the library in Minneapolis.

Ani and John love Minnesota and Minnesota authors. William Kent Krueger is their hands-down favorite and their best selling Minnesota author. They also feature Brian Freeman, David Housewright, Carl Brookins, Ellen Hart and several other published authors from the neighborhood.

Stop by their booth in Heritage Square at the Minnesota State Fair where they’ll have around 6000 books available to browse and purchase.

Both John and Ani invite you to stop by their bookstore where fun times and good reads abound!
September 16 – 6:30 p.m. - William Kent Krueger

Friday, August 14, 2009

Rita Kuehn writes a beautiful story of courage and triumph

by: Rita Kuehn

ISNB: 978-1-934938-34-8

BOOK SIGNING: Saturday, August 15, HarMar Barnes and Noble

Pearl and Sonny are in love and are determined to get married, which shouldn’t be an impossible endeavor for two single, employed adults. But Pearl and Sonny have obstacles. Despite her intelligence and obvious capacity for self-sufficiency, Pearl has lived in a healthcare facility her entire adult life because of the epilepsy she’s had since childhood. And Sonny lives life in a slower and simpler realm. People wonder if he can take care of himself, let alone Pearl.

However, with the help of a nurse who isn’t afraid to take some chances, a perceptive social worker, and Pearl’s loving, long-lost niece, Sonny and Pearl seem to be on the road to a wedding and a life of their own. Unfortunately, some people with selfish interests are hiding in the shadows and are determined to keep Sonny and Pearl separate—and Pearl in the healthcare facility. As friendships form and strengthen, Pearl uses her wit and knowledge to help others see beyond a peripheral view.


Even as a young girl, it was apparent that writing was a gift. Rita’s second grade teacher told her Mom, that Rita was destined to be a writer. As a girl, she spent much of her time journaling, or writing poetry and song lyrics.

She attended the University of Wisconsin at Eau Claire, earning degrees in communications and business administration. In 2000, Rita traveled to Kazakhstan to adopt her daughter, Lexa. Along with her gift of writing, Rita is known for her ability to see the big picture as well as the details and nuances of a situation. Mixing those skills with what her editor says is Rita’s knack for penning beautifully descriptive passages, developing multi-dimensional characters, and commanding smooth transitions between scenes and chapters, makes a powerful combination of writing talent.

Rita currently lives along the Mighty Mississippi River in Champlin, MN with her husband and daughter. She is at work on her next novel.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Children's Author - Sandra McLeod Humphrey


by: Sandra McLeod Humphrey
ISBN-13: 978-1591025696

A collection of 26 vignettes depicting various forms of bullying with thought questions following each vignette. All the vignettes are based on true experiences related to me by students during my school visits, and the book is dedicated to a 12-year-old Minnesota boy who took his own life as a result of bullying.

Hot Issues, Cool Choices has received positive endorsements from nationally recognized educators and is the recipient of a 2008 Mom’s Choice Gold Award and the 2009 Young Voices Foundation Silver Award.


I’m a retired clinical psychologist and children's author with over 40 years experience working with youth. I’m the recipient of the National Character Education Center’s Award for Exemplary
Leadership in Ethics Education (2000), the 2005 Helen Keating Ott Award for Outstanding Contribution to Children’s Literature, a 2008 Mom’s Choice Award, a 2008 American Authors
Association Silver Quill Award, and a 2009 Young Voices Foundation Silver Award. I enjoy visiting schools and presenting at Young Writers’ Conferences and I live with my husband and four dogs (325 pounds of “dog”) and a cat in Minnetonka, MN. I invite you to visit my Web site


If You Had to Choose, What Would You Do?
ISBN-13: 978-1573920100

It’s Up to You...What Do You Do?
ISBN-13: 978-1573922630

MORE--If You Had to Choose, What Would You Do?
ISBN-13: 978-1591020776

Dare to Dream: 25 Extraordinary Lives
ISBN-13: 978-1591022800

Keepin’ It Real: A Young Teen Talks With God
ISBN-13: 978-0788019531

Me, Myself, and I: Youth Meditations for Grades Five through Eight
ISBN-13: 978-0788025600

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

C. Hyytinen - Minnesota Author


by: C. Hyytinen

Echelon Press

Top-notch homicide detective and single mom, Maria Sanchez, is about to face her most formidable foe. A serial killer is wreaking havoc in the streets of Minneapolis, abducting, torturing, and killing children of the community. Can she find the killer before the unthinkable happens?

Dubbed the "River Rat" by the media because his victims are always found floating in the Mississippi River, this maniac is on a mission. Maria and her partner Joe have a deadline to meet and need to do it before he strikes again.

When Maria's daughter, Theresa, doesn’t come home from school one day, Detective Sanchez is in for the fight for her life when she accidentally encounters the killer’s lair. Everything comes crashing down as her fate and that of her only child is ultimately determined by the dead bodies surrounding her…and the gun pointed at her chest.

C. Hyytinen is a Wisconsin transplant and has been a Minnesotan for more than 20 years, embracing the land of 10,000 lakes as her home. Living in a male dominated household with her husband and two sons has proven to be a challenge at times, but has also given her insight into the finer qualities of life. With a demanding career in the fast-track computer world, she uses writing as a form of escape. When she's not busy with her family or work, you’ll find her hunched over her laptop, pounding out another crime thriller.

View C. Hyytinen's website at

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Julie Kramer - Minnesota Author


by: Julie Kramer
ISBN: 978-038552-4773

TV reporter Riley Spartz pursues a curious story of a bride left at the altar and finds herself caught in a dangerous missing-person case.

When Riley sees a want ad reading “Wedding Dress for Sale: Never Worn,” her news instincts tell her that the backstory might make an intriguing television sweeps piece.

The groom, Mark, last seen at the rehearsal dinner, never showed up for the wedding, humiliating his bride, Madeline—and her high-strung, high-society mother—in front of 300 guests. His own mother, eager to spare him further embarrassment, waited weeks before filing a missing-person report and then learned how difficult it is to get police, or the media, interested in missing men.

Now Riley is up against a boss who thinks that finding a famed missing fish will net the station higher ratings, a meth cartel trying to assassinate a K-9 dog because of his powerful nose for drugs, and a neighbor who holds perpetual garage sales that attract traffic at odd hours.

When her missing-person case leads to a murder investigation, Riley discovers a startling motive for Mark's disappearance—and a TV exclusive guaranteed to win the ratings . . . if she lives to report it.


Julie Kramer grew up on the Minnesota-Iowa State Line on a farm that's been in her family for 130 years. But instead of farming corn or cattle, she decided to farm news and went into journalism. She worked for nearly 20 years at WCCO-TV in Minneapolis where she used to run their investigative unit. Now she does freelance network news producing.

Her debut thriller, STALKING SUSAN, won the Minnesota Book Award for genre fiction, and Best First Mystery at the Romantic Times Awards. It was also a finalist for the Mary Higgins Clark Award and is a nominee for both the Anthony and Barry Awards for Best First Novel.

She lives with her family in White Bear Lake, MN.

Stalking Susan (2008) Now out in paperback!



Tuesday, September 1, 6:30 pm
White Bear Lake, MN
White Bear Public Library
4698 Clark Ave.
speaking & signing

Saturday, September 19, 1:00 pm
Ortonville, MN
Ortonville Public Library
412 NW 2nd Street
speaking and signing

Tuesday, October 6, 7:00 pm
St. Paul, MN
St. Paul Public Library, Rice Street Branch
1011 Rice St.
speaking & signing

Sunday, October 11, 2:00 pm
Rochester, MN
Rochester Public Library
Coffee House Author Series
101 2nd St SE.

Tuesday, October 20, 6:30 pm
Hopkins, MN
Hopkins Public Library
22 11th Ave. N.
speaking and signing

Thursday, October 29, 6:30 pm
Shakopee, MN
Scott County Library
235 S. Lewis Street
speaking and signing

Monday, August 10, 2009

Once Upon A Crime Bookstore

Once Upon A Crime Bookstore
604 W. 26th Street
Minneapolis, MN 55405

Owners: Gary Shulze and Pat Frovarp

Established 1987, Once Upon A Crime hosts an annual "Write of Spring" - an open house celebrating MN authors and their fans, every March. Last year we had over 60 authors in attendance.

Coming out the end of this month from Nodin Press: "Once Upon a Crime" - an anthology of 24 crime stories, includes 16 MN authors, plus an introduction by Vince Flynn.

Following is a list of Minnesota authors we are featuring on August 27 at our "Once Upon a Crime" anthology launch party:

Chris Everheart, Gary R. Bush (editors and story contributors)
Norton Stillman, publisher
David Housewright
Michael Stanley (actually, one half of the duo: Stanley Trollip
Maureen Fischer
Anne Frasier
Pat Dennis
William Kent Krueger
Terri Persons
Sujata Massey
Marilyn Victor

Additionally, we would like to congratulate MN authors, Julie Kramer and William Kent Kruger for their Anthony Award nominations.

Once Upon a Crime was just voted as "Best Mystery Store" for the Crimespree Awards. Both the Crimespree and the Anthony award will be presented at Bouchercon in October in Indianapolis.

MN author signing dates:

  • Wed Aug 19 7:00 Judith Yates Borger “Where’s Billie?” Launch party MN author debut
  • Fri Aug 21 7:00 Susan Runholt “Rescuing Seneca Crane” Publication/Birthday Party/refreshments
  • Thu Aug 27 7:00 Once Upon A Crime the anthology edited by Gary R. Bush & Chris Everheart with introduction by Vince Flynn Launch party refreshments. Stories contributed by: William Kent Krueger, Lori L. Lake, Gary R. Bush, Reed Farrel Coleman, Anthony Neil Smith, Mary Logue, Lois Greiman. Libby Fischer Hellmann, Max Allan Collins & Barbara Collins, Sujata Massey, Marilyn Victor, C. J. Box, Ken Bruen, Michael Stanley, Gary Phillips, Anne Frasier, Troy Cook, Pat Dennis, David Housewright, Terri Persons, Maureen Fischer, Pete Hautman, Chris Everheart and S. J. Rozan
  • Sat Aug 29 12:00-2:00 Jess Lourey “September Fair” refreshments
  • Tue Sep 1 7:00 Sister in Crime meets the book to read is Linda Barnes’ Heart of the World
  • Wed Sep 2 7:00 William Kent Krueger “Heaven’s Keep” publication Party refreshments
    Marilyn Victor, Michael Mallory. Camille Hyytinen and Lois Greiman (facilitaors for monthly book club (2nd Wednesdays)
  • Thu Sep 10 7:00 Jan Dunlap “Murder on Warbler Weekend” Launch party refreshments
  • Sat Sep 12 12:00-2:00 Christopher Valen “The Black Minute” Signing/refreshments
  • Sat Sep 26 12:00-2:00 Pete Hautman “How to Steal a Car” young adult signing/refreshments
  • Wed Sep 30 7:00 John Sandford “Rough Country” a Virgil Flowers novel
  • Thu Oct 8 7:00 Sister In Crime meets book choice is Pegasus Descending by James Lee Burke
  • Sat Oct 10 12:00-2:00 Laura Childs “Tragic Magic” Signing/refreshments
  • Sat Dec 6 12:00-2:00 Laura Childs “Eggs Benedict Arnold” signing/refreshments
  • Thu Oct 15 7:00 Vince Flynn "Pursuit of Honor" signing/refreshments

Jannifer Hoffman - Minnesota Author

Resplendence Publishing, LLC
May 2009-ebook and print
ISBN # 9781934992647

When Julia Morgan M.D. miscarries twin girls, she divorces her husband believing he is to blame. He forces her out of her position at the hospital and threatens her credibility as a doctor. Without mentioning her medical degree, Julia accepts a position as nanny on a Colorado ranch 900 miles away.

Dirk Travis is in trouble. His wife has gone missing, and his housekeeper is threatening to quit. He is in desperate need of a reliable person to look after his four-year-old twins. Even though Julia appears to be the answer to his prayers, he can't help but think she's a bit too perfect. Both insist their relationship will be business only. Those plans go awry when people are killed and Dirk is the prime suspect. That doesn't stop the heat index from rising between Dirk and Julia, even as she appears to be the next target.

Born and raised on a North Dakota farm, Jannifer started writing at the age of twelve, creating novels in her head while walking home from a one-room schoolhouse. A lifetime avid reader, she began serious writing in 1974 after reading The Flame and the Flower and Sweet Savage Love.

After completing two historical romances, Ceremony of Deception and Silver Shadows, she decided to try her hand at contemporary romance. It took a year to complete Secrets of the Heart. The sequel, Secret Sacrifices, took nearly two years.

In 1999, Jannifer joined Romance Writers of America and MFW (Midwest Fiction Writers). This spring she also became a member of the WisRWA (WISCONSIN Romance Writers of America) chapter.

She spends summers on Sturgeon Lake, (up north) Minnesota, and winters in Yuma, Arizona.
Hobbies, besides writing of course, include sewing for craft shows and her little corner in a boutique in Moose Lake, and painting animals and flowers on rocks.

Find out more about Jannifer on her website

Secrets of the Heart Resplendence Publishing, LLC, Published: Dec 2008 Romance/Suspense/Thriller

Secret Sacrifices - Resplendence Publishing, LLC, Published: Feb 2009 (All five star reviews) Romance/Suspense/Thriller

Ceremony of Deception - Historical Romantic adventure ( All five star reviews) Released July 2008

Coming Soon: Blood Crystal (no release date yet)

Friday, August 7, 2009

Carl Brookins - Minnesota Author

By Carl Brookins

isbn: 978-1-59080-570-1
Released by Echelon Press in 2008

When Jack Marston took his position at an unusual urban college as director of student services, he didn’t expect to find himself involved in murder and suicide. But working with adult students turns out to be a new an interesting challenge.

Jack is starting a new relationship in his former home town along with his new job. A calm and satisfying life is what it appears to be. Settling in, he puts other talents as an amateur actor into action and is selected for the lead in Ibsen's "Enemy of the People" at the college. Without warning, life takes a strange twist and Jack find himself playing altogether different roles.

A student is brutally murdered and the college president assigns Jack to liaise with the police. Though homicide investigator is not in his job description, he is soon forced to scrutinize faculty and staff, a role not unlike that of his character in the play. The irony of his dual roles escapes no one’s attention, including that of the killer.

In the end he is forced to solve a murder to save himself, a colleague, and his obligation to the students of the institution.

Learn more about Carl and his books at:
Carl's books are available at bookstores in Minnesota, around the country and on

Brookins has been a television producer, a faculty member at Metropolitan State University in Saint Paul and a mystery fiction reviewer for magazines, newspapers and online. He’s a board member of MWMWA, and a member of Sisters in Crime, EPIC, PWA and MWA. He tours bookstores and libraries with The Minnesota Crime Wave, and co-hosts a cable TV series about crime fiction, and currently writes three crime fiction series: The Tanner/Whitney sailing series, The Sean Sean P.I. series and a traditional academic series with Jack Marston. His current books are “Case of the Deceiving Don,” and “Bloody Halls.”


“A Winter’s Tale” “Silence of The Loons” anthology, fall, 2005
“A Fish Story,” “Resort To Murder” anthology, fall, 2007
“Night Sail,” quarterly Mystery magazine, 2007
“Fire Storm” “The Heat of the Moment” California fund raising anthology, fall, 2007
“A Shaggy Dog Story,” in the qarterly “Out of the Gutter,” June 2009

Mystery: July, 2000, Top Publications

Mystery: September, 2002, Top Publications

Mystery: March, 2005, Top Publications

P.I. Mystery: September, 2005, Five Star Mysteries
P.I. Mystery: June, 2008 Nodin Press

P.I. Mystery: 2008, Five Star Mysteries

Amateur detective, Echelon Press, Winter, 2008

“Smallest In the Land”
Non-fiction. The story of Fargo-Moorhead’s educational/public television station. For the International Journal of Radio and Television, June 1966.
“Author! Author!” Advice for authors appearing on radio and television.
“Women Writing The West” magazine, April, 2000.
“Dining on The Road” CrimeSpree magazine, September, 2006
“Giving Good Interview” Crime Spree magazine, 2007
Mystery reviews, “Saint Paul Pioneer Press,” August, 1999—May, 2002.
Mystery reviews, “Mystery Scene Magazine,” Fall, 2002—2004
Mystery reviews, ReviewingTheEvidence web site 2002 to 2006
Mystery reviews, Books n’ Bytes website, 1998 to the present.
Mystery Reviews, Mystery Morgue website, 2006 to the present.

From Inner Passages: Desert to Ocean
“Mystery Reader’s Journal,” Spring, 2002
Writing Lies for Fun and Glory but Very Little Money
“How I Got Published” Writer’s Digest Books, Fall, 2007