Archive for October, 2013

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Review: William Boyd’s Solo in the Washington Post

October 13, 2013

Since my teenage years, I’ve been an avid James Bond fan—following both the novels and the films—and while the big-screen Bond may have gotten most of the attention in recent years, I’ve been equally intrigued with the last three books officially sanctioned by the Fleming estate, each featuring a different author: Devil May Care by Sebastian Faulks, Carte Blanche by Jeffery Deaver, and now Solo by William Boyd. That last one strikes me as the boldest of the three in a number of ways, and I was pleased to review it for the Washington Post. Here’s a quick excerpt:

To some degree, a Bond book is a Bond book. M, Q Branch, Miss Moneypenny, some fast cars, some fast women, a little globe-trotting, a little fate of the world in the balance — then shake, don’t stir. But as with the various shifts in the Bond franchise, small changes can make big differences. Boyd’s Bond reveals himself to be reflective, at times even rueful, moved to fresh depths of moral awareness by thoughts of his past and observations about conflict and cruelty as his mission unfolds.

The full review can be found here. Art Taylor

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Event: Waterbear Reading Series, Saturday, October 26 at One More Page Books

October 10, 2013

One More Page BooksI’m thrilled to be taking part in the October edition of the Waterbear Reading Series at One More Page Books in Arlington, Virginia. The series, which began earlier this year, has already featured some terrific writers—including both friends (Jen Michalski, Laura Ellen Scott, Amber Sparks) and family (Tara Laskowski!)—and the October event will be the last reading of 2013, given the holidays ahead, so fingers crossed for a big audience to help round out the year with a bang!

I’ll be reading on Saturday, October 26, at 6 p.m., along with three other very distinguished writers:

John Copenhaver placed as a quarterfinalist in the 2010 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award for Dodging and Burning.  The last two summers he attended the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference as a general contributor in fiction.  In 2011 he was invited to be a fellow in genre fiction at the Lambda Writers Retreat for Emerging LGBT Voices. He graduated with his BA from Davidson College, MA in literature from Bread Loaf, and MFA in fiction from George Mason, where he served as executive editor of the literary magazine Phoebe.  He also spent a summer interning in the literature department of the National Endowment for the Arts.  He has published in several regional journals, including Timber Creek Review and The Roanoke Review, and was the first runner-up in the F. Scott Fitzgerald Short Story Contest.

Mark Cugini’s work has appeared or is forthcoming in Melville House, Hobart, Sink Review, Barrelhouse, NOÖ, Everday Genius, and other publications. He’s a founding editor of Big Lucks, a contributor to HTMLGiant, and the curator of the Three Tents Reading Series in Washington, DC. His chapbook I’M JUST HAPPY TO BE HERE will be released in March 2013.

Jonathan Harper received his MFA from American University in 2010 and was a staff member of the Lambda Literary Foundation from 2002-2005. His writing is scattered about in places like The Nervous Breakdown, Chelsea Station, Icarus Magazine as well as the anthologies: Homewrecker: An Adultery Reader, The Lost Library: Gay Fiction Rediscovered and Best Gay Stories 2013. He really-really loves Period Pieces and Gillian Anderson has yet to answer one of his fan letters.

Hope to see lots of friendly faces there—and pleased that my parents and brother will be making the trip up for the event as well! — Art Taylor

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Essay: An Appreciation of Margaret Maron in Mystery Scene

October 3, 2013

131cover250I’ve been following Margaret Maron’s career for more than twenty years now, helping to document many of the highpoints for magazines including The Armchair Detective, Mystery Scene, and North Carolina Literary Review—and I couldn’t have been more thrilled about her being named Grand Master of Mystery Writers of America earlier this year. It’s a special honor then to have been invited by Mystery Scene to pen a short appreciation of Margaret and her career. Check out “Tales from the Tar Heel State: The North Carolina Mysteries of Margaret Maron” in the magazine’s Fall 2013 issue, out on newsstands this month. — Art Taylor

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