Our dear Tim has come back to visit. He’s gotten tons of accolades for his Junior Bender series and now his latest Poke set in Bangkok is out —FOR THE DEAD—and of it is said: “A wondrous work, emotionally complex and stirring, with an excellent plot and perfect characterization. I don’t know how Hallinan channeled this from his inner self, but this book is superb. In fact, the whole series is extraordinary.”—Maddy van Hartbruggen, For Mystery Addicts
Thanks for joining us Tim and welcome ‘home’!
It's soooooo nice to be back on MIE, and thanks to the ever-generous Cara Black for suggesting that I take her weekly spot to weigh in and tell you what's up in my world, now that I no longer pester you here once every week.
First in my heart, of course, are the Los Angeles Dodgers. Biggest payroll in major league baseball, talent at every position, and incapable of getting a runner home from second base. They hold the most melancholy baseball record I can think of at the moment: they're the team who, in a single season, most often got the bases loaded without scoring anyone. It was so bad that one writer suggested to opposing teams that the best way to beat the Dodgers was to let them get three men on base every inning.
|Dodger center fielder, Yasiel Puig, 0 for 12 in post-season|
On the other hand, there was some good baseball news, and her name was Mo'ne Davis. What a lift she gave to my spirits.
|Mo'ne, bringing it.|
There is a world outside of baseball, and in it there's been yet another military coup in Thailand, the twelfth since 1932, when the constitutional monarchy was put in place. This one is especially heinous (in my mind) because it was, in essence, a coup against the nation's voters. The Democratic Party, the major party of the traditional Thai elite, has not attained power by, you know, winning an election since 2000, and it was becoming evident that they never would, so the Army (which is commanded by the elite) took over, and the head of the Army retired his uniform and proclaimed himself prime minister. (See, a general isn't supposed to be prime minister, so this change of clothes avoided a violation of the constitution. Wouldn't want to violate the constitution after illegally seizing power, would we?)
|Coup troops restoring order. See all the disorder?|
In a country with a long tradition of free speech, the coup outlawed protest of any kind. There was a brief rash of individuals sitting around eating sandwiches and reading Orwell's 1984, but they got arrested. So people left 1984 home and just sat around pointedly eating a sandwich, and they got arrested. Now the rule is (honest) no group of people numbering more five or more can just sit or stand around, with or without sandwiches.
|Enemy of the State. This guy was dragged away moments after this picture was taken. Honest.|
Oh, and the coup's motto is "Be Happy."
|Junior's Latest Adventure|
A bit closer to home, my Junior Bender series has been bought for NBC television by my favorite comic in the world, Eddie Izzard. The deal for a weekly series was announced about a month ago. As happy as I am about this, the thing I probably like best is that I sat all by myself in Santa Monica, laughing as I wrote about Junior, and in London. God only knows how many thousand miles away, Eddie Izzard read it, and he laughed, too. When I finally reach those pearly gates (fingers crossed) and I'm asked, "So? What did you do?" I'll be able to say, "I made Eddie Izzard laugh."
|Eddie, not laughing.|
Last and certainly not least (the Dodgers can claim that honor), the sixth Poke Rafferty book, For the Dead, comes out today, November 4. This is Miaow's book, and I can (and will) say that I have a special feeling for it. Reviews have been phenomenal, and William Kent Krueger said, “For the Dead is not only a fast-paced, compelling tale, but also, on every level, a fine literary read.・And Edgar-winner Wendy Hornsby described it as, "Beautiful, scary, and heartbreaking all at once. Read it and weep."
When and if I ever stop writing the Poke novels, the character I'll miss most is Miaow. She's been my favorite character to write, ever. I put whatever I had (and then some) into this particular book, and I hope it pays off in enjoyment on the reader's end of this long equation. Please let me know whether you like it.
Thanks to Cara, Jeffrey, et, al. for letting me hang my sign here this week. See you all again, I hope.
Tim for Cara—Tuesday