Tuesday, July 5, 2016

the past comes back...big chairs

Last week I was in Coral Gables Florida and saw this empty chair in the hotel lobby. It reminded me of our founder, Leighton Gage, and his loss. Leighton and his wife, Eide took me to Coral Gables years ago when we attended the Miami book fair. He insisted some day we'd talk at Books and Books, the great indie book store there. Well, I finally did, and sadly without Leighton. But I began my talk about how Leighton had brought me here once and how he was with me in spirit.
Here's the original gang of MIE from a Bouchercon where we dreamed up the idea for this blog or was this a later Bouchercon? In Paris at a bistro opposite Gare du Nord with Leighton and his Dutch son in law where we supped on raw oysters and he insisted his son-in-law tell me about his intelligence work. Another Bouchercon with Jeff. I can't find the old photo of Leighton and I, perched in a giant clown chair at some cool Miami hotel but I wish I could. Miss you, Leighton.
Elie Wiesel passed away, as it's been widely reported. You probably have read his books and know about him and his history as a Holocaust survivor and human rights activist. Maybe you didn't know that at 16 years old, as a young Jewish survivor, he was taken to France with other displaced Jewish youth to the OSE, Oeuvre de Secours aux Enfants home for Orthodox Jewish children in Ambloy, France. He's in this picture somewhere circa 1945. Later he studied literature, philosophy and psychology at the Sorbonne where he became interested in journalism and writing. It wasn't until 1960, encourage by the writer Francois Mauriac, that he published his memoirs in Yiddish 'Night.' Later, translated into English by his wife it became a huge bestseller. So perhaps it's best to remember our friend's passings with these words of Elie Wiesel: “Because I remember, I despair. Because I remember, I have the duty to reject despair.” Cara-Tuesday back on the road and waiting for a grilling from Anna Maria Wednesday in NYC :)


  1. Cara, thank you for these memories. I was in the audience at the Bouchercon panel in Indianopolis in 2009, a newbee author. Never did I imagine
    I would join this lovely band. I owe that to Leighton who had the enerosity to Reach out to lend me a hand. I will never stop missing him.

    I look forward to tomorrow. We will take photos to put here!