Wednesday, 4 May 2011
One Book Bradford
overcast, cool, temps 10
Wow - cool and VERY wet. Teemed rain all day yesterday as Pat and I drove from Pittsburgh to Bradford, PA. Lovely drive, even in the rain.
Had an absolutely gas at the Festival of Mystery. Thank you Mary Alice and Richard, who run the fabulous Mystery Lovers Bookshop in Oakmont, PA. Every year they organize this fund raiser festival. I had the immense pleasure of sitting next to Les Roberts for 4 hours. And the great pleasure of meeting some of you too - who came out. Place was packed 500 or so people, all buying books. Very fun.
Then yesterday morning up early for the 4 hour drive through the Allegheny mountains to Bradford. Lovely little town - home of the Zippo lighter! They'd chosen STILL LIFE as their One Book Bradford selection. When we arrived I went off to speak for an hour to a class at the high school who are studying murder mysteries. Then to the town library. Linda, the librarian, gave me a terrific tour of the impressive place. Not much 'hushing' going on there....they want it to be a real community destination.
And they have a library cat named Whisper! Every library should have one!
Then off to tour the Zippo museum. Fascinating. Especailly seeing all the different designs. The owner of Zippo sent a lighter to all of the American servicemen in WW2. It's become iconic.
Then back to change, off for dinner at the unviersity with the 14 member One Book Bradford committee. Then at 7:30 I spoke. Once again, I took the blackberry with me and asked people to hold their books and wave. Not the best photo (these were seriously attractive people) - but gives you an idea. About 130 people there. And so warm and welcoming. Despite the torrents of rain. A deluge.
The committee did a huge amount of work leading up to this event - including a big community book club event, led by Anita Hebert - lovely woman....and a pathologist, who read Still Life and compared it to how they might investigate Jane's death. He also took the clues and tried to deduct who'd done it. Very fun events in the past few months.
You can also see a photo of Rick and me standing next to a framed poster of STILL LIFE. The man is Rick, one of the organizers, and he designed the poster - making the cover look as though we're seeing it through the bistro windows. Brilliant.
Then Rick and Terry drove me the 4 hours this morning to Toronto. Marilyn was supposed to join us but there was a sudden acute illness in the family.
Am now in the Toronto Union train station, awaiting the 3 o'clock to Montreal. A bit pooped, but Very Very happy with Bradford, and Oakmont and Washington.
Home, here I come. Bathtub, here I come!