Friday, July 15, 2011

Summer Reading Suggestions

Summer Reading

by Jacqueline Seewald

I had every intention of writing something useful and educational this month. Then I opened several of my magazines (yes, we actually do still subscribe to print publications at our house!) and low and behold there were all these wonderful articles on the best books for summer reading. With people going on vacation, sitting at beaches, pools and on cruise ships, many individuals actually enjoy relaxing with a good book.

TIME MAGAZINE did a wonderful job with this in their July 11th issue. The magazine provided an ultimate summer reading list of 48 books. Most of the suggestions come from famous people. They also include staff picks. But what about those of us who are published by small independents? Are our books forever to be ignored by the reading public?

I would like to mention my own recently published novel THE TRUTH SLEUTH.
I hope that you will decide to request the novel at your local library for your summer reading.

The third romantic mystery novel in the Kim Reynolds series continues the heroine’s experiences as a reluctant psychic detective. Kim is a librarian and a teacher who seems to stumble across dead people. Her romantic life is as complicated as her work.

Here’s an excerpt from the very beginning of the novel:


They watched Jimmy Sanduski ride to victory at the NHRA SuperNationals, racing a Harley-Davidson V-Rod. He roared through the field, setting the top speed for the event, and the crowd went wild. Sanduski, new kid on the block, had not been expected to win.
Kim Reynolds didn’t find the sport particularly fascinating, but she’d gone along with Bert St. Croix and April Nevins, just to see what it was like. She enjoyed the company of both women, and, as they were now into motorcycles, Kim thought she might give it a try. April had generously loaned Kim her bike, riding to the raceway park on the back of Bert’s large Harley.
But what had started out as a pleasant afternoon began shifting to something quite different. Kim was developing an uncomfortable feeling of wrongness; a kind of prickling sensation slithered down her spine. She recognized the feeling for what it was but shook her head, trying to dispel the spasm of dread that suddenly gripped her. God, not this again! Would she ever be free of it?
Then Kim gasped, seized by a stab of pain. In her mind, she heard a silent scream, an astonished cry for help. She felt another’s panic and terror. She began to shiver and tremble.
“What’s the matter?” Bert asked, her dark brows rising then knitting together in concern.
“Someone’s been hurt.” Those were the only words she managed to choke out.
“Who? Where?” April asked, glancing around in confusion.
“Maybe we better have a look,” Bert said. Her height of six feet gave her an advantage over both Kim, who was five foot six inches, and April, who was barely five foot two inches tall.
The crowd was starting to thin out, many bikers revving up their engines in anticipation of leaving now that today’s entertainment was over. Kim led, Bert and April following behind her. Although she was not really certain where she was going, Kim plowed blindly through the garbage-strewn grounds. And then she saw him: a very young man sitting in an aluminum beach chair, head slumped forward as if he were in a deep sleep.
“He’s dead,” Kim heard herself say with certainty. Her voice sounded hollow, expressionless and faraway, as if it belonged to someone else.
“Oh, God, are you sure?” April asked, tossing her gold-tinted curls as if to deny Kim’s statement. “Kim’s got this gift of knowing stuff like that,” Bert said.
More like a curse, in Kim’s opinion.
Bert knelt down, at first not touching the body. “I don’t think he’s breathing.” Bert’s voice had taken on a note of professional authority. She looked and sounded like the seasoned policewoman she was. Bert felt for a pulse, then shook her head. “Don’t touch anything. I’m calling this in.” There was a grim expression on Bert’s cafĂ© au lait features. She pulled a small cell phone out from the pocket of her black leather jacket.
Before Bert could make the call, Kim turned and faced her.
“There’s something I think you should know.”
“I’m listening.” Bert stood very still like a figure in a portrait.
Kim let out a ragged breath. “I think that boy was murdered.”

Here are a few reviews of the novel:

“The talented Seewald puts her heroine through the wringer with a romantic dilemma, a job she doesn’t like, two mysterious teen murders, deadly school politics, and financial hardships. Readers will enjoy the continuing adventures of Seewald’s conflicted psychic.”

—Shelley Mosley, Booklist

“The Truth Sleuth packs a double whammy. Not only is the solution to the murder unexpected, but the sleuth's personal life is just as surprisingly complex. Add in a colorful school setting and a protagonist with special gifts, and you get a winner.”

Toni L.P. Kelner, New York Times Bestselling author

“Who better than a psychic reference librarian to untangle a complicated romance and decipher a mysterious death? Jacqueline Seewald has written one for the books!”

Molly MacRae, award-winning author of Wilder Rumors and Lawn Order
“An attractive but demanding administrator, troubled students, along with her lover’s angry ex, complicate Kim Reynolds’ life. Author Jacqueline Seewald understands the ins and outs of high school politics and routines.” Susan Froetschel, author of Royal Escape

“This is an engaging paranormal amateur sleuth with one romance going on hiatus and another beginning while Kim changes jobs. More a character study than a mystery …readers will enjoy the Truth Seeker as Kim is forced to find herself with new employment and new relationships.”

Harriet Klausner

What books would you suggest for summer reading? What books do you look forward to reading this summer?


Louise said...

Hi Jacqueline! Our book club has "The Alchemist" on the list. I'm told "Little Bee" is being considered, too.
Also looking forward to reading "The Truth Sleuth!" If only there were more hours in the day for relaxing with a book in hand.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the excerpt, Jacqueline! And congrats on the reviews-how super! Our book group is reading ROOM for the next meeting. I'm looking forward to reading a "very provoking" book, from what the buzz says. One good thing about Florida in the summer: there are a number of rainy afternoons to curl up in front of the AC with a cold glass of iced tea and read!

Ellis Vidler said...

I really like the excerpt. Psychic abilities interest me, and the clear writing makes me want to read it. May I suggest my own book for summer reading, Haunting Refrain? It also has a psychic heroine.
Nice opening and a good blog.

Jacqueline Seewald said...


Thanks for commenting! I really enjoyed interviewing with you.

Jacqueline Seewald said...

Hi, Rebbie,

I'll add ROOM to my reading list.
Thanks for the suggestion. Hope you'll ask for The Truth Sleuth at your library. Florida libraries are good about order Five Star books.

Jacqueline Seewald said...

Hi, Ellis,

Your novel sounds like one I'd enjoy reading very much. I'll place it on my summer reading list.
Thanks for dropping by.

Susan Crain Bakos said...

I will add your novel to my reading list too.
Yesterday I made five quick picks of summer books on my blog and also mentioned another book I reviewed lately, BONJOUR, HAPPINESS! by the inimitable Jamie Cat Callan.
Follow the link to book picks:
[Warning: it is a sex blog though yesterday's post was about books and French women's beauty secrets and Dan Taylor.]

Cait London said...

I'm writing very hard right now, but stocking up my ereader now for my break away, so this is a good recommendation. (I write some psychic, too, love it :)) A long-distance friend and I share oracle stuff, drawing for each other, to help w/writing/life, which is fun. I also enjoy Jacqueline on some loops. She does a good job.

dkchristi said...

Our local newspaper ran a great section one year with local authors and summer reading. It was swell to see books other than the New York Times features in a major newspaper.

I think we need to continue telling about our own books for summer. Ghost Orchid was inspired by the actual blooming of the "super ghost" of Corkscrew Swamp, Naples, Fl. in 2007. This record-breaking ghost orchid plant continues to break records and appropriately blooms now - when the novel by the same name makes great summer reading.

Jacqueline Seewald said...


Thanks for dropping by. Your site sounds really interesting. Many of our readers love sensual romance as well as mystery.

Jacqueline Seewald said...


Thanks for your kind comments. I enjoy reading your blog posts.
Very helpful to other authors.

Jacqueline Seewald said...

Hi, D.K.,

Ghost Orchid is definitely a great book for summer reading. And I agree with you, more local newspapers should feature publicity for the writing of local authors by including them on summer reading lists. It's not done where I live but I sure wish it was!

D'Ann said...

Hi, Jacqueline!

It frustrates me as a romance writer/reader to very rarely see romance listed on these lists. Maybe a Nora or a Tami Hoag mystery, but very rarely do we see a mid-list author.

And indies? Never. Which is a damn shame.

Alice Duncan said...

I agree, D'Ann. I think everybody ought to read Jacquie's books and mine! They all make for great reading, summer or otherwise. Don't they, Jacquie? :-)

teenyann said...

I equate summer reading with lighter content books so I would suggest anything by Jane Graves or Jennifer Skully. No gruesome murders or dastardly villains, but lots of humor and sexy fun.

Jacqueline Seewald said...

Hi, D'Ann,

Your right about romances being forgotten on most summer reading lists. And the truth is, a good number of women choose them over all other types of books. Too many women are embarrassed to admit it though.
There's a stigma attached to being a romance reader or writer--and there really shouldn't be!

Jacqueline Seewald said...

Hi, Alice,

What can I say? Your novels are terrific! Librarians and readers alike are finally discovering what I've know for years.

Jacqueline Seewald said...


I agree. Summer reader should be for pleasure. Humorous mysteries and romances. Try Alice Duncan's novels. She has a wonderful sense of humor.