Smatterings, the Birthday Edition

In the TLS, Sean O’Brien attempts to make some grand conclusions about the state of the thriller, but he is hamstrung by having to tie in a bunch of recent releases together to make these particular scattershot declarations.

Annette Meyers details her “second act” for Forbes, moving from being a Wall Street recruiter to full-time mystery novelst.

Canwest News Service talks with Alan Bradley about his excellent debut novel THE SWEETNESS AT THE BOTTOM OF THE PIE.

Michael Carlson goes to St. Petersburg for the Super Bowl and a welcome side trip to interview Dennis Lehane.

BV Lawson lists many mysteries having to deal with Charles Darwin in some fashion, in honor of his 200th birthday.

The big question I have about the HarperCollins wrecking ball crew earlier this week is: why did Lisa Gallagher lose out and Jonathan Burnham win? Others seem to share that sentiment. As for laying the blame at Jane Friedman’s door, I do think it was more a bottom line issue (Newscorp’s $8.4 billion dollar writedown trumps personal politics every time.) 

That said, I am very glad to see Sara Nelson writing regularly at

Quercus won’t have Nic Anthony Cheetham to kick around anymore.

The Western Writers of America honor Elmore Leonard with their lifetime achievement award. 

Heather McRobie writes about A.M. Klein, whose work and teaching career have been somewhat forgotten in CanLit and outside circles (admittedly, I only really knew of him because his wife and my maternal grandmother were friends.)

Nora Roberts’ literary-themed inn in Boonsboro, MD is finally open for business.

Foyle’s War will continue on ITV, but they’ve axed WIRE IN THE BLOOD – and Val McDermid is understandably upset.

And finally, this is one of the worst and saddest stories I’ve read in a while.