Starred Review in Booklist

BOOKLIST is giving Pursuit in Provence a STARRED REVIEW, March 15: “Gobbell brings the Provence backdrop to vivid life while dropping enough clues to keep readers focused on the mystery involved.”

Pursuit in Provence coverPUBLISHERS WEEKLY Feb. 20:  “Seasoned with humor and evocative descriptions of magnificent historic sites, this whodunit should appeal to fans of both cozies and traditional mysteries.”

KIRKUS REVIEW Jan 1: “Gobbell’s debut, first in a planned series, combines mystery, informative travelogue and enjoyable characters . . .”

LIBRARY JOURNAL Jan. 1:”Gobbell’s debut shows the deadly side of the pursuit of art and how family and friends may not always have your best interests at heart.”

Save the Date!

Pursuit coverAuthor event – May 3, 2:00, at Parnassus Bookstore. Please mark your calendar!

“A vacation in Provence turns deadly. . . . Gobbell’s debut, first in a planned series, combines mystery, informative travelogue and enjoyable characters . . .”  – Kirkus Reviews

“. . . A twisty tale of treachery. Phyllis Gobbell’s debut suspense novel is distinguished by authentic characters and a glorious evocation of Provence.” – Carolyn Hart, author of Don’t Go Home, recipient of Mystery Writers of America’s Grand Master Award

” . . .a delight! With Jordan Mayfair, Phyllis has given us a protagonist who will resonate with every woman who’s ever lived with love, loss, and struggle, and managed to triumph over it all. Add in an exquisitely intricate plot, a quirky and appealing supporting cast, and all the flavor of the French countryside, and you’ve got a winner! So uncork a nice Semillon and enjoy this one.”  – Steven Womack, author of By Blood Written, Edgar and Shamus award winner 

 

 

 

Bellevue Library Opening

Bellevue Library

Read about the opening of the new library in Bellevue. This was part of The Tennessean article this week:

Grand opening

The grand opening festivities at the new Bellevue branch library at 720 Baugh Road, at 10 a.m. Thursday include a ribbon cutting with Mayor Karl Dean, music, food and children’s activities. There also will be a dedication of the two newest additions to Nashville’s Public Art Collection: “Great Beginnings,” an outdoor sculpture by Beverly Stucker Precious, and “Rise Above,” an indoor piece by Bellevue area resident Brenda Stein that features 90 carved birds soaring through the center of the building.

There will be biscuits from Loveless Cafe and appearances through the day by 10 local authors. Attending the 10:30 a.m. session are Phyllis Gobbell, Kristin O’Donnell Tubb, Alana White, Steven Womack and Tom Wood. The 6 p.m. session will include Tracy Barrett, Chester Campbell, Andrew Maraniss, Jaden Terrell and Lisa Wysocky.

The new Bellevue branch is five times larger than the 30-year-old library it replaces. It will have Monday and Wednesday story times, and has lots of “learn while you play” spaces for little ones as well as the comfy Studio NPL for tweens and teens. It also has 26 public computers (plus laptops and iPads you can check out), vending machines with snacks and coffee and soda, a walking trail, a reading porch, and an interactive Bellevue history wall where you can learn about the area’s geography and history.

The new library is located at 720 Baugh Road in Bellevue, less than a half mile from the old Bellevue Library. Contact the library at 615-862-5854.

 

 

Remembering Martha – Nashville Writers Alliance

MarthaLast night, we raised a glass to Martha. Martha Whitmore Hickman was one of the founders of our writers group and a member for about 25 years. That’s a lot of Tuesday nights! Hundreds! The comments posted on Facebook following the announcement of her death were evidence that she was many things to many people. Last night we shared our memories of her as an elegant and wise writer. Doug Jones wrote a tribute to Martha, and I wanted to share it.

I was saddened to hear the news from California.
 
I recall my first meeting of the Nashville Writers Alliance (NWA) in the April, 1997. It was at Martha and Hoyt Hickman’s home on Castleman Drive in Green Hills. The NWA had been recognized nationally and had a group of excellent writers including Jim Young, Rita Bourke, Phyllis Gobbell, Charles Hooper and, of course, Martha Hickman. They were excellent craftsmen in the business of writing. But Martha Hickman was the master. Many have commented on how smooth her words and reading were. They literally flowed and you just gladly followed along.
 
I knew the reputation of the NWA and was afraid they would listen to me read my work and summarily pitch me out. Martha made me feel like a long-lost friend and guided me through that first nervous meeting. These writers would later all become like family to me.
 
As time passed, Martha became a mentor to me. I have learned she also helped a number of other writers, which is not surprising. She encouraged me to write and the only time I heard her say anything close to being hard was when she said, “Douglas, ignore the critics and keep writing!”
 
I have no idea why but she always liked my SILAS JONES OF ROCK SPRINGS. She said that although she was from the north, she felt she could be a member of the Jones family of Maury County. I would pick her up and drive her to NWA meetings. Our conversations were entertaining and I never had a clue what topic she would select. By the time we arrived at our member’s home, we would be laughing and hooting.
 
I remember like it was yesterday, as we were driving to Charles Hopper’s home for a Tuesday night meeting. We were on Granny White Pike and just passed the 4-way stop on Tyne Blvd. We were talking politics and the weather when she suddenly said, ‘Douglas, you are a natural storyteller. SILAS JONES OF ROCK SPRINGS will be published someday.’ I was so excited that Ms. Martha would say something positive about my writing that I almost drove off the road! She reminded me of my grandmother, Bertha McMeen, and that is about the highest compliment I can give.
She had a soft voice and was kind to everyone. Martha forgot more about writing than l ever know. She was a fine lady.
 
Bless you, Martha Hickman. You are in a better place but know that none of God’s angels are any sweeter than you.