A week of jazz giants – Part 1

George Shearing was the epitome of soft jazz, cool jazz with his “Lullaby of Birdland,” a tune he wrote in 10 minutes for the Birdland Jazz Club way back in 1952. The house band played “Lullaby” once every hour. People liked the number and it became a standard. Shearing wrote a lot of music, nearly [...]

Going to the movies – “The Lincoln Lawyer”

Coming soon to a cinema-plex near you – on March 18 to be exact – “The Lincoln Lawyer”, a legal thriller starring Matthew McConaughey as a criminal defense lawyer who works out of the back of his car. Yes, a Lincoln Town Car. With a great license plate. Check it out on the movie poster. [...]

The last of Lovey week

A southern writer walked off with Love Is Murder mystery writers conference’s Lovey award for best short story this year – Mississippian Carolyn Haines, her short story, “The Sugar Cure.” It appeared in an anthology of crime short stories that Haines edited and Tyrus Books published last year. Here’s what Booklist reviewer Bill Ott said [...]

Still more of Lovey week

Rhys Bowen – her first name is pronounced REECE, it’s Welch – is delightful and funny . . . and it comes through in her writing, in her books. She has three cozy mystery series out, and she won a Lovey – a readers choice award – for her “Royal Spyness” series, her third series. [...]

More of Lovey week

Chicago crime writer, lawyer, and law school prof Laura Caldwell won a Lovey – a readers choice award – for her Izzy McNeil series of chick-lit suspense novels. But she didn’t start out in that field. Her first novel, Burning the Map, published by Harlequin imprint Red Dress Ink in 2002, was straight chick lit [...]

It’s Lovey week – Part 5

Jamie Freveletti, a Chicagoan and a relatively new writer – she only has two books out – won the Lovey Award for best thriller at this year’s Love Is Murder mystery writers conference. The book, Running Dark, tells the story of chemist and ultamarathon runner Emma Caldridge. She’s running in an endurance race in Africa [...]

It’s Lovey week – Part 4

When I watch writers being called up to the front of the room at the Love Is Murder banquet to receive the conference’s honors for best this and best that, I occasionally wonder who is that one? I never heard of her or him. Tasha Alexander is one I did not know this year. And [...]

It’s Lovey week – Part 3

Chicago crime writer Michael Black this year won his second Lovey for best PI/police procedural novel, the award presented by the Love Is Murder mystery writers conference. He won it for Hostile Takeovers, published by Dorchester as a mass market paperback in 2009. This book is the second in Black’s Frank Leal and Olivia Hart [...]

It’s Lovey week – Part 2

The Love Is Murder mystery writers conference this year awarded its Lovey – a readers’ choice award – for best traditional amateur sleuth to Chicago crime writer Julie Hyzy, the creator of the White House chef mystery series. That series, published by Berkley, has gotten a lot of attention for Hyzy . . . clever, [...]

It’s Lovey week – Part 1

Love Is Murder, a mystery writers’ conference held in Chicago a bit more than a week ago, annually gives out a set of readers’ choice awards for the books those who attend the conference like best. Annually, but not last year when LIM took a year off. The conference calls the awards Loveys. The Lovey [...]