‘It’s All Relative’ for Michigan Author Wade Rouse

Cover ImageIf you’re anywhere near Petoskey this Tuesday evening, you might want to duck into indie booksellers McLean and Eakin for a few laughs with Wade Rouse. The Michigan author will be on hand for a discussion and signing of his latest book, It’s All Relative: Two Families, Three Dogs, 34 Holidays, and 50 Boxes of Wine (A Memoir).

This isn’t Mr. Rouse’s first time heading north to promote his work. It was just about two years ago that the author was at McLean and Eakin to share his hilarious memoir, At Least in the City Someone Would Hear Me Scream: Misadventures in Search of the Simple Life, which was released to high praise and laughter.

NBC’s Today Show calls Rouse “laugh-out-loud-funny,” and was noted by The Washington Post as “an original writer and impressive new voice.” Rouse is a contributing humor columnist for Metrosource, a high-profile gay magazine, and his essays and articles have appeared in numerous national magazines and online publications.*

Rouse currently makes his home “on the coast of Lake Michigan” with his partner Gary. Rouse will further anchor himself to Michigan shores with the recent announcement that he’s been asked to be a regular on Michigan Public Radio. The author will be contributing essays from his latest memoir, It’s All Relative, as well as offering special segments. You can click here for Wade’s Saturday feature.

Wade Rouse’s McLean and Eakin event will take place on Tuesday, May 31, 2011 from 6:30pm – 8:00 pm. It is suggested that you buzz the booksellers at 231-347-1180 or 1-800-968-1910 to reserve a spot. Call to confirm detail events before heading out the door as schedules are always subject to change.

If you can’t make it to McLean and Eakin, feel free to link to Rouse’s full appearance schedule for other northern Michigan signings.

– Support your local bookstores, libraries, and universities. It matters.

-Post by Megan Shaffer

Related Links

-Information taken from the Wade Rouse site.

-For a list of Press reviews of Rouse’s work, you can link here.*

Michigan Authors Pen ‘Killer Thrillers’

Cover ImageNPR asked audiences last month to submit nominations for a list of the 100 most suspenseful novels ever. After receiving some 600 titles, NPR’s panel of thriller writers and critics has narrowed the list down to a still hefty, but manageable 182 novels.

The station is basing their contest on an answer once given by James Patterson, which defines a thriller by the “intensity of emotions they create…of apprehension and exhilaration, of excitement and breathlessness…By definition, if a thriller doesn’t thrill, it’s not doing its job.”

I’m so happy to say that author Harry Dolan made the list for his clever Ann Arbor mystery, Bad Things Happen. I read Mr. Dolan’s book late last year and absolutely loved it. You can read NLR’s review without any fear of plot spoilers and catch the book’s trailer here.

For the full NPR article and a chance to weigh in, link to ‘Killer Thrillers’:  Vote For The 10 Best Ever. You can cast your vote and submit as you please, however, don’t overlook Michigan’s beloved Elmore Leonard; he hits the list with Killshot and Road Dogs. You can check out more on these two titles with the following links to the Killshot movie trailer as well as the book trailer contest for Road Dogs.

*Support your local bookstores, libraries, and universities. It matters.

-Post by Megan Shaffer

Nesbo’s ‘Devil’s Star’ Lights Up Oslo’s Dark Side

Cover ImageNorwegian writer Jo Nesbo is a pretty cool character in his own right. Formerly known as a stockbroker and rock musician, the ever-morphing Nesbo now finds himself tagged as Europe’s new star of crime fiction. With his internationally acclaimed Harry Hole series Nesbo is fast becoming Oslo’s literary darling, and after flying through his newly released The Devil’s Star I can see why.

I first heard about writer Jo Nesbo on NPR’s All Things Considered. The title segment Nordic Noir: Catching Olso’s Killer in ‘Devil’s Star’ highlights the author, his beloved Scandinavian people, and his contemporary thriller, The Devil’s Star. Though Star is the fifth of Nesbo’s eight thrillers that feature the haggard, hard-drinking Detective Harry Hole, this fifth translation was only recently released in the U.S. a couple of months ago.

The Devil’s Star is an entertainment boon; not only does it read like an edge-of-your-seat flick, but Nesbo backs it up with smooth, nuanced detail of Oslo’s dark side. Keep an eye out for NLR’s upcoming quickie review of Nesbo’s latest, or link here to sample an excerpt.

*Support your local bookstores, libraries, and universities. It matters.

-Post by Megan Shaffer



I can’t imagine life without my sisters, and after listening to Susan Stamberg’s interview with linguist and author Deborah Tannen, I realize just how complex those relationships can be. For better or for worse, Ms.Tannen has taken the examination of this sisterly love to the next level by interviewing 100 women (her sisters included) in her new book titled You Were Always Mom’s Favorite! Sisters in Conversation Throughout Their Lives. Appropriately titled, Tannen takes an in-depth look at the both the emotional and psychological aspects of these relationships. Take a listen; you’ll appreciate the author’s sisters as they join the interview at the end.


Whip off your glasses and undo your bun because the library as we once knew it is long gone. I was so happy to see Trina Mannino’s article in HOUR Detroit Magazine addressing the long overdue trend of people heading back to the local library instead of the closest dizzying chain. Though the increasing traffic through our libraries is the unfortunate result of the economic recession (ad nauseum), I can’t help but cheer for an institution that can buck up and withstand the trends of time.

Due to the the economic dip, today’s libraries are fast becoming the new Borders, Blockbusters, Kinkos, and in some cases, even the new Starbucks. As assistant professor of Wayne State University’s Library and Information Science Program Maria Gonzales states in For the Books, “It pretty much sums up what libraries do – adopt, adapt, and lead.”


Now that I have lauded the merits of today’s libraries, I must confess I have an addiction. In the scheme of things it’s not that horrific, however, it is increasing in frequency and intensity. In fact, its becoming a bit of an obsession.

The truth is, I think I’m a book hoarder. I can’t help myself. It’s the fault of those libraries that I just applauded. If someone tells me about a book I should read, I make a mad dash for my laptop and instantly reserve it online. I read the Sunday paper reviews,  note which titles interest me, and punch punch punch them in on my keyboard ASAP to see if they are available. If I go to a bookstore, I jot down the titles I need, and beeline over to the library looking for a hit; desperately seeking that  rush of adrenaline when I find it on the shelf! Oh, the score! Oh, the money I’m saving! The fun I’m having! Can this be legal!?!

Unfortunately, like any addiction, inherent in the high of my success is the inevitable misery of the crash. As I look at my ever-towering stack of “To Reads”, the crushing reality hits that there will NEVER be enough time to read them all. There just isn’t enough time. This, in turn, leaves me sitting amongst both a mountain of existential questions and a pile of books. So as I plunk down, sorting through far too many titles, trying to weed out the A list from the B, I vow to take it down a notch…to ease up on the check outs. Yet as I confidently take back my returns and put them determinedly through the slot, I see it out of the corner of my eye….beckoning…the siren of the New Titles Section is calling…and I know I am doomed.

-By Megan Shaffer