Fiction

The Gift of the Magi

The Gift of the Magi
By O. Henry

One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. Pennies saved one and two at a time by bulldozing the grocer and the vegetable man and the butcher until one's cheeks burned with the silent imputation of parsimony that such close dealing implied. Three times Della counted it. One dollar and eighty- seven cents. And the next day would be Christmas.

There was clearly nothing to do but flop down on the shabby little couch and howl. So Della did it. Which instigates the moral reflection that life is made up of sobs, sniffles, and smiles, with sniffles predominating.

While the mistress of the home is gradually subsiding from the first stage to...

Little Red Riding Hood and Mr. Wolf

Little Red Riding Hood and Mr. Wolf
A Trumped-up Tale By Kit-Bacon Gressitt

 

Once upon a time, a girl child who appeared older than her years in her eponymous red and hooded cloak sashayed into the autumn forest to bring cake and wine to her Crooked Granny. And it was the granny’s bad liberal judgment that had put Little Red Riding Hood on the road alone, with a basket of booze.

Skipping along the trail, Little Red noticed Mr. Wolf expounding his many virtues and heaping promise upon promise onto a gathering of lowly forest dwellers. Although she couldn’t put her finger on it, he had a certain je ne sais quoi. Maybe it was his commoditized tan, the classy platinum and diamond cufflinks, his audacious howl imparting words she’d...

Interview with Re Jane author Patricia Park

Interview with Re Jane author Patricia Park
By Kit-Bacon Gressitt

 

See Patricia Park at Warwick’s BooksThursday 28 April 2016, 6:30 pm7812 Girard Avenue, La Jolla, CA 92037

When novelist Patricia Park set out to write Re Jane, she wanted to re-write Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë’s classic. The latter’s Jane was published in Victorian 1847 and set in the Georgian era. Neither time period offered women many options other than marriage. Park’s Jane was first published in 2015, when women had a multitude of options, if not equality.

“I wanted to show what would happen if Jane was in the present day,” Park said as she was preparing for the just-released paperback edition book tour, “if my novel would end with that iconic line, ‘Reader, I married him.’”

It took Park...

Writers Read Presents T. Jefferson Parker

Writers Read Presents T. Jefferson Parker
Reading from his new novel Crazy Blood  

Date: Tuesday, April 12, from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook

Crazy Blood is Fallbrook author T. Jefferson Parker’s second literary departure from his long line of award-winning crime novels and short stories, including three Edgar Award winners.

Like his acclaimed novel, Full Measure, in which a Marine returns from Afghanistan to his parents' ranch in the fire-ravaged town of Fallbrook, California, Crazy Blood is also a story of family and the search for identity.

But what a family it is, a dynasty of crazy ski racers, carving the slopes of Mammoth Lakes in California’s Sierra Nevada mountains.

Crazy Blood follows the third generation of a fatally conflicted clan of snow sports athletes and the brutal competition between...

Writers Read Presents, on February 9, 2016

Writers Read Presents, on February 9, 2016
Poet and Novelist Jon Wesick  Reading and discussing Poetry: Words of Power, Dances of Freedom Novels: Hunger for Annihilation and Yellow Lines      

 



 

 

Preceded by open mic for original poetry and prose

Date: Tuesday, February 9, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook, 760-731-4650

 

 

Host of the Gelato Poetry Series in San Diego, author of the poetry collection Words of Power, Dances of Freedom and two novels, Hunger for Annihilation and Yellow Lines, Jon Wesick has published over three hundred poems in journals such as the Atlanta Review, Pearl and Slipstream. An editor of the San Diego Poetry Annual, he has also published nearly a hundred short stories, one of which was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. One of his poems won second place in the 2007 African American Writers...

Writers Read Presents T. Jefferson Parker

Writers Read Presents T. Jefferson Parker
December 8, 2015 at Fallbrook Library   T. Jefferson Parker   with the paperback release of Full Measure   and an exclusive reading from his new thriller Crazy Blood  

Preceded by open mic for original poetry and prose

Date: Tuesday, December 8, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook, 760-731-4650

T. Jefferson Parker, three-time Edgar Award winner, is the author of the celebrated novel, Full Measure, available in paperback December 1—in time for holiday gift-giving. Marine Patrick Norris returns from Afghanistan to find his hometown, Fallbrook, recovering from a wildfire; his parents facing a devastated avocado ranch;  and his troubled brother, struggling with his own battles.

Jeff will give an exclusive reading of an excerpt from his new thriller, Crazy Blood, to be released in March 2016. A volatile family feud carves the slopes at...

Writers Read at Fallbrook Library Presents Author Charles Degelman

Discussing A Bowl Full of Nails and Gates of Eden Preceded by open mic for original poetry and prose

Date: Tuesday, August 11, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook, 760-731-4650

Charles Degelman is an author, editor and educator living in Los Angeles. His first novel, Gates of Eden, is a 1960s story of resistance, rebellion and love. The book garnered a silver medal from the 2012 Independent Publishers Book Awards. A Bowl Full of Nails, published earlier this year by Harvard Square Editions, is set in the counterculture of the 1970s. It was a finalist in the Bellwether Competition, sponsored by Barbara Kingsolver.

After graduating Harvard, Degelman left academia to become an antiwar activist, political theater artist, musician, communard, carpenter, hard-rock miner, and...

Writers Read at Fallbrook Library Presents

Writers Read at Fallbrook Library Presents
May 12, 2015 Emerging Author Beth Newcomer Discussing The Art of the Short Story Preceded by open mic for original poetry and prose

Date: Tuesday, May 12, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook, 760-731-4650

Beth Escott Newcomer is a Pushcart-prize nominee for her short story "Tightrope," published in The Sand Hill Review in 2013. Her fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in many literary publications, including The Alembic, Stickman Review, The Tulane Review and Diverse Voices Quarterly, which published her story "All She Wanted," a Best of the Net nominee in 2013.

Beth grew up on Normal Avenue in Normal, Illinois, but now lives in Fallbrook, California. To support her writing habit, she manages the Southern California-based graphic design firm she founded and helps promote...

Writers Read at Fallbrook Library Presents

Women in Words: Readings by, for and about women An all-open mic celebration of Women's History Month Date: Tuesday, March 10, from 6 to 7:30 p.m.

Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook, 760-731-4650

Join us for an all-open mic reading, a celebration of Women in Words.

Bring your favorite writing—original or by another writer—by, for or about women throughout history, recent or long past. Share poetry, fiction or creative nonfiction.

And, if you're up for a challenge, take the Women's History Month Quiz here.

For more information about Writers Read,  contact K-B Gressitt at kbgressitt@gmail.com or 760-522-1064.

Review: The Turnip Princess by Franz Xaver von Schönwerth

Review: The Turnip Princess by Franz Xaver von Schönwerth
Reviewed by Kit-Bacon Gressitt

In 2009, folklorists were delighted to learn of the discovery of a cache of 500 unknown Bavarian fairy tales. Unearthed from a municipal archive by German storyteller and fairy tale expert Erika Eichenseer, the tales had been collected in the 1800s by Franz Xaver von Schönwerth, transcribed from his interviews with local Bavarians. By 2010, a portion of the collection, edited by Eichenseer, was published in Germany. This month, Penguin Classics releases The Turnip Princess and Other Newly Discovered Fairy Tales in English, the translation by Maria Tatar, Harvard University’s chair of the Program in Folklore and Mythology.

Unlike the more familiar Brothers Grimm and Hans Christian Andersen collections, Schönwerth’s renditions of oral Bavarian lore are said to be...

Interview: Patricia Bracewell, Emma of Normandy Trilogy

Interview: Patricia Bracewell, Emma of Normandy Trilogy
Interviewed by Kit-Bacon Gressitt

Patricia Bracewell will read at Mysterious Galaxy Books, in San Diego, on Wednesday, February 11 at 7:30 p.m. Mysterious Galaxy is located at 5943 Balboa Ave, San Diego

Patricia Bracewell’s Emma of Normandy Trilogy serves as a graphic reminder of two truths: women make history and women’s history has been woefully under-recorded. Were it not for one of Bracewell’s primary sources, the Encomium Emmae Reginae (In Praise of Queen Emma), fans of historical fiction might not have the joy of reading her trilogy or of learning about Emma, the medieval queen of, at various times, England, Denmark and Norway.

The first book in the trilogy, Shadow on the Crown, introduced Emma as she made a perilous journey...

January 13, 2015, Writers Read Presents

January 13, 2015, Writers Read Presents
Jim Ruland Writer. Sailor. Punk. Rat. Discussing Forest of Fortune and more... Preceded by open mic for original poetry and prose



Date: Tuesday, January 13, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook, 760-731-4650

Jim Ruland is the author of the novel, Forest of Fortune, the short story collection Big Lonesome and co-author of Giving the Finger with Scott Campbell Jr. of Discovery Channel’s Deadliest Catch.

He is currently collaborating with Keith Morris, founding member of Black Flag, Circle Jerks and OFF!, on his memoir My Damage: 40 Years on the Front Lines of Punk.

A veteran of the U.S. Navy, Jim also runs the Southern California-based reading series Vermin on the Mount, now in its eleventh year.

For more information, contact K-B Gressitt at kbgressitt@gmail.com or 760-522-1064.

BOOK REVIEW: Full Measure by T. Jefferson Parker

BOOK REVIEW: Full Measure by T. Jefferson Parker
Reviewed by Kit-Bacon Gressitt

Join Parker at Writers Read at Fallbrook Library, 124 S. Mission Road, on Tues, Sep 23, at 6 p.m., for an early launch of Full Measure.

T. Jefferson Parker, a New York Times bestselling author lauded for his vivid crime thrillers, has written what he calls his first literary novel, Full Measure (St. Martin’s Press, October 7, 2014). The novel is ostensibly the story of Patrick Norris, a young Marine returned from war in Afghanistan to face the struggle of transitioning to civilian life in his hometown, bucolic Fallbrook, Calif. Norris’ ranching parents and much of the community have just suffered devastating losses to a wildfire. Norris’ older bother Ted, a troubled ne’er-do-well, is entangled in...

BOOK REVIEW: "In Doubt" by Drusilla Campbell

Review by Kit-Bacon Gressitt

Update: Dru died Friday 24 October 2014. Read her final blog post here. In my experience, writing doesn’t get easier the more you do it. But there is a growth of confidence, not much, but a nugget, like a pearl, like a tumour. … So I’ve got cancer. I’m writing.  – author Jenny Diski, London Review of Books

This was supposed to be a book review. A simple critique of a new novel—In Doubt (Grand Central Publishing, August 26, 2014)—by a nice local author—Drusilla Campbell of San Diego—who writes about painful things with insight and a tender heart—In Doubt, child abuse; When She Came Home, combat-related PTSD; The Good Sister, mental illness.

But how do you stick to a book review...

T. Jefferson Parker Launches Full Measure

T. Jefferson Parker Launches Full Measure
  Join Writers Read at Fallbrook Library, Tues, Sep. 23, 6 p.m. for a reading and book signing.

My Man, Bowling

My Man, Bowling
A Short Story by Dan McClenaghan

Ruth and Ellis invited their next door neighbors, Clete and Juanita, out for a couple of friendly frames of bowling, losing couple buys the burgers after the game. They rolled down in Clete and Juanita's car, and crossed the sun-baked parking lot and slipped inside, escaping the smoggy summer heat in the cool darkness of the Loma Alta Lanes, on Old Highway 101. The double-daters sighed in four part harmony as the air conditioning froze the moisture on their sweaty backs. They paid for their rental shoes, while Ellis insisted he needed a pair of size fourteens, when in reality he wore seven-and-a-halves.

"You know what they say about a guy's shoe size," he grinned, winking at...

Interview: Author Deborah Harkness, All Souls Trilogy

Interview: Author Deborah Harkness, All Souls Trilogy
Interviewed by Kit-Bacon Gressitt

 

Deborah Harness will be reading from and discussing her final book in the All Souls Trilogy, The Book of Life, at Warwick’s in La Jolla on Friday, July 25, at 7:30 p.m. Reserved seating requires advance purchase of the book from Warwick’s, which can be reached at 858-454-0347.

On July 15, the New York Times bestselling All Souls Trilogy concludes with the release of the final novel in the fantasy series by historian and scholar Deborah Harkness: The Book of Life (Viking, July 15, 2014). The Book of Life offers a conclusion likely to be as auspicious as the series’ 2011 birth with A Discovery of Witches, which received such early and eager praise, it...

August 12, 2014, Writers Read at Fallbrook Library Presents

August 12, 2014, Writers Read at Fallbrook Library Presents
Laurel Corona, historical novelist Discussing The Mapmaker's Daughter Preceded by open mic for original poetry and prose

Date: Tuesday, August 12, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook, 760-731-4650

Laurel Corona is a long-time Writers Read favorite, and we’re delighted to have her back—with her newest historical novel, The Mapmaker’s Daughter. Set in 15th century Spain during the Inquisition and the Jewish expulsion, heroine Amalia Riba struggles to maintain her identity and faith.

The Mapmaker’s Daughter will be available for sale and signing by the author.

For more information, contact K-B Gressitt at kbgressitt@gmail.com or 760-522-1064.

 

Angelica's Heart, Part 3

Read Part 1

Read Part 2

By Dan McClenaghan

Frank Phillips, a fifty-three year old widow has received an experimental heart transplant from a cloned donor pig named Angelica. He is traveling north in a limousine from the Baja California clinic that supplied him with his new heart. Dr. Amali Mahanthappa, the clinic's director and his personal surgeon, accompanies him. Once past the border, rolling into the United States, the limo driver (the limo and driver supplied by an anonymous benefactor) stops at a Hooters for sustenance, picks up a waitress, and makes plans to transport her with them to Los Angeles, to confer with the benefactor.

Nando, the limo driver, pulled off the freeway in San Diego and steered through another maze of city...

Writers Read at Fallbrook Library Presents

Writers Read at Fallbrook Library Presents
Author Lauren Cobb July 8, 2014, discussing Boulevard Women Preceded by open mic for original poetry and prose

Date: Tuesday, July 8, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Location: Fallbrook Library, 124 S Mission, Fallbrook, 760-731-4650

Lauren Cobb, Professor of English at Bemidji State University, Minnesota, will be reading from and discussing her new collection of linked short stories, Boulevard Women. Winner of the 2012 G.S. Sharat Chandra Prize for Short Fiction, the collection delves into the lives of three women, born in three distinct generations and living as neighbors in Athens, Georgia.

Boulevard Women will be available for sale and signing by the author.

For more information, contact K-B Gressitt at kbgressitt@gmail.com or 760-522-1064.