Oregon

This week was the Oregon leg of the Mirage book tour. The Oregonian newspaper welcomed me to the state with a wonderful review.

I spent Sunday and Monday in Portland. HarperCollins put me up at a hotel two blocks away from Powell’s City of Books, and Powell’s offered me a 20% visiting author discount, so I spent most of my free time browsing the stacks. Among my purchases was a copy of Jennifer Holland’s Unlikely Friendships, which I got as a Valentine’s Day gift for Lisa. (If you see this book in a store and don’t want to buy it, then make sure you don’t turn to the photo of the lion cub and the caracal kittens on page 72.)

For the Powell’s reading on Sunday night I had a big, friendly crowd. The high point of the evening for me was the U.S. Marine (and two-tour Iraq vet) who stood up during the Q&A session. She hadn’t read the novel yet and was very disturbed by the concept of it (and, I think, by the fact that the rest of the audience wasn’t disturbed by it), but she was also extraordinarily polite in voicing her misgivings, and ended up buying a copy and promising to let me know what she thought of it. It’s the people who aren’t predisposed to like your work who often make the most interesting comments, so I’ll be very curious to get her email.

Monday night I was at Murder by the Book. The owners were incredibly kind to me, despite my persistent inability to keep their names straight, and Jackie Jean Barbara interviewed me for the store’s blog. I also got a copy of George Pelecanos’ Hard Revolution as swag.

On Tuesday I flew to Sunriver, a resort village in central Oregon. My reading that night was at Sunriver Books & Music, a jewel of a store run by Deon and Rich Stonehouse (she does fiction, he does non-fiction, and there’s also a dog; basically, it’s a Meg Ryan/Tom Hanks movie waiting to happen). Another friendly audience, and in addition to a copy of Pam Houston’s latest, Deon gave me this awesome signing pen to take home:

Today I am back in Seattle. I’ll be at Seattle Mystery Bookshop from noon to 1:30, signing books for anyone who wants to drop by, and then tonight at 7 PM I’ll be reading at the University Book Store. (For a full schedule of upcoming events, click here.)

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