I Hope You’re Finding Moments to Savor Here and There.
Summer is, hands down, my favorite time, but it’s been really hard to fully embrace the season this year, hasn’t it? There’s just so much chaos, confusion, and sadness because of the pandemic. I so hope you’re in good health, that you’re able to see at least a few friends and family members, and that you’ve found special ways to stay as centered as you possibly can.
I’m very grateful my family and I have been spared COVID-19 (so far at least), and despite the fact that I’m not able to experience this summer the way I want to, I’m relishing the little pleasures it offers. Below are a bunch of them.
Have you got your own list of small summer pleasures this year? I hope so!!
–The tomatoes from my local farm stand are especially delicious this year, and so is the corn. That means lots of caprese salads and corn on the cob. Yay!
–I finished my 2021 thriller and have already started the next one. And holy cow, I’m on schedule this year–unlike last year. That means I can write without feeling rushed, which makes the whole process so much more enjoyable.
–My herb garden didn’t attract bugs this year and so I’m loving throwing herbs into (almost) everything.
–The relaxation method I learned in order to help me fall back asleep in the middle of the night–known as 4-7-8–is working so well for me now that I only have to do the first step and I’m out like the proverbial light. If you have trouble falling asleep, give this a try!
–I’m being really diligent about learning Spanish cada día through Duolingo. Have you ever tried this language-learning website? It’s really fun and addictive.
–I’m devouring The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration, the beautifully written history of Black Americans moving north to escape the terrible hardship under Jim Crow laws and build better lives for themselves. I became aware of the book in 2011 when it won the Pulitzer Prize but didn’t have a chance to read it then. It’s absolutely brilliant, poignant and heartbreaking.
–I discovered a spectacular new and very simple pasta recipe (see the link to the video below) that involves several of my favorite foods: olive oil, tomatoes, and breadcrumbs!
–I decided to rewatch Grey’s Anatomy from the beginning on Netflix and gosh, it’s the perfect antidote for the COVID Blues. If the pandemic is in danger of sucking your soul dry, you might enjoy rediscovering Dr. McDreamy.
I’d Love to Hear What You Think of the UK Cover of HAVE YOU SEEN ME?
UK books generally have different covers than their U.S. counterparts, partly because the marketplaces are different. I loved what Avon, my wonderful UK publisher, has done for their edition of HAVE YOU SEEN ME?, set for September release.
Haven’t Yet Read HAVE YOU SEEN ME?
If you like thrillers and whodunits, I’d love you to give it a try. It was named a best book of the month by Amazon
On a cold, rainy morning, personal finance journalist Ally Linden arrives at her office soaked to the bone, only to find she’s forgotten her key card. When her boss shows up a short time later, he’s shocked to see her because, he explains, she hasn’t worked at the company in five years. Ally is apparently in a fugue state and has no idea how or why she ended up there.
As she tries desperately to figure out where she’s been, it becomes increasingly clear that something terrible happened in those forty-eight hours—and someone will stop at nothing to make sure she doesn’t learn the truth.
View the trailer:
What I’m Reading
The Guest List
By Lucy Foley
I bet you’ve heard the buzz about this book. The story involves a huge crowd of people attending a super fancy, pricey wedding on an island off the coast of Ireland, and of course because it’s a murder mystery, you know someone is going to be offed. Your job as a reader is to not only guess who the killer is and why he or she committed the crime, but also guess who the victim is going to be! You don’t find out until late in the book. I found this as delicious as a piece of red velvet wedding cake.
Eight Perfect Murders
By Peter Swanson
Isn’t it wonderful when you don’t have to take the time to “get into” a book, when it’s so compelling from the first page that you cannot stop reading? I was hooked on this book from the very first page. A homage to the thriller genre, it’s the story of a bookseller who finds himself at the center of an FBI investigation because a very clever killer has started using his list of fiction’s most ingenious murders.
What I’m Cooking
If you’ve read this newsletter for a while, you know I love pasta, and this recipe from famed chef Lydia Bastianich is simple and incredibly delicious. The sauce consists basically of olive oil, sautéed garlic, basil, pasta water, and grape tomatoes that you have roasted tossed in breadcrumbs in olive oil. Sublime! Just be sure to get the tomatoes super toasty. My brother recommends cooking them at a slightly higher temperature than what is recommended in order to assure that.
Until next month,