Tag Archives: adult

Jim Tilley and Cai Emmons

Join us for readings from Against the Wind, the debut novel from Jim Tilley, and Weather Woman, the latest from Cai Emmons.

Against the Wind is an elegantly written story of relationships involving six principal characters, the strands of whose lives braid together after a chance reunion among three of them.

A successful environmental lawyer is forced to take himself to task when he realizes that everything about his work has betrayed his core beliefs. A high school English teacher asks her former high school love to take up her environmental cause. A transgender adolescent male raised by his grandparents struggles to excel in a world hostile to his kind. A French Canadian political science professor finds himself left with a choice between his cherished separatist cause and his marriage and family. An accomplished engineer is chronically unable to impress his more accomplished father sufficiently to be named head of the international wind technology company his father founded. The Quebec separatist party’s Minister of Natural Resources, a divorcée, finds herself caught between her French-Canadian lover and an unexpected English-Canadian suitor.

In Weather Woman, thirty-year-old Bronwyn Artair, feeling out of place in her doctoral program in Atmospheric Sciences at MIT, drops out and takes a job as a TV meteorologist, much to the dismay of her mentor, Diane Fenwick. After a year of living alone in Southern New Hampshire, enduring the indignities of her job, dumped by her boyfriend, she discovers her deep connection to the natural world has given her an ability to affect natural forces. When she finally accepts she really possesses this startling capability, she must then negotiate a new relationship to the world. Who will she tell? Who will believe her? Most importantly, how will she put this new skill of hers to use? As she seeks answers to these questions, she travels to Kansas to see the tornado maverick she worships; falls in love with Matt, the tabloid journalist who has come to investigate her; visits fires raging out of control in Los Angeles; and eventually voyages with Matt and Diane to the methane fields of Siberia. A woman experiencing power for the first time in her life, she must figure out what she can do for the world without hurting it further. The story poses questions about science and intuition, women and power, and what the earth needs from humans.

Jim Tilley has published three full-length collections of poetry and a short memoir, The Elegant Solution. His writing has appeared in top literary journals, including Ploughshares, Virginia Quarterly Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, and Southern Review. In 2008, he won Sycamore Review’s Wabash Prize for Poetry. Jim earned a doctorate in physics from Harvard University. During his twenty-five-year career in insurance and investment banking, he wrote several prize-winning papers on finance and investments. He has recently published original mathematics research in various academic journals. He resides in Bedford Corners, New York.

Cai Emmons is the author of the novels His Mother’s Son and The Stylist and, most recently, Weather Woman. A graduate of Yale University, with MFAs from New York University and the University of Oregon, Cai is formerly a playwright and screenwriter. Her short work has appeared in such publications as TriQuarterly, Narrative and Arts and Culture, among others. She teaches in the University of Oregon’s Creative Writing Program.

Mollie Hunt and Heather Ames

Join us for a multi-book launch event from local authors Mollie Hunt and Heather Ames! Among the featured releases are Hunt’s Cat Noel, a Crazy Cat Lady cozy mystery Christmas novella, and Ames’s Swift Retribution, book three in the Brian Swift & Kaylen Roberts mystery/suspense series.

In Cat Noel, Lynley finds a new meaning of Christmas when a Wiccan’s familiar is catnapped, and Lynley becomes her only hope.

Lynley Cannon is dreading the Holidays. The sixty-something cat shelter volunteer would rather hang out with cats that brave her daughter’s soulless Christmas gala, so when a witch’s beloved kitty is catnapped, Lynley grabs the excuse to skip out on her social obligations.

Though Lynley knows little about the white witchcraft known as Wicca, she does know cats and can’t decline a plea for help when one goes missing. Then the witch disappears as well. Lynley, compelled by her cat-like curiosity, sets out to search for the pair, but the task is more difficult than she’d thought.

A freak snow storm and a crazed captor take things in a dangerous direction. As Lynley endures the cold dark of confinement, the Christmas spirit brings a strength she never knew she possessed.

In Swift Retribution, Brian Swift and Kaylen Roberts should have everything they ever wanted. Kaylen’s about to open her second supper club, Brian’s in charge of the Cold Case squad, and their relationship is stable. But the men who murdered Brian’s brother still haven’t been brought to justice, and Brian wants revenge.

When Kaylen’s former mentor, Sam Wilson, returns to Miami and Brian gets involved with an active triple homicide, stability shakes hands with turmoil, and chaos results.

Native Oregonian Mollie Hunt has always had an affinity for cats, so it was a short step for her to become a cat writer. Mollie is the author of THE CRAZY CAT LADY COZY MYSTERY SERIES, featuring Portlander Lynley Cannon, a sixty-something cat shelter volunteer who finds more trouble than a cat in catnip. The 3rd in the series, CAT’S PAW, was a finalist for the 2016 Mystery & Mayhem Book Award, and the 5th, CAT CAFÉ, won the World’s Best Cat Litter-ary Award in 2019.

Mollie’s sci-fantasy, CAT SUMMER (Fire Star Press) is the first in her CAT SEASONS TETRALOGY where cats save the world from an evil older than history—twice! Mollie also published a non-cat mystery, PLACID RIVER RUNS DEEP, which delves into murder, obsession, and the challenge of chronic illness in bucolic southwest Washington. Two of her short cat stories have been published in anthologies, one of which, THE DREAM SPINNER, won the prestigious CWA Muse Medallion. She has a little book of Cat Poems as well.

Mollie is a member of the Oregon Writers’ Colony, Sisters in Crime, Willamette Writers, the Cat Writers’ Association, and NIWA. She lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband and a varying number of cats. Like Lynley, she is a grateful shelter volunteer.

Heather Ames is a world traveler, documentary filmmaker and storyteller now living in Salem, Oregon. Her novels combine mystery, suspense and romance. After a long career in healthcare, she has finally committed to writing full-time. She plans to launch a new mystery series with paranormal elements in 2020 as well as continuing to expand her current series and writing more stand-alone novels.

Three Ways to Disappear – Katy Yocom

Join us for a reading of Three Ways to Disappear, a debut novel by Katy Yocom.

Leaving behind a nomadic career as a journalist, Sarah DeVaughan returns to India, country of her childhood and of unspeakable family tragedy, to help preserve the endangered Bengal tigers. Meanwhile, at home in Kentucky, her sister, Quinn, fears that India will be Sarah’s undoing.

As Sarah’s new job is made complicated by complex local politics and a forbidden love, Quinn copes with their mother’s refusal to discuss the past, her son’s life-threatening illness, and her own increasingly troubled marriage. When Sarah asks Quinn to join her in India, Quinn realizes that the only way to overcome the past is to return to it, and it is in this place of stunning natural beauty and hidden danger that the sisters can finally understand the ways in which their family has disappeared—from their shared history, from one another—and risk everything to find themselves again.

With dramatic urgency, a powerful sense of place, and a beautifully rendered cast of characters, Katy Yocom has created an unforgettable novel about saving all that is precious, from endangered species to the indelible bonds among family.

Katy Yocom hails from Atchison, Kansas; lives in Louisville, Kentucky; and is published by an Oregon publisher. Her debut novel, Three Ways to Disappear, launched this summer from Ashland Creek Press after winning the Siskiyou Prize for New Environmental Literature. It has since been named a Barnes & Noble Top Indie Favorite.

In researching the novel, she traveled to Indian tiger reserves, funded by a grant from the Elizabeth George Foundation. Her writing has appeared in Newsweek, Salon, LitHub, American Way in-flight magazine, Necessary Fiction, and elsewhere. She holds an MFA in Writing from the low-residency program at Spalding University, where she now serves as associate director of the School of Creative and Professional Writing.

Inkwater Authors Night – Henry Alley, Peter Swan, Erik L. Welchoff

Join us for another night of readings from Inkwater Press authors! This month we have Henry Alley, Peter Swan, and Erik L. Welchoff.

Set against the background of the Measure Nine (anti-gay rights) crisis in Oregon in the early 1990s, Henry Alley’s Precincts of Light explore the combined quests of a brother and sister, both newly out, try to recover the lost affections of their children, from five points of view in a novel of continuously rich and poetic language. The voices of Joanne (poet and mother), Harold (minister and father), Appleton (retired law professor and grandfather), Eleanor (collectibles broker and grandmother), and Samuel (politician, father and secret member of the homophobic Oregon Protection Alliance) comprise a book that explores diversity, the possibilities of a potentially peaceable kingdom-the precincts of light. The characters move, each in his or her own faltering way, toward fighting not only intolerance toward gay and lesbian people but toward anyone who might be considered different. Thus the novel becomes the story of the American Family coming to new terms with itself after many shocks and surprises and affirming, ultimately, its own immense flexibility.

In Peter Swan’s Countdown to Contagion, a jihadi microbiologist with the lethal virus he has created is smuggled into Portland, Oregon, on a cargo ship. A river pilot sees more than he should and is murdered by a cell of “sleepers” based in Portland. The murdered man was the best friend of retired FBI counter-terrorism agent Tad Madison whose discoveries convince the FBI to mobilize. They have four days to stop the terrorists’ attack from infecting hundreds attending a national conference at the Portland Convention Center. Tad’s life is on the line, and his fiancé is kidnapped as the terrorists show they will stop at nothing to complete their mission. When he learns that the sleepers are controlled by a brilliant and devious Egyptian, Tad—now an FBI consultant—goes to Nashville, where he joins forces with the FBI and Mossad agents to track down the mastermind. They must stop the terrorist network before it can carry out an East Coast attack against passengers on a huge cruise ship.

Erik L. Welchoff’s Transformations is the story of super-human Warrior Anton Seven as he struggles to prove himself to his new friends in a new world filled with magic—a Wizard, a village of small people called Primords, a Djinni, and a small Faerie—in an effort to justify his existence. After meeting another Warrior of his own origin, he is whisked off to another dimension only to encounter even more strange creatures. Confused and enamored with his new friend’s trust, Anton begins to take charge as his own magical abilities begin to emerge. Yet he remains unsure of himself as he moves ever closer to confronting both his past and the ominous Necromancer. Never has any Warrior had to defy odds that would conceivably destroy even the best genetically engineered super-human. Never before has any Warrior met demi-gods and immortals and survived. The exciting next installment of Anton Seven awaits you in Book Two, “Transformations!”

Henry Alley is a Professor Emeritus of Literature in the Honors College at the University of Oregon. He has five novels, Through Glass (Iris Press, 1979), The Lattice (Ariadne Press, 1986), Umbrella of Glass (Breitenbush Books, 1988), Precincts of Light (Inkwater Press, 2010), Men Touching (Chelsea Station Ediitions, 2019) and a collection of stories, The Dahlia Field (Chelsea Station Editions, 2017). For nearly half a century, such journals as Seattle Review and Virginia Quarterly Review have published his fiction.

Peter Swan has practiced marine casualty and product liability law in a large San Francisco firm, worked as a tenured law professor, and served as General Counsel of the University of Oregon. His interests have included mountaineering, traveling abroad, investing, playing saxophone in a swing band, skiiing, and golfing. Upon retirement, he has turned his hand to writing mysteries and thrillers. His published novels are “Past Due,” “Unnatural Causes,” and “Forest Park” all in the Rick Conwright, PI series and “Fealder’s Choice” in the Parkinson Fealder, homicide detective series. He and his wife of 51 years live in Portland, Oregon.

Born in 1960 near Hayward, California, Erik L. Welchoff began his story after college. Over many years, it evolved in his thoughts, until finally it could be contained no longer. The second novel in a series, “Transformations” is the result of thousands of hours of character development and hundreds of snippets of Welchoff’s personal interests and life experiences, all wrapped together to produce a science fiction/ fantasy epic beyond your imagination. It is filled with new, fresh ideas and is gripping from cover to cover.

Chronicles of a Blessed Man – Paul Haber

Join us for a reading from Chronicles of a Blessed Man, a memoir by Paul Haber.

Paul Haber is a former career soldier- a Marine, then Special Forces (Green Beret) and Ranger. After retiring from the service, he held several jobs, including security officer, bodyguard, and martial arts instructor, before “finding his niche” with the Arizona Department of Corrections; progressing from Officer to Sergeant, to a type of counselor called Corrections Officer III, before taking an early retirement.

His personal life was not quite as successful. Ten years after a marriage to a woman he barely knew, he became divorced and hurried into another, against the advice of his parents and friends. He didn’t realize at the time that he was, in great measure, the cause of the split with his first wife. Fortunately, his second wife, Kyehwa would not give up on him, despite the usual- and some not so usual- problems in their marriage. He upbringing and her beliefs were strong enough that she persevered, and slowly taught him the meaning of love, responsibility and marriage.

Shortly after retiring from Law Enforcement, Paul was suddenly struck down with a ruptured small intestine, which brought him hours, possibly minutes, from a painful death. This is the story of that time, what he learned and beginning of a new way of life.

In addition to highly successful careers in the military and Law Enforcement, Paul Haber worked at more than four dozen jobs, ranging from warehouse worker to electronics instructor and even professional bodyguard. He says it was all research for his writing career, which really began after a near death experience, which became the subject of his first book, Chronicles of a Blessed Man.

He had been writing most of his life, with his first published work was a satiric limerick he wrote as a homework assignment in High School. His English teacher, rather than giving him the “F” Paul expected, submitted the poem to a Young Adult literary magazine and later presented Paul with a check of the princely sum of fifty dollars. That whetted his appetite for story-telling, but for many years, he wrote only for his own enjoyment and that of his children and grandchildren.

Once he began writing, it became almost a fever, and he quickly began several other projects, ranging from an autobiography to a murder novel.

Paul is married to Kyehwa, his bride of more than four decades, and is the father of seven, grandfather of twenty-seven (blood and adopted) and beginning to count the great grand-children. He lives in Vancouver, Washington.

A Raven Lost – M.W. Horses

Join us for a reading from A Raven Lost: Reclaiming Magic Book 2, by M.W. Horses!

In book one, Raven Rayne, Native American Spirit Mage and Archaeologist, returned home to Portland from a life on the road as a vampire hunter. All she wants is to settle into her new life as a professor while keeping her family safe. But home is not the sanctuary she expected. The skills gained during her years as a hunter may not be enough. An alliance that goes against Raven’s very nature might be the only option to shield them from the brewing storm.

Now, in A Raven Lost: Raven Rayne’s recent alliance with Araceli, an ancient vampire, is on shaky ground and comes at an unknown cost. The vampire is pushing her to become the werewolf alpha and take responsibility for the local pack. However, Raven’s primary concern is rescuing Erin Radcliffe, her friend, and former lover, from the vampire who kidnapped her before it’s too late.

The number of people Raven must keep safe continues to grow. Every choice has a consequence as Raven tries to balance the risks of using her magic against the protection it provides. If only she had access to the ancient knowledge hoarded by the very creatures she hunts.

M.W. Horses lives in the Pacific Northwest with her tribe of family and friends. She is a professional cat herder by day and a writer by night. In her spare time, she can be found cooking for those she loves as a bribe to keep her beta readers coming back for more.

PLEDGE: The Public Radio Fund Drive – Don Merrill

Join us for a look at a new project by journalist Don Merrill: Pledge: the Public Radio Fund Drive, a deep look into the tenuous finances of public radio stations.

Merrill got the idea for PLEDGE because he was annoyed by pledge drives he’d been hearing since the mid 90s, and he decided he wanted to rant about them. But he quickly realized that public radio is in a terrible spot between money and mission. Going deeper, he learned of things affecting the genre that most people never consider as they listen to their regular shows for days, weeks, months and years on end.

They include hunts for the ultimate content sharing technology, public radio’s struggles to not lose its soul to corporate money, how it must surveil its listeners to serve them without treating them like numbers or “prey”, how budget cuts can make stations change character or disappear altogether and finally, keeping affiliates from feeling bypassed by networks that have found workarounds to their audiences.

Public radio needs its listeners to understand it much better than they currently can. That’s because public radio hides its problems and convinces the world that everything is fine while facing stress fractures in every direction. It needs to be open and honest about what it essentially is, and needs, as when it asks for money. A greater public can more fully support it only if they know the real deal.

A lifelong journalist and writer, Don Merrill has created commentary for newspapers, articles for magazines and news and public affairs for on-air.

He’s been a producer and reporter for civilian and Armed Forces Broadcasting, worked for the Cincinnati Enquirer and was a public affairs specialist for the Federal Government. He especially loves working in radio and has been an avid public radio listener and supporter.

PLEDGE is his first book.

Inkwater Authors Night

Join us for our monthly reading by authors from Inkwater Press! This month we welcome Justin A. McWhirter, Lisa Manning, and R.M. Allan.

Thorne in the Rose City by Justin A. McWhirter: Thorne is an out of town loan shark who arrives in Portland, Oregon, for what was supposed to be an easy pick-up job. That is until he finds his target already dead, leaving him accidentally caught in a tangled mess of gun running, drug dealing, shady non-profit organizations, and Portland’s darkest secret— a secret the city is desperately trying to forget.

Falcons in the City by Lisa Manning: Have you ever imagined what it would be like to be a bird of prey? Frida, the peregrine falcon, narrates the story of how her family came to live in the city of Portland, Oregon, in the early 1990s. Although you might not expect it, cities—densely populated areas of the planet—can be permanent homes to all sorts of wildlife: coyotes, skunks, raccoons, red-tailed hawks, and even peregrine falcons!

“Falcons in the City,” a tale created from true stories of human-falcon interactions in Portland, is accompanied by beautiful watercolor illustrations. Once you learn this story of a falcon living on a bridge in a river city of the Pacific Northwest, you will be sure to bring binoculars on your next visit—and maybe catch a glimpse of Frida’s peregrine family!

Marco Martinez by R.M. Allan: 1867. The American Civil War is over, yet confusion and bitterness live on throughout the country and in the hearts of many. Marco Martinez steps out of the ashes of the war, a young man turned bounty hunter in search of his share of the legendary dream of something shiny and new and different calling from somewhere out West. Will the shadows of the near past—the sounds of the battlefield and the phantoms that haunt his dreams define him? Or will Marco Martinez somehow find himself while searching to bring outlaws to justice?

Justin A. McWhirter lives in Portland, Oregon, but like most people here in the Rose City is originally from somewhere else, having called Connecticut home before.

A naturalist, story lover, teacher, writer, and artist at heart, Lisa Manning lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband Dennis and daughter Lucy. She has a Masters degree in Outdoor Education and teaches elementary art, sings and plays her ukulele in Cajun and jug band jams, and designs T-shirts and wine labels. “Falcons in the City” is her first book!

R.M. Allan is a native of Oregon, where he currently resides with his family and a couple of cats named Harry and Sassy. He enjoys Americana, pinball, travel, American History, Action and Spy/ Thriller novels. He considers himself a dreamer: an imaginative and creative person always looking forward to what’s ahead.

Shallow Waters – Kay Jennings

Join us for a reading from Native Oregonian Kay Jennings, in which she introduces a thrilling new mystery series set alongside Oregon’s rugged Pacific coast.

A sleepy Oregon coastal village with secrets as dark as its January storms. A new police chief with his own shadowy past.

The last thing Port Stirling Chief of Police Matt Horning needed on day one of his new job was for the mayor’s daughter to turn up dead in a mysterious tunnel on the Oregon beach. Horning, escaping professional troubles in Texas, accepts the vacant job in Port Stirling, Oregon, looking for a fresh start in what he thought would be a peaceful coastal town. Nothing much ever happens here…or does it?

With only a ragtag county crime team to assist him, Horning must match wits with a diabolical killer, the likes of which this quiet village has never seen. An aggressive district attorney, who doesn’t fancy relinquishing the limelight to the new chief, makes his job even more difficult.

For one week in wild and stormy January, Horning calls on all of his detective skills to investigate the unlikely murder. As soon as he starts asking questions, Port Stirling begins to unveil its dark underbelly amid stunning revelations.

From the 300-foot bluffs ringing the white-sand pristine beach, to the posh golf resort at odds with the blue-collar town, Horning and his new team work at break-neck speed to uncover the facts. But will they find the killer before he – or she – strikes again? Will a psychopath ruin Matt Horning’s new life before he can even start it?

KAY JENNINGS was born in the southwest corner of Oregon in a small town not unlike her fictional Port Stirling, and she now lives in Portland, Oregon, with her husband, Steve, a technology entrepreneur.

Jennings has enjoyed a long career in corporate communications in such varied industries as tourism, healthcare, and sports. Since 2000, she has owned Paris Communications, a marketing, PR, and publishing firm. She is particularly proud of her writing and coaching role at BleacherReport.com, a sports website, where her focus was college and NFL football.

Like many Oregonians, Jennings is passionate about gardening, and earned Master Gardener status. A true plant nerd, she is obsessively zealous about growing vegetables, although with 39 mostly David Austin roses, one could also make the case that she is a tiny bit obsessed with roses, too.

She loves the outdoors, particularly in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, and is happiest hiking, playing golf, and enjoying the beaches, rivers, and lakes. A determined, avid traveler since her teens, Jennings has visited dozens of countries around the world.

Beyond the Ripples – Dede Montgomery

Join us for a reading from the latest by local author Dede Montgomery: Beyond the Ripples, a multigenerational mystery set in the Pacific Northwest.

Months after spying a bottle wedged into a fallen cottonwood snag in the Columbia River, Ernest pulls it from the river. The bottle’s note connects Ernest, an old man living in a tiny Oregon town, to teenage Annie, and provokes a mysterious and sudden friendship between Ernest’s daughter Amelia with Sarah, the daughter of the most recent resident of the home Annie once occupied. The two middle-aged women are keen to learn more about Annie and her secret, and in the process, they’re forced to confront unfinished business with their mothers, intimate relationships, and regrets over life choices.

Dede Montgomery is a West Linn resident and a 6th generation Oregonian who presented My Music Man as a 2019 Oregon Capitol Foundation Speaker on Oregon’s 2019 birthday. She also blogs in “Musings on Life in Oregon.” Dede works at OHSU in workplace safety, health and well-being education and outreach. Learn more about her writing at her website.