January 13, 2020 | Issue #24
Five Facts From Our Friend,
William Kent Krueger
The one thing you’ve learned you can’t live without during the pandemic:
My wife. In this time of self-isolation, I’ve come to realize that I never truly appreciated how easy it is spending all my time with the woman who, almost fifty years ago, agreed to a risky future with a kid whose dream was to be a writer.

Your perfect day:
Awake at 6:00 A.M. Two hours of good writing. Breakfast and working the NYT crossword with my wife. A hard, physical workout. More writing in the afternoon. And happy hour on the patio. Which is basically every day now. Oh, lucky me!

Your favorite independent bookstore:
We have so many wonderful independents in the Twin Cities. But I’m known as a mystery writer, and the fine mystery bookstore we have here, one of the best in the nation, is Once Upon A Crime.

The last book you raved about:
Every novel I’ve read by Fredrik Backman in my recent binge on his novels.

Your next book in ten words or less:
A poignant and compelling prequel to my Cork O’Connor series.
Bookseller of the Week
Our guest this week, William Kent Krueger, chose his favorite local indie—Once Upon a Crime in Uptown Minneapolis—as our featured independent bookseller of the week. Get 10% off this week on Kent's THIS TENDER LAND and ORDINARY GRACE as well as on recent and upcoming books by the Fab Five.  SHOP NOW!
Up Close and Personal with Mary Alice Monroe

            In our world, Final Pass Pages is the last look we authors get at our book before it goes back to the publisher—and print. It's a gulp moment to push send! Which I just did for my upcoming novel THE SUMMER OF LOST AND FOUND.
I was especially nervous about this book that I wrote it in real time, a new experience for me. What a roller coaster journey it has been! I let go of a process that has worked for me for twenty years. Usually, I write from a story structure. I know themes, plot, climax and resolution, and often the ending before I write the first word. Yes, I did begin this book with an outline. However, the problem came when living through the weeks and months of the year, my perspective kept changing! What I wanted to say in April, was different in July, and changed again in November. Rewrite followed rewrite. I pulled my hair out, cursed the characters, the story, swore I would never do this again. It was a long, arduous process. 
And now I’ve read my novel for the last time, tweaked the final words--and I’m euphoric. I did it! I sharpened and shared my perspective of the past summer through the voices of the Rutledge family, especially two women from different generations: Cara and Linnea. And isn’t that the power of story? It is a moment of intense satisfaction, pride, and yes, relief! This morning I pushed send, and now I wait with you to hold the book in my hand in May. Oh, my… it will be here before you know it. This is the time I wring my hands, pray, and hold my breath in hope you love it as much as I do.
 #thesummeroflostandfound May 11, 2021
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Latest News From "The Fab Five"

MARY ALICE MONROE is beginning a new book! And other than admit she’s excited, that’s all she’s going to say about that!

For Career Authors website, PATTI CALLAHAN HENRY penned an article about how writing the Audible Original, Wild Swan changed some of the ways she edits. And she’s really honored that the AJC chose Surviving Savannah as an anticipated read for 2021.

MARY KAY ANDREWS is looking forward to joining The Friends and Fiction Book Club on Monday, Jan. 18th to discuss her novel LADIES' NIGHT. And in the meantime, she's busy tracking down treasure to furnish her latest Tybee Island vacation rental, Coquina Cottage. You can follow her progress on her Instagram feed

KRISTIN HARMEL just finished reading Under the Southern SkyKristy's novel, which comes out in April—and she is not afraid to admit that she sobbed like a baby. She wants everyone to know that this book is incredible—and that when you buy it, you should also buy tissues. (But rest assured, you'll be crying happy tears.)

KRISTY WOODSON HARVEY is so excited that her forthcoming novel Under the Southern Sky, is one of Bookstr's "8 Most Anticipated Reads of 2021"!
Debut Spotlight

In this intimate debut novel, written with deep compassion and sharp wit, a woman returns to her small southern hometown in the wake of her mother's sudden death, only to find the past upended by stunning family secrets. The Sweet Taste of Muscadines has been called “a deeply moving work of Southern fiction . . . a story to remember long after the last page is turned.” By Susan Wiggs, the 1 New York Times bestselling author of The Lost and Found Bookshop. Meet the author next week on F&F as she pops in on our Jan 20th episode all about debuts and getting our start as an author!
Listen to the F&F Podcast!
Our very first audio-only episode—produced exclusively for the F&F Podcast—is NOW LIVE!

LISTEN NOW to our first episode on:
or wherever you listen to podcasts.

We hope you will have a listen as Mary Kay and Kristin sit down with two incredible independent booksellers. They talked to Tim Ehrenberg of Nantucket Book Partners (Mitchell's Book Corner & Nantucket Bookworks) and to Laura Taylor of Oxford Exchange in Tampa, FL. Hear all about their stores, the creative ways they are finding to not just survive but thrive during the pandemic, the importance of shopping local, and their favorite recent reads. We hope you enjoy it. If you do, please subscribe, rate, share, and leave a review. We might feature your review on a future episode! 
News from the F&F Official Book Club
We are excited to announce our schedule through August 2021. Mark your calendars!

Monday, January 18 at 7 PM Eastern we will discuss Ladies Night with Mary Kay Andrews. RSVP HERE

Feb. 15: The Winemaker's Wife with Kristin Harmel, plus a guest appearance by Patti Callahan Henry to preview Surviving Savannah
March 15: The Book Club with Mary Alice Monroe, plus a guest appearance by Kristy Woodson Harvey to preview Under the Southern Sky
April 19: Surviving Savannah with Patti Callahan Henry
May 17: Under the Southern Sky with Kristy Woodson Harvey
June 21: The Newcomer with Mary Kay Andrews
July 19: The Summer of Lost and Found with Mary Alice Monroe
Aug. 16: The Forest of Vanishing Stars with Kristin Harmel

Did you miss our book club discussion of A Lowcountry Christmas with Mary Alice Monroe on December 21st? It was a blast! Click here for the replay.

We would love to have you!