Friday, October 25, 2013

Jane Tesh

Jane Tesh is a retired media specialist and pianist for the Andy Griffith Playhouse in Mt. Airy, NC. She is the author of the Madeline Maclin Mysteries, A Case of Imagination, A Hard Bargain, and A Little Learning, featuring an ex-beauty queen turned detective and her con man husband, and the Grace Street Mysteries, Stolen Hearts, Mixed Signals, and the latest, Now You See It, featuring PI David Randall and the many Southern characters who live at 302 Grace Street.

Recently I asked the author about what she was reading. Tesh's reply:
In the Ununited Kingdom, magic is running out, and young foundling Jennifer Strange is in charge of the Kazam Mystical Arts Management, a hotel/employment agency for all the wizards and sorceresses who are gradually losing work. When Jennifer finds out she’s the last Dragonslayer and must kill the last dragon, which will release the beautiful unspoiled Dragonlands to a greedy population and start a war between two kingdoms, Jennifer, along with her faithful, hideous Quarkbeast, must solve all these problems, plus one more: Big Magic is coming, and no one has any idea what this means.

The Last Dragonslayer, the first in the Chronicles of Kazam, like all of Jasper Fforde’s work, has his trademark inventiveness, humor, and plot twists you never see coming. I have book #2, The Song of the Quarkbeast, to read next. Readers who enjoy literary wordplay and wildly imaginative plots will enjoy the Thursday Next series. Thursday, an intrepid young detective, finds she has the ability to Book Jump into the Book World, where all fictional characters are real. In Thursday’s first adventure, The Eyre Affair, someone has kidnapped Jane Eyre from her book, which can’t go on until she’s found. Fforde’s Nursery Crime series features detectives Jack Spratt and Mary Mary. My favorite is The Big Over Easy. Did Humpty Dumpty fall—or was he pushed? And perhaps Fforde’s most intriguing series begins with Shades of Grey, in which your status in life is determined by what color you can see. Eddie Russet, a Red, gets in trouble when he meets the intriguing Jane Grey, a member of the lowest class.

I had the opportunity to hear Jasper Fforde speak at a local bookstore, and he is just as entertaining a speaker as he is a writer. The only problem I have with him is he doesn’t write fast enough to suit me. I can’t wait for his next book!
Visit Jane Tesh's website.

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Jane Tesh and Winkie.

The Page 69 Test: Now You See It.

--Marshal Zeringue