Saturday, March 31, 2018

Kelli Stanley

Kelli Stanley is a critically-acclaimed, multiple award-winning author of crime fiction (novels and short stories). She makes her home in Dashiell Hammett’s San Francisco, a city she loves to write about.

Stanley's latest Miranda Corbie Mystery is City of Sharks.

Recently I asked the author about what she was reading. Her reply:
When a novel is gestating, I rarely read fiction—I don’t want to be subconsciously influenced. While I sometimes make exceptions to this rule, I’m never without at least one history book on my nightstand.

Today, that book is the brilliant American Colonies, by Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Alan Taylor.

The subtitle of this transcendental, urgent and at times transgressive work is “the settling of North America.” Not just the English-Pilgrim-Madison Avenue Americana history most of us over forty were saddled with in elementary school, but a wide view lens on Native American cultures and the various European powers who colonized, commodified and enslaved the land and the peoples of North America, the Caribbean and Africa.

Great non-fiction always gifts the reader with an “ah ha!” moment—that nano-second when your brain connects dots heretofore unthought and unexamined, and disparate threads knit together to make a whole. American Colonies is awash in such connective revelations … for example, you will understand how embedded racism is in this country and why it was (and still is) inculcated as a means of dividing lower economic classes into powerlessness. Though I was already familiar with this general premise, Taylor made me realize the depth and specific motivation for the cultivation of racism as the ultimate economic weapon.

Given the current and unprecedented conflict this country is in—fighting for independence not only from Russian interference and influence over our electoral process, but also for a cultural identity and political reality that does not espouse hatred or undermine human rights and democracy—American Colonies is a very timely read, and one I highly, highly recommend.
Visit Kelli Stanley's website.

Coffee with a Canine: Kelli Stanley & Bertie.

The Page 69 Test: City of Sharks.

My Book, The Movie: City of Sharks.

--Marshal Zeringue