December 1, 2012 11:12:17 PM
A few days ago, my friends Mary Beth Plant and Holly Jeter stopped by for a visit. They had not been in our house for a very long time. "Mary Beth," asked Holly, "what don't you see in here?"
(I thought he missed my Cordelia dog, who died this summer. But, no.) He was amazed that there was no television in the living room.
"Look around," he said, "There are piles of books and magazines everywhere. Chris and Adele don't watch television!"
Actually, we do watch television. But that beast is relegated to one room, in the back of the house. The living room is strictly for entertaining ... and for reading.
Those piles are certainly nothing to be proud of. They are precarious stacks of print and poetry that threaten to some day touch the ceiling and come crashing down on our hard heads. (Please call me a collector, not a hoarder.) They are less representative of our great intellect and more an homage to our pathetic housekeeping.
However, these are wonderful days for readers. The stores are filled with books to read and books to give. This is also a very good time for some writers who call the Golden Triangle home.
"The Three Day Affair," by Michael Kardos, takes the reader on a harrowing adventure. (You may know him as a professor at Mississippi State University.) His recently released novel is about a group of 30-something friends who make one foolish decision, which leads to a series of insane choices. There are twists and turns and an unexpected ending. (No, I will not give it away!)
I could not put it down. But don't take my word for it. "The Three Day Affair" has been named as one of Esquire's Best Books of 2012 and one of Publishers Weekly's Best Books of Fall 2012.
I hope you have had a chance to read Mississippi University for Women's own Michael Smith's book, "The Hands of Strangers." This is the story of a daughter's abduction and the ways her parents deal with that horror. Although it was only released last year, there are few copies left, now considered collectors' items.
Judging from my mail, there are a lot of people who are very interested in ghosts. Author Jill Pascoe will be signing copies of her book, "Mississippi's Haunted Mansions," today, from 3 to 6 p.m., at the Lincoln Home, 714 Third Ave. S. Five of our area's mansions are included.
Brenda Caradine, hostess for the book signing, has also invited members of our own ghost hunting group, GEMS (Ghostly Encounters of Mississippi). The event is free and open to the public. This would be a great opportunity to pick up a book with local interest for some folks on your gift list and ask questions of real ghost hunters. That is, if you are brave enough.
Books make a great Christmas gift. And think how much more special they are when signed by the author. Both Michael Smith and Michael Kardos are part of out area's living legacy. Someday we will be able to say, "I read their wonderful first books and have the signatures to prove it."
Adele Elliott, a New Orleans native, moved to Columbus after Hurricane Katrina.