LASR Anniversary: Nikki Andrews – Guest Blog and Giveaway

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Leave a comment on THIS POST for a chance to win an additional prize – Commenters will be eligible to have their names (or names of their choosing) appear as minor characters in Nikki’s next book, A Thousand Words.

Summer Reading

“I cannot live without books.”
~Thomas Jefferson

Like most of you, I suspect, I read constantly. My parents used to tell me I’d ruin my eyes if I kept reading so much. I’d say they were right, except that my brother, who doesn’t read much, has the same vision problems I do.

Anyway, my days are framed in books, morning to night, 24/7/365. I’ll read anytime, anyplace, but there is something special about summer reading. Those long golden evenings call to me. Even more, I especially love the clear cool mornings, when I can sneak out of bed and spend an hour in my current alternative world before I have to face the demands of the day.

Which brings to mind an adventure. When I was a kid, I not only snuck out of bed, I snuck out of the house. I had a private little nook just out of sight from the house, and I’d wake at first light, tiptoe outside, and read until the neighbor let his dog out. That was my signal to slip back into bed before my household roused. To this day, I don’t believe anyone ever suspected. The memory is very sweet.

A couple years later, in a new home, I tried the same trick. It was a bit harder, because my dad had installed heavier locks after a rash of burglaries in the neighborhood. Still, the call of the early summer morning couldn’t be denied, and I hid in the dense shrubs at the back of the yard, engrossed in a book. Was it still The Black Stallion, or had I graduated to Ray Bradbury? I don’t remember.

I do, however, remember the uproar when my dad got up early and discovered the unlocked door. Alarums and excursions! Roust my siblings, scream and shout, call the cops! I stuck my finger in my book and ambled inside. Sheesh, I was right outside the door. Can’t a gal get some privacy?

Dad grounded me for a week. At thirteen, I welcomed the extra time to read, even if I had to do it in my bedroom instead of out on the grass. Oh, and I had to wash the dishes every night. Fortunately, I’d grown tall enough to prop a book on the windowsill above the sink. As I said, I’ll read anytime, anyplace.

perf5.000x8.000.inddWhen a long-lost painting turns up at Brush & Bevel, a decade-old mystery is reawakened. What really happened to artist Jerry Berger and his model Abby Bingham? Was it a murder-suicide, as the police proclaim, or was it something far more sinister?

Gallery owner Ginny Brent and her loyal staffers, Sue Bradley and Elsie Kimball, each take a different path to unravel the mystery. Together, their discoveries start to form a cohesive whole. But as they get closer to the solution, they discover to their horror that art is not the only thing that can be framed.

About the Author: Nikki Andrews has worked as a picture framer, craft store clerk, and administrative assistant, but in her real life she is a writer, editor, and songmaker. She is a member of Talespinners and the New Hampshire Writers Project, and has published two science fiction novels and several short stories. When she’s not at her desk, she might be releasing salmon fry on the Piscataquog River, making jams or sweaters, or exploring her surroundings on foot, bike or snowshoe.
She lives near a waterfall in New Hampshire with her wonderful husband, a possessive cat, and assorted wildlife.

Website ~ Blog ~ Twitter

By the book at Amazon.

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Comments

  1. I could just picture your illicit morning rendevous under a shrub! Loved summer mornings and summer hours spent at the library and hauling home tons of books to read!

    • And in the summertime, the bookmobile came to my neighborhood, and I could take out as many books as I wanted. And I could carry a lot of books. I remember begging my parents to take me out west so I could see a wildflower shown in a Golden Guide. Oh, the places books took me.

  2. Hi, Nikki,

    I’ve always been a reader as well. My mother was concerned that I spent too much time reading books. Framed sounds like a wonderful novel. Wishing you much success.

  3. Enjoyed your blog post. I remember having a favorite reading spot outside on a swing below my house where I’d avidly read Nancy Drew mysteries or Little House on the Prairie books. What fun!

  4. amy bowens says:

    Ever since I was little I always enjoyed reading as well. My favorite was sitting outside in the fall where the weather was starting to change just like the leaves and still is my favorite time to read, but like you I will read anywhere. After you got caught outside did you ever do it again? I loved the book blurb and also looking for a great read. Thanks for sharing.

    • Hi Amy! Great question. Yes, I continued to read outside, but once my parents knew about it, it lost some of its zest. Forbidden fruits much? I love the autumn as well. Thanks for commenting.

  5. Great post, Nikki. I suspect every writer is a reader–I certainly am. I usually have 3 books going at the same time: one at home, one on the dock and one in the car (hey–I only read when traffic stops!) Having read and reviewed FRAMED, I have to say, it is a great book for any season. Thanks for posting!

    • Thank you for your kind words, Susan. I enjoyed A RED RED ROSE and I’m looking forward to BENEATH THE STONES! I suspect you’re right, and that reading is one of the ways we learn to write. We observe, practice, and innovate. Just like painters, musicians, actors, mothers…

      Glad you popped in.

  6. Hi Nikki,

    I’m a person who loves to read as well, though I don’t quite get as many reading hours as I used to. With spending all day and some of the evening writing, editing, or marketing, I’m ready to step away from the screen/devices in the evening. Trips, though, those are my reading oases these days. I love to load up my kindle with great reads for trips.

    • Trips are a great time to read, Maggie, and I agree about all the screen time we need to put in. For my pleasure reading I prefer tangible books; they’re easier on my eyes and don’t need charging up. Unfortunately, reading in the car makes me sick, so I use that time to knit.
      I’m glad you stopped in.

  7. i still like that. Read Read and Read. Got in trouble with my parents because i spent more Time cooped up in my room. By the way, nice review. always loved good mysteries. This one does sound like a good one.

    • Hi Salisa. The thing about reading is, we’re never “cooped up” while doing it. We’re off having adventures. I will never get to Mars or sail the Pacific on a raft, but with books I can have those experiences.

  8. And the winner is: Amy Bowens! Congratulations, Amy.
    Please get in touch with me at nikkiandrewsbooks (at) gmail (dot) com so we can discuss this.
    Nikki

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