Friday, November 3, 2023

The Stolen Legacy: The Shocking True Story of Book Theft that Inspired a Novel by Kate Carlisle

Jenn McKinlay: I am delighted to have my dear friend and plot group buddy here with us today to share what inspired her latest (and greatest!) bibliophile mystery! Woo hoo!


Kate Carlisle: We mystery writers are a warped lot. We have to be—we put ourselves into the minds of people who do some pretty awful things. You know, like murder.

Yet, I can still be shocked by real-life villainy. Archivist and supposed booklover Greg Priore stole eight million dollars of rare books and ephemera from the antiquarian library he managed. It gets worse. With an X-acto knife, Priore cut out the heart of many precious books, removing maps and illustrations to sell to unwitting private collectors. How could he????


For almost 20 years, Priore fenced stolen goods through a rare book dealer. Both men pled guilty to their crimes.

The ending of the story—the sentencing—is perhaps the most shocking part. Zero jail time. Just a few years of house arrest followed by probation. (The judge explained to the New York Times that they weren’t incarcerated because of the coronavirus pandemic.)



When I read that story, I was as shocked and as disgusted as the rest of the book-loving community. But I was also inspired. (I told you we writers are warped!)

In my latest Bibliophile Mystery, The Twelve Books of Christmas, twelve rare and valuable books have mysteriously gone missing from the library of Castle MacKinnon, in Oddlochen, Scotland. Bookbinder Brooklyn Wainwright flies with her husband Derek Stone to Scotland to attend the holiday wedding of dear friends and to find the missing books. When she arrives, she’s disturbed to discover that the castle library is locked, and that the only person with a key is the librarian under whose watch the books went missing.


Unfortunately, as Brooklyn and Derek search the castle for the missing books, they come across something far more sinister—the body of a murder victim. Could the death and the book thefts be connected?

I’ll be at the Poisoned Pen Bookstore in Scottsdale, AZ on Saturday, November 5 at 2 pm, with Hannah Dennison and Michelle Hoffman. We’d love to see you there! If you can’t make it in person, you can purchase a signed copy of The Twelve Books of Christmas here: http://bit.ly/3JeFQj3


GIVEAWAY
For a chance to win a $25 gift card to Poisoned Pen Bookstore*, tell me about a favorite holiday tradition—any holiday! 
*The giveaway is open internationally, but if the winner is outside the US, the prize will be a $25 gift card to the bookstore of his or her choice, as long as it can be purchased online with a US credit card.


BUY NOW


ABOUT THE TWELVE BOOKS OF CHRISTMAS
The first ever Christmas mystery in the beloved New York Times bestselling Bibliophile Mystery series!

San Francisco book-restoration expert Brooklyn Wainwright and her hunky security-expert husband, Derek Stone, face a locked-room murder mystery during the holidays in Scotland.

In the middle of a wonderful Christmas holiday in Dharma, Brooklyn and Derek receive a frantic phone call from their dear friend Claire near Loch Ness, Scotland. The laird of the castle, Cameron MacKinnon, has just proposed to her! They plan to be married on New Year’s Day, and they want Derek and Brooklyn to be their witnesses. And while they’re visiting, Claire hopes that Brooklyn will be able to solve a little mystery that’s occurred in the castle library—twelve very rare, very important books have gone missing.

Once in Scotland, Brooklyn starts working on the mystery of the missing books but is soon distracted by all of the thumping and bumping noises she’s been hearing in the middle of the night. You’d think the Ghost of Christmas Past had taken up residence. But when one castle employee meets an untimely end and a guest is killed by an arrow through the heart, Brooklyn and Derek know this is not the work of any ghost. Now they must race to find a killer and a book thief before another murder occurs and their friends’ bright and happy future turns dark and deadly.


Kate Carlisle is the New York Times bestselling author of two ongoing series: the Bibliophile Mysteries featuring San Francisco bookbinder Brooklyn Wainwright, whose rare book restoration skills uncover old secrets, treachery and murder; and the Fixer-Upper Mysteries (as seen on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries), featuring Shannon Hammer, a home contractor who discovers not only skeletons in her neighbors' closets, but murder victims, too. Kate’s latest book is The Twelve Books of Christmas, Bibliophile Mystery 17.




83 comments:

  1. Congratulations, Kate, on your newest book . . . I’m looking forward to reading about Brooklyn’s latest case. [I am appalled at the lack of punishment for Greg Priore’s unconscionable crime; certainly this decision was a travesty of justice] . . . .

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    1. Thank you, Joan! I hope you'll love THE TWELVE BOOKS OF CHRISTMAS, and find the fictional comeuppance more satisfying than the real-life punishment turned out to be.

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  2. Love the book so much that I'm reading it again! Had to read Little Black Book again, too, for background purposes of course.

    One of my favorite holiday traditions that my parents used to have was giving all of us kids chocolate letter initials in the Dutch tradition. To this day, I still think Dutch chocolate is the best!

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    1. Dutch chocolate is da bomb! I got one of those chocolate letters for Christmas one year, though, and I found the size of it daunting. It took me a month to nibble my way through that K.

      I am so, so, so happy to hear that you loved THE TWELVE BOOKS OF CHRISTMAS, Donna! Thank you for letting me know.

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  3. Congrats on your newest book. I enjoy this series very much. Thanksgiving we watch the parades on tv and then go to the beach. There is this restaurant across the street from the beach and their dining room is on the 2nd floor where the views are amazing. The food is great too. This year they will be open again after Hurricane Ian. Then after dinner we take a walk to burn some of the calories or if it's hot enough we go for a swim. Thank you so much for this chance at your giveaway. pgenest57 at aol dot com

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    1. Oh, that sounds really lovely, Paula. I'm not a big cook, so Thanksgiving at a restaurant with an amazing view sounds perfect to me. And followed by a beach walk? Heaven!

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  4. Kate, I love this series and have already finished reading THE TWELVE BOOKS OF CHRISTMAS. Derek Stone is one of the best book boyfriends ever created. (JRW contributors, be sure to read book #1. You will fall for the Commander just like Brooklyn does.) I also just adore Brooklyn and her kooky, lovable family. Bonus, her parents go to Scotland with them!

    Our tradition is that one night of Hanukah is for giving books. The kids and now the grandkids love that!

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    1. Oh, that is the best tradition! I love that your grandkids love it, so you're helping to raise the next generation of readers. <3

      Thank you for letting me know that you loved THE TWELVE BOOKS OF CHRISTMAS! Derek is very dreamy. He's my book boyfriend, too. We can share him. ;) (Not sure how Brooklyn will feel about us sharing her boyfriend, but it's her own fault for marrying such an appealing guy.)

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  5. As a librarian, now retired, I love any books about books - and mysteries especially. I try to read at least one book about Christmas during the holidays. Living far from my family most of my adult life, it really lifts my spirits to read about others' trials and tribulations during that special time of year.

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    1. I do think that Christmas books can help give that family feeling of connection to those who are far from their own families during the holidays. I know writing a Christmas book gives me the warm sense of family. I'm writing another one now, as a matter of fact. The next Fixer-Upper Mystery will be a Christmas story, too, so I'm immersed in the holidays already.

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  6. I make homemade Holiday Crackers, Write jokes,draw pictures, color them beautifully, kinda custom for family馃槈 Collect all year paper towels rolls etc buy the snappers from Australia馃槀馃槄 put them together. Wrap them in color papers, tie 1 end begin stuffing for each holiday. I have been working on Thanksgiving 馃and Christmas馃巹. Joke's made0p
    accordingly馃槀馃槄 it began as a joke but as our large treasured older generation of family began passing it began to up a Space that actually brought us all closer. I added More jokes in each Cracker 3-4 now 4-5. So like when go around opening Christmas gifts 1at time allowing each 1 to open talk, have attention, time.. We do this with the cracker. You 'Snap' open read each joke see if anyone knows answers馃槀馃槄馃槀 we talk, laugh, look at drawings. Move onto The next person 'they' get their moment next and so on and so on. Unusually make way more than needed so we can begin day's early and after. . The Holidays never end馃挆

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    1. Oh my goodness, that is a PRECIOUS tradition! What a lot of effort for you, and a way to let your family know that you've been thinking of them all year. I love that you do it by recycling paper towel rolls. I'm so curious about the snappers you have to import for the project. What would I Google to see what you mean? I just tried "holiday snappers," and I got everything from a candy called Snappers to "Reindeer Poop" to lots of pictures of red snapper fish. LOL

      I just fell down the rabbit hole of "cracker snaps." I started writing this comment 15 minutes ago.

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    2. I think I want to try these crackers and I found this website, which has a link to a page of supplies, including snaps: https://www.oldenglishcrackers.com/how-to-make-christmas-crackers/ But really, my favorite holiday tradition is baking many types of Christmas cookies. The biscotti are always a hit! And a new Christmas mystery involving books sounds great! - Melanie

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    3. I'm tempted to try the crackers, too. I have to finish the darn book I'm working on before I can commit to anything else, but it sure looks fun.

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  7. Kate, I began reading very little it's a family legacy. I took my kid's out of school to go to author book signings when they were little.
    Indie book stores of Book's they love. Patricia Pollaco, Steven Kellogg.. all the time. they love book's and do it with their kid's now馃挆 I adore your Book's and website. Such fun secret doors.
    Can't wait to read this 馃帀 馃摎 CONGRATULATIONS

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    1. Thank you, Kath. <3 I created the Secret Room on my website as a gift to my readers, so it's always lovely to hear that all the bonus content is appreciated.

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  9. KATE: I am looking forward to reading a new Bibliophile mystery set during Christmas & in Scotland!!

    WOW, what Gregory Priore & John Schulman did for 20 years is shocking on so many levels. An archivist stealing valuable books is bad enough. But to cut out maps and illustrations from these rare books is the lowest form of theft. And to only get house arrest & probation sounds lame. It's already been three years...so what is Priore doing now?

    As for holiday traditions, after visiting Iceland in 2015 and 2017, I learned about J贸lab贸kafl贸冒, Iceland’s “Christmas book flood”. Icelanders curl up with steaming cups of hot chocolate and read long into the subarctic night on Christmas Eve. Since Ottawa, Ontario is usually cold & snowy, I re-read Craig's Johnson holiday novella, THE SPIRIT OF STEAMBOAT, on Christmas Eve.

    P.S. Sorry about the deleted post for the second day in a row...I'm obviously not working on full cylinders this week!

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    1. Thank you, Grace. I hope you'll love THE TWELVE BOOKS OF CHRISTMAS.

      J贸lab贸kafl贸冒 is a holiday tradition I think we can all get behind! What a cozy picture, to think of the whole family silently reading together beneath blankets, with a fire roaring in the fireplace.

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  10. Kate, using a bookbinder for a mystery series is a brilliant idea. You have put Brooklyn in position to solve some fascinating puzzles throughout! This one sounds deliciously sinister, too.

    We've had traditions come and go through the years, especially as my daughters blended their various partners into the family. Favorite dishes for the holiday meal have changed with likes and dislikes, etc. But the one thing that has not changed is we all open Christmas presents on Christmas Day, in our pajamas, one by one. Depending on who is hosting that year this activity is accompanied by coffee, hot chocolate, and/or mimosas, and usually, cinnamon rolls. If we are here in Cincinnati (all my kids live elsewhere), the rolls and hot drinks are served on Spode Christmas Tree plates and mugs gifted me over the years.

    Kate, Saturday is November 4. Is your event on Saturday or Sunday? Either way, I can't make up, but sure wish I could!

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    1. So sorry about that, Karen. The book signing is on Sunday, November 5. I'm on deadline, which means I have a severe case of Deadline Brain.

      I love how your family has blended your daughters' new partners' likes, dislikes, and traditions into your own. That must make them feel truly welcomed and valued.

      Thanks for the kind words about the Bibliophile Mysteries! They're a pleasure to write, and I love having a beloved classic book inspire the stories.

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  11. As a bookaholic, I love any book about books, and this sounds really engaging. Congratulations. As for favorite holidays and traditions: Christmas is always my favorite holiday, and I love trimming the tree and decorating and playing Christmas music while I do so. And cards! (Although, now that we are in Portugal, we are having to resort to e-cards.)

    This year we are going to add a new tradition: Here in Portugal there is a Christmas dessert called Alletria, which is somewhat of a pasta pudding. Here it is made with eggs as one of the ingredients, but it tastes exactly like an Indian dessert (again served on special holidays) called Payasam. Same ingredients, but minus the eggs. Portugal has a long history with India, so it's not surprising the Portuguese has some Indian recipes with a tweak. So now we are cooking Payasam at Christmas and sharing it with a few friends.

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    1. How fascinating, Elizabeth! I've never heard of a pasta pudding, but I would imagine that it's similar to rice or bread pudding. So fascinating to hear about holiday traditions around the world. That's one of the inspirations behind THE TWELVE BOOKS OF CHRISTMAS, in fact--I wanted to introduce American readers to the Scottish New Year tradition of Hogmanay.

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  12. That story of the stolen and mutiliated books reminds me of the song I heard a while back by John Hiatt called "Perfectly Good Guitar". It was about guitarists who smash their guitars. I love the song as a whole but here's the lyrical passage that stands out to me and you could apply it to people who destroy books:

    "There ought to be a law with no bail
    Smash a guitar, and you go to jail
    With no chance for early parole
    You don't get out till you get some soul"

    As for a favorite holiday tradition, mine doesn't happen anymore but for 40 years the extended family would gather at my grandparents (and then my aunt's house) on Christmas Eve. We'd have a big dinner and then there'd be all the presents for everyone to unwrap. As the family grew larger, Santa Claus would make an appearance for all the littlest kids.

    I loved taking part in it. As a kid it was of course because it meant presents! But as I got older, I just liked seeing all the family members that we didn't generally see much throughout the rest of the year. Plus...FOOD...lots and lots of glorious food! And my aunt made this chicken dish that I loved so much that one year I gave her my container for leftovers BEFORE we'd even started eating. I just had to make sure I got some to take home (I always had a piece for breakfast after presents opening.

    But time moves on and as both my grandparents passed and then some family drama started making things tense, the gathering came to an end the same year (but not because of) my mom died.

    But the memories remain...the year we knew my grandfather was having his last Xmas with us, the great gifts through the years, introducing the foreign exchange students to the family's slightly warped traditions, my uncle's Jewish girlfriend being petrified because she thought we were going to make her sing Christmas songs, the year where we had to come dressed as our favorite Christmas character, the Yankee Swap which always turned into a comedy show and oh so many other things. Plus...again...FOOD, GLORIOUS FOOD!

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    1. Oh, and I forgot to mention the year we gave my grandmother exactly what she asked for as a Christmas present. She stopped letting everyone buy her gifts (except me) a few years prior, but then one year she didn't even let me buy her anything. She announced that unless we were going to give her a thousand dollars, she didn't want or need anything.

      CHALLENGE ACCEPTED. Each member of the family contributed to the goal and the following Christmas I got to hand her the box with exactly what she said. Yep, one thousand one dollar bills! HA!

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    2. Jay, love the grandmother story--she was a lucky woman to be surrounded by so much love! And wholeheartedly agree with John Hiatt's lyrics--for guitars and books!

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    3. Jay, I laughed at the guitar-smashing lyrics. The perfect analogy, really. It's hard to imagine anyone with a true love for something willfully destroying it. It makes their whole life a lie, really, because it demonstrates a lack of value for the thing they claim to love. I would feel the same way about someone embezzling from a charity. Tangible proof that they don't support the cause.

      How did your grandmother react to her treasure chest? Such a great story! I'm so sorry that your family doesn't gather anymore. That is a true loss.

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    4. Flora, thanks! :D

      Kate, my grandmother's reaction was a little "angry" and she tried to give it back until we told her we gave her exactly what she said we could. Then I chimed in with, "Grandma, if nothing else, you can buy us really good presents next year." That got a chuckle.

      An additional side story was my uncle going around to a bunch of banks to get the necessary dollar bills. But when he told the tellers why he was getting the bills, they all loved it.

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  13. congratulations Kate--I love it when mystery writers can punish a bad person on the page!

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  14. I just this morning got this book from the library (I must have been first on the list!). Since I am only on Book 7 of your Bibliophile books, should I save it, or is it a sort-of standalone Christmas book?
    Congratulations – I enjoy this series.
    As for Christmas traditions – there have been none since the pandemic. With no mixing with people, and then last year Jack’s sister died suddenly on Christmas Eve, we have not even put up a Christmas tree. We do put up lights and get a really big Poinsettia and tastefully add some sprinkles. Even the meal has changed from a big turkey to a lovely duck (my favourite), and with no naysayers around, we two can indulge in our favourite – plum pudding with hard sauce. I have no idea what this year will bring.

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    1. Huzzah for being first in queue! You can read the Bibliophile Mysteries out of order if you'd like. Each mystery is self-contained. That said, many readers prefer to read them in order because the relationships do develop. It's really up to your preference.

      I hope this Christmas will be a good one for you, Margo. Last year's must have been so painful and sad, with the loss of Jack's sister. The pandemic was rough, but I hope you'll find your way back to joy in the season.

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  15. Kate, this series is new to me but I cannot wait to dig in! Starting with the first book, of course!

    When I was growing up I was the eldest grandchild. My mother and father and her three sisters and their families would all gather at my grandparents' house to celebrate. My grandfather had a rural delivery mail route and besides the cartons of Chesterfields he was always given, as well as I don't know what all else, he got money! So he started a tradition of a little ceremony handing out that money to his grandchildren. Sometimes we each got a dollar; sometimes two. I always marveled at how amazing it was that he got just the right amount of tips that he could hand out to us. And as more grandchildren were added to the family, it still worked. Sometimes he started handing it out to the youngest child and sometimes he started with me and worked down to the youngest. I'll never forget a particular year that he had started with the youngest and when it came to me there was an extra dollar! Had he calculated wrong? Had the people on his route been extra generous? No idea, but I was thrilled with my bonus! When he retired, so did that tradition, but it lives on in my memory.

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  16. Congratulations, Kate! Christmas always meant my grandmother's nut roll. Tragically, she never passed down the recipe and we've never been able to recreate it.

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  17. Thanks Kate for posting the article from the NYT about the Carnegie Library Theft. I have printed it and plan to enjoy reading it at the coffee shop this morning!

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  18. I love Halloween. The street we live on is actually a circle--Bradford Circle. Every year the kids in the neighborhood, parade around in their costumes before going trick-or treating. This year my 2 year old grandson paraded around in his costume!

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  19. Congratulations on the new book in this fabulous series, Kate!

    Someone wrote a book about those scoundrels, and I heard the author speak at a local literary festival a few years ago. I was stunned. The non-jail sentence makes the crime even worse!

    After my divorce, my young teen sons and I decided to start a new tradition at Christmas, and we made homemade sushi. That carried on for a number of years and put a positive spin on a newly split family.

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  20. The thought of mutilating rare books made me feel physically suck, Kate! Your book sounds great. Scottish castle. Christmas. Yum

    As for traditions: granddaughters and I attend the Nutcracker every year. Jewish next door neighbors help decorate our tree. My group of friends come for a tea party. At Christmas itself We have the whole family here. 15 people. We open presents, one by one. Youngest to oldest
    Then a tradition brought from my family: at teatime we have tree presents. A small gift from the tree! ( only the small gifts seem to have become more elaborate these days) and guess who has to buy 15 presents times two? Right

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    1. Rhys, thank you for the reminder. We also have a tradition of taking the younger relatives to see the Nutcracker ballet every year. Love that your Jewish next door neighbors help decorate your tree. Love the idea of a small gift from the tree.

      Diana

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  21. Congratulations on the new book! A favorite holiday tradition is going to our local history museum and seeing the beautiful tree. ckmbeg (at) gmail (dot) com

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  22. Congratulations Kate! Wonderful series which I enjoy greatly. Each year a tradition for Chanukah we have a family party. This has been a delight for us for many years and even more so now with grandchildren. We have a table decorated with the menorah for lighting, chanukah gelt, latkes, and a yummy meal. We play games with the chanukah gelt and tell stories. This is special and meaningful.

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  23. Thank you for the warm welcome, Jenn! I'm always thrilled to visit Jungle Red. :)

    An update for everyone on the book signing at Poisoned Pen. . . unfortunately, Hannah Dennison has had a family emergency and won't be able to make the trip from England. Michelle Hoffman and I will still be there, though, and I'm very much looking forward to seeing you. Jenn and Paige Shelton will be there to do some rabble-rousing, as well.

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    1. I would love to attend this in person, but I will be tuning in virtually. I WILL get to The Poisoned Pen in person one day!

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  24. Although we had many traditions when they were small, the one tradition that seems to withstand the test of time and has continued now that my children are grown is having Christmas brunch featuring Mickey Mouse waffles with strawberries and whipped cream.

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    1. How fun! I also have a Mickey Mouse waffle iron, which I haul out when children are in the house.

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  25. I'm rapidly trying to remember if I have the Little Black Book - too many books and not enough times. Sigh. Traveling to Scotland during the holidays, castle, wedding - what's not to like? Just need to check out my shelves, I hate missing part of a series.

    Mom decorated our tree the on the Sunday closest to Christmas, unless that was Christmas Eve, then we decorated the Sunday before that. My sister enjoys our family's traditional oyster dressing the evening before Thanksgiving so there isn't so much food on Thanksgiving.

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  26. What a great book idea and i'm sure your villain will face a true comeuppance! One reason fiction is better than real life.
    I love hearing about other people's holiday traditions more than trying to keep ours going ;-) I don't like to cling on to them so tightly that we can't let them go. For years, our whole family wore coordinating Halloween costumes (Marvel superheroes, cops and robbers, Universal Pictures monsters etc) and then we'd take a silly family pic and use it for the Christmas holiday card. I liked that better than the formal posed family pics. Well, this year, the boys were really too old for trick or treat, so we let it go. A little sad, but times change.
    One that we have kept up that is very particular to our family is my husband and I watch Casablanca on Christmas Eve when we wrap presents. We started years ago when we wanted to put something on but both admitted to being "Christmas-ed out." Casablanca was a nice compromise as something we both knew well but don't get tired of watching. Now we look forward to it!

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  27. Can't wait to see you and Hannah on Sunday! Yay!

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  28. This sounds wonderful--and whoa, what a story. And I do wish I could be there at the Pen--what a group! And oh, I so remember your first book--I remember thinking: what a brilliant idea! And indeed, it is. Congratulations on your continuing wonderful success. Holiday tradition? Oysters rockefeller and champagne, ever since I was a little kid. Such a weird tradition, right? With no deeper meaning whatsoever except my parents started it. ANd so we have it. xx

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  29. KATE: Welcome to Jungle Reds. I preordered your Twelve Books of Christmas and look forward to reading the mystery set in Scotland.

    Looks like someone stole Rare Books from the Library. I remember several Brooklyn Wainwright mysteries where someone tried to steal a Rare Book. The world of Rare Books is a mystery to me. I once saw a bookbinding workshop at a Book Fair in San Francisco in 1992.

    Favorite holiday tradition? How do I choose? I love tree trimming parties where we decorate the Christmas tree. Another favorite is the "book flood" when we give books as gifts on Christmas Eve. And a little treat like eating a Candy Cane.

    Diana

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  30. Like Rhys, it makes me sick to think of those two getting away with their thefts all those years and getting a slap on the wrist as punishment. I'm looking forward to catching up with this series, Kate, and will especially enjoy a Christmas book during the holiday season.

    Our Christmas tradition was centered around the meal--my mom's cooking. We had a tree, gifts, all of that, but what mattered the most was sitting at the table groaning with food and watching my mom enjoy having family gathered together. She's been gone a long time, but I still try to provide a special meal for those I love.

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    1. Your mom would love that you've taken up the mantle of cooking the meal for your family, Flora. So many family traditions center around food and cooking. In our house, my husband is more of a cook than I, but I love to pour myself a glass of wine and cheer him on. And I'm a whiz at doing dishes.

      I hope you'll love THE TWELVE BOOKS OF CHRISTMAS. Reading it over the holidays sounds like the perfect decision.

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  31. This is a delightful series. Glad to hear there's another on the way.

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  32. Such fun to read this, Kate - I wrote a book inspired by THE MAP THIEF, Michael Blanding's true crime story about E. Forbes Smiley, a trusted map dealer who (like your guy) waltzed into places like Harvard Library's rare books section with an Xacto knife and waltzed out with a few antique maps literally up his sleeves. Putting your book on my TBR list!

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    1. Ugh. The dastardly devil! Clearly someone who loves money above all else. A villain at heart.

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  33. As kids, our house had a large mirror in the living room that we would put those window cling stickers on for every holiday. I still like decorating the tree (though it's a small tabletop one right now because I don't trust my cat) and making Christmas cookies and candy. We still open one present on Christmas Eve.

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    1. Oh, that's a fun way to decorate, with window clings on mirrors! I might need to do that in our house this year. Perhaps something fun on the bathroom mirrors to surprise my husband. I wonder if they make any that glow in the dark. LOL

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    2. Alicia, you're the random winner! Please email me via my website, KateCarlisle.com, by 11/11/23 to claim your $25 gift card. :)

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  34. So much fun, Kate! You had me at "castle" and "scotland!" This will be my Christmas treat.

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  35. Congratulations on the new book, Kate! It sounds the perfect book for bibliophile, mystery loving reader. I think those of us who truly love books are horrified at the mistreatment of books in whatever form it comes. I lent a hardcover with the jacket still on to a family member and it came back with the cover and some pages water-stained. Seems she took it to the pool with her to read it. I never said anything, but I never lent her a book that I wanted back again.

    In years past, we'd have Thanksgiving dinner at our house and later settle down to watch Planes, Trains, and Automobiles starring Steve Martin and John Candy. With Martin playing Neal, the uptight marketing executive and Candy playing Del, the shower curtain ring salesman, it's so hilarious. I don't know that I'll be able to watch it this year, with my son no longer here. I found a copy (I think I'd given him) of the movie in his belongings, and since I won't be busy fixing Thanksgiving dinner here this year, maybe I will allow myself to watch it and think of happier times.

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    1. I love that movie, too, Kathy! I haven't seen it in years. Perhaps it's time for a rewatch.

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  36. It is sickening that someone would pervert his job to enrich himself by destroying books. Let's hope karma takes care of him.
    It started late in our marriage but my husband goes all out and dresses up for Halloween. He has a monk's robe, face mask, skeletal hands gloves, the works! He will sit on the porch for the kids. Some come right up, some hang back, some question whether he's real. He has a great time handing out candy.

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  37. This sounds delightful. I remember avidly reading the Times reports on the original theft, trial, and not sure what to call the aftermath, miscarriage of justice? Hum.

    Our family is German in origin. Our Christmas traditions included Santa bringing the tree and decorating it - all but three ornaments. A rotund santa, a rotund elf, and the angel tree topper. The santa and elf were tucked into someone's stocking. The tree topper was the purview of the youngest (me) to place. All three ornaments had been brought from the old country by my grandparents before the turn of the 20th century. I can't imagine the logistics of getting the tree smuggled into the house and decorated while most of the family was at midnight mass. Things didn't always go according to plan when my uncles decided Christmas Eve would be the best time for a male bonding experience over highly alcoholic egg nogs. I remember one year my dad had to drill a hole in the ceiling to get that tree to straighten up. He swore, in the face of evidence to the contrary, it had been fine the night before!

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    1. He drilled a hole in the ceiling?!! I've heard jokes about that but never knew someone who actually did it. That egg nog was dangerous!

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  38. I actually GASPED when I read about the criminal cutting material out of rare books! It's just so offensive, and I can't believe they never got any prison time at all.

    On a happier note, THE TWELVE BOOKS OF CHRISTMAS looks delightful, and I always get excited when the Christmas mysteries start appearing on bookshelves!

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    1. Not just no jail time, but a very small fine in light of the value of what they stole. I wonder if they even regret their actions.

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  39. Congratulations on your new book, Kate! While I didn’t get to meet you at Bouchercon, I loved your interview with Jenn and you two cracking each other up!

    Christmas had lots of traditions throughout my childhood. My parents had one party a year - Christmas Eve. It started when we kids were little and they told their neighborhood friends to “come by for a drink after you’ve finished” assembling the bikes or setting out the presents from Santa. As we got older, we kids helped with the set up. We’d go to church, drive through Jack-in-the-Box for dinner and then be ready for the party to start around 10:30. The only part of that tradition that has endured within my family is the trip to Jack-in-the-Box! For some reason my husband and son have resurrected that so we go after church every year! (We live in a neighborhood known as Christmas Card Lane which has become a big deal for people to come see all of the Christmas “cards” — 4 x 8 painted boards with everything from Disney characters to religious themes to simple Happy Holidays. Because the three streets attract so many people, including horse drawn wagons, it’s pretty crowded. This goes on from the first weekend in December through Christmas Day. Trying to get into or out of your driveway can be problematic and it’s not uncommon to hear a ”Bah Humbug” or worse uttered! But it’s also very fun.). — Pat S

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    1. I just checked to see if there’s anything online to show or describe Christmas Card Lane in San Diego and found there’s a Wikipedia article! There’s probably some YouTube videos, too. I’m on my iPad so don’t know how or if I can cut/paste the links. Just Google Christmas Card Lane, San Diego, CA, if you’re interested.

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    2. Oh, I love the Christmas card idea, Pat! I wonder if there's a way I can work it into the book I'm working on. It would be a perfect fit for the story.

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  40. At least six of my replies have disappeared! Please know I'm responding to everyone, but I can't do it twice. LOL The internet gremlins are after me.

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  41. Congratulations on your new release, I'm looking forward to reading the book. My favorite holiday tradition is baking Christmas cookies with my Sister.

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    1. And one of my favorites is to eat Christmas cookies made by others. ;)

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  42. That's horrible about the man cutting up books. Too bad he and his crony didn't get long jail sentences!

    I still put out my Christmas decorations and have my Christmas tree. One thing I do is listen to my 30 + Christmas record albums between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day.

    Your book is requested from the library. I should get it soon.

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    1. I love that you pull out your beloved albums every year. Music has a way of transporting us immediately into the emotion of the song.

      Thanks for requesting THE TWELVE BOOKS OF CHRISTMAS from your library. I hope you'll love it!

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  43. I love ALL of your stories! Thank you for the very entertaining books. My favorite holiday tradition is actually a Halloween tradition. My husband and I dress up (this year we were an angel and a devil), go to the end of our driveway, spooky music included, and hand out candy out of a cauldron. The kids know now to look for us every year! So much fun!!!

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    1. Thank you so much for your kind words about my books. You must've been the angel. ;) <3

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  44. The book is wonderful, Kate! Bibliophile is one of my must-read series.

    My family is all about Christmas. We have started decorating already. One of our traditions is taking a small Christmas-related trip either just after Thanksgiving or in early December. This year we are going back to Callaway Gardens for their light displays. If you have never been there, I urge you to plan a trip. It is mind-bogglingly beautiful.

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    1. I just Googled it, and WOW, their light displays are spectacular. Enjoy your trip!

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  45. Christmas is my favorite holiday so there are many things I look forward to. One of my favorite family traditions is our family Christmas tea party.

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    1. I love a good tea party! There's a tea party scene in THE TWELVE BOOKS OF CHRISTMAS that is a major turning point in the mystery. Mostly because I wanted to have a scene in a Scottish tea room, one of the highlights of my own trips to Scotland.

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  46. The random winner is Alicia (no last name given). Alicia, please email me via my website, KateCarlisle.com, by 11/11/23 to claim your $25 gift card. :)

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