Monday, November 7, 2016

Melodie Johnson Howe at Kepler's, with Help from Keith Raffel

I got the chance to see and meet Melodie Johnson Howe tonight at Kepler's.  She was interviewed by Keith Raffel, and Meg Waite Clayton was in the audience. As you know, Keith and Meg are 2 of my favorite local authors.  So, a good night for me.  I came for 2 main reasons - 1. Keith was doing the interviewing; 2) Nicole Hughes "suggested" that I go. I haven't read any of Melodie's books, but I picked up her new one, Hold A Scorpion, and will place it near the top of my TBR pile.

Melodie has a very interesting story to tell.  She was a Hollywood actress starting in her early 20s.  She appeared with Clint Eastwood (see below), Alan Alda, Richard Widmark, and James ("Jimmy") Caan, among others. And about 10 years later, while getting ready to audition for a TV show, she decided that she was done.  And she walked away from acting.  She had always been interested in writing, and she went ahead with that passion.  She obviously made the right choice since she was nominated for an Edgar!  Keith identified her writing as Noir, but placed in modern settings.  And, in fact, Melodie credits Raymond Chandler, Ross McDonald, Rex Stout, and other old-timey mystery writers as major influences.

It was a fun night.  And I am anxious to add another new author to my ever-expanding list.  Take a look at a few pics.

Melodie, Keith, Meg to the right; Andrew from Kepler's in the middle on theft

Melody talking with Keith

Melodie signing books (including mine!)

Meg, with Keith in the background

Melodie and Clint in Coogan's Bluff, 1968