Sunday, February 10, 2013

Big Chicken

Everyone is skewered, but not the chicken.
A few years ago, a very funny novelist who uses the pseudonym Sijin Belle spent quality time in Pittsburgh writing her debut novel about the poultry industry (obviously not set in Pittsburgh). I can say without fear of contradiction that "Big Chicken" (Selwa Press) is funnier than Dave Barry's latest novel, but the fact it is on a small press means it will likely be overlooked -- a pity since Ms. Belle knows her way around Southern grotesqueries and corporate intrigue.  Tony Norman - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

If you hate factory farming but can't resist chicken wings, if you deplore corporate avarice,
but have to work for a living, and if you have an abiding love-hate relationship with the Deep South - you will definitely savor "Big Chicken".
"Another lurid addition to the annals of wacko crime and zany murder fiction, to be avoided at all costs by the serious reader." 
          Jonathan Fanzeni
"More fun than playing Beer Pong with Billy Carter."
          Preston Beekus
"Loathe Mississippi? Well, #&*% you and the Big Chicken you rode in on!"
          Rep. Clyde Munger IV (Ret.), Halflitre, Mississippi


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Pamela's Song: Love, Loss, Rock & Roll

Dreams Begin Where Memory Ends
Ethereal and profane, poignant and terrifying, Pamela’s Song is the story of a pretty young woman who had almost perfect love in her hand, only to lose it in a moment. Her voice will echo around in your mind long after the words are gone.
For excerpts and video clips of the great performances
of Rock & Roll visit Pamela's

Friday, July 6, 2012

Underground in Arabia

Who knew what wonders were beneath the Arabian desert?
One day in 1983 while walking in the desert north of Riyadh, John Pint came upon a hole the size of a serving plate, so he and his friend Dave Peters chiseled it open enough to squeeze into. Dangling from thirty feet of rope attached to the bumper of a truck, they descended into a cavern that had gone unnoticed for all of time. Thus began John Pint’s twenty-five-year odyssey into the deepest, darkest passages underground in Arabia. 
To read more about this book click here - Underground in Arabia
(To the right is a short video about The Whistling Teapot Cave.)

Saturday, April 14, 2012

The Arab War

       In World War I, with the failure at Gallipoli, the British high command decided to open a 
second front against the Ottomans by encouraging the Arab Revolt led by the Sharif of Mecca.
The nerve center of this effort was the Arab Bureau; their classified house organ was the Arab
Bulletin. Excerpted from these reports are Miss Bell's contributions to this secret publication; they
manifest her prescience, her piercing intelligence and her superb command of the English language.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Dhahran Fables: Fiesta Room Tales

Teenage life in 1950s Dhahran, Saudi Arabia as
told by three who lived it and will never forget.
This book of stories tells how really slow it was to be a teenager in Dhahran in the early 50s when there wasn't radio or TV or even any grass or trees in the camp. Still the kids managed as kids do with house parties and trips to the beach and fooling around in the desert. It was an era when the boys greased their hair back into a DA, rolled up the sleeves of their t-shirts or folded up their shirt collars and the girls still wore crinolines, poodle sweaters, wide belts and jaunty scarves around their necks and they all did their best to avoid adult scrutiny at all costs. Sounds familiar? The more things change the more they are the same and we will all recognize ourselves within these tales of the distant past.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Ibn Saud: King by Conquest

This book provides an excellent account of the individual
driving force behind the creation of Saudi Arabia. Almost
certainly, it is the very best biography of Ibn Saud that
we will ever have. John P. Jones, author and critic
Riyadh: January 16th, 1902. A 23 year-old prince leads a handful of men to reclaim his father's kingdom from the oppressive reign of the Al Rashid and their overseer, Ajlan. Hours later Ajlan is dead and Ibn Saud, flushed with victory, struts the battlements of the Mismak fortress shouting to the people in the street below, "Who is on my side? Who? Your own prince is with you again!" 
     So begins this masterful biography of Abdul Aziz ibn Saud: visionary, warrior, and founding father. A man who imposed his will on the Arabian peninsula to transform Saudi Arabia into a global power. Ibn Saud's life story reads like an adventure novel, but it is absolutely true.