Maybe it was the nasty head cold I've been nursing for the last couple of days but I had this very strange experience at the used book sale yesterday. As I poked through boxes and scanned shelves for titles and authors, I felt like there was a whole group of people looking over my shoulder.
Several Long Arm Westerns had David Cranmer whispering in my ear, "Are they written by James Reasoner?"
"Shhh, David, I'm looking for Luke Short today. And no, I don't think they're James' books."
There were six or seven thin hardback volumes of John Gardner's version of James, James Bond that had Gerald So looking over my shoulder, but I resisted, remembering that I wasn't a James Bond fan. Bill Crider poked me in the ribs when I picked up a 1978 issue of Galaxy magazine. That one I brought home along with a 1990 issue of Analog.
The Rare Birds from Rara-Avis were shouting, "This one. No, this one." Going to a book sale with them? You could go broke. But I did pick up some Michael Connelly's. "Black Light" by Stephen Hunter. "Shutter's Island" by Lehane. And a book by William X Kienzle, "Masquerade" which I'm pretty sure was mentioned there. Of course, they all groaned when I grabbed a Mrs. Polifax novel by Dorothy Gilman. Hey, a girl can't read all that dark stuff without coming up for a breath of fresh air.
Sadly, I left behind a stack of Earle Stanley Gardner's and an entire collection of Dortmunder's by Westlake.
I did find one anthology of horror shorts that I couldn't resist called "Cutting Edge" which looks superb. One book that I tossed in my bag, because Ed Gorman said Charlotte Armstrong was an excellent writer, was "The Balloon Man". He's right! I'm only on page 50 and wishing the whole world would disappear so I could just sit and read this book without interruption.
Driving home, I found myself grinning stupidly about the crowd I toured the sale with, realizing that I know these people more by what they read and write than by who they actually are. The joys of the Internet - bringing us closer, one book at a time.