Four years ago, Jim and I moved to Glendale, Arizona, after living in Florida for eighteen years. I loved my staff, and my library branch (which has since closed), and my other library friends. Other than that, there has never been anything I missed about Florida.
Arizona fits our lifestyle. And, our home in Glendale is located perfectly to get on the loop. We can be in downtown Phoenix in twenty minutes. I can be at The Poisoned Pen Bookstore in Scottsdale in forty minutes.
We've enjoyed some highlights during those four years. Jim took me for a hot
air balloon ride over the Sonoran Desert. What an unforgettable experience! We both love sports. We've seen the Phoenix Suns four or five times, including a playoff game. We've been to Diamondbacks games, including two in one weekend, when they played the Detroit Tigers. We've even been to PIR to a NASCAR race. And, when Ohio State was here for the Fiesta Bowl, we were part of the pep rally at Chase Field.
And, it hasn't all been sports. We've seen Tim McGraw and Faith Hill in concert. We loved the Harry Connick, Jr. concert. And, the Desert Botanical Garden at Christmastime is magical. We've been there twice.
All of these were special Arizona experiences. And, then there's the authors. In Florida, if I wanted to meet and hear authors, I usually had to wait for a festival, our Lee County Reading Festival, or the Sarasota Book Festival. At least since I chaired the Authors Programming, I could try to bring in authors I wanted to see.
Now, we're lucky enough to live close enough to get to The Poisoned Pen or Changing Hands Bookstore. Changing Hands even brought in Barack Obama when he was on his book tour. We met him, shook hands, and told him we hoped he ran for President.
And, The Poisoned Pen hosts so many terrific mystery writers, I could go over there almost every day, if I lived closer. My library programmer, Bette Sharpe, and I even started a program called Authors@The Teague to bring authors to the west side of the Valley. Barbara Peters, owner of The Poisoned Pen, and her staff, have been very generous in assisting us with the programming.
That brings me to this month. This afternoon, I'm off to The Poisoned Pen to see Alafair Burke, author of Angel's Tip, and S.M. Stirling, author of the new science fiction book, The Scourge of God.
I'm frantically trying to finish Margaret Coel's Blood Memory. She's appearing at the Mesquite Public Library on Monday, and I'm going there with another library manager. On Wednesday, we're hosting an Authors@The Teague Program. Jennifer Lee Carrell will talk about her suspense novel, Interred with Their Bones. On Sept. 15, Betty Webb will lead the discussion of The Maltese Falcon for The Big Read program at our library. On the 20th, we'll host four mystery authors from Tucson, Elizabeth Gunn, Susan Cummins Miller, J.M. Hayes, and Margaret Falk (J. Carson Black).
We have a full schedule of authors for our library programs until the end of the year. And, we're already booking them for next year. How about Vicki Delaney and Deborah Turrell Atkinson for March? And, I'm still pleasantly surprised that we'll probably host Laura Lippman in April.
I love our life in Arizona - authors, sports, concerts, my job. For me, Arizona is the place to be.