Author Fair Presentation

Check out the King Library, San Jose CA Author Fair Sunday Nov. 15 from 2 to 5 p.m. Many Bay Area authors will participate, and I’ll be presenting my novel, #BoundariesALoveStory on one of the panels. Hope to see you there!

Many Bay Area authors will be presenting their books from 2 to 5 p.m.

Many Bay Area authors will be presenting their books from 2 to 5 p.m.Christine Z. Mason, Author

Christine Z. Mason, Author
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New Review of Boundaries

CHRISTINE Z. MASON’s BOUNDARIES is a tale filled with cross-roads as young love evolves and confronts challenges from life and family. Mason has birthed a series of characters with texture and finesse that draw you into their lives with their authenticity. You get to know them gradually and recognize their humanity each time you see your own reflection in their actions and circumstance. The beautiful prose lures you in and then whacks you upside-the-head with revelations and discoveries you hadn’t foreseen. There are plenty of “What the…?!” moments that keep you turning pages. Take my advice: turn the front cover ‘cause you won’t stop until the back cover closes.

Lu Magdaleno
ArtRocks247

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Reading Australian Authors in Australia

I’m in Australia for the month of July and had hoped to hear a favorite Aussie author or two read from new works while here. Couldn’t schedule any with my travels, though, so instead I’m reading a couple of novels by Tim Winton and Kate Grenville. Winton’s Eyrie is a dark story set on the west coast near Perth, about two people trying to relate to each other despite distrust and disillusionment, a theme that also plays out in Grenville’s The Idea of Perfection, which I read several years ago. My favorite Winton novels are The Riders and Dirt Music. I highly recommend them.

I’m currently reading Grenville’s The Secret River, about a young English bargeman who came to the eastern coast of Australia in 1806 after being convicted of petty theft. I’m planning to see some of the museums here that highlight the history of Australia, and also plan a trip out of Sydney by ferry to Cockatoo island, which housed many convicts in the distant past.

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My New Psychological/Legal Suspense Novel

I’ve just completed a new novel, this time a character-driven psychological/legal drama about Natalya Drummond, a widowed female attorney,  who is threatened by her vicious Death Row client. Quite a switch from Boundaries: A Love Story, but with some of the same themes: career vs. personal life, special challenges for mothers in the workplace (Natalya has a young daughter, born three months after Nat’s architect husband was killed in a suspicious hit-and-run accident); ethical and moral issues, relationships. I’m just starting to send it out now. I’m a former Death Penalty attorney, but this novel is definitely not autobiographical! The working title is Weighing the Truth.

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Boundaries: A Love Story and The Damnable Legacy of A Minister’s Wife at Books Inc. Palo Alto CA

Boundaries: A Love Story

Boundaries: A Love Story

G.Elizabeth Kretchmer's Damnable Legacy of A Minister's Wife

G.Elizabeth Kretchmer’s Damnable Legacy of A Minister’s Wife

 

The event at Books Inc. in Palo Alto went well, with a wonderful, appreciative audience for my novel, Boundaries: A Love Story and for my colleague, G. Elizabeth Kretchmer’s new novel, The Damnable Legacy of A Minister’s Wife. We were thrilled that so many people came for the readings and to share champagne and chocolates with us.

 

 

Book Tour in No. Calif.

Book Tour in No. Calif.

Christine Z. Mason signing Boundaries: A Love Story

Christine Z. Mason signing Boundaries: A Love Story

Christine Z. Mason reading Boundaries: A Love Story@ Books Inc.

Christine Z. Mason reading Boundaries: A Love Story@ Books Inc.

Gail and Chris meet for the first time at Crossroad Books

Gail and Chris meet for the first time at Crossroad Books

 

 

 

 

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Book Signing for The Mystery of Nan Madol

Will be signing The Mystery of Nan Madol  at Village House of Books, Los Gatos 12/13 noon to 2 with Linda Covella author of  The Castle Blues Quake. Raffles, treats. Great gifts for kids ages 8 to 12. Adventure, mystery, ghosts, voodoo, exotic places!

The Mystery of Nan Madol

Middle-grade novel mystery/adventure ages 8 to 12 by Christine Mason

The Castle Blues Quake by Linda Covella - middle-grade novel for ages 8 to 12

The Castle Blues Quake by Linda Covella – middle-grade novel for ages 8 to 12

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Joint Book Tour Starts in Watsonville 10/25

Here’s the latest from the Register-Pajaronian!

 

Page A2 — REGISTER-PAJARONIAN, Tuesday, Oct. 21, 2014

Writers will visit Crossroads Books Saturday

By ERIK CHALHOUB

OF THE REGISTER-PAJARONIAN

WATSONVILLE — Christine Mason and Gail Elizabeth Kretchmer have known each other for several years, the two authors frequently critiquing each other’s writing while chatting about their latest literary escapades.

Mason lives in Scotts Valley, while Kretchmer resides in Seattle, and the two have never met before in person— until now.

The two are preparing for their joint book tour to promote their new novels, and the California leg of the tour will begin at Crossroads Books, 1935 Main St. in Watsonville, on Saturday from 1-3 p.m.

Mason’s novel, “Boundaries: A Love Story,” was released last year but recently was published in paperback. Kretchmer’s debut novel, “The Damnable Legacy of a Minister’s Wife,” was recently released.

The authors’ “unusual history” goes beyond the fact that they have never met face-to-face before, Mason said. Both spent their early years living on the south side of Chicago, and eventually moved to the west coast. They are both full-time writers in their second careers: Kretchmer in business, Mason in legal profession.

The two eventually met online as members of the Pacific Northwest Writers’ Association.

“We excitedly await our first in-person meeting when Gail arrives from Seattle for the start of our collaborative tour,” Mason said.

The two novels focus on “strong women, family secrets and controversial choices,” Mason said. In particular, Kretchmer’s book emphasizes cancer and adoption, and with October being National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and November National Adoption Awareness Month, the timing of the book tour worked out well, Mason noted.

Mason said “Boundaries” began as a “very long short story” about forbidden relationships. However, several editors praised the story, and encouraged her to develop it into a full-length novel.

Using her background as a former lawyer inspired her to discuss legal issues in the novel, and some characters include a law professor, a first-year law student and a children’s rights attorney.

For Kretchmer, “The Damnable Legacy of a Minister’s Wife” is the result of “a lot of dreams and a lot of life experiences,” she said. Kretchmer, who has three adopted sons, found this to be the inspiration for the protagonist Lynn. Beth, the narrator, was born out of certain religious services Kretchmer has attended, during which she said she’s questioned whether the pastor’s spouse is “really as pure and perfect and faithful as she appears.”

The tour will continue Saturday from 5-6 p.m. at The Village House of Books in Los Gatos and Monday at 7 p.m. at Books Inc. in Palo Alto. Other locations will be announced, including stops at bookstores in Seattle in November.

For information, visit www.christinezmason.com and www.gekretchmer.com.

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Book Event for Two Novelists at Crossroads Books

The Damnable Legacy of a Minister's Wife

The Damnable Legacy of A Minister’s Wife

Gail Kretchmer and I will begin our joint book tour with a book-signing event at CROSSROADS BOOKS in Watsonville CA Saturday, October 25 from 1 to 3 p.m. Both our books feature strong women, family secrets, and controversial choices. Please come for this fun event!

Boundaries: A Love Story

Boundaries: A Love Story

 

 

 

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Mystery of Nan Madol and The Castle Blues Quake on sale for Halloween

Halloween Kids' Books on sale

Halloween Kids’ Books on sale

My kids’ book THE MYSTERY OF NAN MADOL and Linda Covella’s THE CASTLE BLUES QUAKE (both for ages 8-13) are great reads for Halloween. They’re on sale at CROSSROADS BOOKS in Watsonville, CA, VILLAGE HOUSE OF BOOKS in Los Gatos CA and BOOKSHOP SANTA CRUZ in Santa Cruz CA, as well as online. The Castle Blues Quake features a ghost, earthquakes, haunted house rides, poltergeist activity, and crystal ball readings. The Mystery of Nan Madol involves an ancient stone city inhabited by the spirits of the giants who built it, a medicine man with magical powers, the ghosts of the Little People who once lived on the island, and an astounding discovery during a dangerous trek through the jungles of Pohnpei in Micronesia.

 

 

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Another Review: Boundaries: A Love Story

BoundariesALoveStory cover

Here is a wonderful, in-depth new review of my new novel, BOUNDARIES: A LOVE  STORY:

Lloyd Russell, reviewer,  http://booksage.blogspot.com/

“Saturday, October 11, 2014

Boundaries, A Love Story, by Christine Z. Mason, ANOTHER Local Author

I want to start this post by saying something pretty emphatically:  I LOVE BEING A BOOK BLOGGER IN NORTHERN CALIFORNIA!!!!!  Okay, now that I’ve calmed down a bit, I will say the same thing more quietly.  We simply have an enormous amount of talented authors here that I get to meet and read and support.  Don’t get me wrong.  I still enjoy the national giants – Silva, Baldacci (I’m reading The Target, Will Robie #3, now), Picoult, Griffin, Iles, Coben, etc.  But I continually get introduced to local authors who can really write.  The latest is Christine Z. Mason.

How did I even meet Christine?  Funny you should ask.  She came to our VHOB Book Club (now Recycle Book Club) meeting in August to support Ellen Sussman.  I met her there, and we struck up an email conversation.  She offered to send me her book, and, because I’m very cheap, I jumped at the opportunity.  I am so glad I did!

I can never synopsize a book as well as Goodreads does.  Here’s what they say about Boundaries, A Love Story.

A novel about abandonment and passion, chronicling an imprudent but profound love, a maelstrom of family secrets, and a tragedy . . . This East Coast-West Coast tale tracks the conflicts between individual desire and societal expectations, weaving together the secrets, tragedies, and clandestine affairs of two families, one living in Maine, the other in California.

 This book started right out making me feel at home.  On page 6, the characters talk about Boston University, where my youngest, Lauren, went to school (and found her husband, Joe), and Boalt Hall, the law school on the University of California, Berkeley campus. Although I didn’t go to law school there (I went to Santa Clara University – are you surprised?  Shocked, even?), I did do my undergraduate there (I majored in history – not too useful in the job market, methinks).  It was fun to see those references.  Later in the book, there’s even a mention of Solano Avenue, in Berkeley, which is right around the corner from where I grew up in Albany (from ages 5 to 14).  I don’t need to be able to relate to geographical landmarks to enjoy a book, but I don’t dislike that either.

I like the title of this book a lot; because it’s about 1st cousins who start spending time together when he’s 22, and she’s only 16.  And it actually is about their love story.  Of course the title speaks for itself.  But this is about a lot more than just the 2 main characters, Kaia and Mark.  It’s also about Mark’s parents and Kaia’s parents and their “interactions.”  There are a couple of ancillary people, like Chandi, Kaia’s dad’s girlfriend, and Sig, Kaia’s best friend, both in the Bay Area.  But, really, it’s the 2 central figures and their 4 parents.

You know, I would think some plots are easier to write than others.  Christine writes about a very sensitive theme.  And she does it in such a way that it’s not creepy.  In fact, she paints some pictures that do have creepy elements to them.  But they do not extend to Mark and Kaia.  That relationship seems very natural.  I applaud her for that.

Here’s another news flash.  Boundaries is a 439-page book.  I did not tear up until page 384.  So, obviously, I didn’t emotionally connect with the characters.  WRONG!  I actually teared up quite a bit in the last 55 pages.  But even prior to that, I was very caught up with all of the principals.  In this case (don’t get used to it!), the tearing up did not reflect my emotional commitment.  Why is that?  Beats me. It just is what it is.  The only thing I can figure out is that some books take longer to build up to the waterworks than others!

The last piece of the book that I would like to mention is that I thoroughly enjoyed how Christine spoke in different voices.  Every time she did that, I was able to put myself in the shoes/person of the speaker.  And with all of the stuff that was going down, it gave me greater insight into what happened in each case.  Again, bravo, Christine.

Did I like Boundaries, A Love Story?  I most certainly did.  Would I recommend it? Absolutely.  Is there anybody I would suggest not read it?  Definitely not.  Pick it up and enjoy the high-end product of another Bay Area artist.  They’re all over the place, and Christine is one more to add to the group.  We are blessed, people.

 

PERSONAL NOTE:  There is a ton of excessive drinking in this book by various parents. My parents were like that.  They never were officially classified “alcoholics,” but I have no doubt that is exactly what they were.  I think that might be why I quit drinking in my early ’30’s.  So, the point of this little personal note is that I had more trouble reading about the drinking than I did any of the other goings-on. ”

 

 

 

 

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