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Thursday, July 27, 2006

Happy Birthday Vic!



Thursday, 7 p.m., Women & Children First, 5233 N. Clark St.

“On the 50th birthday of V.I. Warshawski, the famous female sleuth in Sara Paretsky’s mystery novels, the author will lead the third annual scholarship awards presentation. The college scholarships will go to selected high school students who spent some time with homeless people. Students will read from their essays and Paretsky will sign copies of her novel, Ghost Country, about a homeless woman. There will also be birthday cake to celebrate Warshawski’s birthday.”

In honor of one of my favorite characters of all time in Fiction, P.I. V.I. Warshawski, and her happy day, here’s a little contest for you: send me an email with the word “GUMSHOE” in the subject line and the item you think you might find Vic knitting someday on a stakeout included in the body portion of the message…


WIN this Regia sock yarn to make some Cool Socks for your Gumshoes…

[Winner selected by Random Draw on Sunday…]

One of the greatest and happiest mysteries of my life is the connection that takes place when the circuit completes: take the cord of the written word and plug it into the socket of my brain.

And surprisingly (or not), one of the strongest hookups for me has been the novels of Sara Paretsky. She’s from here. I’m not from here. But I’ve been here long enough and have a job that throws me out on unexpected landscapes with abandon to the point I relate to Warshawki in a way that can only be described as uncanny.

One of my dearest friends is from Vic’s neighborhood and has taught me all about the difference between Chicago St. (near where I live) and S. South Chicago Ave. That’s right – South South – and that’s the world Warshawki is always going back to and getting lost and locked up with in her many detective adventures. It is a part of the city where if you didn’t grow up here, you would get lost in as soon as you got off at the Indy Ave exit.

Paretsky’s writing opens up the Region like no other – the incredible melting pot; the industrial wasteland of a landscape; the people who hang on to their heritage old and new with strength and continuity while trying to find the dream and survive the predators.

The very best thing I like about Warshawki is that she never gives up. Never takes the path of least resistance. Even when it might not be the wisest thing to do. Knock Knock…

I’m there.

8 responses to “Thursday, July 27, 2006”

  1. Karen B. says:

    That is why I have always thought of Chicago as a city of small towns. Each area holds fast to its own particular identity, though that identity occasionally shifts with time and taste.

    I’ve been many places, but I love this city!

  2. Jennifer says:

    I saw the movie a long time ago, but never read the novels. I’m going to look it up.

  3. Chris says:

    I love those books. Are you going to the talk tonight?? Lucky, lucky you.

  4. Terry says:

    Hmm, this author sounds pretty good! Gonna check out a book or two from the library – thanks for the tip (always! up for a good read). This is kinda an odd feeling – non yarn comment.:)

  5. Katie says:

    When I was a dorky college student, headed off to graduate school for a library degree, I wrote Ms. Paretsky a fan letter telling her how much V.I. meant to me – being such a strong, smart woman. And Ms. Paretsky actually wrote back – a personal letter. I treasured it. She is so fabulous.

  6. Thanks, Bonne, what a wonderful e-mail to wake up to. I love the idea of a detective knitting while on stake-out. V I is usually too impatient to sit still for anything, but knitting on stake-out might calm her down. I wonder what she’d make? I’m going to post the question on my website and let you know what suggestions people come up with.

  7. Bonne Marie says:

    OMG! Thanks so much for stopping by, Sara!

    I can’t wait to hear what people say – I’m thinking it will be quite entertaining! :)

  8. Sylvia says:

    Oh, I love Paretsky’s books! And Women and Children First is a truly fine bookstore. My DD enjoyed their story time very much.

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