Last week, Sara Paretsky was in town (briefly) and she gave a talk at West Brom Town Hall (organised by the lovely Paul of Sandwell Libraries) and a good time was had by all.
I was very impressed with the turnout - over a hundred people turned up to hear Sara talk about growing up in Kansas and how she came to write her latest book, Bleeding Kansas, set unsurprisingly in the state where she grew up. She then read two passages from the book, both of which were very good. Obviously other people thought so too as there were lots of people buying her books (I was there in my official capacity as bookseller to the masses) . A very interesting evening. Here's Sara answering the many questions from the floor after her talk.
She was a real sport, arriving slightly late (as she had been on the radio in London until 4pm), having had no dinner, she still talked for over an hour and a half, then signed books for a huge queue of people.
Regular readers will know that Sara is a longtime favourite of mine, the one who got me reading crime to start with, so meeting her was a bit of a thrill for me.
The venue, West Bromwich Town Hall, was lovely. I'd never been there before. It's a beautiful high Victorian building with a fantastic pipe organ. I meant to get a photo of it but I forgot. This one is from the West Brom walking tour website, and while it's good it doesn't really do justice to the colours and you can't really see the organ which is beautifully painted in green and gold. Next time I'm there I promise I'll do photos.