Posted in Uncategorized, tagged bands, darfur, extraordinary rendition band, harvard square, honk, nomadrights.org, oktoberfest, postal service, puppeteers co-operative, puppets, somerville, The Institute for Infinitely Small Things, tibet, unions, wisconsin on October 2, 2011 |
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We went to Honk! in Somerville today. A few uncomfortable-looking masons and many counterculture bands marched to Harvard Square. It was a hoot. So nice to see these offbeat ’60s types are still springing up. All is not lost! The name of one band may give you a sense of where they are coming from: The Extraordinary Rendition Band. The Institute for Infinitely Small Things joined forces with the Occupy Boston contingent.
Represented below are Nomad Rights (a Tibetan group), unions (including the Postal Service), Darfur activists, and the Puppeteers Co-operative.
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Posted in Uncategorized, tagged buddhism, china trade, colin cotterill, coroner's lunch, corpse in the koryo, eliot pattison, james church, laos, lydia chin, north korea, Qiu Xiaolong, s.j. rozan, skull mantra, thailand, tibet on August 3, 2011 |
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We read a lot of mysteries in our house. We especially like stories set in places we don’t know much about, although my husband enjoyed the Qiu Xiaolong books because he had lived in Shanghai himself.
I just finished a mystery by James Church (pseudonym for an author who is a “former Western intelligence officer”). He writes about North Korea. Since hardly anyone ever goes there, I tend to accept Church’s descriptions as better informed than your average Joe’s. And I find that whenever there’s a news story about that isolated country, it seems to mesh with the murder mysteries. The series starts with The Corpse in the Koryo.
Eliot Pattison’s Tibetan series, starting with The Skull Mantra, was a great hit with me — son John, too, until he got tired of exotic locales and started reading business books (snore). Pattison now alternates writing Tibetan mysteries with writing mysteries about pre-Revolution America and Indians. I heard him say at a book reading in Porter Square that he finds similarities in the spiritual beliefs and practices of Tibetan Buddhists and American Indians.
The wacky Colin Cotterill writes a series set in Laos, stating with The Coroner’s Lunch. We love his style and his unique characters. I’m just starting his new series, set in Thailand and featuring a malapropism of George W. Bush at the start of each chapter.
S.J. Rozan’s detective Lydia Chin operates mostly in New York’s Chinatown, but she does get to Hong Kong, and you can pick up a lot of Chinese culture from her. That series starts with China Trade.
Good novelists do a lot of research. You can get the flavor of a culture without going anywhere.
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