Heading to Hawaii anytime soon? Skip the Luau and try The Friends of the Library of Hawaii bookstore sale in Kakaako on the Island of Oahu! While living 14 years on the islands, I looked forward to this annual event like Christmas or a birthday. One of the oldest continuously running book sales in the … Continue reading A 70-year old Hawaiian tradition; one I sorely miss!
March 24th brings us National Cocktail Day. And while Detective Chan was a teetotaler; me--not so much. So with my given name Luigi, I thought we might pause to discover a savory sipper of the same name..."The Luigi!" I first came across The Luigi recipe in a mystery read, Murder on a Mystery Tour (1987) by Marian Babson. … Continue reading This March celebrate National Cocktail Day with a “Luigi”
He's not often associated with Charlie Chan these days, but for many Actor James Hong holds a special place in the detective's career! At 92-years young (February 22d) actor, voice actor, producer and director James Hong is to acting as Tony Bennett is to singing. He's been around-the-block, easily recognized and has earned a plethora … Continue reading A special birthday wish to Charlie Chan Series Actor James Hong!
Impossible? Or perhaps inevitable we will see the return of Charlie Chan on film? If you think no one’s thought about it here are two attempts (though they never came about) to feature Russell Wong (1997) and Lucy Liu (2006) as additions to the Chan Family. But I'll be candid! I’m not speaking of the … Continue reading Who’s your pick to next portray Charlie Chan at the box office?
Season Greetings! It's been a tough year for everyone (I know of three Charlie Chan events at Universities or Libraries cancelled.) Still, our favorite detective managed to make his presence known and accumulate some interesting accolades this year! Here's is what you'll find inside, The Charlie Chan Family Home 2020 Newsletter: As always our newsletter … Continue reading The Charlie Chan Family Home 2020 Newsletter
Haven't we all brooded over a holiday season or two, deep with regret Author Earl Derr Biggers never got the chance to pen a Charlie Chan Christmas mystery? OK, perhaps that never topped your list of major heartbreaks, but it's still a shame. I mean who doesn't love a good holiday "who done it?" Good … Continue reading The Man Who Murdered Santa Claus – A Charlie Chan mystery!
Well, it's here! November 3d, 2020 is just days away; time for what promises to be quite the onerous general election. But don't believe for a second that a president, congressional delegates, governors and local ballot issues are the only choices requiring your attention at the polls this month! Each month, since March 2003, Webmaster … Continue reading It’s November and Charlie Chan wants YOU at the polls!
This year the 51st Anniversary Bouchercon is being held Virtually, October 16 - 17, 2020 from Sacramento California. So I'm breaking my once-monthly blog rule to share my first time with you... The fall of 2012, I attended my first Bouchercon (famed world mystery convention.) I was ecstatic it was being held in my hometown … Continue reading Everyone remembers their first time! Mine–October 2012.
Last month I suggested four summertime reads, but ended on this note, “should a reader prefer all his or her murders served-up on one delicious plate, just read the fifth Charlie Chan novel, Charlie Chan Carries On (1930.)”
Here is a wonderful review by someone who has read that novel at least four times, and hails from the same hometown as Chan creator Earl Derr Biggers: Author Barbara Gregorich. Barbara is an author, lecturer, mystery fiction and writing instructor, and not only has she written numerous children’s books, poetry, baseball history, mysteries and more; after extensive research she released Biggers’ biography, Earl Derr Biggers: Charlie Chan’s Poppa (2018).
Like Barbara, I too must say this is probably my favorite story in the Chan series. Wait! Or was it the sixth novel Keeper of the Keys (1932), where Charlie experiences snow for the first time? Some decisions are just too tough to make!
When I was sixteen years old and first read Earl Derr Biggers’ six Charlie Chan novels, I loved each and every one, but my favorite was the fifth book, Charlie Chan Carries On. However, I couldn’t really say why.
What was it about this book that made it my favorite? Was it the fact that the story took place on an around-the-world cruise, and that this setting appealed to me? Or perhaps I loved the novelty of having one detective be the protagonist for the first half of the book, and another detective take over for the second half of the story.
Back in the 1990s, after I had already read each book twice, and was about to embark on reading each a third time, I did a lot of research on Earl Derr Biggers. This included reading all the correspondence between Biggers and his editor, David Laurance Chambers of…
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“Are you an ‘Eastsider’ or ‘Westsider’?” I often heard that question growing up in Cleveland, Ohio. As a young boy living in the “southern burbs” I never gave it much thought. It wasn’t until much later I realized it meant do you hail from the east- or west-side of the Cuyahoga River. The river divides … Continue reading North, South, East, or West, summertime sleuthing can be best!