Whiskey Road at Borders.

I’ve noticed Borders has started carrying copies of Whiskey Road. In NYC, it seems they only have one copy in each store. I’m tempted to be disappointed about that, but last month they weren’t carrying my book at all, so one copy is better than none at all.

If you haven’t picked up your copy of Whiskey Road yet, consider stopping by your local Borders to buy the one they have on the shelf. Maybe your city has more!

Our Weekly Review of Whiskey Road.

Here’s a little bit from Terri Schlichenmeyer’s great review of Whiskey Road in Our Weekly – “L.A.’s Premier Community Newspaper”

…author Karen Siplin gently draws you in to a cocktail of mystery, romance, and thriller with her spare, powerful style of writing. I liked the way Siplin keeps certain secrets from readers as we get to know Jimi and Caleb, and I liked the way even the most peripheral characters mean something. This is one of those books you share with friends; it’s a quick read and I think you’ll love it. This weekend, pour yourself into a comfortable chair, and give this novel a shot. Once you start “Whiskey Road”, it’s going to be hard not to finish it in one big gulp.

Sydney Pollack.

Have you ever felt great affection for a person you don’t know personally? I adore Sydney Pollack. Whenever I saw his name on a screen in a movie theater, I believed we were in good hands. He passed away yesterday at his home in Los Angeles.

I wanted to list every movie he’s been involved with, but there are just too many, so I’ll list the movies I believe are worth taking the time to watch again (or for the first time). A comprehensive list is available at The Internet Movie Database.

My favorites are starred. My absolute favorites, the movies I could watch over and over again, are bolded.

This Property is Condemned 1966 (director)
They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? 1969 (director)
**The Way We Were 1973 (director)
**Three Days of the Condor 1975 (director)
*The Electric Horseman 1979 (director, actor)
**Absence of Malice 1981 (director, producer)
Tootsie 1982 (director, producer, actor)
*Out of Africa 1985 (director, producer)
*White Palace 1990 (producer)
**Husbands and Wives 1992 (actor)
*Death Becomes Her 1992 (actor)
*The Player 1992 (actor)
The Firm 1993 (director)
Sabrina 1995 (director, producer)
**Sense & Sensibility 1995 (producer)
A Civil Action 1998 (actor)
The Talented Mr. Ripley 1999 (producer)
Eyes Wide Shut 1999 (actor)
Changing Lanes 2002 (actor)
The Interpreter 2005 (director, producer, actor)
**Michael Clayton 2007 (producer, actor)

Publication Day!

Today is the official pub date for my third novel, Whiskey Road: A Love Story. The book has actually been on the shelves at Barnes & Noble since Saturday. I signed some copies at the store on 68th Street and Broadway in New York City with help from a very nice store clerk named Michael.

I don’t have any appearances scheduled before the publishing panel at Bryant Park in June, but I’ll keep this space updated if anything changes.

As always, you can purchase Whiskey Road at Amazon.com, or any other online store like Barnes & Noble or Books-a-Million, if you can’t find a copy at your local bookstore. But it’s also cool if you ask a clerk for the book, because it puts it on their radar and maybe they’ll order a few!

Thanks for your support.

Whiskey Road Playlist.

My background in film production comes into play when I write novels. I visualize a lot of scenes to music and my books tend to unfold like movies in my brain.

If Whiskey Road: A Love Story was a movie, this would be its soundtrack:

Hurt – Johnny Cash
American Girl – Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
How Soon is Now – The Smiths
Fade Into You – Mazzy Star
The Living – Natalie Merchant
Into Dust – Mazzy Star
A Change is Gonna Come – Sam Cooke
Effigy – Natalie Merchant
Blood Red River – Beth Orton
Devil Song – Beth Orton
The First Time Ever I saw Your Face – Roberta Flack
Consummation – Nina Simone
I Hung My Head – Johnny Cash
I See A Darkness – Johnny Cash
Fire & Roses – Mimi
Run Baby Run – Sheryl Crow
Hold Back the Night – Sinead O’ Connor
Don’t Give Up On Me – Solomon Burke
I Shall Believe – Sheryl Crow
*Bold As Love – Jimi Hendrix

*Bold As Love was the original title of the novel.

The songs are in a kind of order that makes sense to me. For instance, when Caleb stops for Jimi at the side of the road in Darby (chapter 2), it happens to Mazzy Star’s Fade into You. And there’s totally a sex scene that plays out to Nina Simone’s Consummation. (Because what’s a love story without a bit of melodrama?)

There are other songs I associate with Whiskey Road that don’t really fit into the order of the book:

Breathe – Anna Nalick
Hey Joe – Jimi Hendrix
The Stranger Song – Leonard Cohen
Pass in Time – Beth Orton
No Need to Argue – The Cranberries
The Judgment – Solomon Burke
If It Be Your Will – Jann Arden
Foolish Games – Jewel

So Whiskey Road: A Love Story is officially in stores Tuesday! Part of me can’t believe the official pub date is already here. Another part of me can’t believe it’s been 3 years since we sold this baby. A lot has changed, and at the same time not so much.

It’s already available at Amazon.com.

Summer TV 2008.

The weather is beautiful and how seriously television-obsessed am I that good weather gets me all excited for good summer TV?

I saw a commercial for TNT’s The Closer (July) and Kyra is just as cute as a button. Now here’s a show I think I’ll end up buying on DVD. I’ve actually never watched the first season, so I’d like to see it, and I love the characters so much, I wouldn’t mind watching seasons 2 and 3 again.

HBO’s Big Love has been in the news because of the real-life raid of a polygamist sect in Texas. No info about when the new season begins, but I’m starting to look forward to it.

Tonight, the season 1 encore of Burn Notice begins (every Thursday at 11 p.m. on USA). I missed Burn Notice last summer, but I’ve only read terrific things about it. Usually, that means a show is pretty decent. I actually did try to watch the first episode online several months ago. I was only slightly entertained until about twenty minutes in when the lead, Michael Weston, takes a call from his mother. I don’t remember what she said, but his reaction to that call hooked me. Nothing like an international spy with mother issues. Unfortunately, my connection failed after that. So I’m giving it another go by taping it every Thursday night. Of course, I can just buy the DVD set in June, but my concern about buying a DVD set for a show I haven’t watched is that this could easily be a great show I just don’t get (coughTheSopranoscough). I like shows about spies, but what if this turns out to be really male-oriented? (Internet Movie Database has a bunch of quotes from Burn Notice I find amusing.)

I have the same concern about Mad Men. What interests male reviewers may not interest me, no matter how great it is. A show about advertising executives in the 60s “when guys wore narrow-lapelled suits, guzzled bourbon before and after meetings, and smoked like a Neil Young guitar solo” just doesn’t scream Must-See TV for me. Mad Men is another show everyone is raving about, but the rave reviews seem almost nostalgic (even though the reviewers are probably in their twenties and thirties) for the days when white men ran Madison Avenue without fear of sexual harrassment lawsuits and lung cancer. 

I’ll have to take a look to see if any female reviewers love this show… Here we go: Alessandra Stanley of the New York Times – I assume Alessandra is a woman – says of Mad Men “Everybody read Reader’s Digest. Jews worked in Jewish advertising agencies, blacks were waiters and careful not to seem too uppity, and doctors smoked during gynecological exams. Women were called ‘girls.’ Men who loved men kept it to themselves. The magic of “Mad Men” is that it softly spoofs those cruel, antiquated mores without draining away the romance of that era: the amber-lit bars and indigo nightclubs, soaring skyscrapers, smoky railway cars and the brash confidence that comes with winning a war and owning the world. It’s a sardonic love letter to the era that wrought ‘The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit’ and ‘The Best of Everything,’ but homage is paid with more affection than satire.”

I don’t believe I’ll see the “magic” or “romance” in this show, but I’m willing to try. The season 1 encore of Mad Men begins this Sunday (every Sunday at midnight on AMC). The encore has actually been airing for a while, but it starts at episode 1 again this Sunday.

(A review from LA Weekly in which the reviewer says Mad Men gave him the creeps. Parts of the review, however, raised my interest.)

I’m mildly looking forward to the return of Entourage. After diligently taping every episode last season, I missed the season finale and didn’t care. I realized I’m only watching for Jeremy Piven and his assistant. (I loved Jeremy Piven when he had a two minute scene in Singles and when he starred in PCU. It’s a pleasure to watch his wacky self in a role that was made for him.) But I do enjoy the inside look at the life of a newly successful actor and his coattail-riding crew.