Ventura Bookstore's Ed Elrod has planned three events this week to appeal to a variety of literary interests:
The image of Costa Rica as a peaceful, democratic country that welcomes Americans as tourists and expatriate retirees is re-enforced in "Choose Costa Rica." Travel writer John Howells will sign his guide to living and investing in the Central American country at 2 p.m. Saturday.
Unlike many of today's women mystery writers who create female crime solvers, J.A. Jance has chosen to invent a gritty, male cop who appears in her 12th J.P. Beaumont mystery "Lying in Wait." Judy Jance will sign her book at 11 a.m. Wednesday.
Ruben Martinez, the prize-winning journalist, poet and co-host of PBS television's public affairs program "Life and Times" will read from and sign his book "The Other Side: Notes from the New L.A., Mexico City and Beyond" at 7 p.m. Wednesday. Martinez is L.A. bureau chief for Pacific News Service, teaches journalism at Claremont McKenna College and conducts poetry workshops in the schools as a volunteer.
Take advantage of the opportunity to meet these distinguished authors at the Ventura Bookstore, 522 E. Main St. Call 643-4096 for details.
Ventura neurosurgeon, Dr. Melvin Cheatham, will sign his book "Come Walk With Me," an account of his medical work in Kenya, and will also describe his work with the emergency medical mission in Somalia, at 7 p.m. Thursday at Barnes & Noble, 4360 E. Main St., Ventura.
There may still be time to enroll in Jerry Dunn's travel writing class scheduled from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at UCSB Ventura Center, 3585 Maple St. The fee is $95. Call 644-7261.
J.A. Jance will sign "Lying in Wait" at 1 p.m. Wednesday at Mysteries to Die For, 2940 Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks.
Here are some plan-ahead events you might want to pencil in. Carol Higgins Clark, who collaborated with her mother Mary Higgins Clark on "Stillwatch" and is the author of four other novels, "Decked," "Stowaway," "Milk Run" and "Snagged," will be the guest speaker at Southern California Mystery Writers dinner meeting, which begins with a cocktail hour at 6 p.m. Sept. 22 at Sportsmen's Lodge, 12833 Ventura Blvd., Studio City. For reservations call Diane Bouchard at (818) 346-2248.
Jean Craighead George will sign "Julie," the sequel to the Newberry Award-winning "Julie of the Wolves" from 10 a.m. to noon on Sept. 23 at Adventures for Kids, 3457 Telegraph Road, Ventura. Call the store at 650-9688 to arrange classroom visits to meet the author.
The literary community continues to grow. Writer Marsha Landreth is a new Channel Islands resident. She reports, "I love the area, haven't written much since moving, know most of the parts to a sailboat and can see a murder at sea in my future. " Landreth's latest titles are "The Hospital" and the "Vial Murders," due out in October.