Buy Local: R&L’s Book Nook

I’m sold out of Stockholm Syndrome for the moment (yeah! Fist punch! Running man dance move! Wish I’d had another one for Melissa B), so now it’s time to turn the spotlight on our hard-working local stores. ‘Cause I, for one, basically haven’t done my shopping yet.youth-570881_640

Kobo director Mark Leslie Lefebvre first suggested I reach out to my local bookstores when Terminally Ill (Hope Sze #3) got traction. I felt shy, since I used to be a shy kid until I trained myself to be more extroverted. But I took a deep breath and called R&L’s Book Nook, the only bookstore in Alexandria.


Even though this photo is blurry, it has the most genuine smiles, because the photo-taker said, “Say ‘sex’!” I replied, “Are you French?” She lowered the camera to say, “Yes.” “I knew it! French people talk about sex all the time.” French Canadians, anyway. Not sure about France-French.

Roena and Loretta, the R&L who own the store, were lovely. Someone had already asked for Terminally Ill based on my CBC Ontario Morning interview, so they took the Hope Sze series, as well as all my other books. They hosted the my Books and Bodies event in September 2014 (belly dancing pic with Joseline Beaulieu below), and made a huge window display with a dancing skeleton in my scrubs in honour of the event (Terminally Ill=skeleton, Student Body=dancing). I can’t find the pics right now, but trust me, it was spectacular and an author’s dream come true.

They make their own gingerbread and sell crafts, used books and new books, including books by local authors like Jennifer Debruin.


They make gingerbread, too. Houses, cookies, and lollipops. So all you non-readers but eaters, start salivating now.

#supportlocalbusinesses 10592670_735822413137606_5759031422990646708_n copy


Books & bodies with Joseline Beaulieu, Sept 2014

So get thee to R&L Book Nook! You can park at Gaetan’s Chip Stand and fill your mind and body with literature, gingerbread, and French fries!







As an aside: an hour ago, Pat Larkin bought my fifth-last trade paperback of Stockholm Syndrome. In fact, he bought the entire set for his daughter, Amy, a vet student in Calgary.

IMG_9307 Pat really went the extra mile here. He couldn’t get the Hope books in Williamstown, so he contacted me through my website. Then we played telephone tag until Amy flew back to Calgary. But Pat still drove to my house today, theoretically on his way to Cornwall (which is the other way), bought the entire series, and then inspected my electrical wiring and generator to give me tips on how to get my house wired up properly in case of another ice storm. (Summary: I will probably set up an automatic generator in the New Year. Our generator is too small, and we need a transfer switch.)

It doesn’t get any better than that.

But if you go to R&L’s Book Nook, you can make up your own story. Hey, I was there twice yesterday.

As the French Canadians also say, Gogogogogogogo!

R&L’s Book Nook in Alexandria58 Alexandria Main/Alexandria, ON/K0C 1A0/(613)525-9940

And I’m embedding the Cogeco interview because I wasn’t able to post it until late yesterday:

Calling a Code: Code Blues Free for Digital Book Day!

It’s Digital Book Day tomorrow!

In celebration, for the very first time, Code Blues e-book will be free on July 14th, 2014. To download it in the format of your choice, go to Smashwords ( and enter the code GT24E.

Or download it directly from your friendly neighbourhood Kobo (

Code blues cover 2013 EBOOK-200

Make sure you go to the Digital Book Day website to download up to 407 books, completely free, in genres like mystery, thrillers, sf and romance. You have to page down for the literature, YA and non-fiction, but it’s there.

I know I’m working on Monday, but I’m going to try and get up early or stay up late so that I can gorge myself on words.

I’m happy to see that Code Blues is quite high up on the landing page. At the top of mystery-thriller are CJ Lyons, the pediatric emergentologist turned NYT bestseller who organized the entire shebang; JF Penn, thriller author, speaker, and publishing maven; and Bob Meyer, the only bestseller I know who used to be a Green Beret. But if you go down another four books, there’s me! Sometimes, the late bird does catch the worm!

Dr. Hope Sze rolls into Montreal with three simple goals: 1) survive her family medicine residency, 2) try pain au chocolat, 3) go on a date sometime in the next two years.

Then she discovers a doctor’s body in the locker room. When she tries to uncover his killer, two men dive in to help her.

The one man with charm to burn, the one man who makes her melt, has zero alibi. Code Blues.

Because medicine can be murder.

Written by an emergency physician trained in the crumbling corridors of Montreal, Canada.



And hey, if you’ve already paid full price for the first three Hope Sze novels, don’t be bitter. It just means that you’re helping to support an writer with two small children. Plus, if you bought them in paperback, you get 50% off the print version of Student Body, the brand new Hope novella, at our yoga-belly dancing-book launch September 20th.

The e-novella is on sale this summer for everyone, for 99 cents!

student body half price

Snoopy dance! In a dignified doctor-y sort of way, of course.


A few reviews of Code Blues, to whet your appetite:


“Terrific fun.” –Veronica Hares, R.N.


“I had just finished a night shift. My boys were coming come on the school bus. And I could not put the flipping book down.” –D. Poilly, M.D.

(If any of you know Dr. Poilly, these are strong words!)


I really enjoyed this fast-paced mystery.

Having lived in Montreal, I found the references to the city hilarious as well as relevant.

Hope is a truly likeable and very realistic character-I will certainly be reading the next books in this series, and am looking forward to her developing comfort with the hospital and the city.

A lot of fun to read, and a book that keeps you on the edge of your seat until the very end.

–Anne Zoeller


This is a wonderful first entry into what promises to be an on-going mystery series.

There’s a murder and suspects and romance and a white-knuckle finish.

But what really makes this story work and stick with you isn’t all of the above, but the carefully drawn picture of its world and characters.

The protagonist is a new medical resident in the physically deteriorating Montreal anglophone medical system. The facilities are crumbling, and the author skillfully paints a series of characters whose walls are crumbling too. This is a novel partly concerned with boundaries: professional boundaries (when does a physician give ‘too much’), romantic boundaries, relationships that are too co-dependent or too enmeshed to be truly healthy, despite how compelling and driven the characters find them. The novel is partly a meditation on compulsion and addiction–when does the goal-directed driven nature required of medical students and doctors slip over the line from adaptive and necessary to harmful?

—Gregory L. Smith

Code blues cover 2013 EBOOK-200

So c’mon. Get it while it’s free! Coupon code GT24E here, or just load up your Kobo here. If you leave a positive review, the book fairy will do a foxtrot.

You can also buy the print book from your friendly neighbourhood retailers, listed here. But I’ve got to give a special shout out to R&L’s Book Nook, which is hosting the Alexandria portion of Books & Bodies on September 20th.

Read, read, read!


My Newest Fan

Today was a busy day at the bus. I got a note! IMG_6121 But first, I’ve got to give props to Cornwall Living Magazine and their launch party last Wednesday. Not only did they let me bring my kids to the launch party, but the swag was perfectly kid-friendly: pencil crayons! And they fed us pizza. Then they played this video:–nA_4E& I laughed when I saw myself at 0:55, and Max said, “That’s you, Mama!”

Is it a selfie when you take a picture of your picture?

Is it a selfie when you take a picture of your picture?


Okay, that's a selfie. But Max steals the show.

Okay, that’s a selfie. But Max steals the show.

Where's Anastasia? Rolling around on the ground, of course. What else would you do in a restaurant?

Where’s Anastasia? Rolling around on the ground, of course. What else would you do in a restaurant?

Cornwall Living Magazine has generously offered to send free copies to people who ask. So get in there! They also send copies to embassies around the globe. Max, Anastasia and I raced home so I could hand off the kids and hurry over to my interview on Vankleek Cooley via VankleekFM. You can listen here: if you page down to “Listen to the May 28th, 2014 Show – Hour One.”  My interview starts at 31:00.

Fascinating to meet Louise Sproule, the owner and publisher of The Review. We chatted after, and she mentioned that she’s owned the newspaper for 22 years, and her articles can make people cry. They stop her on the street to hug her. One woman brought her flowers.

I explained that my overarching goal is to have my writing connect me with people, places, and things that excite me. But I started off writing in a vacuum, with only “It’s good. Keep writing” from Matt and editors’ rejection letters for feedback. So Louise and I are kind of the opposite. She knows that she has a dedicated audience every week who pay for her words and may tell her so every week, whereas I’m hungry to carve out my audience (not that I’m going to eat them, but while it’s mega-awesome to have a fan in Saudi Arabia and nab a rare sale in Trinidad and Tobago and Norway, I don’t have people crying on me).

Thus, I was blown away when the Glengarry Book Club chose CODE BLUES for their inaugural meeting.   IMG_2342 Then I waited for them to tear me into tiny strips of beef jerky, since that’s what writers usually do. My own daughter said yesterday, when I was packing my books up for Bloody Words 2014, “Mommy, I don’t like your books. I hate them.” Instead, they said that they enjoyed all the Montreal references, the joie de vivre, the multiculturalism. Fast-paced. Easy read. And they liked Hope.

  • “Hope was a really accessible, normal character. Nothing seemed ridiculous.”
  • “I felt sorry for her. The loneliness, the misery, the stress, a new city, her job, working with difficult people and bosses. I felt dirty. She hadn’t had a shower. I felt how she was feeling.”
  • “I’m looking at Hope, working in a hospital is just so foreign, it would never happen to me, I’d be on the floor. But here, I’m following her around, I’m right with her. She’s got these clues, I can put it together, I can relate to her.”
  • “Most people just don’t give a s—. ‘I just got here, I’m not doing that. I’m not going to worry about it.’ Hope just took off with [the murder case] right away.”

None of them figured out the murderer except Anne, a few pages before. Rhonda always reads the last page first, and she was still surprised.

Rhonda is the one holding up Notorious D.O.C. in the back. Isn't she cute?

Rhonda is the one holding up Notorious D.O.C. in the back. Isn’t she cute?

One of them said that she liked she sex scene. “Your description went to the senses instead of a visual image, which I really appreciated, the tactile details, instead of flowery description.”

Code blues cover 2013 EBOOK-200

The one with the sex scene. Among other things

I was waiting for the “but.” It never came. Maybe they’re too polite to say anything to my face, but it dawned on me that readers want to be entertained. They want to be pleased. They’re not like writers and critics. On a related note,



I was delighted when Bob, Max’s bus driver, wanted to buy “my best work.” I gave him TERMINALLY ILL, and now he periodically updates me on where he is in the book. “Elvis is awake!” “The other doctor wants to take the case!” Or, “There’s a bit of sexual tension here.” (Good thing I didn’t give him CODE BLUES, huh?) “My wife wants to read the book after me.”

If you got anything out of this post, join the team. Buy my book(s)!

In case you missed the Terminally Ill memo. Including the one that Ellery Queen says Hope Sze is “utterly likeable.”

To my amazement, one of the students piped up and said that she was reading HIGH SCHOOL HIT LIST on iBooks (High School Hit List – Melissa Yi). “It’s a bit scary. Is that okay?” I said, and she nodded. hit list POD cover-2013-ebook   Today, Isabelle passed me the note, and I’m waiting for the bus to come, so I can give her a signed copy of HIGH SCHOOL HIT LIST.


Vince wanted more dog pictures. Here you go.

I’m happy on so many levels. She’s obviously intelligent and curious, probably heard about the TERMINALLY ILL book launch and went on my website to find something that spoke to her age group. She reads both e-book and print. And she and her family are willing to spend their hard-earned money on my work! To answer her question, my e-books are available everywhere (just starting out on Google Play today). My print books are available on Amazon, and you can order them through your local bookstore, including R&L’s Book Nook, which will be hosting a book launch for the latest Hope Sze novella, STUDENT BODY, on September 20th, 2014. The Hope Sze medical mysteries are now available in trade paperback at the following locations:

R&L’s Book Nook in Alexandria
58 Alexandria Main, Alexandria, ON K0K 1A0; (613)525-9940;
The Quirky Carrot
1 main street south; (613)525-2229; Facebook
Sunset Yoga
Église Ste. Marie de l’Assomption, Cp 119 4172 Route 34, K0C 1L0; (613) 662-YOGA(9642);
Fassifern General Store; RR 5 in Alexandria, ON; (613)525-2144
Penny’s Market7340 regional road 23, K0C 1J0; (613)551-4806;
We’ve added three more retailers:

The Review 76 Main St. E, Vankleek Hill, Ontario, K0B 1R0, Tel: (613) 678-3327, The Brown House 20363 Concession Rd 5, Green Valley, ON K0C 1L0 (Hwy 34 & Brown House Rr 2), 613-347-2583 A L Macdonald Grocery Inc. Williamstown, ON K0C 2J0 Phone: (613) 347-2770 Happy reading!


Here she is. Yay, Isabelle!