The Penguin Who Knew Too Much is out this week! This is the book in which Meg's father discovers a body buried in her basement--discovers it while digging a hole so he can install a prefabricated pond for the penguins that he has moved into the basement, unbeknownst to Meg and Michael. The penguins are refugees from a small private zoo that is having financial difficulties. Before the bank forecloses on the property, it very kindly (or wisely) allowed the owner to farm out the animals with volunteer foster families. In addition to taking the penguins, Dad has also told all the other volunteers that if their charges get to be too much, "I'll be happy to take them off your hands--just drop them off at Meg's." So when a rumor begins making the rounds that the body might be the zookeeper's, Meg starts sleuthing, partly in self-defense--she's afraid if the crime isn't solved soon, she and Michael will have the whole zoo in their back yard.
I'd have blogged about this earlier, but it's been a remarkably busy summer. In addition to Penguins, I also have a short story out in the latest issue of Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine. It's not a Meg story--the narrator is a rat. No, that's not a value judgment--he's a rat. Rattus norvegicus. And in the story--no, wait; that would be a spoiler. Anyway, it's the first story I've sold to EQMM, and I'm enormously pleased.
And in other short story news, Charlaine Harris and Toni Kelner have accepted another short story, "The Haire of the Beast," for their upcoming anthology Moonlight and Mistletoe. All the stories are about werewolves at Christmas. Love it.
And in November, BenBella Books will release House Unauthorized: Vasculitis, Clinic Duty, and Bad Bedside Manner, a collection of essays about the TV show House--which includes my essay, "Sex, Lies, and MRIs." As part of the rigorous and demanding research for my piece, I had to sit down and rewatch all the episodes of the show to date--two and a half seasons of them. Some I rewatched twice. Dedicated, that's me. Keeping my ears open to see if BenBella wants any more essays. Law and Order: Criminal Intent? I'm there, guys! Boston Legal? Darkly Dreaming Dexter? Clean Sweep?
And I've also been making plans for some travel--check out the schedule page on my website for signings in DC, Virginia, Maryland, New York, and Michigan. With more, I hope, to come.