Welcome to some serendipitous fun today as we share Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and as we showcase The Friday 56 with Freda’s Voice.

To join in, just grab a book and share the opening lines…along with any thoughts you wish to give us; then turn to page 56 and excerpt anything on the page.

Then give us the title of the book, so others can add it to their lists!

Since I live in California’s Central Valley, I bought this collection of short stories from a few authors I’ve met at Valley events.  It has been on my TBR Pile, just waiting for the right time to come out.  Valley Fever:  Where Murder is Contagious, is a collection of stories by three women who write about the underbelly of Fresno, the “All-American City,” and its surrounding areas.  The authors:  Sunny Frazier JoAnne Lucas, and Cora Ramos.

Today’s beginning is excerpted from the first story, A Tale of Two Sittings, by Sunny Frazier:

It was the best of crimes, it was the worst of crimes.

It was a crime so well thought out, so magnificent in execution, I had to admire the murderers.  Passion prompted the act, vanity was its undoing.


The p. 56 snippet is from Fresno Heat, by Jo Anne Lucas.

Larry laughed on cue.  “Nells is no shy, retiring public servant like…what was his name?”  Larry snapped his fingers at us.  “That guy last year, the city councilman.  Tarnally, yeah, Edward Tarnally.  Remember him?”


I like the beginning, especially the first line, reminiscent of the famous opener in “A Tale of Two Cities.” 

What are you showcasing today?  Come on by and share!


    • I could say that you’re not missing much, Harvee, but that would make you wonder why I’m still here…lol

      I came here against protest, when my husband (at the time) got a job here; then I stayed because of the job I got, and because it wasn’t that easy to change jobs once you started building seniority.

      Now I could easily move…but there’s just something about the place, in spite of the hot summer heat and the “underbelly.” Maybe it’s an addiction, like the drugs that seem to proliferate here.

      Anyway…long answer, I know; but I’ve read Sunny Frazier’s mysteries and loved them, so buying this short story collection seemed like a no brainer. But I tend to put the short story collections aside until I’m in the mood. I guess I’m now in the mood.

      Thanks for stopping by!


  1. I enjoy books with a real local flavor — this would be exactly the kind of book I would buy. I’m not a fan of Fresno, but I have a good friend who grew up there. this might have to be her Christmas present.


    • I have always lived in California, but have enjoyed visiting other states. We took a lot of road trips when I was a kid. Thanks for stopping by, and maybe, “along the way,” you’ll journey here, Janet Ruth.


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