Author To Speak Of Fire And Magic At Local Libraries

By: Sami Gillette

Author to speak of fire and magic at local libraries

CHENANGO – Three talks featuring author Shelly Reuben will be held regarding her most recent novel, ‘The Boys of Sabbath Street.' ‘Boys' is Reuben's ninth book and features narrator, Maggie Wakeling, a reluctant fire detective, who works as an assistant for the Mayor. Albert Ashforth, author of ‘The Rendition,' praised the book and said, “If you are interested in magic—and who isn’t?—you will love this delightful story. If you are charmed by people falling in love you will love this story. And if you like a good mystery you will love this story.”

In each talk the audience will get an opportunity to hear about Reuben's book and ask questions. Beyond discussing the book, Reuben will also guide the audiences in a short writing project. She picks out the opening lines from great novels and has each attendee choose his/her favorite. Each person will then write a few opening paragraphs of his/her own novel. Though many attendees are at first reluctant, they are usually surprised with the end product. Reuben said, “The creativity that comes out is awe inspiring.”

Reuben was first published in 1988, and has a total of 9 books in her repertoire. “This is the first book I conceived of, but it is the last one I wrote and was published,” she said.

‘Boys,’ like many of her novels, is centered around arson investigation. Reuben was first inspired to write the story thirty years ago. She had read an article in the ‘Daily News’ about two young boys who were given awards in recognition for their heroism - they had saved several individuals from a fire on the East Side. Reuben recalled this as her first encounter with the work of fire marshals and private investigation. When she went to learn more about the process she met her future husband and supervising fire marshal of the New York City Fire Department, Charlie King. “He was a genius. It was like following Sherlock Holmes around,” she said.

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