Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Last Minute Christmas Gifts? You've Found Them

by Stacy Dittrich

It’s that time of year again. Only three days until Christmas and — if you’re like me -- you’re scrambling to pick up the last minute gift you forgot to buy for your Aunt Sally. You know Aunt Sally; the at-home super-sleuth who takes her phone off the hook and locks her doors to ensure she never misses an episode of Nancy Grace or the FBI Files. She’s the one who insists that everyone she passes in the mall is on a wanted poster, or every child she sees has been recently abducted. “It’s the birthmark above the eye — I’m telling you, it’s her!”

She's the neighborhood Sherlock Holmes, complete with binoculars handily stationed at each window so she can quickly and efficiently determine who in her neighborhood is a pedophile, or who is having an affair. Everyone knows someone like Aunt Sally. She's tricky to shop for. There's always the highly regarded Spy Gear — located in the toy department and aimed at 5- to 12-year old boys, but it’s doubtful she could maneuver her way around the night vision goggles or laser alarms. Or, you can browse through the Women in Crime Ink bookstore (an excellent Facebook catalog) and overload her with a slew of true-crime books and thrillers. Most people are feeling the crunch of the economy this year and are cutting back on spending, so books make a great gift!

Caylee Anthony and Michael Jackson books dominated the year's crime shows. Get an up close and personal view; look deep into the facts of these cases with true-crime books like “Mommy’s Little Girl,” by WCI’s Diane Fanning and “Be Careful Who You Love: Inside the Michael Jackson Case,” by Diane Dimond. Kathryn Casey’s, “A Descent Into Hell,” and Lisa Cohen’s “After Etan,” are favorites.

Have a self-proclaimed criminal profiler in the family? Pat Brown’s “Killing for Sport” would make the perfect gift. Books make their way to even those family members that rarely keep up with crime. If your teen is a die-hard rap-music fan, Cathy Scott’s “The Killing of Tupac Shakur” would be a different twist to an ear-busting CD. If the perpetual macho-man in your household scoffs at girly crimes, my book, “Murder Behind the Badge: True Stories of Cops Who Kill,” would make a great stocking stuffer. A history buff in the family? Laura James' theory that Jesse James' son was a cold blooded killer in "The Love Pirate and the Bandit's Son," will keep them occupied for hours.

Between $8-$25 each, books are within this year's budgets and, contrary to popular belief, this print medium is not going away anytime soon. Prefer fictional mysteries to true crime? Many of WCI's versatile authors WCI have delved into the world of fiction. Kathryn Casey’s “Singularity” and “Bloodlines” are both-award winning novels. Diane Fanning and I both have created our own fiction series as well.

Aspiring law students could probably use Andrea Campbell’s “Legal Ease,” and Robin Sax’s “It Happens Every Day: Inside the Life of a Sex Crime DA” and keep them on a shelf close to the computer. Trying to figure out how to help a friend or relative who's suffering her domestic life with a dangerous boyfriend or spouse, or is enduring an abusive relationship? Susan Murphy-Milano’s “Defending Our Lives” or “Moving Out, Moving On” can help. Just make sure you give this gift discretely, where the abuser can't see!

Yep, our authors have it all. Your last-minute shopping is over. Click over to the Women In Crime Ink book store, find the books you want, and scoot on over to your nearest bookstore. Your friends and relatives will thank you for it—and so will we! Happy Holidays to all of you from all of us here at Women In Crime Ink!

No comments: