University Park Library

Fun at UP library yesterday reading Texas Chili? Oh My! Lots of families visiting the library on a HOT Saturday afternoon.


Shelia Turnage, my new favorite author. Why I have not read this book before now, it beats me. I did read through social media about the vocabulary Turnage used in THREE TIMES LUCKY. It was real Southern, and that always attracts my interest. When I read the protagonist name, Bo LoBeau, I knew I was hooked. Turnage creates a community of family life, mystery and fun. Now, on to THE GHOSTS OF TUPELO LANDING with Bo and Dale. Don’t you just love “summer time when the reading is easy?” Quail Ridge Books & Music, near Turnage’s home, keeps signed copies of her books in stock. Check their website for more information!


John Rocco and Jay Primiano’s middle school novel is about friendship,family, and adventure. I believe John was an actual quahogger growing up. A must read for all who enjoy tales about clamming, fishing, friendship, family and competition.

ECHO by Pam Munoz Ryan

Ryan’s historical fiction tells the story of Otto’s and his magic harmonica and how it’s music weaves into the lives of three different people in three different countries, many years later. And OH, the music…Brahms’ Lullaby, America the Beautiful, Auld Lang Syne, and Some Enchanted Evening. A beautiful diverse book written with compelling language. Have I said enough to hook you?

HONEY by Sarah Weeks

I just finished reading “HONEY” by Sarah Weeks. It was a delicious story about ten year old Melody, her good friend Nick, and a dog named Mo. Melody was hoping her father would find someone to marry, since her mother died way back when. But when she hears her father calling someone “Honey,” she was thrown for a loop. She had a hunch it might be her least favorite teacher, Mrs. Hogan. Was she ever wrong. A terrific story about family and relationships. Thank you Sarah!

The Great Good Summer

The Great Good Summer is a book you do not want to miss. Liz Garton Scalon has written a truly beautiful book about family and the south of Texas. Her word choice is perfect. I should know because I am a native Mississippian. Click on the title above to read the first page of this wonderful story. I recommend heading down to the nearest book store or library and dive right in. Believe me, you will not be able to put this one down. Thank you Liz!

Cornbread Cook-off Winner

Cornbread Cook-off winner Linda Whitaker, (center) and illustrator Cheryl Pilgrim (right) in Fort Worth at The West Hampton Sandwich Shop for the tasting. Congratulations Linda!

Her recipe will be featured in “HOUND DAWG”, a Southern retelling of “The Three Little Pigs.”

A special thank you to the judges:  Janet Herald, Dick Stenson, and Regan Vermillion, and especially to Rebecca Allen, TCU Press, for organizing the cook-off.

Christ the King Catholic School in Dallas

I presented to Kindergarden, First, Second, Third, and Fourth grade students at Christ the King in Dallas on Monday, March 31st ,2015. It was so much fun. They were perfect listeners and asked brilliant questions. “After your book was published, what didn’t you like about it?’ and “Why did you name your book “Texas Chili? Oh My?”


The Society’s Publication Awards, which take place every other year, publicly recognize the authors of the best recently published books on Texas history. Please save the date for our next awards luncheon, which will take place on Friday, March 20, 2015 at The Argyle. The San Antonio Conservation Society Congratulates All The Winners Of The 2015 Publication Awards. Chili Texano? Ay Dios!/Texas Chili? Oh My! By Patricia Vermillion

Photo courtesy of Vicki Raney.