Sauntering Through Gotham by Ann Aptaker

 

genuine-gold-300-dpiHappy Sunday! Today we have Ann Aptaker with us and she’s doing a fabulous giveaway! The first three people who leave a comment will get her choice of book from the Cantor Gold Crime Series.


The last several weeks have been exhausting. In addition to my teaching responsibilities, there was the punch-in-the-gut election result, the energy rousing Women’s March (it was thrilling to be with 400,000 sisters and brothers here in New York!), the constant phone calling to members of congress to urge resistance to the dangerous buffoon occupying the White House, my book launch for “Genuine Gold” at The Mysterious Bookshop, a quick trip to Philadelphia for a reading event at Giovanni’s Room bookstore with the wonderful Kati Jazzy Gray-Sandler, and then three miserable days of a tummy bug which good taste compels me to resist describing here. Plus, the weather in Gotham has been crummy: cold or rainy or snowy or sleety. Generally blech-y.strand-bookstore

All of this wrung me dry, taken up a lot of my time, and set me far behind in my writing.

So I’d better do the responsible thing and knuckle down to work, get more written in the still untitled book four in the Cantor Gold crime/mystery series. But today there was a miraculous pre-Springtime Saturday of sunshine and 60 degrees here in New York, a temptation forcing me to abandon all sense of responsibility and get the hell outta the house (okay, studio apartment), clear my head of its burdens, and not give a single thought all day to writing.

The city and its adventures await!

The Fates had my back from the start: I got a seat on the subway! While the weekend crush—thickened by tourists and the bridge-and-tunnel crowd getting on at various Midtown stops—got to know each other more intimately than they’d like, I sat more or less comfortably squeezed between two other lucky seated souls. When the train pulled into Fourteenth Street, I got off. I don’t know why. I just did.

Emerging from the subterranean precinct of the subway, breezy air wrapped around me like a soft hug. Sunshine was everywhere, spilling all over everybody, turning hurrying, purpose-driven New Yorkers into happy amblers. I maneuvered through them and walked from the hubbub of 14th Street to the surrounding residential blocks. The Gold Coast neighborhood (those blocks of beautiful old townhouses and apartment buildings from 13th Street to Washington Square, Seventh Avenue to University Place) was luminous, as finely articulated as a painting. I felt better already.

A yellow doorway on 12th Street caught my eye. Wow! Hmmm…I daydreamed about what kind of life was lived behind that Gothic door. Merry or malevolent? Maybe monkish? A 12th Street medieval mystery.12th-street-door

Well, if one is on 12th Street, one simply must drop into Strand Books. Four floors stacked with the thoughts of the world; the musings, adventures, love affairs, crimes or triumphs of everybody ever, even in faraway languages. Like a library, but better, because no one tells you “Shhhh.”

After a leisurely and salivating browse, and resisting with all my might not to buy (ahh…the tyranny of a tight budget), it was time to move on. After all, the sunshine was on the street, not in this temple of print.

Walking, walking, and on into Union Square, fulfilling its heritage as a catchall for every cause. There was a placard carrying group protesting actions in Venezuela; a group marching for animal rights; a large knot protesting the buffoon in the White House (yeah, I raised my fist and my voice); and some guy banging a drum hung with a sign proclaiming “100% Garbage.” Sure, whatever you say, buddy. Hmmm…and by the way, what’s your story?

ballet-windowThe window of a dancewear shop on 20th Street stopped me in my tracks, triggered a bittersweet nostalgia. Two mannequins costumed and posed like ballerinas advertised Freed’s ballet shoes. Freed’s, an English brand, makes peach-colored toe shoes, unlike the more familiar pink. I know this because she wore Freed’s, my high school crush, my first serious crush, a ballet student at the city’s American Ballet Theater school. I wonder if she knew… I wonder where she… I wonder what she… Hmmm, YA love story…

bergdorfsPuh-leeese…get the hell out of the wallow, kiddo. Right. Moving on, I spotted mood- altering salvation in a Mister Softee ice cream truck at the north end of Madison Square. A caramel sundae oozed me out of the past and back into the beautiful sunshine-y present through the magical and transporting properties of sugar. My mood was sweet and easy once again as I sauntered up Fifth Avenue, until a window in Bergdorf Goodman’s—that clothes closet for the One Per Cent—sparked a fevered dream. Center stage in a snappy display was a helluva dress, a black-and-white striped number. Very sexy. Very retro. Hmmm…Cantor Gold would definitely date the woman who’d wear that dress.

I lolled around in Cantor’s dreamy state of mind as I walked across town to Columbus Circle. After my all day hike of more than fifty blocks, a lurching ride home on the subway beckoned. And whaddya know: I got another seat!

And then home, back upstairs to my cozy corner of the city, relaxed, refreshed, and I didn’t think about writing all day. Riiiiiggght.


Ann Aptaker’s “Cantor Gold” crime series celebrates her favorite themes: dangerous women, crime and mystery fiction, New York City’s fascinating history and its rich pre-Stonewall outlaw LGBTQ culture. Her debut novel, “Criminal Gold,” book one in the series, was a Goldie Award finalist. The series’ second book, “Tarnished Gold,” was both a Lambda Award and Goldie Award winner, the only book in the Mystery category to win both awards. “Genuine Gold,” book three in the series, released in January 2017 from Bold Strokes Books. Ann resides in her beloved hometown, New York City.

Facebook –  Ann Aptaker, Author

Twitter – @AnnAptaker

Publisher – Bold Strokes Books www.boldstrokesbooks.com

 

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27 thoughts on “Sauntering Through Gotham by Ann Aptaker

    1. Hi sequimmorgayne! Congratualtions! You’ve won an ebook of your choice of CRIMINAL GOLD (Book 1 in the Cantor Gold seriers, or TARNISHED GOLD (Book 2) or GENUINE GOLD (Book 3). PM me through Facebook to let me know which book you want, which format (Mobi for Kinds, ePub, or PDF), and the emil addres where you want me to send it. Thanks for reading my “Sauntering” blog post. I hope you enjoyed it!
      Cheers,
      Ann
      Ann Aptaker
      GENUINE GOLD, Book Three in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      TARNISHED GOLD Lambda & Goldie Award Winner, Book Two in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      CRIMINAL GOLD Goldie Award Finalist, Debut Author
      Bold Strokes Books
      Facebook: Ann Aptaker, Author Twitter: @AnnAptaker

      Like

    1. Hi Maddy! Thanks for your kind words! I’m delighted you enjoy Cantor Gold’s adventures. You’ve won an ebook of your choice in the series. You mentioned that your read book one (Criminal Gold), so I assume you want book two, Tarnished Gold? You can PM me through Facebook and let me know which format you’ll need (Mobi for Kind, or ePub, or PDF) and the email address where to send it. Enjoy! And thanks again for your support!
      Cheers,
      Ann
      Ann Aptaker
      GENUINE GOLD, Book Three in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      TARNISHED GOLD Lambda & Goldie Award Winner, Book Two in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      CRIMINAL GOLD Goldie Award Finalist, Debut Author
      Bold Strokes Books
      Facebook: Ann Aptaker, Author Twitter: @AnnAptaker

      Like

    1. Hi Joni! Congratulations! You’ve won an ebook from the Criminal Gold series! You mentioned you’ve read the series thus far, so do you want Book 3, GENUINE GOLD, or either of the first two books (Criminal Gold or Tarnished Gold)? PM me through Facebook and let me know which book you want, which format you need (Mobi for Kindle, or ePub or PDF) and what email address to send it to. I’m delighted you anjoy Cantor’s adventures!
      Cheers,
      Ann
      Ann Aptaker
      GENUINE GOLD, Book Three in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      TARNISHED GOLD Lambda & Goldie Award Winner, Book Two in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      CRIMINAL GOLD Goldie Award Finalist, Debut Author
      Bold Strokes Books
      Facebook: Ann Aptaker, Author Twitter: @AnnAptaker

      Like

  1. ” Like a library, but better, because no one tells you “Shhhh.” ”

    Okay, I’m retired, but I spent 23 years working in a library and am really tired of seeing this ridiculous charge against libraries. I think the reality is libraries are vibrant, happening places that offer – OMG shame on them! – free services to their communities!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Joni! Congratulations! You’ve won an ebook from the Criminal Gold series! You mentioned you’ve read the series thus far, so do you want Book 3, GENUINE GOLD, or either of the first two books (Criminal Gold or Tarnished Gold)? PM me through Facebook and let me know which book you want, which format you need (Mobi for Kindle, or ePub or PDF) and what email address to send it to. I’m delighted you anjoy Cantor’s adventures!
      Cheers,
      Ann
      Ann Aptaker
      GENUINE GOLD, Book Three in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      TARNISHED GOLD Lambda & Goldie Award Winner, Book Two in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      CRIMINAL GOLD Goldie Award Finalist, Debut Author
      Bold Strokes Books
      Facebook: Ann Aptaker, Author Twitter: @AnnAptaker

      Like

    2. Hi Lynn, Don’t get me wrong. I adore libraries! I am a proud card carrying user of many years of the New York Public Library. I would be utterly lost without it, and I’m thrilled that the magnificent Rose Reading Room is open again after renovations. I wrote a great deal of my first book, Crominal Gold, in the Rose. In truth, with the research materials, histories, microfilmed and digitzed newspapers at the library, the Cantor Gold series couldn’t have been written.

      Like

  2. Ohhhhh, the ignomy of being overseas and not seeing posts that say things like ‘first three to respond’ until four people have already responded…. arghhhh! Congrats to the winners!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Genta! I’ll be doing other giveaways. Stay tuned, and thanks fro your support!
      Cheers,
      Ann
      Ann Aptaker
      GENUINE GOLD, Book Three in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      TARNISHED GOLD Lambda & Goldie Award Winner, Book Two in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      CRIMINAL GOLD Goldie Award Finalist, Debut Author
      Bold Strokes Books
      Facebook: Ann Aptaker, Author Twitter: @AnnAptaker

      Like

  3. Thanks for the lovely stroll. As for me, Mr Softee always sounded near, but then disappeared, leaving my wife and I to exclaim to each other, “Mr Softee is SUCH a tease.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. “Mr. Softee is SUCH a tease.”
      Yes, Amy, he is. 😉

      Ann
      Ann Aptaker
      GENUINE GOLD, Book Three in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      TARNISHED GOLD Lambda & Goldie Award Winner, Book Two in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      CRIMINAL GOLD Goldie Award Finalist, Debut Author
      Bold Strokes Books
      Facebook: Ann Aptaker, Author Twitter: @AnnAptaker

      Like

    1. Hi Dian! Thanks for your generous words! Aee you at the GCLS conference in Chicago!
      Ann
      Ann Aptaker
      GENUINE GOLD, Book Three in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      TARNISHED GOLD Lambda & Goldie Award Winner, Book Two in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      CRIMINAL GOLD Goldie Award Finalist, Debut Author
      Bold Strokes Books
      Facebook: Ann Aptaker, Author Twitter: @AnnAptaker

      Like

      1. Hi…
        From one Ann to another…yes, iPads and most gadgets are truly possessed! 😉

        Cheers,
        Ann
        Ann Aptaker
        GENUINE GOLD, Book Three in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
        TARNISHED GOLD Lambda & Goldie Award Winner, Book Two in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
        CRIMINAL GOLD Goldie Award Finalist, Debut Author
        Bold Strokes Books
        Facebook: Ann Aptaker, Author Twitter: @AnnAptaker

        Like

    1. Hi Pat! Thanks for mentioning the nice things folks have said about the Cantor Gold series. I hope you enjoy Cantor’s criminal adventures!
      Cheers,
      Ann
      Ann Aptaker
      GENUINE GOLD, Book Three in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      TARNISHED GOLD Lambda & Goldie Award Winner, Book Two in the Cantor Gold Crime Series
      CRIMINAL GOLD Goldie Award Finalist, Debut Author
      Bold Strokes Books
      Facebook: Ann Aptaker, Author Twitter: @AnnAptaker

      Like

  4. That’s what I like about you, Ann–you’re a dyed-in-wool New Yorker. I love how you embrace our city like a sweetheart. But I must say, I think the best part of your whole day was getting a seat on the train…in both directions!

    Like

  5. Guess I’m too late for the giveaway, but I’m glad to have read your guest blog entry. The series sounds really good and I’m going to check it out. One of the draws for me was the name of the main character “Cantor Gold”. I don’t suppose she’s an actual cantor, though (i.e. a cantor is a person who sings much of the liturgy during the service in a synagogue)? 🙂

    In solidarity,
    Laura Yaros
    avid lesfic fan in Canada

    Like

    1. Hi Laura!
      Good observation on Cantor’s name. No, she’s not a real Cantor, but as you quite rightly noted, a cantor is a ritual singer. And though my Cantor Gold is an outlaw, she is, in many ways, my ritual singer. In her defiance of the Law which oppresses her, in her insistence in living her Lesbian life as she sees fit despite the risks (the books take place in the 1950s, when being LGBT could land you in jail), she “sings” her life, she “sings” Lesbian life on behalf of all of us.

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