By Misty DUPLESSIS
On Nov. 8, 67 attendees joined the La Crescenta Woman’s Club when they hosted their annual Author’s Luncheon at the La Cañada Flintridge Country Club.
This year the club introduced debut author Lynn Sheene and seasoned writer Brett Battles and welcomed back Los Angeles author Denise Hamilton.
New author Sheene read a few pages of her book, “The Last Time I Saw Paris,” which tells the story of a young woman who journeys to Paris in the 1940s when Nazi Germany occupied much of Europe.
Sheene’s fascination with jewelry, particularly a 1930s French art deco broach, led her down a path of curiosity as she began to imagine what life would have been like for the person who owned that piece of jewelry during an era when much of the world was in turmoil.
Over the five years Sheene spent writing the novel she traveled through the timeless city where she visited parks and cafés, meeting interesting characters and creating unforgettable memories that the audience can share through the book.
Full time author Brett Battles shared his inspiration for his newest book, “No Return,” to be released in January 2012.
In 1979, Battles witnessed an event that remained in his memory over the last three decades and provided the perfect backdrop for an intriguing story. He described a vivid memory of a big, black, heavy cloud of smoke hanging over the city after a pilot experienced jet engine failure and was forced to crash in the desert just missing an elementary school.
“The idea of this crash and the pilot who couldn’t get out of the plane stuck with me for 30 years,” said Battles.
Returning guest author and L.A. Times perfume columnist Denise Hamilton first spoke for the La Crescenta Woman’s club several years earlier after her book “L.A. Noir” was published. The writer spent many interviews and countless hours deep in the city in spaces locals never knew existed.
Hamilton’s passion for a good L.A. adventure allowed her to transform the research she collected over the years into riveting stories that took place all over the county.
As a Los Angeles native, she was excited to share the stories she describes as gritty, dark and glamorous with this group of excited readers.
Preparing for the annual luncheon took almost a full 12 months. Luncheon co-chair Carol Stein began arranging for this year’s guest speakers shortly after the 2010 event. Co-chair Carol Huntswork commended Stein for her efforts and hard work in seeking out relatable authors.
“[Stein] has a good reputation for doing that,” said Huntswork, adding that Stein’s efforts have led her to numerous book signings with many great contacts of excited authors wanting to share their stories with club members and guests.
“It was a successful day,” Huntswork said. “The [money] will go toward donations we make to the community throughout the year.”