Thursday, October 14, 2010

Arsenic and Clam Chowder by James D. Livingston - Pump Up Your Book Promotion Tour

On Friday, August 30, 1895 Evalina returned home to her apartment.  It was just your average day, so she was delighted when her ten year old grand-daughter brought over dinner; a tin pail of clam chowder and a pie wrapped in paper.  Evalina immediately fell ill afterward eating it, and boldly told the doctor between waves of pain that her family did this to her.  They poisoned her for her money.  A few hours later, Evalina died.

Her daughter, Mary Alice Livingston, was accused of murdering her mother.  Mary Alice said she was innocent; her mother was her best friend.  But on further inspection, it would seem Mary Alice ordered room service from a hotel restaurant and on the ticket was clam chowder and a pie; which she promptly sent to her mother.  Whether she added anything to it was for the courts to decide.

It seems when Mary Alice's father passed, he left quite a bit of money in a trust.  Mary Alice needed it desperately.  She was raising three kids on her own, but the trust wouldn't give Mary Alice the funds while her mother was alive.  The odds were not stacking nicely against Mary Alice.   Pregnant with her fourth child in prison, the book escalates into the courtroom, where Mary Alice is facing the possibility of being the first woman to be executed by electric chair. 

Arsenice and Clam Chowder is a mystery and yet  true story, filled with rich and vibrant characters, a solid plot, and a court room drama that will keep you on the edge of your seat until the final verdict.  A stellar read!


Born June 23, 1930, in Brookly, New York, James D. Livingston studied engineering physics at Cornell University and received a PhD in applied physics from Harvard University in 1956. After retiring from General Electric after a lengthy career as a research physicist, he taught in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at MIT. Although a physicist by profession, he has long had a strong interest in American history, and is the coauthor, with Sherry H. Penney, of A Very Dangerous Woman: Martha Wright and Women’s Rights.

You can find out more about James and Arsenic and Clam Chowder at

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The old grey donkey, Eeyore stood by himself in a thistly corner of the Forest, his front feet well apart, his head on one side, and thought about things. Sometimes he thought sadly to himself, "Why?" and sometimes he thought, "Wherefore?" and sometimes he thought, "Inasmuch as which?" and sometimes he didn't quite know what he was thinking about.

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