In Their Own Write

Three books by current and former New Times writers, on topics ranging from murder to music, have hit the bookstores.

American Rock n' Roll Tour, by staff writer Dave Walker, is a guide to the country's historic rock landmarks, including the familiar--Graceland in Memphis and the Fillmore in San Francisco--and the not-so-familiar--like the Southwestern Bible Institute in Waxahachie, Texas (the school that expelled Jerry Lee Lewis). Singer-producer Joey Ramone calls the book "the Rand McNally of rock n' roll." It's published by Thunder's Mouth Press. A signing party will be held at 7:30 p.m. on October 9 at Houle Books, Central and Camelback.

Staff writer Paul Rubin is co-author of Jazz Spoken Here: Conversations with Twenty-Two Musicians. The book, co-written with Wayne Enstice and published by Louisiana State University Press, is a collection of interviews with major jazz figures, including Dizzy Gillespie, Dave Brubeck and Ray Bryant. The musicians talk about their lives and their craft, such as when veteran trumpet player Ruby Braff told the authors: "I want delicious sounds and beautiful horns and beautiful music put together so it'll take me away on a dream. Dreams. That's what it's all about--dreams."

Also in the bookstores is The Trunk Murderess: Winnie Ruth Judd, by former editor and staff writer Jana Bommersbach. The book, published by Simon & Schuster, examines the mystery--and the cover-up--behind the infamous slayings of two young women in Phoenix in 1931. Bommersbach won the Don Bolles Award for Investigative Reporting for her two-part series on the case that was published by New Times in 1990. Simon & Schuster also is releasing an audio version of the book read by actress Jane Alexander. Signing parties are scheduled for October 24 at the Phoenician, at a luncheon sponsored by the Arizona Kidney Foundation; at 7:30 p.m. on October 28 at Houle Books; and at 6 p.m. November 12 at Dushoff Books, 32nd Street and Camelback.

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