Where the magic happens: on an 11-year-old, pre-Intel PowerBook G4 with no distracting Internet connection.

Broos's books


4 of 5 stars

So moving and insightful that I had to remind myself it wasn't autobiographical. The clinical bits get so personal, though, that reading the book aloud can get kind of disconcerting.

A Sailor of Austria: In Which, Without Really Intending to, Otto Prohaska Becomes Official War Hero No. 27 of the Habsburg Empire

4 of 5 stars

A beautifully written, quietly humorous tale of an Austro-Hungarian U-boat commander during World War I. I was sorry to finish it. But then I remembered I've got three more of them to read.

Red Seas Under Red Skies

4 of 5 stars

Starts out with a bang--which leads to another bang, which leads to another ... Lightweight, but funny and inventive.


Selected Works

The Matty Graves novels
Midshipman Matty Graves must choose between family and duty.

“Refreshingly cynical.”
—Jonathan Lunn

Acting-Lieutenant Matty Graves gets caught up in the Haitian Revolution in 1800. Mayhem ensues!

"[N]ever dull . . ."
—Madison Smartt Bell

Matty seizes the opportunity to make a name and fortune for himself—even if it means destroying those closest to him.

"[U]nusual, if somewhat jaundiced . . ."
Library Journal

Errors after the fact
Seamen's terms in landsmen's language
Haitian Timeline
Nautical info bits
How far it is from here to there, by sea, in English statute miles.
Public domain stuff—I didn't write this.
Yep, still maps

Beyond the Graves

Sometimes simple is best

October 15, 2010

Tags: web design, Julia Keller, Huntington, West Virginia

I've been teaching myself web design lately. This website that you're reading Right! This! Very! Second! is built on a template provided by the Authors Guild. It's serviceable, it works well for an author's site, and, um... well, it isn't quite what I need to show off my galumphing great skills as a graphic designer. Which I will put one up as soon as I finish designing it, OK?

Meanwhile, for some reason it never occurred to me that a website could be like rilla rilla rilla simple. For instance: the one for Chicago Tribune feature writer and Pulitzer winner Julia Keller. Never met the woman, never read a word by her. I ought to have, as she wrote Mr. Gatling's Terrible Marvel: The Gun that Changed Everything and the Misunderstood Genius Who Invented It, which totally sounds like something I'd like.

Anyway, I came across her website while working on a book about West Virginia. One of my grandfathers was from Huntington, West Virginia, or nearabouts, and she's an alumna of Marshall University—which is in Huntington, West Virginia.

So what's so special about the site? To me, I mean? I just like the photo, really.