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Book: “Bedford Avenue: Incidents in a Small Town”
Author: Kristopher Schultz
Publisher: 2013 by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, Softcover and ebook versions, 203 pages
“Bedford Avenue” is a collection of loving tributes to small town life, best enjoyed as author Kristopher Schultz said, ”with your feet up and a beverage in your hand.”
It could be any small town with its collection of neighbors, carefully drawn characters and tales of encounters with wildlife, but this book is set in a town very like Placerville. Maybe it is Placerville, but Schultz doesn’t actually identify it as such.
Names of the characters, like the feisty 85-year old Maxine who is always right, have been changed; the names of businesses along Main Street have been disguised but that is half the fun of the book — trying to figure out who is who.
Schultz, a 28-year Placerville resident, is a teacher at Pinewood School and “Bedford Avenue” is his first book.
“About 20 years ago, my wife and I used to live in a little cottage on Bedford and my neighbors were wonderful folks. I wrote a few pieces about some of the events and people on Bedford and the work sat on a shelf for years,” he said.
Being an empty-nester with two daughters in college gave Schultz time to look at his stories and decide to put them together in book form.
“People who have read the book always ask, ‘Who is this, really?’ I always answer, ‘Who do you think it is?’ Everyone seems to be positive they know who the characters are — sometimes they are partially right, sometimes not even close. Nothing and no one in the book is directly based on one person or event.”
Writing the book was “a fun process. You learn a lot about yourself,” said Schultz. “This is a labor of love, not a way to get rich.”
He is thinking about writing a second book along the same lines.
“I just hope it brings a smile to everyone’s face,” he said.
Small town readers will identify with Rebecca Forrester’s skunk and bear encounters, City Council squabbles and the ribs at Mostly Frank’s. They might even recognize their neighbors.
Schultz has a book launch on Nov. 16 from 6 to 9 p.m. at Placerville Flowers on Main in downtown Placerville.
Schultz and friends will read a few select passages from “Bedford Avenue” and wine and light hors d’oeuvers will be offered, accompanied by the music of George Sheldon.
For every book sold at the event, a donation will be made to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
The book can be purchased locally for $14 at Placerville Flowers on Main, 321 Main St. and at Placerville News Company, 409 Main St. in Placerville or online at Amazon.com in both e-book and soft-cover version. They can also be found on the author’s Website at KristopherSchultz.com.