Boarding House Blues

Author: Tiger Wiseman

14 September 2022
Books that defined the 1920s — Wooster & Jeeves

Historical Fiction is a story that takes readers to a time and place in the past. The "past" could be 1260 or 1960. Today, readers think of historical fiction as something written in one time, but depicting another. But what about writers who depicted their own time, but are being read 50 years later? Personally, […]

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1 September 2022
Women's Journey to the Olympics

Don't get mad, get even. That might well have been the motto of female athletes in the 1920s. Participation in the ancient Olympic Games was limited to male athletes only. At the first modern Olympic Games in Athens 1896, no women competed, as Baron de Coubertin, founder of the International Olympic Committee, and its second […]

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16 August 2022
The Bee's Knees

During the Roaring Twenties, flappers and other "bright young things" invented nonsense expressions — possibly to incense their proper mamas and papas. One of their favorite targets was phrases to replace the word/s "wonderful" or "the best". One of the most widely known of these is 'the bee's knees', as in "I think dinner at […]

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1 August 2022
Comics - Fun or Social Commentary?

Who didn't love reading the Sunday funnies as a kid? My most vivid memory of my paternal grandfather is watching him paste Sunday comic strips into scrapbooks. After he died, my aunt gave me two of them as keepsakes. One is Jiggs and Maggie, the other a strip called The Bungle Family. Jiggs and Maggie […]

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15 July 2022
From Sex Worker to Real Estate Mogul

Many fortunes were made (and lost) in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Names such as Andrew Carnegie, George F. Baker, William Rockefeller, and Henry Ford readily come to mind. But what about women? What about Black women? Hannah Elias is not exactly a well-known name, but by the early 1900s, she had built […]

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1 July 2022
What's for Lunch?

Back in the days when I was a reporter (long before the internet), one of our favourite lunch spots was a small restaurant around the corner from the newsroom. Most days we ordered the blue-plate special which was invariably delicious, filling, and inexpensive. Ever wonder where that term came from? Apparently, this is a very […]

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18 May 2022
1920s Unsolved Mysteries - Thomas Ince

In November 1924, movie studio pioneer Thomas Ince attended a party on William Randolph Hearst’s private yacht, the Oneida. All of this is indisputable. But what happened next? There were 15 guests aboard the luxury yacht that weekend, including Hearst, his mistress Marion Davies, actress Seena Owen, and author Elinor Glynn. A full and accurate […]

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10 May 2022
Mysteries on the Small Screen

When I say “TV series set in the 1920s,” what comes to mind? Most people would immediately respond Upstairs Downstairs and Downton Abbey. Some might add Peaky Blinders. As a mystery writer, my list is a little different: Murdoch Mysteries, Miss Fisher Mysteries, and Frankie Drake Mysteries The Roaring Twenties, aka the Jazz Age, were […]

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2 May 2022
What to Read: Agatha Christie

A Belgian detective, a soldier recovering from duty on the Western front, and a Scotland Yard detective walk into a country manor . . . It doesn’t take a genius to recognize the beginning of an Agatha Christie mystery. It is, in fact, Christie’s first mystery, The Mysterious Affair at Styles, written during World War […]

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10 April 2022
Casper, Hannibal, or Heathcliff? Susan, Lolita, or Sunbeam?

What's in a name?  Whether you're a parent or an author, names are important. Names invoke mental images and carry emotional connotations. Authors expend a tremendous amount of time and sweat naming their characters. I bow before the geniuses who coined the names Wil E. Coyote, Hot Lips Houlihan, and Dr. Strangelove. What about Willy […]

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