A New York Minute

Jeff Buick New York Platinus InvestmentsI love New York.

Wouldn’t want to live there, but I love it for its energy, its sophistication, and about a thousand other reasons. But I only love it for short periods at a time. I admire those who call it home. The constant noise, the crowds and the traffic are insane. I guess that’s part of the attraction.

I was in NY for a week at Book Expo America, checking out what is happening in the publishing industry. BEA is a monster of a show, consuming the entire Javits Center, which is a mean feat. All the big boys were there – Harper Collins, Ingram, Random House, Pengui…tons more.

And us. Enthrill Entertainment. The little boutique publishing house that turned a few heads.

We have a new, interactive thriller coming out this summer – One Child. Check out http://www.onechildonline.com for details. Enter your name and e-mail and watch the video trailer. It’s pretty cool. Different enough that the top people at some of the largest publishing houses in the world were asking us for more information.

Anyway, there’s the shameless plug for the new book. Back to New York.

We took in the Broadway play, A Behanding in Spokane with Christopher Walken while we were there. This is one dark and funny play. It pretty much insults every demographic slice of society, so if you go, be prepared to be insulted at some point. Loved it. Highly recommended by all four of us who attended.

Returned to the Top of the Rock at Rockefeller Plaza. Last time we were there it was awe-inspiring. This time it was long lines and so-so. I’ve told lots of people to bypass the Empire State Building and head up Rockefeller Plaza, but not anymore. If you have to stand in a line, go for the tallest landmark in the city. Top of the Rock is okay, but that’s about it.

Headed down to Soho and checked out some of the settings I put in One Child. Soho is amazing. It’s gentrified and trendy, without the rough edges of The Meatpacking District or Chelsea. If I ever buy a condo in Manhattan, it’ll be in Soho.

Took in the current offering from the Guggenheim. Crap. Total crap. It’s a collection of photographs that insults the profession. There are so many great photographers out there working hard and taking incredible shots and getting no recognition whatsoever for their efforts. It sets my blood boiling. At least there were a few Picassos, Monets and Gauguins to ease the sting of a twenty dollar cab fare and twenty-one dollar entry tickets. We walked back to the hotel.

We tried a couple of new restaurants and returned to some favorites. Kellari Taverna on West 44th Street is still a wonderful place to eat. A bit loud and on the expensive side, but you get quality food and impeccable service. I’ll be back every time I visit. Taboon, at the corner of 10th Avenue and 52nd Street, is at the top of our list. This little Hell’s Kitchen gem has a tandoor oven where all the food is cooked. Incredible. Do not leave NY without visiting this wonderful restaurant. And if you want a reasonably priced meal that tastes great, there’s a little hole in the wall on 9th Avenue between 51st and 52nd called Hummus Kitchen. Try the couscous and chicken. It’s to die for.

Stayed at one of the chain hotels this time, rather than the Dylan. Crowne Plaza Times Square. It was surprisingly good. The people working the front desk were outstanding, the room clean and they even had a feather pillow. I like the boutique hotels, but with their rates rising toward the $400 mark for a standard room, I’m liking the Crowne Plaza and the Grand Central Hyatt better all the time.

We’re heading back to New York in July for ThrillerFest. This is my favorite conference of the year. David Morrell, Sandra Brown, Heather Graham, Clive Cussler, Brett Battles, Rick Mofina – the list of thriller authors is almost endless. The cream of the crop are at the Grand Central Hyatt, and they’re totally accessible. If you love reading thrillers and want to meet the authors one-on-one, ThrillerFest is the place. It’s reader friendly.

That’s it. Finished.

New York is a blast. If you’ve been, you already know that. If you haven’t, get to it.


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