Books that “Shell­daz­zle”

Two new seashell-themed ad­di­tions to lo­cal book­shelves

Cape Coral Living - - Contents -

By some ac­counts, Sani­bel Is­land is the seashell cap­i­tal of the world, so it’s not sur­pris­ing that seashellthemed books are com­monly found on lo­cal shelves. Two such books hit the is­land in the past few months: A Shell of a Prob­lem and Shel­lan­guage. Jen­nifer L. Schiff, who di­vides her time be­tween Sani­bel and New Eng­land, has writ­ten the first in what she is call­ing the Sani­bel Is­land Mys­tery se­ries. She says it is the type of book she en­joys read­ing—a cozy mys­tery. A Shell of a Prob­lem is also the first piece of fic­tion from this tech and fi­nan­cial writer. Schiff has cre­ated a sim­ple plot, with a de­cid­edly is­land flair. When the star at­trac­tion—the so-called Golden Junonia—goes miss­ing from the an­nual Sani­bel Shell Show, lo­cal news­pa­per re­porter Guini­vere Jones is de­ter­mined to find out what hap­pened to it. The story gets more com­pli­cated when a chief sus­pect ends up dead. And then there’s just enough ro- mance in­volved to keep things in­ter­est­ing for Guin. A Shell of a Prob­lem is quick and en­ter­tain­ing to read, made more fun be­cause the au­thor uses real places on Sani­bel to tell the story, and the char­ac­ters, while fic­tional, bear some small re­sem­blance to var­i­ous is­land per­son­al­i­ties. On the other end of the spec­trum is Shel­lan­guage, writ­ten by lo­cal shelling en­thu­si­ast Pam Rambo. Rambo has de­vised her own hu­mor­ous shelling “vo­cab­shel­lary” and doc­u­mented it in this slim vol­ume, with beau­ti­ful pho­tos and light-hearted draw­ings to il­lus­trate each en­try. From “ab­shel­lutely” to “Shel­lzam!”, Rambo de­fines more than 40 crazy shell words that all “cutie shel­looties” will find “shel­lar­i­ous.” Both of these books aim to please the shell fa­nat­ics among us. Each should pro­vide an amus­ing af­ter­noon of beach read­ing … be­tween shelling ex­cur­sions. “Hasta shel­lvista.”

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