Pat Wahler

Penning stories to savor.

Humor and History is a Perfect Combination

I love to laugh and equally enjoy learning quirky little tidbits from the past. If you do, too, I have the perfect book to recommend. Launching Sheep & Other Stories from the Intersection of History & Nonsense is a collection of eighty-six blog posts written by Sarah Angleton – friend and fellow writer – selected from five years blogging as the Practical Historian.  As the title suggests, readers will not be bored by dry history lectures. The stories are witty and clever; drawing parallels between events from the past and the daily life of the author’s own family in an entertaining and decidedly tongue-in-cheek fashion.

Sarah Angleton signing at North Cafe.

Because all pieces in the collection are short, the book is easy to pick up and read whenever you have a spare moment. The only problem might be in putting it down.  While humor abounds, it so happens one of my favorite stories is a bit more poignant.  We learn about the author’s niece looking for the perfect wedding gown, and how Queen Victoria started a trend. Trust me, if you’ve bought a wedding dress, you’ll love the story, On the Shelf of Rarely Used Things.

Yesterday, Sarah had her first book signing at North Cafe in Wentzville, Missouri. I stopped in to congratulate her, and get an autograph on my copy. Do yourself a favor and buy this book on Amazon, or request it at your local bookstore. If you’d like to meet Sarah, you can visit her next signing at Our Town Books in Jacksonville, Illinois on June 2.

Congratulations to Sarah on a fabulous accomplishment!

Support your local authors. They need you!

Attending her signing moves me to mention the hard work involved in letting people know about a book. In the old days, authors like Edgar Allen Poe or Ernest Hemingway would arrange a tour to read from their work and (hopefully) sell some books. Some authors are reported to have bribed  paid editors and critics for recognition. Others who had a little extra coin in their pockets  might hire people to wear sandwich boards and walk through town (history’s version of social media).

Any way you look at it, getting out the word is tough.

That’s where you, dear readers, are so crucial. Pictured is a chart of ways you can help your favorite author. I can promise she (or he) will appreciate it more than you know.






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  1. Thank you, Pat! Funny that we talk all the time about how the book industry is changing so much, but looking back, promotion is still that same tedious and scary thing it’s always been. I hadn’t thought to hire someone to wear a sandwich board.

    • Pat Wahler

      May 15, 2017 at 4:26 pm

      Sarah, maybe that’s the one thing we modern folks haven’t tried to become a bestselling author! I’m going to start saving my money.

  2. Linda O'Connell

    May 15, 2017 at 12:27 pm

    This book sounds fascinating. Who knew Queen Victoria had something to do with wedding traditions? Love tidbits like this. Congratulations to Sarah.

  3. Pat–This does sound like a good book to read. Who doesn’t like funny-mixed-with- poignant AND it doesn’t require a huge time commitment… You can just read a little when yo have time.

    • Pat Wahler

      May 15, 2017 at 7:26 pm

      Sioux, I always enjoy reading Sarah’s blog, so having many of her posts all in one place is perfect. By the way, congrats to you! I understand the LTYM show was fabulous!

  4. So proud of Sarah and her book! I bought two copies to giveaway as gifts. They make the perfect gift for someone who likes to laugh and enjoys odd historical facts.

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