When Spring Valley book lover April Parmelee found out about Lisa Jackson's Straight to the Heart of Your Town contest she mobilized to help Las Vegas win the right to host the book launch for the bestselling author's newest book, "You Don't Want to Know."
"I texted everyone I knew, and they all voted," Parmelee said.
The 45-plus votes made on her behalf were instrumental in pushing Las Vegas ahead. Fresno, Calif., which came in second, lost by only nine votes. New York City took third and Kansas City, Mo., was fourth. Jackson's publisher Kensington Books sprang for a launch party Aug. 7 inside the Planet Hollywood P.F. Chang's. Winning voters were invited, and the crowd numbered more than 60. As an additional treat, Jackson and her sister, novelist Nancy Bush, agreed to sign books at the 8915 W. Charleston Blvd. Barnes & Noble Aug. 6.
Barnes & Noble employee and Jackson fan Cyndie Berney was "ready to do cartwheels" when she found out about the signing, especially since Jackson rarely tours.
"I had people in California voting for us," Berney said. "We did this as fans."
Henderson resident Ron Frame read about Jackson's public book signing in the newspaper and rushed to tell his wife, Linda, who is a huge follower of Jackson's work.
"She thought I was making it up," Frame said, adding that she wouldn't believe him until she'd read it herself.
At the signing, the Frames won a drawing for admission to the party. Linda Frame said she was thrilled at the prospect of attending.
"She's fantastic," she said of Jackson. "Some writers have an ability to take you away with their books. She's one of them."
North Las Vegas resident Dawn Cooper shared that sentiment. She works in book merchandising and brought home an advance reader's copy of Jackson's book that her 15-year-old son Colton Cooper devoured. Colton messaged Jackson on Facebook to tell her how much he loved the book, and the two have been corresponding ever since.
"I love her books," Colton said. He added that Jackson has inspired him to try to start a youth writing club at Legacy High School, where he will be a sophomore in the fall.