Nationally distributed Columbus author book signing Saturday

The latest post from Columbus novelist Glenda Winders raises a rather shocking question right off the bat: What are you wearing when you testify against your best friend as she stands trial for murder?

So it’s in “Sainted in Error,” published earlier this year by Mascot Books (305 pages, $16.95).

Kirkus Reviews calls the work “a gripping tale of one woman’s mental breakdown”.

Winders will be signing copies of the book from 1-4 p.m. Saturday at the Book Warehouse, 3140 Outlet Drive, Suite F060, at Indiana Premium Outlets in Edinburgh. When the book came out a few months ago, it grabbed enough attention from local readers to stay on Columbus’ Viewpoint Books’ bestseller list for a few weeks.

Besides his fictional work, Winders writes articles and profiles for the Republic’s Columbus magazine.

In Winders’ story, as the character Maggie Patterson runs her hand over the clothes in her closet and ponders the prosaic details of preparing for a shocking personal murder trial, she is catapulted into the memories that led her at the moment. Piece by piece, she assembles the fragments of her past to give meaning to a violent crime whose echoes reverberate in her memories.

Maggie and Cynthia meet in freshman year of college and are seemingly destined to be best friends forever. Over the years, however, Maggie’s marriage and career lead to success and wealth while Cynthia’s jealousy and untreated mental illness cause their relationship to disintegrate.

As the stories of the two women’s lives unfold, Cynthia’s paranoia and anger sour every relationship she has and even turn the people who loved her most against her, eventually turning into an event Maggie never sees coming.

Not a murder mystery in the usual sense, and spanning time and space, “Sainted in Error” delves into the tenacity of friendship and the damage the stigma still attached to mental illness can do.

Winders is an award-winning fiction writer, editor and journalist whose work has appeared in major magazines and newspapers nationwide. While serving as an editor at Copley News Service, she led a team of reporters that won a Pulitzer Prize in 2006 with the San Diego Union-Tribune for national reporting for the disclosure that the former California congressman Randy Cunningham had taken bribes, which ultimately led to his criminal conviction and imprisonment.

Her first novel, “The Nine Assignments”, was published in 2016.

Colin L. Johnson