Although Macon native Nancy Grace ended her popular TV show Thursday, she is still plenty busy.
Grace was at Barnes & Noble Booksellers in Macon on Sunday signing copies of her new crime novel, “Murder in the Courthouse.”
Although the line wasn’t that long, those who were waiting had to have some patience. Grace chatted at length with pretty much everyone, many of whom knew her or her family from when she was a child.
One of those was Frank Fountain of Dexter, who worked with Grace’s dad on the railroad in Macon. When Grace found that out she summoned up her 8-year-old twins so they could hear Fountain talk about the work their grandfather did.
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Fountain said after speaking with Grace that he remembered her well as a child. He was not surprised that she grew up to become one of Macon’s most famous former residents.
“She’s dedicated to whatever she believes in,” he said after getting her to sign a copy of the book.
Grace went on signing about an hour after it was scheduled to end. She said afterward that doing a book-signing in Macon is a different kind of experience because of the people who bring back memories.
“Regardless of where I am I always feel like Macon is home,” she said. “Most of my happiest memories have been in Macon.”
Grace originally planned to become a teacher after graduating from Windsor Academy, but when she was 19 her fiancee was murdered. That inspired her to become a lawyer, and she was a prosecutor in Atlanta before going to work for Court TV. She eventually got her own show on HLN, formerly Headline News.
She discussed true crime on the show from a prosecutor’s point of view.
The book she was signing Sunday is her fourth, and the third in the Hailey Dean mystery series.
The first person in line was Mike Edwards of Macon. Unlike most of the others, who picked up the book at the signing, he had already read it.
“It’s really good,” he said. “It’s fast paced. You don’t want to put it down once you start it.”
He went to school with Grace in elementary school and has read all of her books.
“If I had known then what I know now, instead of playing basketball and baseball and football and marbles, I would have been chasing her all over the playground,” he said.
One person who had never met her was Christina Kelly of Warner Robins. An Air Force retiree, she was a big fan of Grace’s show and hated to see it end.
“I love her personality,” Kelly said. “I know some people don’t like it, but she challenges all of the people who come on her show.”
Grace said the saddest thing about signing off Thursday was saying goodbye to her staff. Most of them had been together for the entire 12-year run of the show.
She said she is now looking at starting a crime website as well as possibly some other type of TV show. On Oct. 23 the Hallmark Channel will premiere an original movie based on another of Grace’s books, “Murder, With Love.” Grace will make a cameo appearance in the movie.