Regular readers of this site know that I haven't been posting (or commenting) with quite the frequency as in the past, even with the Yanks on what has thus far been another magical run deep into the playoffs. I've been watching, you can be sure, but I've also been distracted, and for good reason: this week I've published my second book, Master of Shadows, which tells the story of the secret diplomatic career of the painter Peter Paul Rubens. Now I know the first reaction here is: what is a guy who writes about baseball doing writing about art? Well, I'd like to think we can enjoy both high culture and popular culture—I'm no snob. And I'd point out that my first book, Spalding's World Tour, in its own way, was about diplomacy as well, though of a different sort. If you read both books, and I hope you've read the first and will read the second, I think you'll find Albert Spalding and Peter Paul Rubens quite similar as individuals: a pair of orphans with enormous physical and intellectual gifts and savvy business instincts. If you enjoyed the first, I think you'll enjoy the second. Frankly, I think it's a better book. You can read much more about it on my other website. I will say it's an absolutely beautifully made book, so a perfect gift with the holidays looming. If you patronize this site, I hope you will support its proprietors! If you're so inclined, also please do join the Master of Shadows Facebook group for updates and news about events.