I'm still reading... still writing book reviews... and still writing too. Of course, I should also be still vacuuming floors and running washing machines, but I'll get to that. Meanwhile I managed to write three whole short stories (well, very short stories) yesterday, and today I'm going to post some more reviews. If there's still time afterwards I'll get back to editing and reading Elijah's Children--I'm still not sure if there's a novel in there, but it feels like there might be...
Anyway, here are some links to book reviews on Gather, and the all-important Coffee Recommendations. (Mmm, coffee: I read a book today where a vampire confessed the thing he misses most in life is coffee, but that review will be posted on Nights and Weekends on September 15th, so you'll have to wait.)
Starting with something that's definitely not fiction, but might possibly help me learn how to sell my next book when it comes out (see yesterday's post), Zarella’s Hierarchy of Contagiousness has some well-documented statistics and describes some well-planned internet experiments, all about when's the best time to make your post, whether views or links matter more, and what happens to those messages on infinite mailing lists... Certainly interesting, I don't think it's given me any solutions, but it's well worth reading with a cup of 2-star easy-drinking coffee.
And now to the sort of books I'd like to read and write: As the Twig is Bent, by Joe Perrone Jr creates a very plausible 10th precinct in New York, peopled with believable characters, from detective, to murdered women, mourning husbands, priests, and sinners. The story's filled with intricate details of daily life, balanced with gruesome crime, best read with a well-balanced 3-star coffee.
Next comes another mystery, this one set a little closer to (my) home, but with some fascinating characters. A Ghost of a Chance, by Minnette Meador, is a fun paranormal mystery romance with a very satisfying sense of humor, great dialog, ghosts, horror, and more, all solidly grounded in the Pacific Northwest. Enjoy a 3-star well-balanced coffee while enjoying this well-balanced mix of laughter and fear.
Staying with touches of the paranormal, next is The Canary List, by Sigmund Brouwer. A young girl runs away from the bad guy at her foster home and the teacher who tries to help her ends up in jail. Soon the story's drawing in Vatican conspiracies and more--a Christian novel that should definitely work just as well in non-Christian circles. Best read with a 5-star bold dark coffee.
And now for something very real, very down-to-earth, with powerful emotions, lyrical writing, and a wonderful sense of timing as the path from past to present is slowly revealed. Carry Yourself Back to Me, by Deborah Reed is a book I shall definitely recommend to our book group when we reconvene. Enjoy a 4-star rich, elegant, complex coffee with this one.
Finally there's Delphine De Vigan's No and Me, which I will also recommend to the group. If you only read one French novel in translation, make it this one--a powerfully clear depiction of loneliness in home, school and on the streets with no simple answers, just genuine lives and honest emotion. More 4-star elegant coffee required with this elegantly told tale.