If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com.

Check out our February author interviews: 2/7-debut author Keenan Powell (Alaskan lawyer), 2/14-Leslie Wheeler (Rattlesnake Hill), 2/21-bestselling author Krista Davis, who unveils a new series, 2/28-Diane Vallere answers my questions about Pajama Frame. Please join us in welcoming these authors to WWK.

Our February Saturday Guest Blogger Schedule: 2/3-Saralyn Richard, 2/10-Kathryn Lane. WWK's Margaret H. Hamilton will blog on 2/17, and Kait Carson on 2/24.

Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:

Shari Randall's "Pets" will be included in Chesapeake Crimes: Fur, Feathers, and Felonies anthology, which will be published in 2018. In the same anthology "Rasputin," KM Rockwood's short story, will also be published. Her short story "Goldie" will be published in the Busted anthology, which will be released by Level Best Books on April 25th.

In addition, our prolific KM has had the following shorts published as well: "Making Tracks" in Passport to Murder, Bouchercon anthology, October 2017 and "Turkey Underfoot," appears in the anthology The Killer Wore Cranberry: a Fifth Course of Chaos.


Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A Reader’s Dilemma

So many books; so little time. I could never read all the interesting books in the world, let alone those published in any given year. The question, then, is how to choose which books to read.

I am an eclectic reader, which makes it even tougher. I am not like one poster at a blog I read who claims to never read more than one book by an author—I’ll read someone’s entire oeuvre if it keeps my interest. But I am not a slave to reading only authors I know.

Just for fun here are my last ten reads and the reasons I picked them up.

#10 Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery. Jan and I traveled to the Canadian Maritimes early this summer and we stopped at Green Gables and walked the area. I had given the book to one of my granddaughters a few years back, but had never read it myself. Having walked the area, I was curious, so when we got home, I borrowed it. I found it a very good read, and was glad none of my children or grandchildren had quite the knack for getting into trouble that Anne had.

#9 206 Bones by Kathy Reich. Jan and I were in the airport and she needed a book to read. Neither of us had read Reich before, but I knew lots of people who enjoyed her books, so I suggested she get it. We had earlier on the trip spent several days in Montreal where Reich’s protagonist hangs out. We both found the book a very good read.

#8 The Culture of Contentment by John Kenneth Galbraith. This had been on my to- read list for more than a decade (maybe more than two decades). I found his observations to be just as relevant today as they were when he wrote them. I labeled it a very good read.

#7 Don’t Sabotage Your Submission by Chris Roerden. I find with “how to” books that each has its own emphasis, and I get the most out of them by reading several. Chris’s was the most recent self-editing book I’ve read, and I found it had a number of ideas I had not read elsewhere so, again, I had another very good read.

#6 Shockwave Rider by John Brunner. The novel I started writing a couple of weeks ago is set in the near future (80 or so years from now). I wanted to read some of the classics of dystopian fiction, and this book was on many lists. It was my first book by Brunner; I rated it as only fair.

#5.5 The Island Within by Richard Nelson. Jan and I have an agreement that works well for us. While we are at our Upper Peninsula camp, we revert to typical male/female work roles. It’s not that I’m not willing to do the cleaning—I don’t meet her standards. However, we’ve found something that works very well for us: she cleans up after the evening meal, and I read to her. We tend to like essays and nonfiction personal stories for these readings because they have natural stopping points. I had read this book several years ago and enjoyed reading it to Jan. Very good.

#5 Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson. Also part of my pre-reading for futuristic novels and again a first book by the author. This one I found very enjoyable.

#4 The Burning Wire by Jeffrey Deaver. I’ve enjoyed all of Deaver’s Lincoln Rhyme books as well as his stand-alones. Jan found this at our library on one of our bi-weekly stops. This one I rated as excellent.

#3 Crimes by Moonlight edited by Charlaine Harris. I am not into vampires, were-creatures or generally things that go bump in the night. However, I had enjoyed short stories by several of the anthology’s authors and thought it might be time to expand my reading a bit. These are cracking good tales with just a touch of “woo-woo.” I rated it excellent, but I’m not rushing off to read all the latest vampire books.

#2 At Risk by Patricia Cornwall. I had read several books in Cornwell’s Dr. Kay Scarpetta series and for me they got to be the same old, same old and I had given up on her. Jan, who hadn’t read Cornwell when I did, picked it and a Scarpetta up at the same time she found the Deaver. She read it and thoroughly enjoyed it, so I read it. Glad I did; I rated it excellent.

#1 Bitter Medicine by Sara Paretsky. I’ve read most of Paretsky’s V I Warshawski’s novels, but somehow missed this one, so it was filling in a missing piece. As with most of Paretsky’s books, I found this one to be excellent.

My eleven books included one reread; one on my to-be- read list for years and years and years; several new authors; several repeat authors; and an anthology that stretched my usual genre.

How do you decide what to read?

~ Jim


E. B. Davis said...

I take recommendations,but also chose books by subject matter. There are also times when I just take a chance via my curiousity. I've read some of the books on your list, the Reich, Roerden, and Harris books.

Ramona said...

I also take recs, but I love to stand at the New Book Shelf at the library or bookstore and read first pages. Subject matter is a biggie as well, but if there's not an engaging beginning, sorry, I'm moving on.

I'm so happy to see Anne of Green Gables on your list. I enjoyed many vicarious adventures with the intrepid Miss Shirley.

Pauline Alldred said...

I like to read books by writers I know personally. I also like to support writers who belong to Sisters in Crime. It's interesting to see book lists of other readers because it draws my attention to a book that I think might be interesting.

Ellis Vidler said...

Elaine, I like your eclectic tastes. So glad to see you read Anne of GG. I've laughed and cried through it many times. And I remember reading Bitter Medicine some years ago and thinking how good it was. I like occasional trips outside crime fiction. It's stimulating to read something else once in a while.