A New Year & Some Thoughts

Well, I managed to go 4 months without writing a single blog post. And the award for lamest blog and worst blogger ever goes to…

Okay, so it’s a new year and we shall see what that brings. 2010 was a bit of a lean year in terms of writing for me. Not that I depend on it for income. I’d long ago been dead were that the case – and dead in a hurry! Didn’t see much published last year so I’m hoping 2011 will be a fat year. I also didn’t get much written. I hope to change that.

I finished up some reading toward the end of the year and some of it bears mentioning.

The Alienist by Caleb Carr was a great, dark detective story set in New York City at the end of the 19th century.

So Cold the River by Michael Koryta was very enjoyable and atmospheric. That is to say, it left me wanting to travel to the places in the book and to see them for myself. It was Koryta’s fist stab (no pun) at supernatural thriller and I think he did quite well. His next one will be in a similar vein and I will be looking for that to come out.

City of Thieves by David Benioff. I couldn’t say enough about this book. I can’t wait to read / see more stuff by this writer. A wonderful story set during the siege of Leningrad where two “criminals” are offered their freedom if they can find a dozen eggs in the war and starvation-ravaged city. It is, at once, charming, horrific, endearing, and funny. I understand there is to be a movie made of it. Consider my ticket already bought.

Stephen King. I haven’t read any King in so long, it’s not funny. I’m a big fan of his son, Joe Hill’s work but I think the last King books I read was Four Past Midnight. So I heard that Under the Dome is quite good but it’s also 1,500 pages and I just don’t have the time or the attention span of late, so I picked up Full Dark, No Stars when it came out.

It contains four novellas. I started with the first one in the book (I don’t always, you know) titled “1922.” Good. So goddamn good, I haven’t read any of the others yet. You know, it’s like I put it down and said to myself “That is as good or better than anything I have ever read by him.” Also, I think it is one of the best tales I have ever read… period. And so he ruined me with the first novella. I may be wrong but I will wager none of the others in that book will stand up to “1922.” It falls under the category of supernatural thriller, which I love. It is also incredibly dark and twisted. I won’t give too much of it away but it concerns a man who talks his son into helping him to kill his wife, the boy’s mother and how their world unravels afterward. It is haunting and impossibly dark and masterfully, masterfully written. Reading this King novella, I felt something I have felt only a time or two before and usually while reading Cormac McCarthy; the sense that you are in the presence of a master of their art. I highly recommend this book if only for the first novella alone.

Well, that’s all for now. See y’all in… probably 3 to 6 months. Hahaha!

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