4 Following


Currently reading

Roberto BolaƱo
The Book of Paul
Richard Long
Anansi Boys
Neil Gaiman
Midnight's Children
Salman Rushdie
James Joyce
The Master and Margarita
Mikhail Bulgakov, Diana Burgin, Katherine Tiernan O'Connor
City of Bones
Cassandra Clare

Long Arm Gil Hamilton

The Long Arm of Gil Hamilton - Larry Niven One of my favorite of Niven's works. I pay homage to this book in my own series.

Kingdom (Tiber City, #1)

Kingdom (Tiber City, #1) - Anderson O'Donnell The person who recommended this to me described it as "dense," which is a term I use for books from writers such as Umberto Eco or Gabriel Garcia Marquez, books that you cannot just pass a breezy afternoon taking in along with the afternoon sun. Books that require you to invest some time in to reap the rewards of an outstanding read. And please understand, Kingdom is not an easy read. O'Donnell rebuilds America along with his new city, Tiber City as a place that could exist, a world that could be ours given a nudge or two to the side. Once I found the world and unlocked some of the essential story elements, it was difficult for me not to think about what he was doing with his story, with his philosophy.

The writing itself is evocative and captivating without being overwrought. Another reviewer complained that it could be cut down and I disagree. For whatever reason, there is a desire on the part of some readers that books be simple, easy reads, especially in genre fiction. I love it when genre authors take risks and challenge us. I would place Mr. O'Donnell along side authors such as Dan Simmons and while Kingdom is not as quite as ambitious as Mr. Simmons' works, I can see him going down a similar path and I highly recommend this book.


Reaper - Becca C Smith I was so excited to read this. While my tastes tend to run more literary, I am always up for a good supernatural thriller. While I'm not usually in the market for teen related faire, I am also a high school English teacher and always on the prowl for books my students can really enjoy. That's how I initially discovered the first book in this series, Riser (a must read!). And I was hooked almost immediately by the sheer creativity of Ms. Smith's world and her grasp of the teenage mind.

I was incredibly impressed by this second endeavor. Usually a second novel in a series pales in comparison to the first. Most authors have a hard time continuing to innovate with the same characters. Ms. Smith has no such problem. Her world has a wonderful depth and she has given herself a large pool to draw from when it comes to finding new adventures for Chelsan. I was actually more engrossed by this chapter of the story. The stakes were raised and it didn't feel forced or repetitive. The action was taught and I even found myself being drawn into the feud between the rivals for Chelsan's affections. There are surprises around every turn and I couldn't turn the pages fast enough. My only regret is that I now have to wait yet again for the next book. I gave the last book 5 stars. I wish I could give this one more.

Riser (The Riser Saga, #1)

Riser (The Riser Saga, #1) - Becca C. Smith As a high school teacher, I'm always looking for new fiction to get my students excited about reading. While I was not a big fan of the Twilight series, I was just happy my students were reading books. A friend of mine gave me a copy of this to read because she thought I might like to share it with my students. I was a little skeptical, but once I started reading this, I had a hard time putting it down. Ms. Smith shows a great deal of maturity in her first work, spinning a compelling tale that combines elements of science fiction and fantasy seamlessly. Chelsen's gift is unique in fiction. Trust me, you have not read this story before. It is so rare to find something so original handled so well. I was surprised to find myself caught up in the story so quickly and, to be honest, I did not put it down until the final page was turned. I was only upset that it ended!

I shared this with a couple of my students and now they are both on Team Chelsen! We all cannot wait for the next book in this series.