April 3, 2016

January, February and March 2016

Jan 1 The House of Tomorrow Peter Bognanni
2 Midnight Riot Ben Aaronovitch
3 Down Cemetery Road Mick Herron
4 As Close To Us As Breathing Elizabeth Poliner
Feb 5 Nobody Walks Mick Herron
6 Altered Carbon Richard K. Morgan
7 Anna and the Swallow Man Gavriel Savit
8 Daredevils Shawn Vestal
9 Lay Down Your Weary Tune W. B. Belcher
10 The Wolves Alex Berenson
Mar 11 Real Tigers Mick Herron
12 Dodgers Bill Beverly
13 Midnight Sun Jo Nesbo
14 Back Blast Mark Greaney
15 As Good As Gone Larry Watson

This time, I'm giving a Quarterly report!  I've done two months at a time previously, but never three!

My list of favorite authors is as long as my arm.  Because I read so much, I expose myself to a wide variety.  During these three months, I read books by five of my favorites, Mick Herron, Alex Berenson, Joe Nesbo, Mark Greaney and Larry Watson.  You can pick up any of their books, not just the novels on this list, and I don't think you'll be disappointed.

The primary reason I love reading debut authors is it's so darn hard to get published these days.  The House of Tomorrow by Peter Bognanni is a debut novel; it's a unique and touching story about a teenage boy who has been raised in isolation by his grandmother.  The story is charming and thoughtful and a great read.  I highly recommend it.

Another debut that is outstanding is Dodgers by Bill Beverly.  From BN.com: "Dodgers is a dark, unforgettable coming-of-age journey that recalls the very best of Richard Price, Denis Johnson, and J.D. Salinger. It is the story of a young LA gang member named East, who is sent by his uncle along with some other teenage boys—including East's hothead younger brother—to kill a key witness hiding out in Wisconsin. The journey takes East out of a city he's never left and into an America that is entirely alien to him, ultimately forcing him to grapple with his place in the world and decide what kind of man he wants to become."

Anna and the Swallow Man by Gavriel Savit is also a debut novel.  It's YA, but I passed it around my Tai Chi Class and everyone who read it absolutely loved it.  This from the Kirkus Review:  "After a young girl is left to fend for herself in World War II Poland, she stumbles upon an intriguing gentleman who she hopes will guide her out of the emerging chaos of war. Anna Lania is 7 at the start of this multiyear tale with its overtones of folklore and magical realism. Her linguistics-professor father is taken away by the Germans during the expulsion of intellectuals at Jagiellonian University in Krakow. A linguist herself, Anna is drawn to the language abilities and bird savvy of the Swallow Man, so named to preserve his anonymity. As they make their way together across Poland, the Swallow Man has ingenious ways of explaining their new realities to Anna via storytelling while his real activities remain an enigma until the end. Most striking here is that debut author Savit creates a young girl's world that only consists of father figures—and it is not always clear how Anna is to determine whom to trust and whether or not these relationships and how she thinks of them are ultimately safe. The eventual conclusion: human connection, however, brief or imperfect, has the potential to save us all. Artful, original, insightful."

What are you reading?

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