An open discussion on what everyone is currently reading. Make recommendations to others, discuss what is new, hot, bestsellers, anything and everything related to books and the authors.

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I've returned to the Jack Reacher books by Lee Child (primarily because I still have a few outstanding and I want to be 'caught up' by the time the new one is released!)

For the last couple of months I've been reading a number of UK crime writers (Simon Kernick, Mark Billingham and Peter James) and now find it strange to go back to Child's style of writing - I'm not sure if it's his use of very short sentences or the (at times) overly-descriptive passages but I'm currently wading through 'Without Fail'!

Perhaps by the time I've read the remaining titles I have yet to go, I'll be in the right 'mind-set' to appreciate "61 Hours"!
Just started John Burdett's new book, The Godfather of Kathmandu. I've just finished a very serious crime fiction, so I'm trying to get tuned to his Buddhist humor.
I just finished John Burdett's The Godfather of Kathmandu. His books are really imaginative. They include a weave of Buddhism and corruption in Thailand that is absolutely fascinating.
Then you'd like the story of the Theft of the Blue Diamond

http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1969920,00.html

You couldn't make this stuff up...
That's an incredible story. I'm wondering what the jewels (real or fake) were a cover for? Arms? Child prostitutes? There seems to be an essential element missing and since everyone involved is corrupt, we may never know what it is.
My thoughts exactly. Especially in light of John Burdett's Thai police stories (which started this conversation) but
1) who says these wonderful jewels ever existed in the first place? Maybe the gardner stole one or two jewels, but the largest blue diamond on the planet was just laying around for a common gardner to take?
2) what bugs me is Thais are killing Thais over this. Isn't that a misplaced motive? If an author wrote this it'd be Saudi secret agents tracking torturing Thais to find the jewels. But since everyone involved is corrupt then sure, why not have Thais kill Thais.

Anyway, truth is stranger than fiction.
I don't think anyone gets off on the corruption charge these days. Americans just have the money to more efficiently cover it up (unless it's some clown like Larry Craig or Eric Massa). The US is the biggest arms dealer in the world and you can bet the ways of moving money are ingenious. Phony jewels would be fine. Dope dealers use stolen art to move money. Anything is possible.
I'd swear that was a made up story. I mean, the guy on death row formed a band and released a version of Elvis' "Jailhouse Rock"? I couldn't stop laughing. Great piece.
Just finished two fantastic books - Wyatt by Garry Disher (Crime Fiction) and Girls Like Funny Boys by Dave Franklin (not crime fiction). Now I'm dithering around in that post fantastic book, NOTHING will ever interest me again bleaaaghhhhh - but Vintage have released all the Edmund Crispin books so Buried for Pleasure is tempting, and I've got the guilts over Home Before Dark by Charles MacLean which is a review book I'm overdue with. Mind you I'm also waiting for delivery of Lenny Bartulin's second book - The Black Russian and I fully intend to jump all queues with it.
I'm reading "Convictions" the memoir of John Kroger, currently Oregon's attorney general. It's an excellent account of his work as a Federal prosecutor.

I've started a new book of my own, "Betrayal." I'm guessing there are other books with a similar title. My wife gives me good reminders to keep focused on the internals of characters' feelings. As an old technical writer and journalist, I tend to leave out how people feel. I mean, if you're writing assembly instructions, do you say how much joy there is when you get tab 3 into slot 3?
Maybe technical volumes would be more readable by newbies if writers did. ;-)
HYPOTHERMIA by Arnaldur Indridason. I've read all of his books so far and have always been just a little disappointed. In this particular one there is a great deal of repetition of the protagonist's (Police detective Erlendur) backstory, so much so that one is tempted to say "Who cares? Get on with life already." But there is also plot repetition because he takes all the characters involved in a case over the same ground over and over again, first via interviews, then via first person pov narrative by each of the people involved, and then by Erlendur telling others about the case. Perhaps this was to show different perspectives of the truth (a la RASHOMON GATE), but actually there aren't any contradictions and it gets tedious.

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