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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Michael Connelly is barely on the shelves when I swoop and devour, and also De Mille, for me he is the master. I read Lee Child, much like you would a comic book, not expecting any real depth; however I do like his character Reacher. I think Sue Grafton is in some ways similar, maybe a few points up the scale and her other characters are always there, very colourful and rounded, like meeting up with old friends. I read authors rather than individual books, for me the continuing back story is just as enticing as the new scenario that the characters find themselves in. Different strokes for different folks (my Mom’s old adage).....
I devoured De Mille like you do Connelly, Gail. He wrote some absolutely fabulous novels. Grafton's plots have many flaws but I have always liked her, like I like Paretsky, because I like strong women protagonists. Thank goodness for different strokes.
Noir by K.W. Jeter
Just finished Lousie Welch's The Cutting Room which I really enjoyed. Has a fabulous noir feel to it - there were times I forgot the action was set in current times and not in the 1940s. There's a few full-on gay sex scenes which were well handled. The real joy is Welch's use of language - very poetic.

I've also finished the first instalment in YA crime series by Gabrielle Lord. The series is called Conspiracy 365 and basically the main character, a 15 year old boy, has to survive on the run for a year while unravelling a family secret. There'll be 12 books in the series - one for each month. I thoroughly enjoyed the first book. Captivating and exciting.
Kjell Eriksson's THE CRUEL STARS OF NIGHT.: Not as good as Mankell, Fossum, et al., but certainly better than
the Stieg Larsen trilogy (in my opinion).

I wonder who creates the hype that turns one into a bestseller and the others into "reminiscent of . . .". I suppose dying before the release of the books sort of works the way it does in the art world. (See Sarah Weinman for Stieg Larsen, especially the critic she cites last).
I understand. I just finished the second book of Johan Theorin. The author is compared to Mankell, but the only similarity is that both authors are Swedish. Theorin's first was ECHOES FROM THE DEAD, a well-written mystery, although I could argue with his making a likable character a baddy in the end. The second book is THE DARKEST ROOM. This is the best book I've read this year. It defies categorization; there are elements of crime, thriller, ghost story, and mystery. His description of nature is poetic, but not overblown like James Lee Burke. Both books are translated by the same person, so she must get some of the credit. The author is in his 50's and is a journalist with only these two novels. Hope he has retired from journalism to increase his publication rate. Recommend this one strongly.

I took a break from mysteries and read GAME CHANGE, very intertaining.

Then I read Denise Mina's latest, STILL MIDNIGHT. I must say that she has mellowed. It contains less violence, and the characters are less fierce. Even the bad guys are not truly hateful; one of them falls in love with his victim, which is very funny.

Now I'm starting Michael Stanley's second, THE SECOND DEATH OF GOODLUCK TINUBU, which feature police Detective David "Kubu" Bengu of Botswana. His first was A CARRION DEATH which kept me guessing until the end.
Stanley's books sound like copy-cat McCall-Smith. As if he was cashing in on the Mma Ramotswe bestsellers. I'll have to take a look. I read Theorin and can't remember a thing about him. I know I dislike Asa Larsson. Thursten is good, though.
Very perceptive comment about James Lee Burke. Those descriptive passages crop up like little flags: "Watch me being a great descriptive writer now!" Readers do seem to like it.
May look at Mina again, too. Didn't like the earlier ones.
Kubu has the same sort of sweetness of character as Mma Ramotswe, but the crime elements have much more of an edge than McCall-Smith's.

I also dislike Asa Larsson, female claptrap.
Hah! We do think alike. :)
Rain Gods: A Novel by James Lee Burke (Kindle Edition - July 14, 2009)
I used to be a big fan of James Lee Burke's Louisiana Robicheau{sp] books. After the first two or three they started to get a little old. I read where he had a new series and gave this one a shot. So far its not too bad. It takes place in SW Texas. It is eerily similar to No Country for Old Men by Cormac Mccarthy (Kindle Edition - Nov. 29, 2007). So much so Im surprised McCarthy hasnt sued. Same part of the country. Elderly sheriff going after psycho hitman. Young couple in danger. I cant imagine Burke would stoop so low and maybe it is just similar in a few ways. Im halfway through and even with this caveat I still recommend it.
Oh well...blah...belay that! Im dropping this to two stars and only that because it had some pretty good action confrontation murder scenes. The second half of the book really stinks and I'll never read Burke again much less buy one of his books. And the ending was pure unadulterated garbage. And it went on and on and on.
Burke just signed a new contract for the next novel for an advance of over 500,000 dollars.

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