Random Thoughts

about reading, writing, and anything else that interests me

July Reading

I have spent a lot of time in the car this month, and as a result, have done a lot of reading.  I managed to read 11 books:

  1. Destiny’s Road by Larry Niven
  2. Free Fire by C.J. Box
  3. Guilty Pleasures by Laurel K. Hamilton
  4. The Laughing Corpse by Laurel K. Hamilton
  5. The Healer’s War by Elizabeth Ann Scarborough
  6. Angel Station by Walter Jon Williams
  7. Lay Down My Sword and Shield by James Lee Burke
  8. Fever Dream by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child
  9. Saint Vidicon to the Rescue! by Christopher Stasheff
  10. Circus of the Damned by Laurel K. Hamilton
  11. Ringworld by Larry Niven

Although I had no idea I was doing it, I started and ended the month with books by Larry Niven.  Destiny’s Road was the first of his books that I read, and I really liked it. I like the way he writes — he doesn’t feel a need to throw you immediately into the midst of conflict.   Ringworld was similar in that regard, but it was a very different book from Destiny’s Road.  There was more science than I am really comfortable with.  But it was an enjoyable book, nonetheless.   I can really see Niven’s growth as an author; Ringworld was written in 1970 and Destiny’s Road in 1998.

Free Fire was a fast book.  It was a mystery that takes place in Yellowstone.  The basic story was interesting — murder committed in an area of Yellowstone where you basically can’t be prosecuted.  There was, of course, more to it than that.  I really enjoyed it.

I read three books by Laurel K. Hamilton, the first three in her Anita Blake series: Guilty Pleasures, The Laughing Corpse, and Circus of the Damned.  I really enjoyed all three.  They aren’t real serious reading, but they are fun books to read.  I like her books because they are set in St. Louis, a city I am familiar with, and because they really create an entire new world there.  I enjoy vampire books, and I am just surprised it took me so long to start reading them!

I had not read anything of Elizabeth Ann Scarborough’s before reading The Healer’s War.  She was a nurse in Viet Nam, but she takes pains to explain that it isn’t autobiographical.  I enjoyed the book a lot because it reminded me of the old TV series China Beach, with a little fantasy thrown in.  I am interested to see the great variety of books that are considered fantasy.  It makes me feel better about the book my son and I are writing.

Lay Down My Sword and Shield is an early James Lee Burke.  My husband won’t read Burke anymore because they are always so unhappy, but I still like them.  This book was definitely filled with unhappy people, but they were interesting to me.

Fever Dream was interesting on a number of levels.  The main character was from New Orleans, which I enjoyed.  I don’t know that I liked him as a character, though.  The story was good, though.  There is a sequel, Cold Vengeance, coming out in August.  I will be reading it!

St. Vidicon to the Rescue! was a hilarious book! Christopher Stasheff was teaching at the university I do when the book was published.  I can see a lot of influences from his academic role here in the book.  It is lightearted and just fun!

I read a total of 3,922 pages this month.  If I did that every month, I’d reach my goal of 45,000 pages.  Unfortunately, most months I don’t read nearly that much.  Oh well… Goals are there to shoot for, not necessarily to achieve!

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2 thoughts on “July Reading

  1. Miscellaneous Writer on said:

    Since you’ve talked about getting into fantasy more and more lately, I would recommend you read A Game of Thrones! The HBO series inspired me to pick it up and it’s been great!

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