This is a “what drivel is Bear reading” post. No WoW. Move along!
One of the genres of fiction I really enjoy is the thriller. The suspenseful police procedural, the mystery, the counter-espionage, the spy versus spy, the cat and mouse hunt for a killer.
I prefer them with a strong undercurrent of black comedy.
Some of my favorite series are the Prey novels by John Sandford (and his LuEllen and Kit books too), the Scudder books by Lawrance Block (damn those are good), the intertwining series of books by Stephen Hunter that, generally, follows the lives of two generations of the Swagger family, Earl Swagger and his son Bob Lee Swagger (those are extremely good, I’d start chronologically if you’re interested, really, it may seem Bob Lee Swagger, “Bob the Nailer”, is the event to be anticipated, what with a movie based on one of his books, Point of Impact, but the books featuring Earl Swagger are, to my mind, far more interesting), and finally my favorites, the Reacher books by Lee Childs.
Every single one a stellar, knockout series of books to read.
I want more!
But there aren’t any right now.
I’ve re-read them all so many times I’ve worn tracks of words across my mind’s eye. I’m actually re-reading the Kildar series by John Ringo, and skipping past all the S&M bits, just to have something to read that’s got that black sense of humor and some action. Sadly, as good as the action is, it’s more of a series like Mack Bolan The Executioner, Able Team or Phoenix Force than it is Shadow Prey. Lots of great combat scenes and strategizing, not so much on the suspense. You kinda go in knowing not only who did it, but who’s gonna get revenge, and what they’re gonna use to do it.
Entertaining, but I want a solid mystery.
As I stood in the library today, trying to find something to read, searching the mystery shelves forlornly when what I really want are more Davenport, Reacher, Scudder or Swagger stories, Cassie suggested I try something…. new.
She suggested I try Patricia Cornwell’s series about a forensic investigator, Dr. Kay Scarpetta.
This suggestion made me darn nervous. I don’t know anything at all about Patricia Cornwell. Plus, Cassie doesn’t read any of my mysteries. If she likes these, but doesn’t like mine, will I like them?
Well, on the bright side, trying a new author is better than huffing paint on a rainy day. What’s the worst that will happen, I have to go back to the Kildar?
So, I went to three different libraries in our system, but I managed to grab the first seven books in published order. I believe in starting from the very beginning if you’re gonna get into something, and letting the story unfold and the characters develop the way the author wrote it, instead of leaping into the middle.
So, I’ve got;
- Body of Evidence
- All that Remains
- Cruel and Unusual
- The Body Farm
- From Potters Field
- Cause of Death
- Unnatural Exposure
All sitting on my desk to read through.
I’m willing to go that far in case the first few don’t really set fire, but it gathers steam later on.
If these turn out great reads, there are lots more in the series as well.
You know, it must be hell being a really popular author, because it doesn’t matter how recently your last book came out, somebody like me is sitting there saying, “Yeah, so that was good, but when’s your NEXT book coming out?”
Wish me luck, I’m hoping for the best!