So here we are with me out of energy and too many books to write about, so I’ll tell a little story and ask a couple of questions instead.
A couple of days ago, I was chatting with some guys, and as frequently happens, one asks, “What’s the best book you’ve read recently?”
It took me about .5 seconds of thought to reply, “Bound by Benedict Jacka.” As you readers all know, from the really long post that I haven’t written yet about it.
Anyway, a moment or two later, I followed that up with, “Of course, that’s actually a recommendation for 8 books, because you need the set to get the impact of Bound. So, the best stand-alone recently is Deep Down Dead . . .” and went out to give them a summary of my blog post on that book (yes, I actually wrote that one).
So, here’s my question: how do you handle recommending an installment in a long-running series? Or, how do you take recommendations for the latest book in a series that’s been going on awhile?
All in all, March was a pretty good month — 29 books finished, nearly not enough written (I’m very tired lately, too tired to write, anyway). A good mix of good books and iffy — with a couple of really good ones thrown in. Which is a pretty decent way to spend a hobby/obsession, no?
So, anyway, here’s what happened here in March.
Books/Novels/Novellas Read/Listened to:
- The Sense Of Humor by Max Elliot Anderson
- Mercy Thompson Audiobooks 1-3: Moon Called, Blood Bound, Iron Kissed by Patricia Briggs, Lorelei King
- Death Stalks Kettle Street by John Bowen
- HER: The 1st Victor Locke Story by Michael RN Jones
- Snotgirl, Vol. 1: Green Hair Don’t Care by Bryan Lee O’Malley, Leslie Hung
- The Doll (Audiobook) by Taylor Stevens, Hilary Huber
- Cold Reign by Faith Hunter
- Wires and Nerve, Volume 1 by Marissa Meyer, Douglas Holgate
- Hide and Seek by Ian Rankin
- Hack by Duncan MacMaster
- Defying the Prophet by Gibson Michaels
- Pipeliner by Shawn Hartje
- The Book of Three (Audiobook) by Lloyd Alexander, James Langton
- Silence Fallen by Patricia Briggs
- No Uncertain Sound: Reformed Doctrine and Life by Reformed Forum
- The Person of Jesus by J. Gresham Machen
- The Black Cauldron (Audiobook) by Lloyd Alexander, James Langton
- Robert B. Parker’s Little White Lies by Ace Atkins
- The Forgotten Girls by Owen Laukkanen
- The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi
How was your month?
I succumbed to one of those things going around Facebook, and rambled enough that I figured it qualified as a short blog post, so . . .
It’s National Book Week (in the U.S.) [And, no, it’s not, but that’s what the silly FB thing says] The rules are, Grab the closest book to you, turn to pg. 56, and post the 5th sentence as your Status.
Don’t mention the title.
Copy the Rules as part of your post:
Here is mine…
“We can’t risk another event like that.”
That seemed boring, so I grabbed the book that one was stacked on top of (making it almost as close) and got: “Every now and then, Warren reached over and leaned on the horn.” Which is only moderately more interesting.
Both books — both pages, really — contain far more interesting sentences, but them’s the rules.
I am just having one of those weeks — seriously, it’s like my week is manifestation of Murphy’s Law, and the idea of me writing something new is laughable. So here’s a variation of a post I did a year ago — we’ve got some new regulars in the comments, and I’d like to hear what you all say.
Anyway. . .
This was asked awhile ago on some Facebook group I belong to and I thought the answers were interesting enough, I’d ask you:
If you can remember, what was the first book that destroyed you? (that is, which book left you an emotional wreck?)
For me, it was either: Where the Red Fern Grows (which I read most of several times, and all of a couple of times); The High King by Lloyd Alexander between the deaths and goodbyes, I still can’t do it dry-eyed; or Bridge to Terabithia — I can’t tell you anything about the plot (there were 2 kids, 1 girl and 1 boy, right?), the characters or anything, and I read it 2-4 times — all I can remember is emotional devastation.
Looking forward to hearing from you. Share the emotional scars we all know you have. 🙂
Did my taxes (well, mostly) before I wrote today’s post. My brain is fried now and there’s no way that I can come up with something anywhere coherent.
Can’t even find a silly picture, meme, or a conclusion to this . . . someone semi-famous said, “Math is hard!”
Hope you’re reading something non-tax related and entertaining today.
Haven’t abandoned the blog — have 1 post 80% done, 3 more in progress (sadly, have barely read anything this week) — and 1 kid in the hospital.
That last one trumps even you guys 🙂 It’s nothing serious (probably), just people with many initials after their names and the cool white coats being cautious. Still, it takes something out of a guy.
Regular programming will resume shortly, DV.
As we kick off 2017, I wanted to take a glance back at 2016. 241 books read — I exceeded my goal (I don’t remember what it was at the beginning, but I revised it a couple of times and still beat it by 6), 444 posts (short of my goal by a couple hundred), I had some good gains in traffic — views and visitors (not as much as the previous couple of years, but that’s better than a loss). I’m also seeing good growth in followers here and on various social media fronts, which is encouraging as all get out.
So here’s my breakdown of books by genre, like the one I did last year. Mystery/Suspense took a hit this year percentage-wise, but not as much as I thought it did. SF and Fantasy jumped up to make up for that. it’s been forever since I’ve read a Western, I guess (at least one that wasn’t a hybrid with Urban Fantasy or SF or something). Theological books went down in actual numbers, not just percent — but I read some big, technical stuff this year that took a lot more time/energy to read, so I’m not too bothered by that. Still, for someone who doesn’t plan too thoroughly, the percentages stay remarkably the same from year to year — tastes (and series I follow) apparently stay the same.
Enough about me. I want to talk about you, who keep me going and show an interest in what I’m doing here and give some thanks to people for thier imact on The Irresponsible Reader (the blog and the person) in 2016:
- Mega-Thanks to Jo Perry and Darrel Drake for helping to push me to their Twitter followers — you’ve probably done more than I have for the health of this thing. I only say that half in-jest.
- Thanks to: A J Blakemont, Alice, allysonj, bbooksmartblog, Book Haunt, Bookstooge (there are times I could feel like I’m writing just for your feedback), Brenton Dickieson, Cate_Beauman, Darrell Drake, debra, Deek Rhew, Dessa, doddyaboutbooks, duskrider3740 , Erin Rhew, Gary, Grace Crandall, Jason B. Ladd, Jayme B, justbusiness1, Karen E. Olson, Kat Knit, Kimberlee Bastain, Laura@125Pages, Lauren Jones, Levi, Marsha, Micah Burke, Nancy, Patty Pope, Paul, Rafael Lovato, Ren, Rich Leder, Roy M. Griffis, rrys, S. C. Flynn, Tom R. Moore, and Vijayalakshmi Harish for your comments/feedback. Keep it up! I really appreciate the time you took to leave feedback. Hopefully you can tell that you’ve shaped the conversation here — it has, I assure you. I need to do better about commenting on other blogs, but WordPress comment sections seem to have it out for me.
- To Stuart M. Perkins, laydenrobinson, Mildew Fairy Reads, Jayme B, Jessica Manuel, One for the Books, Dr. Joseph Suglia, Edmond Sanganyado, natalieslovelyblog, As the page turns.., Fictionophile, Aidan Reid, Haidji, Marve Gandah, JAH, raulconde001, Bibliophage, greenlanddiary, Fernando Ortiz, Jr., ebookbump, the Defined Introvert, mpatraiko, Got My Book, Stormy Vixen, Bijoux Alisoa, Vijayalakshmi Harish, allysonyj, J. L. Gribble, Looseygoosey, extraordinarydog, Senna, Beth from Hello Beautiful Book Blog, Alois Larc, greatestcatpics, Deniz Yalım, bluecloverdust, wanderlustexplored, ThemisAthena, kittensandhumans, Grace Crandall, alittlebirdtweets, kmelerine, Peter Ranger
BusinessandBook, DPNews, Real Tasty Pages, drjohnpatrickkeefeii, Char’s Horror Corner, BrokenTune, Canary, hoveprinting, Krissys Bookshelf Reviews, allmeowedout, belikewaterproduction, FelissaEly, frustratedego, Drew @ TheTattooedBookGeek, TNWTL MOVEMENT, marteenreadsbooks, Contemplative Reflections, Michael Patrick Hicks, Candace L Stauber,doddyaboutbooks, booksfromdusktilldawn, resterrestern, juliahuynhs, Laine The Librarian, William Duarte, My Thoughts, annmariemcqueen1, amecipraba, Larissa N. Takahassi, julianrichmonds, Manuel Antao, BrokenTune, duskrider3740, Shitijsharma, bookcupidity, enjoywanderlust, bluereadergal, wildpuppies and Lowlife Magazine for being new followers (at least for a post or two) of the blog (in one of its forms) this year — the size of this list shocks me, and I hope you all got at least something out of it. (I sincerely hope I didn’t miss anyone)
- Hearty thanks to: Goldy Moldavsky, Kevin Smith, Phil Hester and Jonathan Lau, Martine Leavitt, Alan Bradley, Jayne Entwistle, Alex Bledsoe, Christopher Buckley, Scott Meyer, Benedict Jacka,Blake Crouch, Brad Meltzer, Tod Goldberg, Scott Brick, Brandon Sanderson, Danielle Paige, Devon Sorvari, Kevin J. Vanhoozer, Brandon D. Crowe, Carl R. Trueman, David B. Garner, K. Scott Oliphint, Rod Mays, L. Michael Morales, Jax Miller, John Irving, Karen E. Olson, Kevin Hearne, Delilah S. Dawson, and Chuck Wendig, Lee Child, Dick Hill, Luke Daniels, Mary McGarry Morris, Megan E. O’Keefe, Michael R. Underwood, Mary Robinette Kowal, Michael Portnoy, Adelia Drubetski, Noah Hawley, Robert Petkoff, Owen Laukkanen, Patricia Briggs, Reed Farrel Coleman, Matthew Norman, Anna Kendrick, Wesley Chu, John Scalzi, Zachary Quinto, David VanDrunen, J. V. Fesko, Ace Atkins, Amy Stewart, Seanan McGuire, Cynthia Hopkins, Jo Perry, Berkeley Breathed, Bob Proehl, Brenden Fletcher, Cameron Stewart, Craig Johnson, Cristina Henríquez, James E. Adams, David Rosenfelt, Kyle Higgins, Eddy Barrows, Douglas Adams, E.J. Copperman/Jeff Cohen, Elan Mastai, Janet Evanovich, Lee Goldberg, Marilynne Robinson, Faith Hunter, Galia Armeland, Harry Bingham, James Patterson, Marshall Karp, Edoardo Ballerini, Jay Snyder, Joel R. Beeke, Paul M. Smalley, Joe Mantegna, Joseph Finder, Kim Harrison, Maria Semple, Kathleen Wilhoite, Pip Ballantine and Tee Morris, Booth Tarkington, Pat Conroy, Paul Cornell, Tony Parker, Erich Wurster, Joseph W. Smith III, Rainbow Rowell, Rebecca Lowman, Sunil Malhotra, Norton Juster, Norman Dietz, Pierce Brown, Rick Yancey, Shane Kuhn, Tiffany McDaniel, Randall Munroe, Jonathan L. Master, Michael P.V. Barrett, Amber Benson, Kobna Holdbrook-Smith, Kathe Mazur, Lauren Graham, Ben Aaronovitch, Andrew Cartmel, Lee Sullivan, David McCallum, Pepper Harding, Amy Poehler, Richard P. Belcher, Jr., Marissa Meyer, Benjamin L. Gladd, Matthew S. Harmon, Gerald M. Bilkes, Herman Bavinck, J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, Jack Thorne, Daniel O’Malley, Anthony T. Selvaggio, John William Huelskamp, Maria Semple, Matthew Goodman, Kathe Mazur, Michael W. Goheen, Mitch Stokes, Peter Davidson, Philip S. Ross, Rebecca Konyndyk DeYoung, Robert Galbraith, Robert Glenister, James K. A. Smith, Vern S. Poythress, Wes Bredenhof, Robin Sloan, Ari Fliakos, W. Bruce Cameron, A. Lee Martinez, Michael Koryta, Taylor Stevens, Hillary Huber, Patricia Briggs, and Lorelei King this blog would be nothing without your efforts, your blood, sweat, tears, fears, work, love, dreams, hopes, and words. Your books were my companions throughout this year, and I can’t thank you enough for them.
- More thanks to: Tara R, Roy M. Griffis, Jennifer Wilson, Daniel Falatko, David Harris Lang, Dustin Renwick, Emily Ruben, Erica Wright, John Grayson Heide, Jayme Beddingfield, Joe Klingler, Jonathan Charles Bruce, Kathy Cyr, Kimberlee Ann Bastian, Larry Rodness, Marina Fontaine, Michael Darling, Michael Landweber, Nancy Hersage, Sean McKenzie, Nerys Wheatley, Darrell Drake, Rafael Lovato, Clay Johnson, Rhett C. Bruno, Rick Riordan, Dylan Madeley, Larry Higdon , Grant Bywaters, William Galaini, Adam W. Jones, Anne Renwick, Arthur M. Doweyko, Arthur Nsenga, Shaunakay Francis, C.A. Huggins, C. G. Barrett, Chris Grams, Chuck Waldron, Robert A. Brown, Dale Wiley, Dan Martin, David Ahern, Devri Walls, Olga Werby , Jason B. Ladd, Johnny Newport, Rich Leder, Carl Schmidt, H. Lovelyn Bettison, L. Sydney Abel, Marjorie Thelen, Mark Benjamin, Walt Hackman, C. Esther, Richard Paolinelli, Alan J. Field, Alexa Whitewolf, Daniel P. Swenson, Jessica Dall, J. L. Gribble, Joe Zieja, Josi Russell, Kathy Bryson, Lee LaCroix, Frank Westworth, Nicky Peacock, Robert Germaux, S.C. Flynn, James Hutchings, Hagit R. Oron, Or Oron, Kristi King-Morgan, Connor MacDonald, M. T. Miller, Nathan Ronen, Jeff Faria, Diana Strenka, Vanya Ferreira, Cathy Kennedy, Zoe Kalo, David Belisle, Jason Heller, and Joshua Viola
for the work, the effort, heart, and everything that went into your books — plus thanks for asking me to read your work (either yourself or through your publicist, publisher, etc.). It’s super humbling, I know you all didn’t like what I said, but, I am grateful for the opportunity.
- Stian for the graphics help and encouragement, hope I get to fully utilize them soon.
- And you all for reading. Seriously, each time I get a notification of a like, or a share, or a follow, etc. it makes my day. To know that someone took a couple of seconds or more out of their day to glance at this? It means the world to me. Thanks.
Have a great 2017, hope you find plenty of good things to read!