Saturday, June 19, 2010

Things to avoid when reading

4 things to watch out for when reading.

1. Jeffrey Deaver. He has written a ton of mystery crime novels about Lincoln Child a quadriplegic genius detective. One of the first ones "the Bonecollecter" was made into a movie with Angelina Jolie and Denzel Washington. Sounds like the perfect combos of a very active author and the start of a movie series.
Here's the problem. Each book was around 8 to 9 hundred pages long, which is not bad, but half of those pages were repetitive and written like a kindergartner. His over enunciation of events clouds the mind into not realizing they are reading the same thing over and over again.
Here's an example, "the rain came down cold. It was cold and wet and it came from the sky. The wet cold rain didn't bug him, but it came down in cold drops from the sky."
2. Any book based on a movie that was based on a book, but had very little to do with the original story. Ones to avoid, the box, Total Recall, Planet of the Apes.
3. Aaron Allston. A sci-fi writer who is so self absorbed in his own creations that he has almost single handedly destroyed the star wars series. Somehow he got appointed in charge of the books and comics about 5 years ago and has taken the whole series from something to respect because you could always say that star wars was the cool sci-fi, to something to avoid altogether for it's strange turn of events.
4. Any book that compares itself to famous books or other authors. This is especially true when the comparison is before the title or in larger print. Avoid words and phrases like "writing in the style of," or "a companion too" or "as good as."
Quotes from famous authors or celebrities on the back cover can be a warning sign, but not always. Sometimes it helps decode a confusing title.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Blood Diamond.

Blood Diamond. By Greg Campbell.

I picked this book up simply out of boredom. It is the true story of the diamond trade. Millions have been killed or mutilated to get the relatively common stone. A single diamond company has controlled the diamond market for almost two hundred years. Restricting the trade and sale for all that time, by only ever allowing 10% of the stock ever to go to market they now have the largest world supplies of diamonds and sell to the public. It was shocking to learn the truth about diamonds, and how they cause social unrest, wars and rebellions in Africa. This is one of those stories about something that seems so pure and symbolic but in truth is a hideous mess. I definitely want to reread this book.

9 out of 10.

Thursday, June 17, 2010


Prey. By Michael Crichton.

Those who know my reading history know that I love Crichton books. But for some unknown reason I stopped about 5 books ago. To be honest I was a little disapointed. A computer company creates self aware microscopic nanites which evolve into a new form of life that wants to hunt and kill others forms of life. Until a scientist who comes to work on the nanites figures out a way to stop them. It's basically Jurassic Park, but without dinosaurs. It was classic but recycled Crichton.

3 of 10.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The Gunseller.

The Gunseller. By Hugh Laurie.

Yes that's Hugh Laurie from "House". This book read like a movie, it was quick and witty. You could picture a younger Laurie cast as the lead with Stephan Fry as hid government contact. The story was a familar story a skilled conman tricked into doing one job while being framed for another, then the whole thing straightens out at the end with conman as hero. The writing was clever the one liners memorable and the character descriptions brilliantly worded. This is definetly in my reread pile.

7 out of 10.