She’s Come Undone: Wally Lamb

Book style: Coming-of-age drama

Book pairing: A tough ale

When I first volunteered at my local library when I was around 14, which would be in the mid to late 90’s, I put this book away often. It was published in 1992 and hit Oprah’s list in 1997, so naturally it got checked out a lot. I was always intrigued by this book because of the cover (which is how I pick out my wine and beers). For some reason though, I forgot about the book and never read it.

I happened upon this book at a Half Price Books so I decided to finally just buy the thing and read it. And even though I’d seen this book a hundred time, I didn’t really know what it was about.

This book revolves around Delores Price and her pretty shitty life. Granted, many of the things that made her life shitty was because of the choices she made, but some definitely were not. She was handed a lot of crap, and dealt with it the best way she could, but when your life leaves you angry and resentful, it’s hard to do a good job at dealing with all of it.

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End of Watch: Stephen King

I was lucky and found this book available for check out at the library. This is the third of the Bill Hodges detective series. Since I don’t know how many of you have read any of the series I’ll try to keep it vague but informative.

This is a detective series by Stephen King, veering away from his usual horror-style, but still giving it a supernatural twist that Stephen King does so well. Brady Hartsfield is still alive and has spent the last few years in a hospital, a veritable vegetable. Or so most people think. A few people, including Det – Ret Hodges thinks there’s still brain function within Brady, and possibly some other sinister activity within his brain. Nurses see things that don’t make sense, like faucets turning on and off by themselves and blinds tilting. Many of the nurses feel something dark within Brady’s room, and some refuse to tend to him.

Then the deaths come. Not in murders, but in suicides. The suicides are mysterious in the fact that the ones who are committing suicides were also past victims of Brady during the first killings. Hodges thinks there’s something else going on, but he doesn’t want to believe, or doesn’t think he can believe it would be something paranormal.

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Far North: Michael Ridpath

Note: This book is called 66° North in other countries – this is the US version.

This is the second book in the Fire & Ice Series – the book previous to this is called Where the Shadows Lie.

Now that Magnus has spent some time in Iceland, he’s become a little more familiar with the culture but often still refers back to his American training, which sometimes gets him in trouble, but sometimes turns out to be the thing they needed. In this book, Magnus reaches back to his past to try to find out who killed his father so many years ago, and who is behind the murders of the country’s top bankers and financiers.

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Zer0es: Chuck Wendig

This was my first “hacker” book, although I feel like I should have started these a long time ago considering I work in IT security, and it was also my first book by Chuck Wendig. I’d heard of him and seen his books, but always forgot to look into them, getting distracted with loads of other books to add to my list (it’s probably a real thing – like biblio-ADHD or something). I actually found his blog, started reading it and loved his writing style, so I finally grabbed up his book and read it.

I would describe Chuck’s writing style in this book as quick paced and rough-edged, in a good way. I read it almost like a noir-style novel, where things are happening quickly, and you’re digging your way through the dirt to find out who’s behind the government conspiracy. Continue reading “Zer0es: Chuck Wendig”

Slaughterhouse Five: Kurt Vonnegut

It took me over 30 years to finally read a Kurt Vonnegut book. I think sometimes I don’t read a lot of classics because I’m afraid I’ll be disappointed (Emma, I’m lookin’ at you).

This book is abstract, to say the least, but is still followable. Yon Yonson is the narrator, but only speaks of himself a handful of times. It’s mainly told as a third person story and is considered semi-autobiographical, as Vonnegut was actually there during the bombing of Dresden. He quickly introduces himself in the beginning, and mentions himself as a character during the time at Dresden, which is how he is able to tell the story. Continue reading “Slaughterhouse Five: Kurt Vonnegut”

On Writing: Stephen King scares me, but in a good way

This book is about writing, but is much different than most of those, ‘How To Get Published in Five Steps or Less’ books.

This book is called, On Writing, a Memoir of the Craft, by Stephen King. The book is structured as a memoir in the first half, and more about his writing process in the second half.  What I love about this book is his honesty and his reasons for writing – because it’s what he feels he was meant to do. Clear and simple. He feels it in his bones to write. He keeps his attitudes and opinions on his sleeve, like he does in many of his books and lets you know what’s what, even if you may feel slightly offended. I feel like he’d probably say something like, “Get over it. You chose to read this book.” Continue reading “On Writing: Stephen King scares me, but in a good way”

Dear Hearts, by Ericka Clay

Books are amazing. They are an avenue for adventure, imagination, thought, learning something new, and discovering something within yourself. I was presented the opportunity to read and review a book by up and coming author, Ericka Clay. To be honest, it wasn’t a book that I’d probably choose immediately on my own, but this is the great thing about books. If we step outside of our regular list of genres and try something different, you may discover a wonderful book you never would have known existed. Continue reading “Dear Hearts, by Ericka Clay”