Friday, January 19, 2007

winter pastime

It is the middle of January, cold, wet, the view out the window is of brown trees, dead grass, gray skies. This weather is good for at least one thing - curling up on the couch in front of the fire with a good book.

Ever since I first read Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde when I was maybe about 12, mysteries have been my favorite read. I don't remember reading Nancy Drew or Hardy Boys, but who can forget Mr. Hyde!

As an adult, I ventured into horror, reading Stephen King. I liked it for a while, but the gore factor started to overcome the story and seemed overwhelmingly unnecessary. I also read Patricia Cornwell for a while about medical examiner Dr. Kay Scarpetta, until I had enough of postmortum.

I have read most of Sue Grafton's alphabet mysteries so far, featuring PI Kinsey Millhone, and Janet Evanovich's series about PI Stephanie Plum are very entertaining.

Lee Child's series about Jack Reacher, ex-military cop is always good and keeps my attention. I read quite a few of John Grisham's lawyer books, my favorite is The Partner. Laurie King is the author of an entertaining series of books featuring Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes, set in the early 1900s.

When I am not in the mood for mystery or horror or investigation:

Nicholas Sparks puts out a great love story, Gene Brewer's K-Pax series was fun, and Jennifer Chiaverini's Elm Creek Quilt series are a good light read.

Other favorites - Nicholas Evans, Mitch Albom, Stuart Woods, John Dunning, Nancy Pickard, Jan Karon, Michael Crichton, Bill Bryson, Scott Turow, Robert James Waller.

Here is a great website for looking up your favorite authors - Fantastic Fiction.

Right now on my nightstand is Running with Scissors by Augusten Burroughs, what are you reading?


The Calico Cat said...

Since you asked: Statistics & Business Law - however, when I do read for pleasure 99.9% of the time it is a mystery (And a small tiny segment of that genre while we are at it.) I really like Sue Grafton & Nevada Barr...

Barry said...

I've enjoyed reading Stephen King for a long time. I'd never read anything of his till I was in college and my roommate had actually brought a collection of his books, so I dug in and never looked back. If you haven't read the Dark Tower series they're not as gory and very good.

My favorite author today is a guy named Stephen White who writes a series of mystery-type stories about a psychiatrist in Boulder, CO who gets involved in one case after another. They're better written and more character intensive than your basic pot-boilers, but the plots are excellent too. One thing, if you plan to read his books (he has about 10 in the series so far) start from the beginning, as they are sequential and later books can spoil the earlier ones. I started with one in the middle of the series and was spoiled on an event from a previous book.

Right now I'm reading a series from a guy named Stephen Woodworth (I have a thing for authors named Stephen) about this new breed of telepathic humans with violet irises. Pretty interesting.

A couple other authors I enjoy are Robert Block, Carolyn Hart, Michael Crichton, and Peter David. I've never read any Sue Graftons...

bluemountainmama said...

oohh...looks cozy! i'm currently reading helen keller's autobiography. but, alas, i have no fire to cozy up to.....a criteria for the next house we buy.

John Cowart said...

Hi Susan,
Once again you've given me my desktop background for the day; love that fireplace. Thanks.

I've been reading some old diaries recently and I've just finished "Thieves Dozen" a collection of short stories by Donald E. Westlake; All of them involve the Dortmunder gang or "Hot Rock" fame.

From your own list of books, I think you and my wife have the same tastes in authors. She could have made the same list.

jellyhead said...

I love a good mystery, too, but my favourite books are books about families and relationships - people being people, with all the twists and turns.

I read 'Running with Scissors' last year.

Right now I am reading 'Mr Golightly's Holiday' by Sally Vickers.

Enjoy that fire this weekend!

bluemountainmama said...

susan- the lyrics on my winter post are from an old song called "in the bleak midwinter". it may have started as a poem...i'm not sure.

Motherkitty said...

Reading by the fireside is a wonderful way to pass the time and remain calm. Wish I was there to share that time with you!!! I would bring along several books now residing on my dresser (unread).

Motherkitty said...

P.S. I forgot to say that both those unread books are Steven King's.

Kerri said...

I love mysteries too and have read all of Sue Grafton's Alphabet series to date (unless she has a new one I don't know about). I like her humor :) I've read lots of the authors you've mentioned. Yes, Nicholas Sparks tells a good romantic tale. I agree about Stephen King.
John Grisham is great.
Have you ever read Jeffery Deaver? A little gory at times, but only in small bits. I really like his writing.
I've been so busy reading blogs that my novel reading has suffered and I'm missing it.
I'll check out that link. Thanks for this interesting post.