Shaking Up the Reading

My reading habits have been as poor as my writing habits lately.

I think part of the problem is I’ve been reading a few books where nothing happens. Sure, they’re good books, and they’re horror books, but there are several pages at a time where nothing happens. Solid writing, great atmosphere, a dash of “look at this creepy stuff!”, but no real action. It’s really starting to bother me.

As such I’ve strayed once again into the suspense/mystery section of my local Borders. Doing so was a good diversion a year or so ago, and so far it’s headed that same direction as I’ve read a lot more in the past two weeks than I have the previous two months.

I started with Severance Package by Duane Swierczynski. Brian mentioned the guy, I browsed the synopsis for Severance Package, and I decided it was right up my alley. Sure enough, I burned through it in no time. The plot is fairly simple, and it the action rolls right along from the first page to the last. The occasional humor is a nice bonus. I’ve now got his books The Blonde and The Wheelman sitting on the nightstand, waiting to be read.

Right now I’m halfway through Brimstone by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child. Everything I’ve heard about Preston & Child suggests they’re mystery/thriller writers with a horror/supernatural bend, and Brimstone definitely fits the mold. I can do without all the references to previous books in the series, and I think the main character, Aloysius Pendergast, is a stuck-up douche, but I like where the story is going and I can relate to the other main character (or is it sidekick?), Vincent D’Agosta, much better. The prose is very straightforward and leads the reader through at a good clip.

It’s good to be hooked on reading again.

Even better, they’ve both given my fingers the itch to be at the keyboard, working my own prose.

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

No comments

  1. JohnU says:

    Severance Package is on order, but I read The Blonde a short while back and really enjoyed it.

    Right now, I’m reading Perdido Street Station, China Mieville, which starts pretty slow but is rather interesting. But it’s a slow read, especially since my time is more and more limited these days, so I suspect it’ll be another 2 weeks before I finish.

  2. Mike says:

    I tried to read Perdido a few years back, but after about 100 pages or so I gave up. Like you said, it was slow.

  3. Clark says:

    Bastard – you told me that you read Perdido Street Station and kept telling me that I should read it because it was so awesome – and I made it through the same 25 pages about six times before I ultimately quit, wasting $15 bucks.

  4. Mike says:

    Are you sure I wasn’t telling you about my buddy Mikey (who will probably comment here before long and correct us) who really dug it? Because I bought it on his recommendation. :)

  5. JohnU says:

    I’m enjoying it. It’s just that slow reads are, well, slow, and take me a long time, and I have limited time for anything these days so it’ll be weeks before I’m done. Not sure I’ll get my 60 books this year.

  6. Kent says:

    Swierczynski is excellent. You might also give his first novel, Secret Dead Men, a try. It’s pretty different in tone and style from The Wheelman, The Blonde, and Severance Package, but still a good read. I am anxiously awaiting his next novel, Breakneck.

  7. Mike says:

    I’m tempted to pick up some of his comics. I’m not much interested in Cable and characters like that, but I may snap up his Werewolf By Night arc.

  8. Kent says:

    I haven’t checked out Cable. The x thing is a turn-off. His iron Fist looks cool, and his Punisher one-shot from back in the spring was hands-down the best Punisher tale I’ve ever read, and Castle is barely even in it. People were kinda goofy over his Wolverine one-shot, too. Werewolf By Night seems more my speed, though. I’ll probably check out his and then Victor Gischler’s upcoming runs on the Punisher, too.

  9. Troy says:

    Mike!

    Read The Wheelman first, then The Blonde, then The Redhead at the end of The Blonde – slightly more reading enjoyment.

    Troy

  10. Mike says:

    Kent – Been way too long since I’ve read some Punisher. I should try to get caught up sometime.

    Troy – Thanks for the tip! I’ll probably take that advice.

  11. Mikey says:

    PSS was right up there with the Thomas Covenat books in my opinion. Original, sweeping, and full of stop-and-think moments. I’m sorry all y’all aren’t getting the same impact from it as I did.

    -Mikey-

  12. Mike says:

    I need to revisit the Thomas Covenant books at some point. I tried reading the first one, but it was right at the point I was getting sick of fantasy and just put the book down and read something else.

  13. […] finishing Brimstone by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child this week. At the beginning of the book I said I wasn’t fond of their Pendergast character, but he grew on me by the […]

  14. […] finishing Brimstone by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child this week. At the beginning of the book I said I wasn’t fond of their Pendergast character, but he grew on me by the […]

  15. […] finishing Brimstone by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child this week. At the beginning of the book I said I wasn’t fond of their Pendergast character, but he grew on me by the […]

  16. […] finishing Brimstone by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child this week. At the beginning of the book I said I wasn’t fond of their Pendergast character, but he grew on me by the […]

  17. […] finishing Brimstone by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child this week. At the beginning of the book I said I wasn’t fond of their Pendergast character, but he grew on me by the […]