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All story, all the time.

Entries in james lee burke (1)

Tuesday
Jul172012

Authors for whom I've been waiting this year

The advent of digital books has meant that virtually every day there are what seem to be thousands of newly published books. It can be overwhelming to browse books online because there are so many from which to choose. And even if they are just a few dollars out of my pocket, it's disappointing when a book doesn't live up to the hype. And I'm not even talking about the self-published, which are hit or miss in terms of quality. I've absolutely loved some self-published books, and absolutely hated some of them. I'm talking about all books.

Yes, I am a hard critic because reading is an experience like no other. In some ways I believe reading to be (at its best) the most interactive experience of all. A good book allows me to sink completely into someone else's story and literally get pleasurably lost for a while. What isn't interactive about that?

So, on that note, here are a few of the books I've been waiting for this year and which have recently been published or are about to hit the virtual bookshelves:

Creole Belle, by James Lee Burke. Because he writes mystery novels with a literary bent and with such an attention to craft that his words are pure pleasure, even when they are about murder and greed.

Coming to My Senses: A Story of Perfume, Pleasure, and an Unlikely Bride, by Alyssa Harad. Because I heard about this book a couple of years ago from a friend who happens to be married to Alyssa, and the reviews this memoir is getting are very good. Besides, who can resist a title like this one?

Hell or High Water, by Joy Castro. Because Joy is a writer who wrote the amazing memoir The Truth Book and I hear she is as good a fiction writer as she is a memoirist. Also, because I took a memoir writing workshop with her years ago and I learned that she is an exemplary human being and the workshop still helps me tremendously with my own writing and that of my students.

Broken Harbor, by Tana French. Because ever since I read In The Woods, I've learned that you can write suspense in a literary way. While I did not like the ending of In The Woods, I felt the execution of the rest of the book was great. I've read the two subsequent books that followed In The Woods, and in some ways they were even better.