A quick note to say that Loose Id have temporarily dropped the prices on many “first of series” books, including mine. This is currently guaranteed to apply only to books purchased directly through Loose Id, although they were working on getting the reductions onto the big third party sites like Amazon. You can also get two of my short stories for free from the Loose Id site. My catalogue page is here: http://www.loose-id.com/authors/erotic-romance-authors-g-k.html?cat=76
Right, have some suggestions from Amazon UK’s latest ebook deal newsletter. These are all under £2 at Amazon; most are also on offer at Kobo. Penguin Modern Classics seem to be having a sales binge so it’s worth trawling through the rest of the deals list if you like their catalogue. As always, check the price before clicking the buy button.
I know some of you do find these posts useful for flagging up stuff to have a closer look at. I put in the covers this time because there were a couple I specifically wanted to show. Is it useful to see the covers, or does this make the post too unwieldy on people’s flist?
John Wyndham – The Day of the Triffids – in a Penguin Modern Classics edition, with the newest cover art by Brian Cronin. The art’s a good match in tone/period feel for the book, but I still think of Harry Willock’s reverse colour line drawing cover art of the 1970s as the ur-cover art for Wyndham, just as Tom Baker is My Doctor.
Master and Commander (Aubrey/Maturin Series, Book 1) (Aubrey & Maturin series) by Patrick O’Brian
I have provided the title exactly as given on the Amazon and Kobo pages. Yes, I am easily amused.
Val McDermid – Forensics: The Anatomy of Crime
Non-fiction from one of the greatest crime writers of today. One for the writers, but also of general geeky interest.
CS Lewis – Mere Christianity
Lewis’s collection of radio broadcasts setting out the case for Christianity.
Tony Robinson – No Cunning Plan
Another acting memoir. Haven’t looked at the sample yet, but if Robinson’s any good at writing prose, this is probably going to be interesting.
George Orwell – The Road to Wigan Pier
Orwell’s non-fiction is as important, and as topical, as his fiction.
Anthony Burgess – A Clockwork Orange
Haven’t read this in at least thirty years, but I suspect I would still find it equal parts horrifying, terrifying and laugh-out-loud funny. It’s only just occurred to me that this book pressed some of the same buttons for me that Iain (M) Banks would some years later.
I’m busy tidying up the notebooks I use to write on the bus, and came across my book log notes for the books I read in September last year. As it happens, two of these are in the sale at Amazon UK and Kobo at the moment. :-)
Agatha Christie — Murder on the Orient Express
There isn’t really a lot I can say that hasn’t already been said by hundreds of reviewers on LibraryThing. It’s a classic bottle mystery–a murder and a group of people in an isolated venue, in this case the Orient Express trains stranded in a snowdrift. It’s great fun watching Poirot piece together all the red herrings to find that some are clues after all.
Agatha Christie — The Murder on the Links
Poirot novel set in France, with Poirot butting heads with the local police investigator. Poirot is asked to come urgently by a man in fear of his life. The widow’s story does not quite hang together, and yet she is genuinely shocked and distraught by her husband’s death. Red herrings abound, and as usual Hastings repeatedly gets hold of the wrong end of the stick–or in this case, the length of lead piping. Enjoyable Poirot fare, although nothing outstanding.
Lindsey Davis — The Silver Pigs
First of the Falco books, a mystery series set in Ancient Rome during the reign of Vesparius. Marcus Didius Falco is a PI. That’s public informer, a role remarkably similar to that of the private investigator in the modern era. And as with the classic gumshoe mystery, Falco has an office/flats at the top of a seedy low rent tenement building.
The novel is as historically accurate as Davis could make it, but human nature hasn’t changed much over the last 2000 years. Falco rescues a damsel in distress, and finds himself sucked into a case involving theft and corruption in the silver mines of a backwards colony at the fringe of the Empire.
Excellent mystery, with an appealing lead character and careful world building. I loved this, and will be reading more of the series.
My alter ego’s new short is released today. It’s the first of a series of short stories, but can be read as a standalone. More details below:
Flynn’s new boss is so hot he can’t wait to get home to tell the chatroom how much he wants Dom’s cock down his throat. By Friday, he’s shared quite a few thoughts on what he’d like his boss to do to him. But he’s not as anonymous as he thinks, and Dom’s intent on disciplining him for breaching company policy on social networking. Dom gives him a choice of put up or shut up: he can play out the fantasy in real life, or he can walk out of the office without a word to HR as long as he never talks that way about Dom again. Flynn chooses “put up”—but he’s forgotten about one of the things he said he wouldn’t mind doing.
Series: In Like Flynn 1
NineStar Press (where you can find an excerpt)
Amazon: Australia ¦ Brazil ¦ Canada ¦ France ¦ Germany ¦ India ¦ Italy ¦ Japan ¦ Netherlands ¦ Spain
Or search on your local Amazon using ASIN: B01MZ2891M
I’m working my way through my treeware notebook, and have found some notes from my Hugo reading stint which it appears I never posted at the time. Here, have some belated Hugo thoughts. :-)
Naomi Kritzer — Cat pictures please
Gentle, funny short about what happens when a search engine wakes up and wants to be helpful. It has more sense than to expose its existence, so it tries to do good deeds by stealth. I was smiling on every page. Lovely if slightly creepy little story about the potential benefits of AI.
Available free at http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/kritzer_01_15/
Brooke Bolander — And You Shall Know Her By The Trail Of Dead
Take one part pulp, one part cyberpunk, add a shot of very cheap bourbon, and shake well. Watch the resulting foul mouthed guttersnipe of a synthetic person take on a security AI at its own game; or maybe the reverse. Bolander sketches in some fascinating world building with a few brief sentences, but the focus is on the rescue mission Rhye’s been press-ganged into. It’s a fast moving tale with a satisfying conclusion, and deserves a spot on the Hugo ballot.
Available free at http://www.lightspeedmagazine.com/fiction/shall-know-trail-dead/
Chuck Tingle — Space Raptor Butt Invasion
Okay. There’s back story on what this is doing on the Hugo ballot. It is not your typical nominee. Onwards…
Our hero is one of two men (definitely men) manning a remote observation station somewhere on a remote planet. The story opens as his teammate leaves at the end of his assignment, with no replacement arriving. Budget cuts mean the station will be solo manned from now on, and our hero will be the only living thing on the planet. So what is that mysterious space suited figure he thinks he’s seen?
So far, it’s a pitch perfect pastiche of Golden Age pulp. I have read the stories. I could make a guess at what happens next.
What happens next is that it segues into a pastiche of pulp gay porn, only with two guys stuck with solo duty on their respective nation’s planetary observation base. One of whom is a dinosaur…
Dr Tingle had far too much fun ramming every possible porn cliché into his tight virgin word processor. This is really not my taste in porn, not least because it pastiches bad pulp punctuation, but it’s very funny. My verdict as a Hugo voter is that this story gets No Awarded, but I am nominating the good Doctor’s performance art in response to its nomination for next year’s Best Related Work category.
First of the Grantchester Mysteries series, about a Church of England vicar who solves mysteries in collaboration with one of the local police detectives. The first book is a set of six short stories, each a standalone about an individual case, but with an overall arc running through them. I bought it because I’d seen and enjoyed a couple of episodes of the tv adaptation. This doesn’t always mean I’ll like a book, but in this case I’m very glad I bought it. It’s an excellent period cosy mystery, written by someone who knows the minutiae of Anglican clerical life. The ebook for this one is often low price as a hook for the series, and well worth getting.
Sweetly funny milf erotic romance novel – but be warned that the characters spend an awful lot of the book being interrupted before they can actually do something about their attraction. Successful romance writer Jillian divorced her no-good husband a while back for cheating on her, and hasn’t had much luck in the dating game since then. So when her son comes home from unversity for vacation and brings his friend Brian with him, Jillian can’t help but notice that Brian’s very nicely put together. He’s also her son’s friend, which puts him off limits.
Brian thinks Jillian’s pretty hot, even if she’s old enough to be his friend’s mother. In fact, she *is* his friend’s mother, which puts her off limits…
While some of the situations they end up in are frankly implausible, the lead and supporting characters are well-written, and Jillian and Brian’s ever more frantic efforts to first hide and then give in to their attraction are entertaining. This isn’t going to be to everyone’s taste; but if it appeals to your sense of humour, it’s a lot of fun.
This is the first of a series, but there’s closure at the end of the book. The ebook is free as a hook for the series, and I think worth downloading to try it out.