Sunday, January 31, 2010


I know I haven't posted in a while, and I just wanted to touch base and let everyone know I'm still here. Things have been a bit hectic in my life, and will probably continue to be so over the next few weeks. I have been doing much better with my writing, becoming more regular (not yet daily, but much closer). I actually have a writing nook in my bedroom now! Actually, it is just a small student desk I picked up at Walmart for $49. But I love it and couldn't be happier! My reading has been going great; I just finished my tenth book for the month of January. And to top everything off, we actually got about six inches of snow here, with another inch of sleet on top. A bit of a late birthday present for me, but I'll take it nonetheless.

What I actually want to briefly focus on is another gem of a writer that I have discovered. As I documented below in my previous post, I've had an amazing run of discovering "new" authors; at least they are new to me. This lastest gem that I've discovered is Gord Rollo. In the past month, I've read his books The Jigsaw Man and Strange Magic (his newest release). Gord is one of those few authors that I've had the pleasure of reading that I would call a storyteller. To me, this is a rare talent and there are not a lot of folks I'd put in that category. The few off the top of my head are Scott Nicholson, Stephen King, and Brian Keene.

A storyteller, at least in my opinion, is someone who knows how to engage the reader, and keep the reader's attention throughout the entire story. Gord demonstrated this to me in the two books I've read by him. He doesn't go for the gross-out to grab the reader's attention (but believe me, there are some gross parts in his writing). Gord invites you to become invested in the characters, and to begin to care for them. He also piques your interest in the story, building up the suspense with each successive page. With both of these books, he had me wanting to turn the page to find out what was going to happen next. And probably my favorite aspect of his storytelling is that he knows how to end a book. I won't ruin it for those of you have not read either of these works, but Gord knows how to deliver in the end, building up to the climax and then delivering a not-so-cookie-cutter ending.

If you have not read his work, I'd suggest you start with The Jigsaw Man. Personally, I have yet to read his work Crimson. Honestly, I don't want to right now because I won't have anything else to read by him until his next work is published! But I would love to see Gord acheive success in his writing endeavors, and I would encourage you to check out my new favorite Canadian author. Eh?

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

My Inner Fanboy

Over the past few days I have been looking back at this previous year, specifically in regards to my reading history. And as I take inventory, I can't help but get excited. I've read so many writers for the first time, and my excitement has been very difficult to contain. I read the most books during a one-year span in my entire life. All in all, it has been a wonderful year when it comes to my reading. And this year is off to to a much bigger bang than last year.

Here is a list of writers I read for the first time this past year: Robert B. Parker (may he rest in peace), Bernhard Schlink, Michael Connelly, Scott Nicholson (one of my favorite storytellers), Shirley Jackson, Joe McKinney, Christopher Ransom, Richard Laymon (a master of horror), Gary A. Braunbeck, Jonathan Maberry (extremely talented writer), Dean Koontz, Brian Keene (a writer who gets you emotionally involved in the story), Jack Kilborn (delivers a ton of action), Jack Ketchum (another master), Wrath James White (no one grabs a reader and doesn't let go like him), John Skipp, Cody Goodfellow, Bryan Smith (can tell one sick story), Paul Tremblay (just see my entry below about The Little Sleep), Tom Piccirilli, and Gord Rollo (another of my favorite storytellers, definitely my favorite Canadian storyteller :)), and Bob Ford (no one matches the raw emotional elements in his writing).

Whew! I was getting all worked up just writing that list. I feel foolish when I am finishing my books because I honestly am blown away by the satisfaction level that I keep attaining with each successive book. I feel like such a fanboy! I guess it's because I am!

And the best part is that I have been able to have some level of interaction with many of these writers via message boards or Twitter (I thought it was the stupidest thing ever when it came out, now I have a hard time going without it!). So, if any of the above writers or others that I read for the first time in the future happen across this post, please know I am not trying to be obnoxious or blow smoke up your butt when I compliment you. I sincerely mean it. It's just that my inner fanboy tends to get in the way.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Darkness On The Edge Of Town

Brian Keene's new book, Darkness On The Edge Of Town, starts to ship today from Amazon. It will not be out in bookstores until February. Brian is one of the leading writers in the horror genre, and if you have not read anything by him, you should check him out. Click here to find out more about his new book:

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

A Must Read

I want to start off this entry by saying that I don't see myself as witty, nor do I feel I wax eloquent with words. So, when I talk about my "must read", please forgive me if I don't move you with my description of the work. Just take my word for it. This book is a must read.

The book I am referring to is The Little Sleep by Paul Tremblay. I finished this book in the wee hours of this morning, and I must say I was blown away. I know, I know, you are probably thinking that I am over-hyping this book and that it can't really be that good. But trust me, it is that good!

In The Little Sleep, we are introduced to Boston Private Investigator, Mark Genevich. However, there is one thing that greatly handicaps him in his line of work: he is a narcoleptic. In this book, we are introduced to one of the most interesting and likeable characters I have ever come across. This novel offers intrigue, wit, humor, and very smooth prose throughout its entirety. It flowed wonderfully, and I could not find any awkward moments or transitions. And just when you think it is all fun and games, the mood turns dark and the story takes an intriguing turn.

Paul Tremblay definitely demonstrates a tremendous talent with this book. I am eagerly anticipating the follow-up to this book, No Sleep Till Wonderland coming out this February. I will also be seeking out Tremblay's earlier works as well. As I stated at the beginning of this post, I feel I lack the words or the eloquence to do this book justice. However, it is one of the best overall works that I have read, and I would recommend it to anyone. Trust me. Just read the book.