Recommended Reading 11/30/2014

I thought I’d make a list of different books or stories I’ve enjoyed over the past little while. Some are recent reads, others are ones that that have stuck with me because of how good they are. I’ve also included both novels and short fiction. Hopefully a few sound enjoyable and you end up discovering a new story.

Here’s the list, included with links to where you can find them (mostly Amazon links for the novels, but you can find out more from there).

HHhH – This is one that has really stuck with me with the way it’s crafted. Historical fiction may not be a genre for everyone, but this book may change your mind.

The novel follows Jozef Gabčík and Jan Kubiš as they assassinate Nazi leader and mastermind Reinhard Heydrich. Author Laurent Binet structures the story in a way that tells you details about what is going to happen before it does, yet nothing is spoiled. The climax of the book is gripping and tense.

There’s a lot of story on the lives of both the heroic assassins and their target. There are some graphic descriptions made all the more horrific by knowing that they actually happened.

Racers of the Night – Here’s short story collection by award winning author Brad Torgersen.

There’s something about these stories, and Torgersen’s stories in general, that are unique. There are lots of left turns, not always twists exactly, but the stories taking a direction that I wasn’t anticipating. Some stories deal with deeper themes than expected, which is a nice surprise.

“The Curse of Sally Tincakes” is probably my favorite story of the bunch. The setting throws you into a vivid world with wonderfully driven characters. The beautiful artwork for the story also makes up the cover for Racers of the Night.

“Everyone Will Want One” – This is a short work that appeared in Asimov’s September 2014 issue by Kelly Sandoval.

I was pulled into this story about a very advanced virtual toy. There are plenty of great themes on social status and fitting in, and the story goes to some dark places.

I don’t want to say too much about this one, but it’s definitely one of my favorites from Asimov’s this year.

Drive – This is one that has been around for awhile and was adapted into a film starring Ryan Gosling.

There are plenty of differences between the short novel and the film so if you’ve seen or read one, you can see or read the other. They stand alone as enjoyable, but for separate reasons.

The novel is a quick read and you can easily finish it on a nice day where you are free to enjoy it. There are so many gems with the way James Sallis uses language. The only thing slowing me down reading it was because I was re-reading different sections and marveling at the word choices. (Maybe I’m weird).

If you like gritty noir like The Postman Always Rings Twice, then you’ll probably like this too if you haven’t already read it. And if you’re interested in reading prose executed with finesse, then put this on your reading list.

So there’s the list for today. Please let me know of any books or stories you would recommend by mentioning it in the comments. I’m always looking for something new.

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About Robert Steele

Please feel free to contact me at: robertwilliamsteele@gmail.com
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2 Responses to Recommended Reading 11/30/2014

  1. Medicine Walk by Richard Wagamese

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