Five lessons I learned from what I read in 2011

January 10, 2012 § 4 Comments

I read oodles (the technical term for it) when I was in elementary and middle school, a lot in high school, and not terribly much in college (aside from what I was reading for classes, which took the majority of my reading energy). Fortunately I’m rectifying that error, by reading more than ever these days. The ‘real’ world, with mortgages and bills and full-time jobs isn’t all glamor and glitz, but it’s one major redeeming quality is a total lack of homework. I’ve taken advantage of the extra time in my life (and the fact that my wife who is in grad school still does have homework in the evenings) by reading more this year than in the previous eight years combined.

Since I began writing seriously, the way I read books has changed significantly, for better or worse. I’m more discerning of everything from adverb overuse and cliches to strong and original characters. Most of the books I read « Read the rest of this entry »

Book Review: Boneshaker by Cherie Priest

September 13, 2011 § 1 Comment

To start with, I’m a big sucker for steampunk, and how could you not love that cover?  That said, I’m not a fan of zombies so it took me a while to get around to reading this one.  I shouldn’t have worried.  This isn’t even the first paranormal book (zombies are paranormal right?) I’ve enjoyed this year.  I don’t know what’s happening to me.

Set in 1800s Seattle, Boneshaker is the story of a boy trying to learn more about where he comes from and his mother who has spent years keeping it from him.  Also there are zombies.  And airships.  And crazy inventors.  Sometimes I felt like the plot was happening to the characters, rather than the characters driving the plot, but overall a good read, and on a lot of steampunk-books-not-to-miss lists.

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