Thursday, July 21, 2011

The Sun on my Face, the Books in my Hand

From Paula: I ran into the fantabulous Barbara Poelle at the Pennwriters conference, and she told me she missed blogging. Not one to miss an opportunity, I quickly extended an invite to blog here at Working Stiffs. Barbara, thanks so much for joining us today!

By Guest blogger Barbara Poelle

I am mere DAYS away from a vacation, I can already feel the sand in my suit, sun on my shoulders, and the delight of the waiter when he sees my hand in the air for yet another mai tai. Well, maybe that is more of a judgmental grimace, but SIR, I AM ON VACATION.

Despite owning an ereader for work, I am still a book girl, so per usual, I am packing an extra carry-on full of delightful titles. (I am not kidding, I even did this on our HONEYMOON).  See, despite being ensconced in prose all day, I still find reading to be my favorite leisure activity as well.  It's like the male gynecologist; just because he's dealing with lady parts all day, doesn't mean he isn't delighted to see his wife in the evening.  (For those of you who have never read a blog by me, sorry. The rest of you, you KNOW that was tame.) But here's the thing, I have a bit of room in my roller bag and I would love to find something surprising and delicious to lose myself in. Let me tell you a few titles I have so far and perhaps you can help me add a few more (and you'll notice no client pimping. A) Because I read everything by my guys already, and B) YOU should be reading everything by my guys already):

Full Dark, No Stars by Stephen King
I know, I am several months behind on this one, but COME ON, it isn't vacay without a King. I was in Mexico for my 21st birthday (and we will NEVER speak of those events again) and the morning after I decided to recover on the beach under an umbrella with THE STAND, and I read it cover to cover in one delicious, languid afternoon.  A tradition for me since.

(Okay, okay, and I cannot help ONE shameless plug...if you are looking to have a Stephen King-like adventure like I did in Mexico over a deca--uh,  a few short years ago, here is the recipe for that:
5 parts tequila, 4 parts Dos Equis, chips and salsa, shake well, preferably to Latin club music, sleep for 4 hours, then buy yourself Sophie Littlefield's AFTERTIME and the second one in the trilogy, REBIRTH. There is a reason why people are comparing the series to The Stand. After you read, you will want to thank me profusely and send me gifts. Don't deny that impulse.)

Born to Run by Christopher McDougal
Okay, so I put in my puny 20 miles a week, (often times crossing the finish line at the Boat Basin on the Hudson  for a burger and a beer-  I NEED TO REFUEL, PEOPLE) but this book explores the science, technique and even anthropology behind long distance and ultra marathon running.  Supposed to be mind blowing.

The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson
This is me cheating because this title is not out until September but I have an ARC. (The first taste is free, always seems to croon from this dark alley.) OMG, I read the first 30 pages of this when agent Holly Root was shopping it, and I have been rubbing my gums and thinking about turning tricks to get just a few more pages ever since.

The Snowman by  Jo Nesbø
Okay, I'll admit it out loud...I am not a huge fan of the Larsson series. (I am hiding under my desk as I type that, should lightening strike me down.) But I have heard that Nesbø's  book, although compared to that international phenomenon, is one of the best crime novels of our time. Alright, I'm game to try.

Iron House by John Hart
I sat next to him at the Edgars! Ahem. Okay, so now that we've confirmed that Hart and I are besties, let me just say that I have been waiting for his next one and even behaved myself, letting it sit there, untouched, until vacation, as a treat. If you haven't read him, you should.

So that is a cross section of my intent, (along with a few romance titles of which I have three, so good there)...anybody have any further suggestions?


Joyce said... manuscript? No? Ahem. Sorry.

Our very own Jennie Bentley/Bente Gallagher/Jenna Bennett has written some excellent books. Her DIY series is great and her real estate series has a smokin' hot bad boy in it.

Julia Spencer Fleming's series is one of my favorites. And two former guest bloggers have fantastic books out now: Steve Ulfelder's Purgatory Chasm and Bill Cameron's County Line. I'm looking forward to a book coming out in a couple of weeks--Tawna Fenske's Making Waves. Tawna is a hoot and will be our guest here next Tuesday.

Thanks for being our guest, Barbara!

Ramona said...

I've been reading a YA called Ghosts of War: The True Story of a 19-year-old GI by Ryan Smithson. Ryan was a high school junior when 9/11 happened. He was so moved--"If I don't do something, who will?"--he joined the Army reserves. Two years later, he's graduated from high school, married to his girlfriend and is deployed to Iraq. It's a very compelling record of ordinary days in extraordinary circumstances. And he's a terrific writer.

Annette said...

Joyce, I can't believe you pitched to a guest blogger. Tsk tsk. ;-)

Welcome to Working Stiffs, Barbara. Joyce made some excellent recommendations (including her own manuscript). Let me add the Rosie Winter mystery series by Kathryn Miller Haines, and anything by my newest favorite author Craig Johnson.

Enjoy your vacation!

Joyce said...

Ooh. I second the Rosie Winters books. I can't believe I forgot to mention them!

Jenna said...

Awww, thanks for the plug, Joyce!

Barbara, nice to see you here. I enjoyed meeting you in Nashville last year. And yeah, Jo Nesbø totally rocks. I'm not just saying that because I'm Norwegian.

I second the Julia Spencer-Fleming suggestion, but you've probably already read them. If you like historical mysteries, in addition to Kathryn, Kelli Stanley's books are incredible. (They have me in them. How could they not be?) Same for Tasha Alexander's stuff. (Without me, sadly.) And absolutely anything at all by Jennifer Crusie, although my favorite is Bet Me.

Have a great trip! I just came back from St. Augustine, and wish I was still there!

Bpoelle said...

Yes! Good points..especially about the Ulfelder book!

Bpoelle said...

Oh, and I read Tashya already, of course, and I have Kelli's!

Working Stiffs said...

Welcome to Working Stiffs, Barbara!

Two books I recently enjoyed and recommend are Simon Wood's Terminated and Eyes of the Innocent by Brad Parks.

Happy reading, and thanks again for visiting!


RKLewis said...

Literary Fiction may not be your bag, but if you haven't read Ghostwritten, by David Mitchell, you're doing yourself a disservice. Just sayin'. :-)

Patg said...

Hello!! Published writers on this blog, check them all out--We're grrrreeeeaaatttt!!!
Hey, I'm not bashful!
And I'd never want lightning to strike any human being (okay, maybe I can think of a few, starting with the guy Ramona wrote about last Friday) but it should strike all around you for not loving Larsson. Nesbo is okay.
Not a King fan either, my taste runs to Preston and Childs' Pendergast books.