Sunday, 8 January 2012

2011 Reading Pile.

I’m taking a quick look at last year’s reading list. Not quite as many as in some previous years, but there is quite a reasonable collection here. They range from classic Edwardian and Victorian tales from the Wordsworth Editions, Tales of Mystery & The Supernatural collections to modern tv tie ins.

I’m not going to review every single book, but if there is anything of interest that I haven’t commented on please feel free to leave a comment and I’ll see what I can add.

Wordsworth Editions, Tales of Mystery & The Supernatural

These are prints of classic works at very reasonable cover price, and their covers are often quite intriguing in their own right, often pictures that give inspiration for model work.  I’m reading these to give me inspiration for the Supernatural plot lines I’m planning for my campaign.  Back in 2009 I read all of the Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes stories so I was pleased to add his Tales of Unease to last year’s reading list.

The Castle of Otranto, Vathek & Nightmare Abbey         
Edited by David Stuart Davis

The Casebook of Carnacki The Ghost Finder       
W. H. Hodgson

Tales of Unease               
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Madam Crowl's Ghost & Other Stories  
Sheridan Le Fanu

The Monk
Matthew Lewis

A Night on the Moor & Other Tales of Dread      
R. Murray Gilchrist

Speaking of Supernatural, Titan Books have a range of books and graphic novels based on the series. These are very entertaining romps  inside the world of the TV series where you get to ride out with Sam and Dean in extra stories. Worth reading if you’re into the TV series.

Beginning's End
Andrew Dabb

One Year Gone
Rebecca Dessertine

Coyoye's Kiss
Christa  Faust

War of the Sons               
Rebecca Dessertine & David Reed

Night Terror
John Passarella

Keeping with TV shows, there has to be somewhere in excess of 400 Doctor Who novels out there somewhere and I’ve probably read nearly everyone of them in the past. The current offering, published by BBC Books covers adventures for the present TV Doctor and companion combination.

If you’ve never read any of these before but like the programme, then I’d recommend Touched by An Angel by Jonathan Morris or Dead of Winter by James Goss as a starting point.

Dead of Winter
James Goss

The Way Through the Woods
Una McCormack

Hunter's Moon
Paul Finch

Paradox Lost
George Mann

Touched By An Angel
Jonathan Morris

Borrowed Time
Naomi A. Alderman

BBC Books were also responsible for three Torchwood books as well. Torchwood is a Doctor Who spin off series, these three books fit in between the Children of Earth and Miracle Day stories. Personally the best one of the three for me was First Born by James Goss, and I’m not just saying that because I got James to sign my copy when I was halfway through reading it and I found myself sitting a few seats away from him at a Doctor Who Tomb of the Cybermen and Tutankhamun lecture. 

Long Time Dead
Sarah Pinborough

First Born
James Goss

The Men Who Sold The World
Guy Adams

Big Finish published The Mervyn Stone Mysteries by Nev Fountain. These have to be some of the funniest books I’ve read in a long time. If you’ve ever attended a science fiction convention in any capacity you’ll find something in Geek Tragedy for you. Meryn Stone was the script editor on a sci-fi shown from the 1980s, who finds himself having to investigate something quite strange and off the wall murders. These are great mystery novels are flavored with great humour. 

Everyone I know who has read them really wants to see additional books added to this series. I really do not want to give any plot away – just read and enjoy.

Book 1: Geek Tragedy   
Book 2: DVD Extras Include: Murder
Book 3: Cursed Among Sequels

From Orion books I’ve started to read the novels which were used as the basis for the series True Blood. These are the Sookie Stackhouse novels by Charlaine Harris. Usually when you have a tv series or film based on a book you compare them and despair at what was removed. For these I actually prefer the tv series, they have enhanced many of the characters that are just featured in passing to give a richer, more interesting Bon Temps setting.

Book 1: Dead Until Dark
Book 2: Living Dead in Dallas
Book 3: Club Dead

Other reading.

Running out of time here so for now I’ll just list the others, like I said leave a message if you want me to expand on anything.

Vanitas - Mathew Waterhouse
Life Begins at 40 - Chris Newton
Cemetry Drive - J. T. Wilson
Wolfsangel - M.D.Lachlan
All Aliens Like Burgers - Ruth Wheeler
Do Aliens Read Science Fiction? - Ruth Wheeler
The Reapers are the Angels - Alden Bell

Now to start on this year's already growing pile of books.