New Arrivals and Current Reading, June 16 – 22, 2014

New Arrivals
First a pre-order came, then one for a Friday Forgotten Book post, then…

Cibola Burn by James S. A. Corey (Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck) [Orbit June 2014 hardcover, purchased new] – science fiction. This is the fourth novel in The Expanse series. I admit to having only read the first, and part of the second, novels in the series but what I’ve read is exceptional and I just need to set aside the time to settle in with the rest.

Web of Murder by Harry Whittington [Vintage Crime 1993 trade paper, used – Gold Medal paperback shown) – mystery. I’m going to read this for the “femme fatale” Friday Forgotten Book special on July 11th. I think it will fit, but I’m not positive. I picked this up at Powell’s last week.

Sherlock Holmes: The Stuff of Nightmares by James Lovegrove [Titan Books 2013 trade paper, new] – mystery.
Sherlock Holmes: Gods of War by James Lovegrove [Titan Books 2014 trade paper, new] – mystery.
Last week I read the very satisfactory Sherlock Holmes: The Will of the Dead by James Mann. I enjoyed it enough that I wanted to try more of this series, published by Titan Books. These Holmes and Watson pastiches are set in a steampunk version of Victorian London. I was liked Mann’s deftness with the characters and setting, and expect Lovegrove to do the same.

Beatrix Potter’s Gardening Life by Marta McDowell [Timber Press June 2014 hardcover, new] – non-fiction, biography / gardening. Since I was a child I loved the stories and especially the illustrations by Beatrix Potter. I’m an enthusiastic gardener. The sub-title of this is “The plants and places that inspired the classic children’s tales“. How could I resist?

Current Reading
After reading three SF novels in a row I wanted someting different so I read Jonathan Latimer’s 1936 novel The Lady in the Morgue which I posted as a Friday Forgotten Book a few days ago. I finished a Sherlock Holmes pastiche, The Will of the Dead by George Mann, which I enjoyed very much. Now I’m about half way through the Potter book.

Barbara finished Cold Moon by Jeffrey Deaver, a book in the Lincoln Rhyme series that she had missed. She has now started Cop Hater, her first try at an 87th Precinct novel by Ed McBain.

What new books did you get, and what have you been reading?

About Rick Robinson

Enjoying life in Portland, OR
This entry was posted in Current Reading, mystery, New Arrivals, Non-fiction, science fiction. Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to New Arrivals and Current Reading, June 16 – 22, 2014

  1. The Holmes books look interesting. Not familiar with Corey. Will keep an eye out on your thoughts. Not read that Whittington.

    My book buying of late has been sparse. I’ve gotten a lot of good stuff wanting reviews though.

  2. Jeff Meyerson says:

    I’m still meaning to try the first Corey book but with its size and everything else I have backed up I don’t know when that will happen. I am in the middle of FIVE books at the moment – one short story collection (Muller & Pronzini), two non fiction books (Malzberg on SF and Nick Hornby’s collection of book review columns) and two fiction (horror sequel to THE STRAIN by Guillermo Del Toro & Chuck Hogan and the second book by Tom Rachman). Also I just got the new Megan Abbott from the library and have half a dozen other library books on the shelf.

    New books. After your post last week I got a couple of James White’s Sector General books ordered from paperbackswap and the first came in, FINAL DIAGNOSIS. (I have an ABE order of five or six books that should be arriving this week.)

    Only two books finished last week. First was an ebook I’d been reading for a while, the masive MACK REYNOLDS MEGAPACK: 23 short stories. Let’s just say I liked the SF stuff better than his North Africa-set stories, which were endless (and often poitnless) novellas. The other was Lauren Beukes’s highly praised time travel/serial killer book, THE SHINING GIRLS, which was as good as advertised, I would definitely recommend this (library) one.

  3. Barbara might enjoy some of the later volumes of the 87th Precinct series better than COP HATER. If I remember correctly, they were still sending telegrams in COP HATER.

    Jeff, Mack Reynolds was prolific and his output was uneven. When he was good, he was very very good. But when he was bad…

  4. Jerry House says:

    I am severely under-read on James White, Richard, but what I’ve read I have liked. I have a pile of his books around here somewhere; now I just have to find them.

    This week I read MR. MERCEDES, the new Stephen King. It’s a straight thriller which I’ve seen mistakedly marketed as a noir. A good read marred by some over the top characterization. Also this week, FROST by Donald Wandrei, a collection of eight detective stories from the pulps. (There’s a new edition collecting all of Wandrei’s Frost stories now available and I would like to get my hands on that.) Wandrei’s troubled brother Howard was also a pulp writer and I read THE EERIE MR. MURPHY, a collection of published and unpublished fantasies along with some of HW’s artwork. Two early Bleiler/Dikty best of the year SF collections (1949 & 1953), three small books of poetry by Joseph Payne Brennan, and THE RETURN OF POGO helped round off the week.

    Upcoming are the new Longmire by Craig Johnson, a “Jake Foster” western ghosted by James Reasoner and Ed Gorman, the graphic novel version of Tarantino’s DJANGO UNCHAINED, and a passel of SF/fantasy collections and anthologies.

  5. Richard says:

    Randy, the Expanse series has garnered top notch reviews everywhere. I read the first one, Leviathan Wakes, practically non-stop. Same with the first third of the second book, then got pulled away and I just haven’t gotten back to it. Still, I count it one of my favorite SF series.

    The Holmes book by George Mann, The Will of the Dead, was quite enjoyable, perhaps your library has it.

  6. Richard says:

    Jeff, just clear the library list and then go for Leviathan Wakes. You got the new Megan Abbott already? Your library is fast. The wait list at mine is nearly 100, which is why I bought a copy, which I see I forgot to put in this week’s New Arrivals.

    Do you know that White didn’t use his lead character Conway after Star Healer? The later ones use Priclica as the lead, and others. Too bad ’cause I liked Conway. I also liked Mack Reynolds’ SF stories, but not his adventure stuff. Is The Shining Girls one Barbara might like, dark, serial murder stuff?

  7. Richard says:

    George, I have a McBain omnibus with Cop Hater as the first one, so that’s where she started. You’re right about Reynolds.

  8. Jeff Meyerson says:

    I think Barbara will like it (THE SHINING GIRLS), maybe more than you would. The author is South African but sets this in Chicago between 1929 and 1993. It’s a time traveling serial killer story.

    I put the Abbott on reserve as soon as the library ordered it so was #1 on the list. I got it the first day it was out.

  9. Richard says:

    Jerry, nice to see you here since you’re on hiatus from your own blog.

    You’ll enjoy the White books when you get to them, I think. Barbara has Mr. Mercedes on hold at the library, but there is a long line in front of her. Stephen King isn’t my thing. When you say FROST I think of the English detective, not pulps. I’ll have to check it out.

    I’m not familiar with the poetry of Joseph Payne Brennan, I’ll look it up.

    I saw Craig Johnson at Left Coast Crime, cowboy hat and all, and he was a most interesting speaker. I’ve yet to read a Longmire book or see an episode of the show.

  10. Richard says:

    Thanks, Jeff. I checked the library when I heard about the Abbott but it wasn’t listed, then forgot until later, when the list was already long, so I pre-ordered it at Powell’s. It’s waiting at the Burnside store, they emailed me to come get it, but I got Web of Murder at the Hawthorn location and didn’t go on into town for the other. I need to go get the book before they cancel my order.

  11. I should give those Holmes books a try.

  12. Richard, I don’t think I’ve ever read pastiches but those two novels by James Lovegrove look interesting and I’ll certainly take a look. I finally finished reading Martin Cruz Smith’s STALLION GATE which I started out in April and am now nearly through with THE HELL RAISERS (or SADDLE PALS), a western by Lee Floren that lay neglected on the shelf.

  13. Richard says:

    Prashant, there are a LOT of Sherlock Holmes pastiches out there, most so-so, a few really awful and some very good. If you web search “Sherlock Holmes pastiche” you get a lot of hits, including lists. These being published by Titan are set in Holmes’ Victorian London but in a steampunk setting. I’m enjoying them a lot. A die hard fan of the Cannon would wave these off as too fanciful, but they are pretty well written and fun to read.

    I read Stallion Gate years ago and liked it but not nearly as well as Gorky Park, which is still my favorite Cruz-Smith book.

  14. Richard, I’m with you on Gorky Park which is also my favourite book by Cruz Smith. Thanks for the info about SH pastiches.

  15. Richard says:

    My pleasure, Prashant!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s