Whenever I meet someone who likes to read, I always ask about their favorite books. It’s fun to enthuse with a fellow suspense lover, but it’s also interesting to learn about authors and genres I’m not familiar with. Book fans love talking about the books they’ve recently read as well as the ones that will stick with them as forever favorites.
So I’m taking this opportunity to share with you what I’ve been reading this summer. In case you have the same kind of curiosity about hearing the experiences of a fellow book lover.
It’s been a busy time, but despite that I’ve been able to enjoy several books, one way or another. Let me tell you about them.
The Silent Corner, by Dean Koontz
My mentor, Dean Wesley Smith, had me read the opening chapter of this book to study it as an example of how to entice a reader into a story emotionally. Rather than telling the reader how to feel, Koontz creates an atmosphere conducive to the emotions he wants his readers to experience. And he is a master of the skill.
After reading the book’s opening, I was hooked and devoured the rest of it. Very chilling and all too relevant to current world events. I recommend it if you like a taut, frightening story that leaves you hanging a little at the end.
Kill The Messenger, by Tami Hoag
I’ve long been a fan of Tami Hoag and I enjoyed this action-packed and heart-warming story of a poor kid running from the consequences of being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
This one also came to me courtesy of my mentor. I came across it on my own when he challenged me to find a book with an opening that did a good job of creating a certain mood. I thought this one qualified.
Raven Black, by Ann Cleeves
I’ve read some of Cleeve’s Vera Stanhope mysteries, but this was the first book I’ve read from the Shetland series. As a writer of suspense fiction myself, I usually see the twists coming.
This one, I didn’t.
So I got a lovely bit of enjoyment out of the ending of this book, and I enjoy the way she develops her characters. The landscapes are wonderful to imagine, too.
Partners in Crime, by Agatha Christie
At some time or another, I think I’ve read just about everything Christie ever published, including the books she wrote as Mary Westmacott. It’s been years, though, since I’ve read any Tommy and Tuppence stories, so it was fun to get reacquainted with that delightful, crime-fighting couple.
I read this as an audiobook while doing housework, and it was a great way to lighten my load. I think it may have sparked an idea or two for some new stories of my own.
Demolition Angel, by Robert Crais
I’d like to read more books by Robert Crais. I always mean to and I’ve enjoyed everything I’ve read by him, but so far that list is small. I must remedy that situation.
This book was intense and full of action and suspense. A really enjoyable read.
The Healer’s Legacy, by M MacKinnon
I’m currently reading this third book in the Highland Spirits series by M MacKinnon. I count myself fortunate to have included one of her stories in my compilation, And Then There Were Nine. That one was a dark tale, but the Highland Spirits books are fun, sweet, full of beautiful Scottish scenery, romance, ghosts, and suspense. Quite a package!
I haven’t read as far as the climactic scene yet, but I am really enjoying the book—as I did with the first two in the series. I’m married to a kilt-wearing Scot myself, so these books hold a special place in my heart and I expect the ending will be spectacular. I can’t wait!
Half the summer still awaits
I hope you’re getting in a bunch of good summer reading. It’s important to get your daily dose of story. If you haven’t seen my new video series about the power and benefits of Story in your life, why not take a moment to check it out?
And please, share your own summer reading experiences in the comments. I’d love to know what you’ve been curling up with, or taking to the beach or porch swing or wherever you best like to read.