Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Top Ten Tuesdays

At the Broke and Bookish: Top Ten Things On My Reading Wishlist (if you could make authors write about these things you would. Could be a specific type of character, an issue tackled, a time period, a certain plot, etc.)

oohh fun ...

1) I want more Dirk Gently books by Douglas Adams. He would, of course, need to be alive to accomplish this, so there is that problem.

2) Terry Pratchett needs to be cloned or something - I would like more Tiffany Aching books, more books with Granny, I want to know what happened to Brutha after the end of Small Gods. Feet of Clay is amazing and I want more Dorfl. So yeah, just more, since there isn't anyone else like Pratchett. 

3) This is a broad one for many authors - write relationships that develop over time. I am sick to death of instalove and instabestfriendship. Instalust, that I can cope with since of course that happens. The problem is that as soon as someone is declared "hot" everything happens at sonic boom rate and suddenly you have this deep, trusting relationship on the basis of ...???  Of I have no idea what. I want relationships the show you the characters learning to trust, respect and then love each other.  Same thing with friendships by the way. Too many books have these amazing friendships develop out of thin air.

4) Ursula Vernon must write more Dragonbreath books!  More! My son and I love these books and the last one didn't have a teaser for the next book. Does that mean that there will be no more ? NO!

5) For brain candy, I really enjoyed the Barbara Michael's ghost story style books like Ammie, Come Home, Stitches in Time, and Be Buried in the Rain. I have been looking for something similar for years and now that she passed away last year (Barbara Mertz wrote books about Egypt under her own name, as well as under the pseudonyms Elizabeth Peters and Barbara Michaels. The Peters books were mysteries/thrillers, like the Amelia Peabody books, that were 'real world' and the Michaels books had ghosts and supernatural events.) I liked most of them, and have seen a few other authors run with the archaeology related mysteries theme, but no one really has made a run with the chiller style books that I liked. I have tried The Shadowy Horses by Susanna Kearsley and it captured some of feeling, but was also really lacking in depth and the solution seemed to be pulled out of thin air really. It was kind of like an early Michaels, but I ended up feeling let down and slightly grumpy at the end. One of the things that made the Michaels' books so good was all the information about topic du jour like roses or historic gardens. I want more authors to write books in this general style to fill the void.

6) I am also a sucker for good mysteries in an academic setting, written by people who actually have a clue about academic settings.  I really loved a couple of the Amanda Cross books - Death in a Tenured Position was my favorite. Unfortunately, the author kinda lost the thread and stopped producing the same kind of well written books. Again, I want someone to take up the torch.

7) Whatever happened to cyberpunk ? Like Neal Stephenson before he started writing multi-volume concrete blocks. Anyone out there like Snow Crash? Is anyone writing cyberpunk anymore ? What are they calling it ?

8) Okay, I suppose this is a cheat but I would make Connie Willis re-write Blackout/All Clear employing an editor from the UK (ohh - I know a totally sweet one who worked with me and has a background in history - perfect) so that all of geographic and historical errors are fixed and so that the monster plot hole (not the minor arguments about how time travel works - which should get fixed too, but the massive one that actually totally destroys the continuity of the book and which is hidden by the ridiculous size the books) is fixed and you end up with a one volume chunkster book that would be fantastic. There is no way I can explain the plot hole in a non-spoiler way, but I write a grump about the kinds of errors that kept pulling me out of the book. This killed me because I like Connie Willis, honest!

9) I want the next book in the Tuesdays at the Castle series by Jessica Day George. So - this one is easy - Wednesday ended with a huge cliffhanger.  Now what ? ? ? 

10)  There must be more books like The Quest for Becket's Bones: The Mystery of the Relics of St. Thomas Becket of Canterbury by John Butler. This is an awesome nonfiction book that walks us through the story of some bones that were discovered in January 1888 by workmen excavating the eastern crypt of Canterbury Cathedral. The ancient bones were of a tall, middle-aged man whose skull had seemingly been cleft by a sword. Were these the remains of St Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury, who was murdered in the Cathedral in December 1170 by knights of King Henry II ? Or someone else entirely ? This was an excellent, short introduction to a period in history and I would like there to be more books like this.


  1. What a wonderfully eclectic and thoughtful list! I'm going to have to start following your blog. I am in total and complete agreement on #3; the whole instalove thing gets old. I recently came across it in an author who usually doesn't play that card, and it really irked me. It's not that I don't think people can feel an instant attraction, even a strong connection, when they meet (and I don't necessarily mean lust.) But you've got to base a relationship on more than that initial connection; you've got to get to know and trust each other, and that takes time.

    As for your other points - I'm only just getting started on Pratchett, but I'm right with you re the Jessica Day George series. I love them! And I enjoy mysteries, but have never read the Barbara Michaels/Elizabeth Peters books. Sounds like I should give them a try.

    I hope you'll stop by and visit my blog. I suspect we have at least a few tastes in common, and it's always fun to "chat" with a fellow booklover!

    1. Thanks for visiting! I wandered by your blog earlier today and liked your list too. I started reading Pratchett in college when there were many fewer books, so it was easier to get addicted. It is frankly amazing to see an author that grows and evolves in their writing, and keeps producing new ideas, rather then getting stuck in a rut or just running out of steam.


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