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The Life of a Book Reviewer... - Michael M Jones

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November 28th, 2007

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03:27 pm - The Life of a Book Reviewer...
Last night, in a fit of pique, I told my beloved, patient wife that I didn't know what I wanted to read next. I'd just finished several fine YA books, wasn't in the mood for epic fantasy at the moment, and was still purring over listening to HAVE SPACESUIT, WILL TRAVEL on audio (Full Cast Audio, all hail to Bruce Coville).

"I want a good urban fantasy!" I whined. "I want the next Kim Harrison*, the next Jim Butcher**, and the next Simon Green***, and I want them now!"

Well, today I checked the front porch, and there in the empty left-hand planter**** was a happy little white package. In said package was the ARC of UNQUIET DREAMS, by Mark Del Franco, sequel to UNSHAPELY THINGS. (Ace, January 2008). To which I must thusly say, "Thank you, Book Fairy, for delivering unto me a good urban fantasy that will appease me for a few days." Because the Book Fairy's offerings must not be taken for granted, nor unappreciated, lest it stop bringing them.

Yes, I believe in the Book Fairy. You call it the UPS driver. Or the FedEx driver. Or the US Postal Service. I say it takes many shapes, and brings me many fine books. And a few questionable ones. (I refuse to talk about the time it brought Nora Roberts to me.)

And this is NORMAL for our household.

* - And may a thousand fleas infest the loins of the guy selling the next Kim Harrison ARC (* 1/2), a signed and numbered item, on eBay. For $110. Sir, you suck. That money better be going to charity or something.

* 1/2 - Due out in February. (* 3/4)

* 3/4 - The paperback of FOR A FEW DEMONS MORE just came out. The inside page quotes from my SF Site review of DEAD WITCH WALKING. Color me pleased.

** - And by that, I mean the next Dresden Files. Due out in April.

*** - I'll take anything. Unfortunately, the next one due out is the 8th in the Nightside series. Read and reviewed THE UNNATURAL INQUIRER months ago. After that comes the next in his James Bond-ish series, which is June.

**** - The current driver on our route likes to play mind games with me. Currently, he'll put the packages on the front step, or in one of the empty planters that flank the front door. Sometimes, he'll then twist the American flag we have hanging outside the door over the flagpole, as if to let us know something's there. Go figure. I wonder if they just don't realize that the large package-sized mailbox outside the garage (which is much closer to the street than the front door is) is there for a reason besides decoration. I'd train this driver, but then we'd just get a new one who'd probably find somewhere even weirder to leave packages.

BTW: Last night, I finally started reading TERRITORY, by Emma Bull. Magic meets the Old West in a revised version of the events leading up to the shootout at the OK Corral, if I'm not mistaken. Good stuff. But it's Emma Bull. I can't race through one of hers... it would be like gulping down dinner at Ruth's Chris Steakhouse without pausing to enjoy it!

Other stuff on my plate: WHITECHAPEL GODS, by S.M. Peters (Roc, February 2008). Alternate history Victorian-era steampunk/urban fantasy. Looks fascinating, but highly unusual. Looking forward to tackling it.

Also finishing up GOBLIN WAR, by Jim Hines (DAW, March 2008) which is the third in the Jig the Dragonslayer series. Comedic/epic fantasy about a goblin who gets caught up in wacky adventures. Damned good stuff. ( Goblin Quest and Goblin Hero)

ALSO started reading MIDNIGHT REIGN, by Chris Marie Green (Ace, February 2008), which is the sequel to NIGHT RISING . Vampires, psychics, and other weird stuff in Hollywood. I really liked the first in the series.

I'll wrap this up now. I took the opportunity to play with format a little, hope it doesn't explode all over the screen...
Current Mood: cheerfulcheerful

(9 comments | Leave a comment)


[User Picture]
Date:November 28th, 2007 09:27 pm (UTC)
That is officially the first public reaction I've seen to Goblin War. Thanks :-)
[User Picture]
Date:November 28th, 2007 10:40 pm (UTC)
I like it! Poor Jig, he gets no love. (Just hero worship, the poor guy... the call-and-response Recitation of Deeds was hilarious!)
[User Picture]
Date:November 28th, 2007 10:27 pm (UTC)
dammit, had I galleys yet, I'd send you one!
[User Picture]
Date:November 28th, 2007 10:37 pm (UTC)
Ace tends to be pretty good about sending ARCs out, so hopefully I'll be seeing this one in the mail before too long, if they plan on sending any. :> Looking forward to it!
[User Picture]
Date:November 29th, 2007 12:48 am (UTC)
Our delivery elves used to just stuff boxes and packages into the hedges surrounding our front door. Then I trimmed them back to bare wood because of rot on the leaves, with the intent to dig them out, but they started growing back healthy, so go figure. Still too small to stuff packages into, however.

So they now place them under our welcome mat. Which is amusing and more than a little aggravating when the box is, say, 15x12x12. (It also makes it impossible to open the security screen door from inside the house, sometimes necessitating a trip all the way around from the back door in order to retrieve said package.)

Emma and Will were in town not too long ago signing at a local SFF specialty bookstore, and I was literally too exhausted to attend. But I shall have to forego my self-bitterness and go pick up her book soon.
[User Picture]
Date:November 29th, 2007 01:13 am (UTC)
We've had them leave packages:
In the mailbox.
In the package mailbox.
On the front step leaning against the door.
On the front step in the planters.
Leaning against the garage door.
Leaning against the package mailbox's pole. (wtf?)
IN the garage if the door was up, sometimes on the floor, sometimes on
the steps leading up to the kitchen door.
On the hood of the car in the driveway.
By the door on the side of the driveway which is out of the way and never

It's like an Easter egg hunt sometimes to make sure we haven't missed anything. :>
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
Date:November 29th, 2007 06:46 pm (UTC)
Quite naturally. :> And as I told Anton, Ace (and Roc and DAW) is very good about sending out ARCs, so I'll be crossing my fingers that they follow through on Magic Burns. :>

Magic Bites is on my backlog to be reviewed... a TV tray table which lurks behind me, forever reminding me of my obligations. (2006 and part of 2007 was a slow period for me, but one in which a whole bunch of really good urban fantasy authors all seemed to debut, so now my main goal is to get to their first books by the time the second come out! I'm no Harriet Klausner, thank goodness...)
[User Picture]
Date:November 29th, 2007 02:37 pm (UTC)
I just finished reading GOBLIN HERO, which was a lot of fun, and I'm eagerly awaiting GOBLIN WAR...and, of course, THE STEPSISTER SCHEME. I had the pleasure of hearing Jim read a chapter of TSS at Fantasy Matters, and damn, it was terrific!
[User Picture]
Date:November 29th, 2007 06:41 pm (UTC)
He's another one of those authors I have yet to meet, but want to. :>
Pesky new authors, always springing up all over the place....
and I agree, STEPSISTER sounds like it's going to be fun.

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