Sunday, December 14, 2008

Reading Report

My reading reports have been a bit sparse lately, I know. That's mostly because lately I'm having trouble finding any fiction that I want to read. Part of the problem seems to be that I've sort of burned out on most mystery fiction, which used to be one of my mainstays. Folks like Lawrence Block, Jonathan Kellerman, and Sue Grafton have just missed me with their last few books and I don't know how much of that is me and how much is them. I haven't even bought the new Robert B. Parker Spenser novel and that's been out a couple of months now. In any case, I just don't seem to be able to get into that sort of thing these days. Maybe it will swing back around. We'll see.
So what have I been reading? A lot of short stories. I've read about half of the Simon Magus stories in the Scroll of Thoth collection. Read or re-read a bunch of Robert E. Howard stories. Quite a few re-reads of Michael Moorcock's Elric tales.
Much non fiction, most of it having to do with Norsemen. Also read Memoirs of Vidocq, the autobiography of Franscois Eugene Vidocq, the real life French criminal turned detective who was one of the original inspirations for Sherlock Holmes. Fascinating stuff.
Re-read Edgar Rice Burroughs' Pellucidar novel, Back to the Stone Age, and a couple of Doc Savage pulp novels, The Red Terrors and Mystery Under the Sea. Whenever I read one of Lester Dent's Doc novels, I'm always amazed at what an influence Dent had one me. My third person writing style still has some stylistic similarities to Dent's all these years after I first read his stuff. I make no attempt to imitate him in terms of writing, but the influence is definitely there. Occasionally I'll write a very 'Dent' sort of sentence or paragraph. I'll pull out an example the next time I find one.
I've asked for a couple of memoirs for Christmas and if I don't get them, I'll buy them after the holidays. I'm down to three Repairman Jack books now, and I have one or two other fiction books I've put back for a rainy day. So the reading goes on. Just not at quite the rate I was tearing through stuff for a while there.

No comments: