Saturday, April 16, 2011

The Seinfeld Post

This is "The Seinfeld Post" because it's a whole bunch of stuff about nothing.  These are random thoughts that are unconnected, except that they're all about books.  Here we go:

1.  I recently blogged about seeing Harlan Coben on book tour and how much we all enjoyed him.  I have now read his new book.  He gets better each time.  His first 7 were about Myron Bolitar, and then he started doing stand-alones.  Since he did his first group of Bolitars, he has written about 11 or 12 books.  Of those, 2 or 3 have been new Bolitars.  This one, Live Wire, is, again, about Myron Bolitar.  Besides having fun reading about these well-known and very familiar characters, he has also constructed a great story line with great writing.  It's funny, poignant, and exciting.  Nice job, Harlan!

2.  I recently finished Abraham Verghese's best seller - Cutting for Stone.  As I mentioned, I read it because I promised Phil that I would before going to see Verghese at, once again, Dominican College in San Rafael.  I'm glad I read it, and I would recommend it.  I liked it a lot.  I didn't love it, like some people did, but it's a good story and is well written.  I will blog after we go to see him.

3.  We ran into Donna R., and she highly recommended The Calligrapher's Daughter, by Eugene Kim.

4.   I was in Peets and was reading Cutting for Stone while waiting in line.  A woman in front of me told me that she really liked the book.  We got to talking, and she recommended a trilogy called the Josephine B Trilogy.  It's written by Sandra Gulland.  It's about Napolean and (not surprisingly) Josephine.  I didn't know this woman and certainly don't know her tastes.  So, take this recommendation for what it's worth - a crapshoot.

5.  Speaking of random, have any of you (besides Rich) ever emailed an author?  I have done it a number of times and have just about always gotten a response.  Most of the time, the emails are pretty generic, but I have actually gotten some detailed and very responsive answers.  Here are just a couple of examples:

     A.  Christopher Reich - I once pointed out to him that he used "just then" about every 10 pages.  He emailed and said that he wasn't aware of it but would watch for it in his next book.  True to his word, the next book only had it 3 times (even that was annoying because I was so tuned in to it).
     B.  John Lescroart - I was confused about the order of his books.  He sent a very detailed email and even suggested that I read a half of one of his books, read another one, and then come back to the first one.  How cool was that?
     C.  Sheldon Siegel - You all know that he went out to dinner with Rich, Joni, and me.  What's interesting is that I had already exchanged a number of emails with him before finally meeting him.  It was like meeting someone that I already knew.  His emails are always personal.  Now, when we email, he always asks how Joni (by name) is doing.

I promise that my next post will have something more interesting to say than "The Seinfeld Post."

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