Tuesday, December 9, 2014

My top reads of 2014.

Okay, I did not bother to check release dates. So, if these titles are a couple of years old, hey...I didn't pick them up until THIS year. Therefore, they are MY top reads of the year. Sorry I am late, but Monday was a busy day.

I have to say that I do not read nearly enough. However, I still make time because I believe in my heart that you have to be an avid reader to be a good writer. As for worries that perhaps my mind will absorb some idea or another and forge it in to something of my own...I got news for ya, there is nothing original left under the sun. Most of us in the zombie genre HAVE to give props to Romero. He is the guy who got this snowball rolling downhill. I have enough faith in my own ability to create something that is unique and mine. So, that is enough of that. Let's talk about books.

Odium by Claire Riley.

"Where Claire really shines is in her descriptive ability. She paints a world that you can see, hear, and smell. Her ability to describe is an example that teachers could use in a writing class. She does not go overboard, but finds the "sweet spot" of description. And trust me, it is just as easy to go overboard as it is to be to vague. Claire C. Riley is a name you need to add to your list. She may very well be the best writer you have never heard of...but need to." (From my review of this title.)

If you have not jumped on this bandwagon yet, it is not too late.

"This is hilarious. The writer did an exceptional job of spoofing the Indie Zombie book scene. If you have read OR WRITTEN a zombie story, you must read this. It has some vulgar language, but it all fits perfectly. Everything from crappy editing to weak character development is made fum of in this neat package."

If you write in the zombie genre and have a sense of humor, you will totally dig this. If you READ zombie fiction, then you will get EVERY SINGLE JOKE, and probably laugh a lot harder than some of the authors in the genre who might feel this hits too close to home.

Dead Trees by Eli Constant

"One thing that makes this book stand out is a strong female protagonist. SO often this genre is dominated by uber-military MacGyver types that have all the answers and can get out of every scrape. Elise is a mother simply trying her best to keep her daughter's alive, and while she does "hook up" with Jason, you get the impression that she can do with or without him just fine."

This was a great year for female horror authors. My reading selection did not intentionally skew towards female authors, it just sort of ended up that way. There is something visceral in female horror authors when it comes to description. They give you details that assault all of the senses and pull you deep into a story in a special way.

You Have to Fucking Eat by Adam Mansbach

"Overall, this is a fun little story that will probably cause a few people to get bent out of shape, but who cares! Sometimes you just need a good laugh. This fits the bill. Stop being so PC and serious."

Short and funny, and the audio version is narrated by Bryan Cranston (Walter White to Breaking Bad fans!)

"A wonderful story that also shows how far we have come and have yet to come when race is considered in the shaping of this nation."

Way outside of my normal reading list. This was a gripping story.

Survival by Rhonda Hopkins

"I was fortunate to be able to read this tale prior to release. The bottom line is that this is hands down my favorite read so far in 2014. Short story or not, this tale will stick with you. This story opens with a punch in the throat and has you gasping until the last words on the page fade as you turn off your Kindle.

It can be a challenge to really offer up characters with depth that you care about in a short story, yet Rhonda Hopkins does just that. And you will experience a roller coaster of emotions throughout. It matters very little if you are a fan of the zombie genre, this is a story that will pull you in and refuse to let go.

So do yourself a favor...read this gem and then tell a friend."

This was my favorite read of the year. I felt fortunate to be one of the early readers This is a real treat, and if you have not grabbed your copy yet, you are missing out on something VERY special.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much, Todd! I am blown away by your encouragement and support. You have no idea how much it means to me for one of my favorite authors to say such awesome things about my work.

    Happy Holidays to you and your family!