Thought of the Week: What Should I Read?

All right, confession time: for a writer, I’m very poorly-read. I haven’t actually sat down to read a book in years.

I have my excuses: work, raising a child, working on my own books, depression, etc. etc. etc. The point is that, if I really wanted to, I’d have read. And I feel kind of embarrassed, and ashamed about that. What kind of writer doesn’t read?

I suspect that if I did genuinely have more time I would read, but when every free moment is spent trying to write, I just can’t get around to reading.

However…I’d like that to change. I’ve been away at this work training thing for two weeks by the time you read this, and I will have already chosen a book to read (this is a shame, because I would have very much liked your opinions). I may not even get around to reading that, but I thought I’d share with you the list of books I’ve bought over the past few years and simply never got around to reading.

The Lake, The River & the Other Lake – Steve Amick (2005)

The resort town of Weneshkeen, nestled along Michigan’s Gold Coast, has become a complex melting pot: townies and old timers mix with ritzy summer folk, migrant cherry pickers, wily river guides, and a few Ojibwe Indians. As the summer blooms, these lives mingle in surprising ways – a lifelong resident and Vietnam Vet pursues the take-no-guff deputy sheriff, while plotting revenge against the jet-skiers polluting his beloved lake; a summer kid from downstate stumbles into a romance with the sexiest rich girl in town; the town’s retired reverend discovers the Internet and a new friend in his computer tutor.

Little Wolf Slayer – Donald E. Cooke (1952)

Ship of Magic – Robin Hobb (1999)

Bingtown is a hub of exotic trade and home to a merchant nobility famed for its liveships-rare vessels carved from wizardwood, which ripens magically into sentient awareness. The fortunes of one of Bingtown’s oldest families rest on the newly awakened liveship Vivacia.

For Althea Vestrit, the ship is her rightful legacy unjustly denied her – a legacy she will risk anything to reclaim. For Althea’s young nephew Wintrow, wrenched from his religious studies and forced to serve aboard ship, Vivacia is a life sentence.

But the fate of the Vestrit family – and the ship – may ultimately lie in the hands of an outsider. The ruthless pirate Kennit seeks a way to seize power over all the denizens of the Pirate Isles…and the first step of his plan requires him to capture his own liveship and bend it to his will…

Steve Jobs – Walter Isaacson (2011)

The Charnel Prince – Greg Keyes (2004)

When the legendary Briar King awoke from his slumber, a season of darkness and horror fell upon the Kingdom of Crotheny. Now countless breeds of unspeakable monsters roam the countryside. An epidemic of madness has transformed peaceful villagers from the wildlands into savage, flesh-eating fiends. In Eslen, King William has been murdered, Queen Muriele is stalked by treachery on every side, and their last surviving daughter, Anne, has fled the assassins bent on destroying her family.

Close on the heels of the runaway princess, young knight Neil MeqVren, the queen’s one trusted ally, is sworn to rescue Anne from her murderous pursuers. Anne herself undertakes a perilous journey toward the sanctuary of her distant paramour’s arms, but along the way lie the sinister agents and hidden snares of a sprawling conspiracy that few might hope to evade.

At the same time, spies in the service of Praifec Hespero, the powerful Churchman, embark upon a mission to destroy the Briar King in the heart of his domain. And the power-hungry Church, spurred on by the mystical events, has launched an inquisition whose repercussions threaten even the queen. As the noose of intrigue tightens across the land, personal fates and a kingdom’s destiny alike will be decided in a conflict between virtue and malevolence, might and magic.

Full Dark, No Stars – Stephen King (2010)

The Song Spinner – Pauline Le Bel (1994)

Step into the land of Pindrop where Hush Laws keep everyone quiet. Very quiet. The melancholy ruler, Frilo, has decreed that even birds are not allowed to sing. Meet young Aurora who hears beautiful music in her head. While she does her whispering lessons like other good children and wears her Hush Cloth, she dreams of a day when everyone will may joyful sound again. Into this silent land, comes the mysterious Zantalalia. Banished to the Water World because she refused to stop singing, she has secretly returned in time for the Sunwatch holiday with a precious gift for Aurora. Now it will take all the courage Aurora can muster to get past the dreaded Captain Nizzle of the Noise Police and convince Frilo to lift the shroud of silence.

The Dragonriders of Pern – Anne McCaffrey (1988)

Wildwood – Colin Meloy (2011)

Prue McKeel’s life is ordinary. That is, until her brother is abducted by a murder of crows and taken to the Impassable Wilderness, a dense tangled forest on the edge of Portland. No one’s ever gone in – or at least returned to tell of it.

So begins an adventure that will take Prue and her friend Curtis deep into the Impassable Wilderness. There they uncover a secret world in the midst of violent upheaval – a world full of warring creatures, peaceable mystics, and powerful figures with the darkest intention. And what begins as as rescue mission becomes something much greater as the two friends find themselves entwined in a struggle for the very freedom of this wilderness. A wilderness the locals call Wildwood.

Trinity Fields – Bradford Morrow (1995)

The Pact – Walter J. Roers (2000)

In the summer of 1948, young Mike Dougherty and Ricky Stedman become firm friends and begin a series of adventures in their working-class Minneapolis neighborhood. Their pleasurable pastimes are overshadowed, however, by harsh family realities that the boys are slow to reveal to each other.

Shatner Rules – William Shatner (2011)

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One thought on “Thought of the Week: What Should I Read?

  1. it’s great you have made a decision to start–I find just 10 min. before turning out the lights to sleep got me back in that reading habit, even when busy, that time-frame seems to work well. Oh, and not sure how old your child is but I’m finding now that my son is 8, we are reading middle-reader books together as a family, Many of these “kid” books are amazing and provide a lot for imagination, We are on Harry Potter book 5 now, and there are some other great ones like the Mysterious Benedict Society and the Secret Series…so if you read w/your child at some point, you can get some good reads in yourself!

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