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Thread: March - How Many?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Lobotomized Martin's Avatar
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    March - How Many?

    Ten books completed in March. Overall a strong month for me with some great re-reads and new stories.

    The Green Mile by Stephen King:
    I am working my way through a re-read of all of Stephen King’s works by way of audible. The order as rather random as I pick them up when they are on sale. I have not read this one since it was released as a serial novel. This book remains one of my favorite novels!
    5 Stars

    The Demon Next Door by Bryan Burrough:
    A best-selling author learns that a young man who grew up in his small town and went to school a few years before him was a mass murderer. He also learns he attempted to kill another student at his high school and that crime was hidden and never talked about in the community. He researches how this secret was kept in this small town where everyone knew each other and the general goings on. He uncovers a coordinated effort by the local media, church and police to protect this man reputation. A shocking true story.
    4 Stars

    Agent to the Stars by John Scalzi:
    John Scalzi can tell ‘Quirky’ stories with the best of them. This is a fun ride about an alien race that has learned all about humans through the signals the receive. The signals they received are TV shows. When they decide they want to engage the humans they take the obvious approach. They hire the top agent in Hollywood. Not sure what I really expected from this one but I will saw it was exceeded.
    5 Stars

    Lisey’s Story by Stephen King:
    The Green Mile was so enjoyable I really wanted to get back into Mr. Kings universe. Lisey’s Story was an Audible sale a while back and sat for a while. I remember looking but not loving the story the first time I read it. While this is no Green Mile, I did enjoy it more than I expected to.
    4 Stars

    Full Dark, No Stars by Stephen King:
    Another King re-read. Three great stories and one pretty good one. Fair extension is the story that kept this from being another 5-star read for me.
    4 Stars

    The God Engines by John Scalzi:
    I have been working my way through John Scalzi’s full catalog. I knew this was a very different story from Scalzi. This story did not work for me and is easily my least favorite Scalzi story.
    2 Stars

    Mucho Mojo (Hap and Leonard #2) by Joe R. Lansdale:
    As I wind down my John Scalzi kick, I was looking for something to fill in that reading time. I started The Hap Leonard series last month and am very glad I did. Very fun reading!
    4 Stars

    Red by Jack Ketchum:
    Sadie Hartman recently posted a glowing review of this one and I was shocked there was a Ketchum story I had never heard of so off I went. This is Ketchum at his finest. A fantastic story about loss, grief and payback.
    4 Stars

    The Passenger by Jack Ketchum:
    This novella simply did not work for me. I liked it enough to give it 3 stars but to be honest that is a stretch
    3 Stars

    The Two-Bear Mambo (Hap and Leonard #3) by Joe R Lansdale:
    Continuing my fun run through Hap and Leonard’s world with book three. The first three were done in the TV show so next up will be story I know nothing about. Looking forward to it!
    4 Stars

  2. #2
    Senior Member 1st Rubber Room Confinement jeffingoff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Martin View Post
    Ten books completed in March. Overall a strong month for me with some great re-reads and new stories.

    The Green Mile by Stephen King:
    I am working my way through a re-read of all of Stephen King’s works by way of audible. The order as rather random as I pick them up when they are on sale. I have not read this one since it was released as a serial novel. This book remains one of my favorite novels!
    5 Stars

    The Demon Next Door by Bryan Burrough:
    A best-selling author learns that a young man who grew up in his small town and went to school a few years before him was a mass murderer. He also learns he attempted to kill another student at his high school and that crime was hidden and never talked about in the community. He researches how this secret was kept in this small town where everyone knew each other and the general goings on. He uncovers a coordinated effort by the local media, church and police to protect this man reputation. A shocking true story.
    4 Stars

    Agent to the Stars by John Scalzi:
    John Scalzi can tell ‘Quirky’ stories with the best of them. This is a fun ride about an alien race that has learned all about humans through the signals the receive. The signals they received are TV shows. When they decide they want to engage the humans they take the obvious approach. They hire the top agent in Hollywood. Not sure what I really expected from this one but I will saw it was exceeded.
    5 Stars

    Lisey’s Story by Stephen King:
    The Green Mile was so enjoyable I really wanted to get back into Mr. Kings universe. Lisey’s Story was an Audible sale a while back and sat for a while. I remember looking but not loving the story the first time I read it. While this is no Green Mile, I did enjoy it more than I expected to.
    4 Stars

    Full Dark, No Stars by Stephen King:
    Another King re-read. Three great stories and one pretty good one. Fair extension is the story that kept this from being another 5-star read for me.
    4 Stars

    The God Engines by John Scalzi:
    I have been working my way through John Scalzi’s full catalog. I knew this was a very different story from Scalzi. This story did not work for me and is easily my least favorite Scalzi story.
    2 Stars

    Mucho Mojo (Hap and Leonard #2) by Joe R. Lansdale:
    As I wind down my John Scalzi kick, I was looking for something to fill in that reading time. I started The Hap Leonard series last month and am very glad I did. Very fun reading!
    4 Stars

    Red by Jack Ketchum:
    Sadie Hartman recently posted a glowing review of this one and I was shocked there was a Ketchum story I had never heard of so off I went. This is Ketchum at his finest. A fantastic story about loss, grief and payback.
    4 Stars

    The Passenger by Jack Ketchum:
    This novella simply did not work for me. I liked it enough to give it 3 stars but to be honest that is a stretch
    3 Stars

    The Two-Bear Mambo (Hap and Leonard #3) by Joe R Lansdale:
    Continuing my fun run through Hap and Leonard’s world with book three. The first three were done in the TV show so next up will be story I know nothing about. Looking forward to it!
    4 Stars
    I plan on starting my Hap and Leonard journey now that I have the first three. After I read those, I'll watch the show on Netflix and probably go on a rant about how they could cancel such an awesome show. I just have to see it first before I can rant.

  3. #3
    Member Part-timer JasonUK's Avatar
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    Read my standard 4 books again.

    Nate Southard - Red Sky (7/10) Fast-paced crime/horror novel with strong characters and non-stop action. A nice downbeat ending as well.

    Motley Crue - The Dirt (6/10) For the most part, this is funny, shocking and outrageous but falls off badly toward the end becoming dull and depressing. Mirroring the band's career at the time the book was written, I suppose. What impressed me most about this book was that several people who the band criticised were given a chapter each to put their side of the story. The low point was when one of the band admitted to getting away with rape. Overall this is a good read and much better than the recent Netflix movie.

    Christopher Rice - Blood Echo (6/10) A sequel to the excellent Bone Music, this is an okay action story that fails to capitalise on the strong premise of the first book, as if the author wasn't quit sure what to do with it. However, it is a fast-paced read with enough hints of more to come to make me look forward to the next in the series.

    Joe R Lansdale - Captains Outrageous (7/10) A loosely plotted adventure for Hap & Leonard but the action and humour are reward enough.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Hearing Voices
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    Quote Originally Posted by Martin View Post
    T
    Agent to the Stars by John Scalzi:
    John Scalzi can tell ‘Quirky’ stories with the best of them. This is a fun ride about an alien race that has learned all about humans through the signals the receive. The signals they received are TV shows. When they decide they want to engage the humans they take the obvious approach. They hire the top agent in Hollywood. Not sure what I really expected from this one but I will saw it was exceeded.
    5 Stars
    I haven't read much Scalzi as his type of sci-fi (and sci-fi in general) just doesn't much appeal to me anymore, but this one -- this comedic, light sci-fi ala Fredric Brown -- continues to intrigue me. One of these days I'm going to read it, and your comments on it make me think that that's a wise plan. :-)

  5. #5
    Senior Member Lobotomized Martin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JasonUK View Post
    Read my standard 4 books again.

    Nate Southard - Red Sky (7/10) Fast-paced crime/horror novel with strong characters and non-stop action. A nice downbeat ending as well.

    Motley Crue - The Dirt (6/10) For the most part, this is funny, shocking and outrageous but falls off badly toward the end becoming dull and depressing. Mirroring the band's career at the time the book was written, I suppose. What impressed me most about this book was that several people who the band criticised were given a chapter each to put their side of the story. The low point was when one of the band admitted to getting away with rape. Overall this is a good read and much better than the recent Netflix movie.

    Christopher Rice - Blood Echo (6/10) A sequel to the excellent Bone Music, this is an okay action story that fails to capitalise on the strong premise of the first book, as if the author wasn't quit sure what to do with it. However, it is a fast-paced read with enough hints of more to come to make me look forward to the next in the series.

    Joe R Lansdale - Captains Outrageous (7/10) A loosely plotted adventure for Hap & Leonard but the action and humour are reward enough.
    Nate Southard is someone I have been intrigued by but have never read. May have to try him soon.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Lobotomized Martin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RonClinton View Post
    I haven't read much Scalzi as his type of sci-fi (and sci-fi in general) just doesn't much appeal to me anymore, but this one -- this comedic, light sci-fi ala Fredric Brown -- continues to intrigue me. One of these days I'm going to read it, and your comments on it make me think that that's a wise plan. :-)
    I have never been a fan of sci-fi, it simply does not appeal to me. I really enjoy Mr. Scalzi's writing though. I just started reading him about a year and a half back and I am now down to one book left to read. I have really enjoyed all but two of his books. I did not care for The God's Engines and Shorts. I will read The Android's Dream soon and then I will be left waiting for his next release. His stories have been a bit addicting. I am replacing that addiction with Hap and Leonard now!

  7. #7
    Senior Member 1st Electroshock Session
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    Quote Originally Posted by Martin View Post
    Nate Southard is someone I have been intrigued by but have never read. May have to try him soon.
    I've liked what I've read of Southard's work. I need to search out more as well.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Martin View Post
    Nate Southard is someone I have been intrigued by but have never read. May have to try him soon.
    Lights out is another good Nate Southard novel. Synopsis:

    Burnham State Maximum Security Penitentiary holds the worst criminals humanity has to offer. Murderers, rapists, and others who have preyed upon humanity populate the prison, creating a food chain of violence and fear. Something lives beneath Burnham, however, and after years of waiting, it has been set free.

    And it is hungry.

    Now, those who call Burnham home must band together if they hope to survive. After years of being called monsters, they will face something much worse, and they will know how it feels to be prey.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Lobotomized Martin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by One eyed cat View Post
    Lights out is another good Nate Southard novel. Synopsis:

    Burnham State Maximum Security Penitentiary holds the worst criminals humanity has to offer. Murderers, rapists, and others who have preyed upon humanity populate the prison, creating a food chain of violence and fear. Something lives beneath Burnham, however, and after years of waiting, it has been set free.

    And it is hungry.

    Now, those who call Burnham home must band together if they hope to survive. After years of being called monsters, they will face something much worse, and they will know how it feels to be prey.
    Thanks for the input. I am starting to look into grabbing something of his to read.

  10. #10
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    Only finished 4 in March.

    The Twelve by Justin Cronin. Enjoyed the second reading as much as the first. As good as, if not better, than The Passage. 5 / 5

    Nothing is Everything by Simon Strantzas. Kind of surprised by this one, as I've generally like Strantzas when I've encountered his work in the past. But not this collection. Read the first three stories. Blah. TBR pile is too big for Blah. Decided to move on. DNF

    Dead Pig Collector was a short, fun read by Warren Ellis. What happens when a hit man / disposal specialist arrives on the scene of the job to find that the intended target has killed his client? Kind of saw the ending of this one coming, but still enjoyed it. 4 / 5

    Holiday by M. Rickert is a collection of stories centered around various holidays. More weird than horror, Rickert writes stories that tend to be deeply nuanced; at times too nuanced for my tastes. Still, I generally enjoyed this collection of weird stories. My favorites were 'Journey into the Kingdom', about a man that falls in love with a troubled girl who may or may not be a ghost, and 'Traitor, about a young girl who lives with a woman (who may or may not be her mother) who works as an operative for a terrorist group. 3.5 / 5

    The Washingtonians - short story by Bentley Little, screenplay by Richard Chizmar & Johnathon Schaech - This collection contains the complete genesis for 'The Washingtonians' that was filmed for the Masters of Horror television series; original short story, script outline, original screenplay, and the final, working screenplay. All in all, it is a bit overkill, but it was interesting to see the differences in the original screenplay and the one that was finally filmed (personally I liked the original ending better than the one that was ultimately filmed for Masters of Horror), and the Bentley short story is a classic. 4 / 5

    B

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sock Monkey View Post
    I've liked what I've read of Southard's work. I need to search out more as well.
    I've read most of Southard's work and feel he's very underrated as a writer. I especially enjoyed the novels Red Sky and Pale Horses and his two short story collections, Broken Skin and Something Went Wrong.

    B

  12. #12
    Senior Member Lobotomized Martin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brlesh View Post
    Only finished 4 in March.

    The Twelve by Justin Cronin. Enjoyed the second reading as much as the first. As good as, if not better, than The Passage. 5 / 5

    Nothing is Everything by Simon Strantzas. Kind of surprised by this one, as I've generally like Strantzas when I've encountered his work in the past. But not this collection. Read the first three stories. Blah. TBR pile is too big for Blah. Decided to move on. DNF

    Dead Pig Collector was a short, fun read by Warren Ellis. What happens when a hit man / disposal specialist arrives on the scene of the job to find that the intended target has killed his client? Kind of saw the ending of this one coming, but still enjoyed it. 4 / 5

    Holiday by M. Rickert is a collection of stories centered around various holidays. More weird than horror, Rickert writes stories that tend to be deeply nuanced; at times too nuanced for my tastes. Still, I generally enjoyed this collection of weird stories. My favorites were 'Journey into the Kingdom', about a man that falls in love with a troubled girl who may or may not be a ghost, and 'Traitor, about a young girl who lives with a woman (who may or may not be her mother) who works as an operative for a terrorist group. 3.5 / 5

    The Washingtonians - short story by Bentley Little, screenplay by Richard Chizmar & Johnathon Schaech - This collection contains the complete genesis for 'The Washingtonians' that was filmed for the Masters of Horror television series; original short story, script outline, original screenplay, and the final, working screenplay. All in all, it is a bit overkill, but it was interesting to see the differences in the original screenplay and the one that was finally filmed (personally I liked the original ending better than the one that was ultimately filmed for Masters of Horror), and the Bentley short story is a classic. 4 / 5

    B
    I have The Washingtonians on my shelf but have not read it yet. Thanks for the review, it may prompt me to move it up on my list.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by brlesh View Post
    I've read most of Southard's work and feel he's very underrated as a writer. I especially enjoyed the novels Red Sky and Pale Horses and his two short story collections, Broken Skin and Something Went Wrong.

    B
    I still need to read Pale Horses and his short stories are great. Hitting the bags (think this ones in Broken Skin) still comes to mind years after reading it, might have to reread that one soon.

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