DISCLAIMER: Let me preface these brief reviews with the fact that this is not an all encompassing list of books. I don’t read a wide variety of genres, so this isn’t a wide-variety list. Take it as it is: simply a list of books, written for adults, that I have enjoyed over the years. Hopefully you’ll enjoy them too.
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
The world has gone down the tube and society as a whole spends its time in a virtual-reality video game. The creator of the game has hidden a series of keys and Easter-eggs that, when found, will lead to a vast fortune. Players have been searching for the first key for years, and no one has found it, until now. By far the best book I’ve read in a long, long time. I read it in a day because I just couldn’t put it down. It is chock full of 80’s and early 90’s TV, music, game, and movie references that people from that era will get a kick out of. However, anyone who loves video games and/or has a slightly nerdy side will absolutely love this book. Great story, great characters, and fantastic world building; a must-read.
A Lifetime of Secrets: A PostSecret Book by Frank Warren
PostSecret is a website (that can be found here) where people’s anonymous secrets get posted, after they have been mailed to the creator of the site. Due to its popularity (and I’m assuming volume of submissions) the author has published a few books that contain those secrets. The secrets range from the hilarious to the life-changing; from the heart-breaking to the beautiful. As I read this particular volume I experienced the full gamut of emotions, and couldn’t help but imagine what those people are going through, and the things they are keeping from everyone. It really makes you appreciate and rethink your own life and get a better understanding of the hidden things people experience that no one else knows about. A great, quick roller coaster of a read.
The Rook (The Checquy Files #1) by Daniel O’Malley
I am a sucker for paranormal-military/secret government organizations that exist to keep evil creatures in check. The Rook is just such a book and it is brilliant. The story follows Myfanwy (pronounced “Miffany”) Thomas and others who are a part of a secret group called the Checquy. They are tasked with keeping Britain safe from the supernatural. What I especially love about this book is that each higher-up person within the Checquy has a unique ability (read: superpower) that helps them do their job. For example, there is a character that has four bodies. What I also ended up enjoying (that may throw people at first) is that the world-building is done through a journal Myfanwy kept for herself before she lost her memory. Every other chapter or so is an entry from said journal that gives a little back story to characters/events/etc. to help explain what’s going on for the reader. The book is really well done and I cannot wait for the second one to come out.
Ant Farm and Other Desperate Situations by Simon Rich
Ant Farm is simply a collection of super-short stories (jokes? Essays? Anecdotes? I don’t know what to call them) that have no connection to each other and can stand completely alone. What makes this book great is that each story is absolutely hilarious. I’ve actually read this book five times because it’s so short and so entertaining. I actually can’t give examples of the stories because, since they are so short, I would give the punch-line away, and I don’t want to ruin anything. Just take my word for it and read it. You’ll love it and find your own favorite stories to share. Sadly we don’t own this book so you’ll have to get it through MeLCat (click the title above) or request that we purchase it (which you can do here). You’ll thank me when you do.
Robopocalypse by Daniel H. Wilson
The book actually starts after the robotic apocalypse and a massive war when a soldier finds the robots’ ultimate black box (like on a plane). The book then takes us back to the beginning of how the uprising started and to key points throughout the world with key players through a series of security footage from the black box. It was a unique way to tell the story and I think it worked beautifully. You start off reading about these people who have no connection, and then as the story progresses you find out how they fit within the overarching puzzle. Obviously the book is a way for us to think about our reliance on technology, but it never once felt preachy (or if that was even the point of the book). This is a great sci-fi action/thriller that fans of the genre will definitely enjoy.
The Nathaniel Cade Series by Christopher Farnsworth
Nathaniel Cade is a vampire that is employed by the U.S Government and is tasked to protect the President and the country from the supernatural. He is paired with a human (Zach) who is able to organize and take care of things during the day, while Nathaniel sleeps. There are currently three books in print: Blood Oath, The President’s Vampire, and Red, White, and Blood. All three books are fantastic, although I felt that the first was the weakest of the three (4/5 stars as opposed to 5/5). Each book focuses on a different paranormal threat, but includes a few key characters that appear from book to book. They are fast-paced and action-packed mixed with some very wry, dark humor, and exactly what you want from a paranormal-military thriller. What I like best about the books is how Nathaniel is portrayed. He is treated and acts like how you imagine a powerful vampire would be. He doesn’t attempt to blend in as a human, but instead gives off this feeling that causes a deep, primal fear in everyone around him. No one knows why, but they know they should keep away from Nathaniel. In a word: awesome. Definitely a recommended series that hopefully has many more on the way; Nathaniel is a character to root for.