So my quest to save money continues this week with Bad Juju and Other Tales of Madness and Mayhem, a collection of short stories by Jonathan Woods. It’s sort of like what you might get if Joe R. Lansdale, Elmore Leonard, and Carl Hiaasen spent the night together drinking and trying to top each other with crazy stories about life in an unnamed Caribbean republic. For some reason, the setting keeps making me think of a much, much seedier version of Catalina Island, probably because that’s the only island I visit on any sort of regular basis.
As Ariel’s hands grabbed my throat, I kneed him in the jewels as hard as I could. The next instant he was writhing on the floor like a dying insect.
Oh, ouch. I’ve got nothing to add to that one!
And, of course, here is this week’s excerpt from The War of the Ravels, my current work in progress:
The sun lay very near the horizon now, thick and red, coloring the sky with swirls of angry color. The bottom of the chasm became obscured by a thick layer of luminous fog that oozed up from the sea, as if someone had dumped a massive quantity of dry ice into the water and then lit it from below with flood lamps.
Hmm, that can’t be good …
This week I’m reading Pines, by Blake Crouch. This is another Prime freebie for the Kindle, thus continuing my effort to avoid spending money on books for a while — an effort which has probably just been extended by another few months due to my iPod’s unfortunate high-speed encounter with a tile floor. Deceleration trauma is rough on small spinning drives! Anyway, “Pines” is about a Secret Service agents who awakens in a small Idaho town following a car crash, and has a rather rough time leaving. I’m almost finished with it and, while I figured out the Big Twist well before the Big Reveal, the rules say no spoilers, so I had to choose my two sentences carefully. Here goes!
“It’s done,” Pilcher said, “and you’re my new sheriff. Welcome aboard.”
Believe me, this falls into the category of “An Offer You Can’t Refuse”.
And now, of course, here is this week’s teaser from The War of the Ravels:
The innkeeper tugged his blade free again, and accidentally dropped it this time. It failed to penetrate the ground, ending up lying on its side like some sort of unintentional metaphor.
So right now I’m reading Feed, a — wait for it! — not-quite-post-apocalyptic zombie book set in a future America in which people never leave the safety of their homes, preferring to communicate and interact via the Internet, where one is less likely to get attacked by the undead. (Getting attacked by trolls is, of course, still a risk.) The main characters are a trio of bloggers who follow a presidential candidate on the campaign trail, reporting on the stops and events and trying not to get eaten.
My father has always had just one piece of advice about zombies and ammunition, one he’s drilled into my head enough times that it’s managed to stick: When you have one bullet left and there’s no visible way out of the shit you’re standing in, save it for yourself.
Dads are always ready with the good advice! (A certain character from “Deep Rising” may wish he had learned this particular lesson.) Let’s not forget a couple of other important ones, like “Cardio” and “Double-Tap”.
And of course, here’s a little teaser from the upcoming conclusion of Shards:
One did not leave the husks of swatted flies lying about one’s kitchen, especially when expecting visitors. Untelleh would come to the castle once she had been restored from her exile, and it would hardly do to receive her atop a pile of slaughtered Rittandics, like some sort of barbarian despot.