Goodreads Challenges

On Goodreads.com I challenged myself to read 80 books for 2011. It seemed like an immense stretch, until I passed 65 (the first goal I’d set) and thought “What the hell?! I can do this.” I achieved that goal and for 2012 decided to step it up to 90. For those that do not read a lot, the idea that one would challenge themselves to 90 books probably seems insane, not to mention daunting. Especially since I am in the middle of writing my own books, and reading other people’s work is the greatest distraction for any writer. I have three more books to read in order to reach my goal for this year. Crazy? Not when you own a Kindle Fire that can hold thousands of books. Before that, I was buying every single book I read. I still love to buy books. On my last three vacations I came home with brand new books tucked into my suitcases. Barnes & Noble can see me coming a mile away!

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I recently finished Cold Days by Jim Butcher, his newest novel in the Dresden Files series. I love these books with a passion. I cannot write what Jim writes. Sure, I can list magical beings until you tire of hearing my voice, and my mind is chock full of facts that most people will never understand, but I cannot put together a body of work like he does. I read it and think “My mind cannot bend in those directions.” His work is on the most beautiful of epic scales, and it offends me that the TV show for these books was scrapped amid the writer’s strike in 2007.

Cold Days is movie worthy from start to finish. It is the book you read and say, “Man, I’d love to see this in the theater.” That’s my selfish wish, that one day these books will be optioned for movies, movies that are clearly already winners because the material for the screenplays is brilliant, snarky, hilarious, imaginative, slightly terrifying, and 100% enjoyable. If you’ve never read a Jim Butcher novel, you need to pick up the first four (Storm Front, Fool Moon, Grave Peril, & Summer Knight) and if you don’t come away hooked, pass them on to a friend. Honestly, I don’t foresee that, but if you do love them, make sure you tell your friends about it. I know I have.

Are there any books you’ve read this year that you’re stoked about? If so, drop me a line and tell me about them.

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