Never say never
I’ve finally kicked the crud that threatened my life and limb and sleep for over two weeks. It is seriously the longest cold I’ve ever had. It threatened to morph into a sinus infection, and teetered on the edge of bronchitis for a few days as it crawled down my throat, but I think my immune system is finally getting the hang of it. At least the weather had the decency to suck while I suffered, and I didn’t have to watch glorious sunshine and blue whit-ish skies overhead. (Seriously, I don’t recall the last time the sky had the deep blue of my childhood. It’s permanently whitish now – maybe there’s something to all the chemtrails theories out there?)
Moving on. While being sick I took good care of myself, mainly by not exerting myself in any fashion. It’s not lazy when you have an excuse. I didn’t exercise, I didn’t cook much, I certainly did not strain myself with an overabundance of yardwork and even housework for that matter. What I did do a fair bit of, between sleeping in a medicated haze and dragging my poor self to work is read. Reading is easy, fun and can put you to sleep or wake you up, depending on the genre.
Not wanting to tax myself with serious works of non-fiction and fiction requiring a dictionary, I stuck mainly to the fantasy genre, seeing as it’s light, readable and candy for the brain in general. Which leads me to ask, isn’t it funny when life proves you wrong by leading you to enjoy stuff you’ve professed to hate? Happens to me all the time, and my carefully thought out stances against say, Twitter and fantasy literature have done a predictable 180 in the last few months. I am very reluctant to ever say NEVER now, seeing as it’s a gauntlet throwing challenge to the universe to prove me wrong.
I can’t remember when it started, but I know the book that made me fall – Moon Called by Patricia Briggs. I have a vague idea of how it must have happened – a person who reads an average of four books per week must spend a certain amount of time researching what to read next, so I do a fair bit of surfing, reading Amazon reviews and blogs and hope to find the rare gem of a reviewer whose opinions match my own. If I’m lucky, a review of a book I already love will contain a recommendation of a similarly loved book which will likely make its way into my Amazon basket within a few weeks.
I started Moon Called not having a clue what to expect, and found myself reasonably entertained by the story, and NOT PISSED OFF at the writing. I know this sounds like faint praise, but very often the ‘speaking voice’ of the author will turn me off the story faster than cheap plot lines and cheesy dialogue. It was not a great book, something like a 3.5/5 in my mind, but seeing as I read like it’s going out of style, I went ahead and ordered the next two books. Each one was just as good if not a bit better than the first, and suddenly I found myself waiting for the latest book to come out, and browsing similar genres, and then it just spiraled out of control, and now I have something like FORTY fantasy/urban fantasy/whatever genre books added to my collection.
I’ve checked out the classics a la Laurell K. Hamilton (not my fave), and new arrivals like (somebody suggest someone, I’m drawing a blank), and there’s still a whole universe out there to explore. One series that quickly rose to the top of the LIKE pile is Ilona Andrews’ Magic Bites series. Yep, the covers are one small step above romance novels’ art work, and they’re kind of small, and soft cover only, but they are wonderful stories with great characters, fantastic dialogue, and solid if not great plot lines. And they are addictive in that way that all the famed series are. (And yes, I blew through Charlaine Harris’ Sookie Stackhouse series also.)
If um, any of my readers are into the genres, please feel free to chime in with your favorite series. Actually any series of books – because it’s super satisfying to have a long story to read, and revisit favorite characters. And I’ll just vigorously start saying NEVER to a healthy diet, and exercise, and a full eight hours of sleep, and traveling around the world, and…