Thursday, January 3, 2008

The Greatness of Green

I am still sick, spending most of my time either in bed or on the couch, hiding from the world. Considering I am very crabby and cranky when I am sick, I’m sure the world is very grateful that I have temporarily vanished.

However, my darling agent called me yesterday with some great and unexpected news, which helped to alleviate some of my crankiness. Also helping to battle my poor mood and health was that I recently managed to sneak in a good book.

Between my day job and work on Book 2, finding time to read is never easy. Yet, I recently discovered that I had not read the last book released in Simon R. Green’s Nightside series “Hell To Pay.” I fell in love with this series with his second book, “Agents of Light and Darkness” – it was absolutely amazing! The writing was stunning and he also tackled some of my favorite themes and topics. It was just brilliant. Out of the series, I think “Agents” is still my favorite, but I gobbled the rest up as quickly as I could get my hands on them.

Reasons to read the Nightside series:

1. Green’s imagination is astounding. Absolutely mind-blowing the stuff he can come up with. You keep turning the page just to see what his wonderfully twisted mind will come up with next.

2. The characters are great. No matter how bizarre, strange, unreal – deep down, they are all very human and flawed, which in a scary way, keeps the story very relatable for the reader.

3. And finally, and my favorite reason, the writing is wonderful. I will admit that I think the first book is probably the weakest of the set, but many first books in a series are as the writer is struggling to not only find his/her voice but also the direction of the characters and the series. Even so, I didn’t hesitate to pick up the second book in the series, which was amazing! The writing is crisp, concise, and to the point. He can weave these lurid, rich descriptions in just a few words to ensnare all five senses. He lays out this bizarre world in just a matter-of-fact tone. And then, he gives these fantastic one-liners that not only put the perfect image in your head, but it also stimulates your intellect so that you pause to soak in all the nuances of his comment.

If you’re looking for something different from the regular vampire, werewolf, witch, urban fantasy fare, check out Simon R. Green’s Nightside series. Book 1 is “Something from the Nightside.” Meanwhile, book 8 – “The Unnatural Inquirer” – was just released this week. Apparently, I need to place another order on Amazon.


daydream said...

This definitely sounds pretty interesting. I am really looking forward to reading something new and interesting. I myself need some new ideas on how to improve my own writing and reading the classics of all genres is not helping me much in fantasy.

Jocelynn said...

I think the classics provide an excellent foundation; teaching technique, plot development, and various ways of character development. However, reading new writers and books keeps a writer aware of new developments and what edges are being exploited in writing. I'll try to do a post soon of some of my favorite writers/influences.

daydream said...

I ma not really saying reading them is bad. I just get carried away in a different feeling and when I have to sit down and write in fantasy or horror I am several keys off, but it's not something very serious. I need practice to keep my focus on. Your idea of a post is a really good one.