Climb Up On Santa’s Lap

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Like pretty much every writer I’ve ever met, I grew up wishing for books for every present-giving holiday.  Every birthday featured at least one book I desired (and often more.)  A book was always nestled among the candy eggs in my Easter basket. Christmas was the same – Santa granted my book wishes every year. As a child I received the Marguerite Henry horse books, the complete Chronicles of Narnia, Nancy Drew and the Happy Hollisters. I can’t remember a Christmas that didn’t end with me lying on the floor under the tree, reading whatever story Santa had brought me, until I was forced to put the book down and eat lunch with my family. Reading and Christmas go hand in hand for me. It’s just not Christmas without a book under the tree.

I know not all of our faithful MW readers are not celebrating Christmas for reasons of their own, but I’d be willing to bet that every one of you has a book you’re hoping to get your hands on soon. So I thought today we could talk about the books that are on all our wish lists. I’ll go first. *grin*

First up is Killing Pretty by Richard Kadrey. It’s the latest in the Sandman Slim series, which is dark and gritty and absolutely great. James Stark, better known by the denizens of Hell and Los Angeles as Sandman Slim, spent 11 years killing monsters in Lucifer’s arena for the entertainment of fallen angels, until he clawed his way back to Earth to avenge his girlfriend’s murder and hunt down Mason Faim, the black magician responsible for sending him to perdition. In this latest book, Death’s been murdered, and he needs Stark’s help to figure out who did it and why. Kadrey pulls no punches, and if you’re uncomfortable with violence and harsh language, this might not be the book for you. But if you like walking in the literary shadows, you can’t go wrong with this series. Start at the beginning – it’ll all make better sense that way.

Next up, we have Ari Marmell’s Hallow Point, the second of the Mick Oberon series. Oberon is a private dick in 1932 Chicago, but under the trench coat and battered fedora, he’s also a cast-out from the Seelie Court.  In this latest book, The Spear of Lugh has found its way to Chicago. And everyone wants it, for it is said that he who carries the spear into battle cannot be defeated. Among those who seek it are an agent of the infamous Wild Hunt; a mobster who knows far more about these things than he should; and of course both the Seelie and Unseelie Courts – the last people Mick Oberon would want getting hold of the spear. Marmell has successfully melded the noir feel of old detective stories with a modern urban fantasy voice, and what you get is a thrilling adventure.

Of course I’ve saved the best for last. My very favorite writer, Tim Powers, doesn’t release books very often, so when he does, it’s cause for celebration.  Medusa’s Web is his newest book, coming out mid-January, and I’m beside myself with excitement! In the wake of their Aunt Amity’s suicide, Scott and Madeline Madden are summoned to Caveat, the eerie, decaying mansion in the Hollywood hills in which they were raised. But their decadent and reclusive cousins, the malicious wheelchair-bound Claimayne and his sister, Ariel, do not welcome Scott and Madeline’s return to the childhood home they once shared. While Scott desperately wants to go back to their shabby South-of-Sunset lives, he cannot pry his sister away from this haunted “House of Usher in the Hollywood Hills” that is a conduit for the supernatural.  Will he unravel the mystery of the Madden family’s past and finally free them. . . or be pulled deeper into their deadly web? Powers is a master of the secret history story, delving under the surface of actual historical events to find the magic that might have been running the show without anyone else knowing. He’s never disappointed me yet, and I absolutely can’t wait for this one.

I hope that each and every one of you has the holiday you dream of, filled with happiness and love. If you don’t celebrate any of the many holidays that fall during this season, I wish you joy in the new year to come. And for whatever reason you might be hoping for a new book, take a minute to share the title with the rest of us. Books are the best, and the more we know about, the happier we’ll all be.

 

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4 comments to Climb Up On Santa’s Lap

  • Ken

    Right back at you, Misty.

    Personally, I’m counting the days until Grave Visions comes out. I’ve been an Alex Craft (and, by extension, Kalayna Price) fan for a while now.

  • Razziecat

    Already had my Christmas present! Carol Berg’s “Ash and Silver” was released on Dec. 1st, the conclusion to the “Dust and Light” duology. Having a new book by Ms. Berg literally makes me feel like it’s Christmas, with all the wonder and excitement that holiday brought when I was a child. And the book is every bit as great as I expected 😀

    I have more books on my Wish List, that haven’t come out yet; it’s how I follow the calendar…Guy Gavriel Kay’s “Children of Earth and Sky” is due out next May 10–my birthday! And Patricia McKillip’s “Dreams of Distant Shores” is due on June 14–my mother’s birthday. I’m seeing a pattern here 😀 ..Also Rachel Caine’s “Paper and Fire: The Great Library”, the sequel to “Ink and Bone”, is coming next July. I love having books to look forward to!

  • I just put “Ink and Bone” on hold at the library!

  • Razziecat

    Misty, you’ll love it! 😀