100 Things #40: Dean Koontz’s Ticktock.

Dean Koontz is known as a horror and suspense writer. My father recommended his work when he saw how quickly I took to Stephen King’s work.

This book…ran a little differently.

With our (most definitely not) fearless hero being an average mystery writer, things start to get really strange when he runs into a weird but beautiful woman. And his not to mention the…CREEPY voodoo doll that’s been following him around, bringing disaster in its wake.

…and it only gets WEIRDER.

And the weirder it gets, the funnier it gets. By the time we know what’s going on, even the disasters are a laugh riot, because by that time we giggle in gleeful anticipation at just how it’s going to get worse. If you think YOUR luck’s bad, this guy will make you feel better.

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100 Things #39: The Writings of Rumi.

Rumi is a name that you may have heard before. I can’t say much without basically rhapsodizing about him, so I’ll keep it simple. Rumi’s writings are important to Sufism—the religion with the whirling dervishes—and have a different sort of feel to them than books like the Bible and the Torah.

Rumi’s poems have a certain intimacy and immediacy about them, a man who has fallen so hopelessly in love with his god that his devotion borders on the obsessive. It’s a completely different sort of faith, driven not by the need to prove that his god exists, but the need to feel his god through every fiber of his being. Rumi’s writing is spiritual without being overtly religious, and just about anyone can pick up something within his words.

It really is a work of beauty, and if you’re in the least bit spiritually inclined, you should totally look into his work.

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100 Things #36: Irregular Creatures by Chuck Wendig

This is the second post where I gush about Chuck Wendig’s work—what can I say, I’m a fan. Irregular Creatures is a collection of his short stories, varying in tone from delightfully dark to friendly family fun—as someone first introduced to him via the blog, the latter was more jarring.

Without spoiling any of the contents, the man has an astounding creative mind. While I got used to him as an advice-tossing profanity-spouting guru, it was bumping into his narratives here that sold me on the man’s mad skills. This was one of the first books I got a sample on and was verily cheesed off when I hit the end of the sample. I honestly took a detour off my route to find someplace with wi-fi to buy the whole book.

At some point, I’m gonna have to review it on Goodreads, after I reread it again and it’s fresh in my head.

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100 Things #35: Sherlock(s).

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle is a staple of classic reading. However, I will admit that until a year and a half ago, I hadn’t read a single Sherlock Holmes story. And this at the time where the BBC reboot was getting big, and I had a friend prodding me to watch.

Luckily, I had two things: A brand-new Nook Simple Reader, and the URL of Project Gutenberg. Basically all the classics are available, and so I pounced on it, reading as much of the canon as I could (though admittedly out of sequence).

I went in without expectations, but the ‘classics’ were well known (by my folks, who colored my expectations) as stuffy old things.

So when the first thing that happened was the science of antemortem bruise formation, I cracked up laughing. The series as a whole has a strange, sardonic wit to it. I dove headfirst into the thrillers then, enjoying the thing without the preconceived expectations of before.

If someone’s trying to sell you on any of the reboots, I’d totally read the originals first. …then again, I’m a purist.

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100 Things #33: Nostradormouse

There were a few things in my Nook that were pre-loaded when I bought it—Nostradormouse, a story targeted ostensibly to children, was one of them (Or it might not have been. My memory is fuzzy). For some reason, I could not access the book on my first device, but when I grabbed my Nook Tablet, I read it.

And fast.

Nostradormouse begins with the birth of a mouse with prophetic abilities, who goes on a pilgrimage of sorts. As he travels, the animals are given names (not as in “You are a possum, and you are a beaver”). As he names his ‘people’ the animals go from being a collective without any differentiation to individuals.

The story has gentle underthreads of Norse mythology, something you rarely see outside of video games nowadays.

Got a Nook? I’ll lend it if you ask! See, me going much further than I have here will result in me gushing over it and spoiling the whole thing.

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