Seventh Five Books Finished in 2010


035) Utah: Sex and Travel Guide by Calvin Grondahl, finished August 10

I'm disappointed by this little collection of panel cartoons. Most of the stuff could be transplanted to any other locale and much of the rest to most any other locale. Plus, so many divorce jokes! Why so many divorce jokes? And not particularly funny divorce jokes, but bitter angry divorce jokes.

Which is not to say that this book doens't have its laughs. And Lady Steed, who was just flipping through it, likes it much more than I do. So there's that.

not long


034) E Pluribus Unicorn by Theodore Sturgeon, finished August 9

I read the introduction to this book, set it aside for a few months then took it with me to Comic-Con where I read all but the final tale --- mostly while homeless.

The book is great. It offers one of the world's few good unicorn stories (they do exist!), some gay aliens (they do exist!) and a dizzying variety of voices and tones.

I finally have, after a year+'s hiatus, returned to read the last story and the timing is tremendous. It provided the sword to cut through the Gordian Knot for a project I'm currently working on.

Thank you, Mr Sturgeon!

If you're looking for genre short stories which prove genre's worth, this is a good place to start.

about sixteen months


033) The Complete Peanuts, 1971 to 1972 by Charles M. Schulz, finished August 6

Holy moly! What a cliffhanger!

Sorry, but this volume ended in the middle of the story, and the next volume's sitting there waiting for me on that shelf right over there, so I'm going to go grab it if you don't mind.


about five months


032) I Am Not a Serial Killer by Dan Wells, finished August 6

The second book finished in Experiment Kindle (and another pdf, this one very difficult to read) is also the most riveting book I've ever read.

(It's also a complete ripoff of me. Take one part "Happy St. Patrick's Day" and two parts my aborted reluctant teenage sociopath and you've got IANASK.)

I haven't had this much fun in a book for a while, and I can't remember the last time I turned pages so quickly. Everytime Lynsey took the Kindle to read Persuasion I wanted to, well, kill her. (I am not a serial killer.) (One will do me fine.) (He said hahahumurously.)

One of the most deeply flawed heros of all time, John Wayne Cleaver, is a kid that nature would have be a serial killer. He's trying to avoid that fate, but when a killer shows up in his hometown, the only way it can be stopped is if he kills him himself. And to do that, he must release his inner monster.

Great book. Don't miss it.

two or three weeks


031) Rogue Clone by Steven L. Kent, finished July 26

(You can tell I have not yet fully joined the future because I feel obliged to mention that I read this on a borrowed Kindle.)

The Kindle I'm borrowing has a bunch of these Clone books. I picked one at random to be my first Kindle experience. Rogue Clone is not the first in the series and I do not know how typical it is, but, honestly, it wasn't any good. It had good moments, but as a book it does not hold together. It was several stories smashed randomly together, ending more, it seems, for the convenience of the author rather than for the pleasure of the reader. Because let's be honest. While I could come up with convoluted artistic justification for this book's quirks, ultimately they are errors and failures because the book claims no purpose beyond entertaining a reader. So I didn't ask many things this book. But cohesion and good sense were two of those few.


Previously in 2010 . . . . :

030) Servant of a Dark God by John Brown, finished July 21
029) Drink Me, or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Blog by James Goldberg, finished June 9
028) Out of the Mount (tentative title) edited by Davey Morrison, finished June 8
027) Madman Boogaloo! by Mike Allred, Mike Baron, Bernie Mireault, Steve Rude; finished June 2
026) The Education of Robert Nifkin by Daniel Pinkwater, finished May 22
025) True Grit by Charles Portis, finished May 21
024) Old Man's War by John Scalzi, finished May 15
023) Pandora's Nightmare: Horror Unleashed, finished May 13
022) Anthem by Ayn Rand, finished May 11
021) Look! It's Jesus!: Amazing Holy Visions in Everyday Life by Harry Choron and Sandra Choron, finished May 9
020) Travels in the Scriptorium: A Novel by Paul Auster, finished May 5
019) Suburban Folklore by Steven Walters, finished May 4
018) The Lonely Polygamist by Brady Udall, finished April 30
017) Gracie: A Love Story by George Burns by George Burns, finished April 20
016) The Autobiography of Malcolm X as told to Alex Haley, finished April 15
015) Dispensation: Latter-Day Fiction edited by Angela Hallstrom, finished March 24
014) The Best American Comics 2009 edited by Charles Burns, finished March 22
013) Icon: A Hero's Welcome by Dwayne McDuffie and MD Bright, finished March 17
012) There's Treasure Everywhere by Bill Watterson, finished March 15
011) Static Shock: Rebirth of the Cool. Finished right at midnight between March 13 and 14
010) Teen Titans: Year One by Amy Wolfram et al, finished March 7
009) The Complete Calvin and Hobbes, Book One by Bill Watterson, finished March 6
008) Apparition & Late Fictions: A Novella and Stories by Thomas Lynch, finished March 5
007) Stone Rabbit #1: BC Mambo by Erik Craddock, finished March 2
006) The Selected Works of T. S. Spivet by Reif Larsen, finished February 23
005) Missile Mouse 2 by Jake Parker (MS POLICY), finished February 5
004) Heroes of the Fallen by David J. West, finished February 4
003) Still Life in Milford by Thomas Lynch, finished January 19
002) Rapunzel's Revenge by Hales Shannon Dean and Nathan, finished January 16
001) Mormoniana by Mormon Artists Group, finished January 13


  1. Eric, if you liked IANASK, you should really listen to Writing Excuses. It's really interesting to listen to Dan analyze and critique other books and films (plus Brandon and Howard are great, too).

  2. .

    I want to start listening to Writing Excuses, I just haven't figured out how to make podcasts part of my lifestyle.

  3. I listen to them at work, but I'm just at a computer all day. Can you listen to them during your commute?

  4. .

    Only if I give up my reading time. And buy an mp3 player.

  5. Oh, do you take public transit to work?

  6. I should have warned you that you probably wouldn't like the Clone books on my Kindle. The John Scalzi books are ever so much better - and would have made for a more enjoyable First Kindle Experience....

  7. .

    It's okay. The experience was still good.

    I'm sorry you left already --- we meant to give it back to you before you took off.

  8. This is the fourth recommendation I've seen for IANASK. I suppose I should take it as a sign...

  9. Confuzzled - Am I already counted as one of your IANASK recommendations? If not, make it five.