Wednesday, March 26, 2008

My Favorite Authors/Series

Today around the watercooler, we are discussing our favorite book.

Yeah right.

We were actually discussing this at work while we celebrated my birthday. I'm not sure I could name a favorite book of all time. There are so many authors I love.

Now, if it came down to it, I would have to name The Gatehouse Mystery as my favorite book. Why? Because it is my favorite book in the Trixie Belden mystery series. And as anybody who knows me knows, I love that series. I particularly like this book because, while the third in the series, sets so much in motion for the rest of the series. The characters are absolutely real and believable. And I feel that if I close my eyes, I am part of the fun. Believe me, I wanted to be one of Trixie's friends growing up.

But just answering that leaves out so many great authors and series.

I have loved just about everything I have ever read by Sigmund Brouwer, but my favorite of his is Creature of the Mists. There are so many reversals, you don't truly know what is going on until the final page. Yet every one of them makes perfect sense, as does the ending.

While I have loved Brock and Bodie Thoene for years, I will admit I'm not enjoying their newer books nearly as much as I do their classic stuff like The Zion Chronicles and The Saga of the Sierras. (And someday I intend to read The Zion Covenant series. Really!)

A couple years back I discovered Mindy Starns Clark. After devouring all of her books, I await each new release eagerly.

Jerrilyn Farmer's series about a caterer in Hollywood is lots of fun with great mysteries attached. My favorite remains the second, Immaculate Reception. But that might change if the 8th book in the series ever comes out.

I love anything have to do with water, so you can imagine who Glynn Marsh Alam's series appeals to me. Her heroine is a diver for a sheriff's department in Florida. The writing is so vivid it takes you there. While I've loved all of them, I still think the first, Dive Deep and Deadly, is my favorite.

I buy everything Rhys Bowen writes. And considering she's working on her third series now, that says something. I don't think she's topped Evan Can Wait yet, but Oh Danny Boy certainly gives it a run for its money.

Donna Andrews is another person who wrote two different series. The one starring an artifical intelligence personality is sadly out of print, but it is well worth tracking down. You have to start that series with You've Got Murder. But if you want to laugh, check out her other mystery series. The Meg Langslow series is absolutely histerical. The funniest is We'll Always Have Parrots, but my favorite is Owls Well that Ends Well.

And I can't leave out Joanne Fluke. I love her Hannah Swensen mysteries. Yes, they are light, but the characters are so wonderful. I just love spending time with them. And the recipes in the books are delicious.

Then there's Dorothy Gilman's Mrs. Pollifax series. Mrs. Pollifax is a widow, grandmother, garden club member, and part time CIA agent. The books are a bit far fetched at times, but they are such great fun I don't care. Plus you get a glimpse of the historical times of various locations in the world. See, the books were written from the 60's to the early part of this decade (there are only 14 books, however), and each takes place in the time where it was written. So Mrs. Pollifax goes from dealing with communists to dealing with Saddam. As an aside, her boss at the CIA is named Carstairs, which I stole for my internet screen name.

But I can't leave out Sandy Denger. I still consider her my favorite author. Which means I really need to go back and reread some of her stuff. She can create wonderful mysteries or gripping historical drama with each. Her writing style is almost poetic. And she weaves Christian themes into her writing so well it catches you by surprise.

So that gives you a little feel of my favorite authors.

Please join us around the watercooler. If you post this week, you'll be entered in a drawing for an iPod shuffle. And if you tell them I sent you, I'll get some added entries as well.

But right now, I'm out of here so I can go to a book signing and meet up with some friends.

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