Saturday, July 7, 2007

I Can Has Books?

Joy and happiness! I won an Amazon Gift Certificate in Bam's July Contest. While I am so very happy that people liked my entry, I am beside myself ecstatic to be able to buy books again! Not that I don't heart the library, but I'm the kind of girl who likes her gratification instant. That hold list just wasn't cutting it.

A while back, I made a list of books I'd love to buy when I got money. There were five on the list. I'd ordered exactly two when I noticed that Kage Baker's final Company novel, Sons of Heaven, will be out on July 10th, 2007. My mom and I are both hooked on this series, and seeing as she gave birth to me and all, I figured it might be a nice thing to get a book I could maybe lend her...after I've read it a couple of times.

Anyhoo, Sons of Heaven kinda screwed with my list, so I had to switch things up.

  1. Sons of Heaven by Kage Baker.
    Baker is an incredible writer with a sly, dry wit; an admirable appreciation for pirates; and a delightful appreciation for California history (Even though it's set in the 19th century, Mendoza in Hollywood is on my list of all-time favorite Books Set In Los Angeles). Her Company novels are a vast, conspiracy-riddled tapestry of interconnecting novels and short stories that span, oh, all of human history, and then some. Sons of Heaven is supposed to wrap up this tale of time-travel, immortal cyborgs, corporate iniquity and star-crossed love. Goody. I've been waiting years to see how it all turns out.

  2. God is Not Great by Christopher Hitchens
    My favorite droll, drunken Brit. I don't always agree with the man, but I love the way he shows those Fox News bobbleheads up for the blathering echo-chamber of idiots they are. For that alone, he deserves my money, but the book looks pretty interesting, too.

  3. The Rest Falls Away by Colleen Gleeson
    Vampire slayer tale that rates (favorable) comparisons to Buffy? History-ish setting? Many good reviews? Okay, I'll bite.

  4. The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett
    Hard-boiled/Noir classic. I love me some Hammett. While writing on my WIP, Bright, I was thinking about Hammett's description of Sam Spade ("He looked rather pleasantly like a blond Satan"*) when I realized that even though I'd read The Maltese Falcon several times, I didn't own the book.

    The Maltese Falcon is my third favorite Hammett novel. My adoration of Hammett characters goes: Continental Op (there's just something about a morally flexible, nameless hero that gets me every time); Nick Charles (The Thin Man. Actually, I'm more partial to William Powell than the book version, but when I read it, I imagine William Powell); Sam Spade (for some reason, I never imagine Bogart when I read the Maltese Falcon. Funny since I love the movie, and I think the out-the-window fade to black is one of the loveliest around, but there you go.)

    I just love the way Hammett writes. Spare, and what a way with descriptions and dialog! Red Harvest is my favorite, and it's my go-to book when I think I'm getting too wordy. Still, third place ain't nothing to sneeze at. And, The Maltese Falcon fit my remaining budget, with free shipping to boot.

*FYI, the thing I love about the description is that Hammett describes his character in a way that makes Spade seem attractive, but not handsome. I was writing a description of a character with an attractive/ugly vibe.