I love reading. I'd like to share with you some writers and books that are my favorites. Hopefully you can find a book to give as a gift either to a loved one or to yourself.
I make time to read daily and at the very least right before sleep to help my brain unwind from the day.
My favorite genre is Fantasy Fiction. There have been many authors over the years that have grabbed my attention and kept me coming back for more. I am a huge fan for book series because I want to know more about my favorite characters and will follow them on many adventures.
I have books all over my house and I love looking at the covers and reliving the adventures within. Here's a list of what I love to read and what you'd find on my e-reader. I hope I can help you find a new favorite. I've included links to the authors websites so you can easily check out their works.
Vampires, Faeries, and Werewolves; Oh My!
The first series to really sweep me off my feet was the Vampire Chronicles by Ms. Anne Rice. ‘Interview with the Vampire’ was originally published back in 1972 and Ms. Rice’s writing hooked me early and had me turning pages late into the night when I was in high school, a little over 20 years after the first book was written. I invested into her characters as many others had. If you haven’t read her books yet, you should definitely check them out. They are really the basis for the vampire novel movement in my humble opinion.
Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter Novels by Laurell K. Hamilton was a natural progression. I needed some way to battle against the vampires that I had a 'love/scared out of my pants' relationship with. Ms. Hamilton captured me with her tough chick Anita and how she expertly handled the vampires around her. I’m a sucker for a tough heroine. Ms. Hamilton’s Merry Gentry series weaves faeries into the world and plays with magic and imagination.
Of course you can’t forget Sookie Stackhouse when you’re speaking of vampires. Charlaine Harris makes her vampires pop off the page and you root for them as well as the simple and mostly normal Sookie.
Yasmine Galenorn does an amazing job of mashing a couple of my favorite genres together in her series Otherworld Series.
I love Mercy Thompson. She’s a car mechanic and knows how to take care of herself. She’s also a small little coyote thrown into a world of bigger than life werewolves. Her adventures have kept me up late on a lot of nights. Check out Patricia Briggs for more on Mercy.
Demons, Ghosts, and Things That Go Bump in the Night
If you’re into the paranormal and kick ass chicks check out the Jill Kismet series by Lilith Saintcrow. Jill is a hunter and she handles things most people are too afraid to even acknowledge.
You can’t leave Harry Dresden off of my favorites list. Jim Butcher created the Dresden Files and Harry is a character who you root for time and again when the shit hits the fan. Oh, did I mention that he drives a bug? A guy after my own heart.
A new find is from A. W. Exley and it’s the Artifact Hunters. This series has a steampunk flare and Lady Cara Devon scoffs at high society while solving crimes and obtaining magical artifacts. There's also a handsome Count that wins her over with his roguish ways.
Sarra Cannon’s Shadow Demons is an interesting spin on demons and cheerleading. I was a little skeptical about the cheerleading, but I after delving into her world I think she may actually have it totally accurate.
Big Adventures in Far Off Times or Worlds
Robin Hobb has an amazing ability to create far off places that you can really sink into and immerse yourself. The Rain Wild Chronicles, and the Live Ship series are rich with dragons. She also has several other series that are fun to read and get lost in.
Diana Gabaldon pulls us right into the 1700’s and wishing we could find some faerie stones to transport us back to a hunky Scottish man who will love us with his entire being. These novels are not only totally engrossing, but they are hefty books and great for a long vacation, or a cold winter with time on your hands.
Jacqueline Carey created a very unique world in her Kushiel series. The main character, Phedre, overcomes obstacles that many would not survive. In this world Ms. Carey explores the different aspects of love and shows that each has a place and is good.
Jim Butcher also created an epic adventure series called the Codex Alera.
Young Adult and Children’s Books I Love
Ummm, Harry Potter. Anyone heard of that guy? If you haven’t read the series yet; first of all you must be living under a rock; but I highly recommend it. I even convinced my husband to read these and he loved it. J.K. Rowling is a master at creating worlds.
The Hunger Games are a good series to read and are pretty true to the movies. Suzanne Collins is very good at creating a world surrounding the human spirit and perseverance.
Aretmis Fowl is a young criminal mastermind who doesn’t always follow the rules and ends up working with (or is it against?) faeries and learns valuable lessons. Eoin Colfer created am amazing world filled with technology that the faeries have control of.
If you like the Percy Jackson movies you’ll love the books that Rick Riordan wrote that they were based on. The series Percy Jackson and the Olympians is great to get kids (and adults) started on learning more about ancient Greek mythology.
For the Writer’s in Your Life:
Stephen King’s book On Writing is amazing. I don’t read too many of Stephen King’s books because he scared the bejesus out of me with his movies when I was a kid. But I can appreciate his craft; he’s a master. If you get the opportunity to read On Writing it helps you see into his world a little more and gets your creative juices flowing.
The Writer's Journey by Christopher Vogler helps with creating the story arch and understanding the types of characters and what they do.
Some of my favorite books on writing are from Writer’s Digest Books. I also recommend their magazine and website.
One of the first that I read was You Can Write a Novel by James V. Smith, Jr. I learned invaluable tips on how to build a framework and structure my notes for easy use. I appreciate the tips on character and scene cards, it helps me stay organized and remember important details as I'm writing.
Write and Revise for Publication by Jack Smith and Revision and Self-Editing for Publication by James Scott Bell are great at looking at the nitty gritty details once you’ve gotten to the point where you’ve got your first draft done, or mostly done.
Hope This Article Helps This Holiday Season...
I hope at least one of these suggestions helps you find a new world to sink into. Don't mind me, I'm about to get lost in one of these books again.
Even if these books aren't perfect for that someone on your list, if they're a bookworm you can never go wrong with a gift card to their favorite bookstore.