Tuesday, November 8, 2016

What I'm Reading -- Some Good Books, Some Blah Books

I find that I read like I write — I balance multiple books/stories, dipping into each of them when time and interest allows.  I’m currently writing six books/stories for various pen names, with another seven in the pre-writing stage.  Similarly with reading, I’m in the middle of three books right now (and I had taken a break from these to read a fourth book last week).

Might as well start this off the same way I start off every “What I’m Reading” post.  Yep, I’m reading a Star Trek book.  This time, it’s Star Trek: Prey: Book 1: Hell’s Heart by John Jackson Miller.  It’s okay.  It’s Klingon-focussed and I seem to be one of the few Star Trek fans that’s never really liked the Klingon storylines.  Miller’s writing ability is far superior in this book compared to his previous Star Trek book, but overall it's fairly decent.  I'm having a little trouble keeping all the Klingon names straight as half of them start with K.

The second book I’m reading is Abaddon’s Gate by James S.A. Corey, which is the third book in The Expanse series.  (This is the book series that The Expanse tv series is based on.)  The Expanse is planned as a nine-book epic and what I particularly enjoy about it is that each book seems to be greatly different than the one before it — so the reader doesn’t get much of the same-old-same-old feeling that can come with some ongoing series.

In The Expanse, an alien protomolecule from who-knows-where has started infecting humanity and doing strange things.  Book one (Leviathan Wakes) featured the protomolecule seemingly breaking down human bodies and reshaping the organic matter for some strange purpose.  Book two (Caliban’s War) was about how a company was trying to use the protomolecule to create supersoldiers, while the on Venus, the protomolecule was reshaping the inorganic material on the planet for some strange purpose.  In Abbadon’s Gate, the work that the protomolecule had undertaken on Venus led to the creation of a “ring” that it launched and set in place in the outer solar system.  The ring leads somewhere, but that hasn’t yet been revealed to me.  (The characters are all travelling to the ring right now.)

Corey writes engaging chapters that are nicely-sized.  I generally read a chapter a day before bed.  What I find particularly interesting about the future that Corey has created is that religion and faith are still very strongly present.  In most sci-fi stories, humanity has mostly become atheist, with religion only showing up as either a human cult or the backwards practices of a primitive alien culture.  So, to read how faith is navigating the future has been an interesting journey.

For the third book, I felt a strange need to pick up a hetero romance from the grocery store.  I’m reading Lycan Unleashed by Shannon Curtis (which is bundled with The Immortal’s Hunger by Kelli Ireland).  It’s okay so far.  I'm only a few chapters in.  As I’m reading it, I get the feeling that this is a sequel to a previous story, but the “other books by” list indicates this is Curtis’s first publication with Harlequin.  It’s pretty decent so far.  In retrospect, I probably shouldn’t have picked up a werewolf romance if I’m not into paranormal stuff.  (But at this grocery store it seemed to be either regency, western, or paranormal — none of which really caught my interest.)  Plus, I was taken by the cover model.

And I mentioned that last week I paused these three books to read another.  I had a quick read through Frances Caballo’s very short ebook The Author's Guide to Goodreads.  I was hoping to learn something I didn’t already know, but it was essentially a primer to Goodreads and didn’t go too in depth.  Might be helpful for some, but wasn’t anything new to me.

Cameron D. James is a writer of gay erotica and M/M erotic romance; his latest release is Seduced by My Best Friend’s Dad (co-written with Sandra Claire). He is also the publisher and co-founder of Deep Desires Press  a publisher of erotica and high-heat-level erotic romance. He lives in Canada, is always crushing on Starbucks baristas, and has two rescue cats. To learn more about Cameron, visit http://www.camerondjames.com.


  1. You exhaust me, Cameron!

    If you learn any useful tips about GR, though, I hope you'll share. I am moderately active there as a reviewer. I have no idea whether than impacts people's awareness of me as a writer.

  2. I am like this with both reading and writing, Cameron, and I'm glad I'm not the only one!

    I think some of it is that my brain gets into different moods. I like to have a sort of palate cleanser book around, something light and not too demanding, to balance whatever heavier thing I'm also reading.

    I laughed out loud at this sentence: "I felt a strange need to pick up a hetero romance from the grocery store." This happens to me, too, sometimes! Not sure why. If you figure it out, let me know. :)

  3. You seem to have read quite a stack of books lately, Cameron. My spouse is fond of hetero rom-coms (movies), for some reason. I always assume it's because those plots usually end so much better in fiction or movies than in real life.


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