Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Vampire Zombies and other October reads

I keep meaning to write about the books I've been reading as I read them, but it's gotten put off too long and these are all going to be lumped together.

First up is Nightwatch. Along with it comes Day Watch, Twilight Watch and (if I understand right) next summer will be Last Watch, by Sergei Lukyanenko. I finished reading the first three last week, and I loved them. Nightwatch was definitely the best, but Twilight Watch was right up there with it. The premise of the books is that vampires, werewolves, and varying types of magic users exist right under our noses. In these modern days, the Night and Day watches are at odds, and are held in check by the Inquisition, a group made up of both Light and Dark "Others". The books do a really good job at blurring the line between good and bad, right and wrong. I became interested in this because of the movie, Nightwatch. I haven't watched it yet, but from what I hear, you want to watch this movie with English subtitles, and not with English dubbing. Hopefully, I'll get around to watching that this weekend.

Brian Schott recently wrote about the upcoming movie I Am Legend, which led to a trip to Barnes and Noble just before they closed Friday night. I picked up the softcover, which is a collection of stories by Richard Matheson. I think the hardcover version doesn't have the additional stories, which are a must-read if you enjoy well-written horror. There's also a graphic novel version out, which might be an interesting read. I have high hopes for the movie, and it is one I'm willing to see at the theater, and might even fight the opening night crowds for. The last story in the book, Person to Person was incredible, as well. I'm about to begin Hell House, which I bought at the same time as I Am Legend.

The other book I purchased on the late Friday run was A Thousand Splendid Suns. I actually read this before I Am Legend, because last month I read The Kite Runner, also by Khaled Hosseini, and I was anxious to see what this book would be like. They are not sequels, however they are both stories about life in the Middle East. The Kite Runner was incredible in it's ability to make you ache inside for Amir, the main character. You understand his unforgivable actions, yet you almost have more sympathy for him than for those who are hurt by him. Both books were very well written, and stand on their own as worthy reads. However, I can't tell you how much I appreciated the look inside of the lives of the characters. While the characters were fictional, the world they live in is not, nor are the choices they are faced with. (If only every person who refers to all Muslims, Middle Easterners and everyone else they don't understand as "terrorists" could read one of these books!)

As a side note, Laurell K. Hamilton will be at the Sugar House Barnes and Noble on October 29 at 7:00 PM. I really enjoyed the first few books in both her Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter and her Meredith Gentry (faery) series. I may finish the series, but I haven't read any in a few years because I got rather disgusted with the non-stop sex scenes. Her stories were good enough (and exciting enough) on their own, and really didn't need gratuitous sex to complete them. I probably will bring my sister with me for her appearance in Sugar House, though.

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