Saturday, August 04, 2007

Madam Recommends

My husband and I are thinking of going to see Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix at an actual theater sometime in the near future. That tells you how much I'd like to see it, because we seldom go to the theater any more. It's too expensive, except for the odd special occasion, as well as too loud for my delicate shell-like ears. I think younger movie goers are all hard of hearing. This must be the reason theater owners turn the sound up to the level of a mortar attack.

I have read all seven installments of Rowling's books. I love them quite as much as anybody. In her writing, Rowling does the thing I enjoy most in a book - she creates people I'm interested in and a world that I love visiting for a while.

Thinking about the Harry Potter series led me to consider other authors and series that I admire (present company in this blog excepted, of course). I love good historicals as well as books set in exotic locales. If the author can take me there and let me live there while I'm reading, I'm happy as can be. I very much like Alexander McCall Smith's series - both The Number One Ladies' Detective Agency series and The Sunday Philosophy Club. As for books that let me visit far-flung locales and time-travel as well, some of my favories include Colleen McCullough's five book series on the end of the Roman Republic, the first of which was The Grass Crown. I also greatly enjoy Laura Jo Rowland's series set in 17th Century Japan, and her Samuri detective/chancellor/family man Ichiro Sano. I'll read just about anything by Pauline Gedge. Her specialty is ancient Egypt, and she wrote a wonderful three book series about the founders of the 18th Dynasty, the brothers Kamose and Ahmose. The thing about these books that sets them apart, in my humble opinion, is that they are about human beings, and families, and daily living and how ordinary people deal with extraordinary times and events. Give me a real human story any time.

In the same vein, other books and series that are about real people in interesting places and times include anything by Steven Pressfield, who is one of my favorite writers of all time; the Falco series by Lindsey Davis; the "Gordianus the Finder" books by Steven Saylor. And let us raise our glasses at lst to Ellis Peters, author of the Brother Cadfael mysteries, who inspired me to write a mystery of my own.


Rick Blechta said...

If you like visiting far-flung places, you might enjoy both Charles' and my novels. Morocco! Egypt! Vienna! the Scottish Highlands! Buffalo...

Anonymous said...

Donis, just wanted to say that I absolutely love your books. When will another be published? My mother's family is from Oklahoma and when I read them, I felt that I was seeing some things through the eyes of my grandmother and her family. They were from Weatherford, Oklahoma and my great-grandfather was a Sooner.

I came over to this blog at the invitation of Vicki Delaney, who visited my blog with a very nice comment when I had finished her book, Burden of Memory. Loved that book too!

You and Vicki both keep up the good work. I'm recommending your books to all I see at my library.