The Culling

Posted: February 1, 2013 in Musings, Scribe Scribbles
Tags: , , ,


And so it begins. While I still have a queue of books to get through that are Christian from Marcher Lord Press (The Restorer’s Son, Freeheads, Throne of Bones) after that, I am officially out of a reading pile for The Christian Manifesto. It’s a weird feeling, having nothing to review and at the same time, very liberating too. I talked with my editors, and they’ve decided to give me enough freedom to hang myself. I mean rope to play with. Something.

We  (The Christian Manifesto) want to do more secular market interviews and reviews. Unfortunately, we don’t have contacts for a lot of the secular publishing houses and that just stinks. Mainly because I’m bored and am tired of reading the tripe that is often handed out from the Christian* publishing companies. Now, there are a lot of hard-working people in those companies, but they’re still mass producing fiction tripe. And there’s only so much I can read before I start vomiting up plot points and sweating platitudes.  So it’s time to go to  the secular companies that also produce tripe, but at least a different flavor of it.

If you are a friend of mine on GoodReads, you have helped me pick out these books to try. If you aren’t a friend of mine on GoodReads, why not?! I’m constantly crowd sourcing for my next book to try. Find me and friend me.  You can do that by checking out the new widget over there on the side bar, and this ALSO lets you keep track with that I’m currently reading.

In fact, if you check back after I get ten or so answers from the  question I’m about to pose, you’ll SEE the results over there, in the book that I add to my shelf. Ready for that question? Of course you are!

Of the six books in the picture above (I’ll be nice and type them out too along with a link to their spot on Good Reads) which should I try after I finish my current queue? Or possibly interject into my queue?   Which of these titles peaks your  curiosity?

Tuesdays At the Castle by Jessica Day George
A Tale Dark and Grim by Adam Gidwitz
The Clockwork Three by Matthew J.Kirby
Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta
The Kneebone Boy by Ellen Potter
A Drowned Maiden’s Hair by Laura Amy Schlitz

Let me know what YOU would like me to read from the above list in the comments below. Or, if you have other suggestions for me, I’d love to hear them.

* Marcher Lord Press is  not one of those turning out the tripe. I don’t always like what they produce, but their work is   always solid in its structure, tone, and editing.

  1. H. A. Titus says:

    I’ve read other books by Elizabeth Day George–she has an absolutely delightful fairytale called Dragon Slippers that I’d highly recommend–so I’m for Tuesdays At the Castle. Also I’ve heard great things about The Kneebone Boy from Kat Heckenbach, who always has excellent reading suggestions (I don’t think I’ve ever hated anything I read from her recommendation). And, of course, The Clockwork Three sounds interesting to me because it sounds steampunky. 🙂
    I’m going to go find you on Goodreads! 🙂

  2. Gee says:

    Here are a few suggestions concerning other books that you might enjoy reading or re-reading: “The Moviegoer” and “The Last Gentleman” by Walker Percy, “The Complete Stories” by (Mary) Flannery O’Connor, “Hamlet” by William Shakespeare, “The History of the Caliph Vathek” by William Beckford, and (although not on the same par as the previous) “Desperation” by Stephen King.

  3. Amanda says:

    I’ve been itching to read Tuesdays at the Castle!! So I call that one.

  4. I’d love to hear what you think about Tuesdays at the Castle, since my sister read it and loved it. I haven’t read it yet…

  5. I’ve been curious about “The Clockwork Three” for a while now. 😉

    Hmmm… some other good ones for you would be the 100 cupboards series, and the Ashtown Burials series by N.D. Wilson. They are in the secular market with just a hint of Christian thrown in. 😉 (I only recently discovered them… love them so much!!! Mr. Wilson’s voice is truly inspiring… at least to me. ;D)

    Also, Divergent and Insurgent by veronica Roth, The Ink Trilogy by Cornelia Funke… oh! And The Looking Glass Wars…. (can’t remember the author’s name). Merlin: the Lost years is a book I’m currently reading; it’s pretty good (but then, I’m a sucker for anything Arthurian… ;D)

    And, if you haven’t already, you might be interested in peaking at “The Book of Names” and it’s sequels (though I can’t remember the name of that author right now either… :P) That one is definitely a Christian title, though. 😉

    Well, anyway, just some thoughts. I have a load more if you are interested, but I won’t go bothering you with all of them just now. Haha! ;D

    Nichole White

    • PLEASE, bother me. Especially with the secular titles.

      I’ll have to check out N.D. Wilson. I was underwhelmed by Divergent and I loved the Inkheart Trilogy but I’m not certain that’d work for our demographic. xD I own the Looking Glass Wars, I should definitely review them. I’d own Hatter if it were not copyright infringement O:)

      • Lol! Definitely know what you mean about wanting to own Hatter. He’s amazing! 😉

        Well, what exactly is your demographic? Perhaps then I’ll have a better idea of what sort of titles you are looking towards. 😉

        In the meantime though, I thought “Tyger, Tyger” by Kersten Hamilton was pretty good. And I started getting into “The Iron King” books. 🙂 Romance isn’t really my style, but what with the interesting twist involving Celtic fairies, I found that I enjoyed most of the books themselves, and appreciated the mythological threads woven throughout.

        There’s also “Cinder”, which is sort of a mix of steampunk (but not really) and sci-fi. It was a curious tale, but kept me intrigued throughout. 🙂 I enjoyed it, for sure, though I wouldn’t necessarily say it was one of the best books I’ve ever read, you understand. 😉

        “The Healing Wars” trilogy by Janice Hardy might intrigue you. It’s about a girl who can “shift” pain from one person to another holder… sometimes her own body, and sometimes someone else’s. In her life, it is both a gift and a curse, and it causes her some serious troubles, but also earns her some good friends. I liked the first book which was aptly named “The Shifter”. I haven’t read any of the others yet, but I follow Ms. Hardy’s blog, which is absolutely LOADED with amazing writing advice, if you are interested. 😉

        I’m sure you’ve probably already read some of Rick Riordine’s Olympian series books. 😀 And his Heroes of Olympus series is also excellent. Both series deal with Greek mythology, which is a curious subject in and of itself. But I’ve recently started to read his Egyptian series as well… also dealing with mythology, but of a darker, more ancient kind. *wiggly eyebrows* Honestly, I personally don’t think it’s quite as good as his Olympian books, but it is still quite good… and Egyptian mythology is a rather obscure subject, so these books are also very interesting. However, you have to understand going into the books that, in dealing with mythology, you will also be reading about pagan gods and goddesses, and some mythical stories that most certainly don’t align with christian teachings. Still good reads, I think. ;D

        I also recommend almost ANYTHING by Tammora Pierce. 😀 I love her books… so much! The world is grandly developed to a point of realism, the heroines are complicated and easy to root for without being overdone or underdone… I really enjoy them. 😀 Especially the books “Trickster’s Choice” and “Trickster’s Queen”. And… well, really, I’ve read almost all of her books. They are all very good in my own opinion, well worth the effort, time, and money put into them. 🙂

        The Leven Thumps books are interesting. The voice of the author can throw a reader off at first… (at least it did for me) because the author slips in and out of addressing the reader directly as a story teller. The story line itself, however, is most certainly an intriguing one… about a boy who finds himself an important part of a dream world that only a very few actually know about. It’s much more complicated than that, of course… and much more interesting. 😉

        And if you are in for a more realistic twist on the old Grimm’s Fairytales, you might try “Reckless” by Cornelia Funke. However, it is most definitely a darker read. I mean, what if the prince never actually found Sleeping Beauty? What if there really WAS such a creature known as the Tailor, who had scissors for hands and liked to skin little children who angered him (and btw, the story of the Tailor is an old German legend often used in Germany to frighten little children into submission.) What if the witch that tried to eat Hansel and Gretel still lived? What if the whole fairy-tale realm was being taken over by a curse that could turn people into living, breathing, walking stone, and what if the people who were stone planned to take over the entire realm? And what if you were the child who discovered this dangerous place in a hidden mirror while you were trying to find your long lost father? I read this book while I was actually studying German culture and legends at college, so I found it doubly interesting. 😉 It was quite the experience to be able to talk to discuss the stories and ideas within the book itself with my professor after class.

        Well, that should get you started anyway. haha! Sorry this post is so long! I have more, but I will stop there for now. Let me know exactly what types of books you are interested in in particular and I will compile a list. ^_^

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