Forum Archives

Return to Forum List

Set in my ways - series fiction

You are not logged in. Login here or register.

TrustedHer posted 8/8/2012 00:52 AM

I mostly read (and re-read) books I'm familiar with, or at least, authors I know I like.

My genres are mostly science fiction, military fiction, and mystery.

I seek out series fiction, lots of novels by one author.

It took me a couple of years post d-day to begin reading again.

It's hard for me to branch out. I can't seem to get motivated to read standalone novels. If an author doesn't have a bunch of titles published, or if they are all standalone, I don't try them.

When I do find an author I like, I devour the entire series, and I'm crushed when it ends, or when I have to wait for the next one.

Sometimes, that leads me to abandon a series. Like Sue Grafton's Kinsey Milhone novels, for instance. I got tired of waiting around "M" or "N", and just quit reading altogether.

Lately, it's been Laurie King, David Weber, John Ringo, John Sandford, Ian Hunt, Jack Campbell. I read all the W.E.B. Griffin I liked, and I discovered I dislike his spy stuff. I often wish Rex Stout were still alive and writing.

I read all of C.S. Forrester's Hornblower series, and I can tolerate Patrick O'Brien's Aubrey stuff, but it's not really my cup of tea.

Now that I have a Kindle Fire, I have been downloading public domain stuff, like P.G. Wodehouse, which is enjoyable, but very light.

Any suggestions for me based on this whining?

GabyBaby posted 8/8/2012 10:04 AM

"Shogun" by James Clovell
A bold English adventurer. An invincible Japanese warlord. A beautiful woman torn between two ways of life, two ways of love. All brought together in an extraordinary saga of a time and a place aflame with conflict, passion, ambition, lust, and the struggle for power...

"His Majesty's Dragon" by Naomi Novik
Aerial combat brings a thrilling new dimension to the Napoleonic Wars as valiant warriors rise to Britain’s defense by taking to the skies . . . not aboard aircraft but atop the mighty backs of fighting dragons.

When HMS Reliant captures a French frigate and seizes its precious cargo, an unhatched dragon egg, fate sweeps Capt. Will Laurence from his seafaring life into an uncertain future–and an unexpected kinship with a most extraordinary creature. Thrust into the rarified world of the Aerial Corps as master of the dragon Temeraire, he will face a crash course in the daring tactics of airborne battle. For as France’s own dragon-borne forces rally to breach British soil in Bonaparte’s boldest gambit, Laurence and Temeraire must soar into their own baptism of fire.

"His Majesty's Dragon" is the first in a series of books. Fantasy (brining in the dragons) but with a military flavor. I enjoyed this series.

I'm sure I'll think of some others, but thought I'd throw out a couple of suggestions that popped into my head.

[This message edited by GabyBaby at 10:05 AM, August 8th (Wednesday)]

TrustedHer posted 8/8/2012 10:29 AM

Thanks for the suggestions.

I suppose I'm a difficult person to please. I got turned off on Asian epics by reading "Shibumi", a novel so bad it ruined an entire genre for me.

And I cut my teeth on science fiction that at least pretended to involve, you know, science. Or advanced technology. Not swords, sorcerers... or dragons and elves.

jjct posted 8/9/2012 07:34 AM

It took me a couple of years post d-day to begin reading again.

Yeah, me too.
Then, I 'began again' with the Sharpe series by Cornwell (military/history/fiction & very well researched & accurate!)...quickly filled up a dang bookshelf. That's when I decided to get a nook!

I also get tired of waiting for the next book in a series, and abandon the whole thing.

I guess..we're twins, right?

looking forward posted 8/9/2012 21:24 PM

I have just discovered an author who writes espionage thrillers, featuring a former Israeli spy by trade, an art restorer by preference.
Author: Daniel Silva
Character: Gabriel Allon

Silva has written 12 Gabriel Allon books. I'm just about to start #3.

Below is a great resource site called Fantastic Fiction.

Catherine Coulter also writes mysteries featuring the husband and wife FBI team of Dillon Savich & Lacey Sherlock.

[This message edited by looking forward at 12:19 PM, August 11th (Saturday)]

inconnu posted 8/9/2012 23:38 PM

If you're looking for more historical mysteries:

Peter Tremayne's Sister Fidelma series

Ellis Peter's Cadfael series

Anne Perry has 2 series - Thomas and Charlotte Pitt, and the Monk books

leapyearbaby posted 8/18/2012 23:58 PM

Lee Child's Jack Reacher....what a ride!!

Daniel Silva is very good.

Alex Berenson.

Michael Connelly.

Alex Kava.

Karin Slaughter.

Nelson Demille John Cory series, but his standalone books are just as good.

Patricia Cornwell, although sometimes her stuff is soooo depressing. Kathy Reichs...same vein, but a little cheerier.

James Rollins.

Both Kellermans and their son Jesse is an even better writer, but doesn't do series.

Stephen White.

If you can read English authors, Ian Rankin, Elizabeth George (love, love her stuff), Peter Robinson.

All series, many of them with a dozen or more books.

I'm sure there is more, but that is off the top of my head. Can you tell I read a lot?

leapyearbaby posted 8/19/2012 00:02 AM

Oh and BTW, I read both Shibumi and Shogun and Shogun is waaaay better....might restore your faith again.

Anything by James Michener and historical fiction Edward Rutherford.

I'll stop now....

scarredforever posted 8/20/2012 06:28 AM

The Inspector Lynley series by Elizabeth George- British mysteries- she's a great writer. By the time you plow through all of her novels the next in the series should be out.

Ruth Rendell- great author of psychological mysteries/thriller/novels that leave you shaking your head at the end. Like OMG she didn't just write that!
British as well. She also writes under the name of Barbara Vine, and has a Inspector Wexford series(under the Ruth Rendell name).

darkbeast posted 8/20/2012 09:04 AM

I got turned off on Asian epics by reading "Shibumi", a novel so bad it ruined an entire genre for me.

First of all, "Shibumi" is not an Asian epic. I, like you, didn't think much of it. "Musashi" by Eiji Yoshikawa is the greatest book that I've ever read. Yoshikawa also wrote "Taiko" and it is also fantastic.

Unlike you, I prefer stand alone stories to series, but I've found some excellent series off of recommendations.

The Vokosigan Novels by Lois McMaster Bujold are very good. I like that each book is a different genre of story. One is a mystery, the next a political thriller, the next may be a romance. It avoids what I dislike about series fiction--rehashing the same plot over and over.

I just started "Black Company" series and, so far, it's pretty great. Grim with no real heroic characters to speak of.

For some reason, I have a real aversion to dragons in a story. So far, no dragons in Black Company.

I alway recommend David Morell's "Brotherhood of the Rose" series. It will wash the terrible "Shibumi" aftertaste away--and make you crave a Baby Ruth bar.

ladyvorkosigan posted 8/20/2012 09:13 AM

Lindsey Davis's Falco series. Detective stories set during the Roman empire under Vespasian.

StillGoing posted 8/20/2012 12:12 PM

srs sci-fi: Starfishers trilogy by Glen Cook

tomfoolery sci-fi: Stainless Steel Rat (and Bill the Galactic Hero - the Bloater drive ftw) by Harry Harrison

my secret shame: Gaunts Ghosts series, Eisenhorn trilogy and Ravenor trilogy by Dan Abnett. They're set in the Warhammer 40k universe (sci-fi). Gaming fiction tends towards the horrible but Abnett's stuff is a lot of fun. Very brutal and messy though.

If you like military fiction check out Steven Pressfield. Gates of Fire is a good start. No series fiction there, though.

darkbeast posted 8/20/2012 12:48 PM

Full disclosure:

StillGoing pointed me in the direction of Black Company

Lady Vorkosigan pointed me in the direction of, well, you know.

Threnody posted 8/27/2012 09:22 AM

It sounds like your reading habits are much like mine. I have great difficulty reaching beyond the known authors and series, very probably to my detriment.

Here's my go-to list because I'm too damned stubborn to change:

Historical fiction series

* Dudley Pope's Ramage series (Napoleanic wars, nautical -- think Sharpe's Rifles, but on the water and not quite as light)
* Dorothy Dunnett's House of Niccolo series and Lymond Chronicles

I should note: There's much swash to be buckled in all three of the above series. Dunnett's, especially, has breathtaking moments and your heart will break a bit and then be rebuilt by many of the characters.

* Bernard Cornwell, pretty much anything. The Archer series is good, and of course Sharpe's Rifles, etc. It's lighter reading, compared to most of my list, but wholly enjoyable. The title escapes me, but he has one about Stonehenge that I found fascinating.

* Ken Follett, in particular his duo Pillars of the Earth and its sequel. He's written some WWII-era series as well, but my attention is generally kept by the medieval-era books. They're beautifully-written dramas.

Science/Speculative Fiction

* Anything by Iain Banks (spec) / Iain M. Banks (sci-fi). Anything. Every damned book. He's amazing.

* Ditto Ursula K. LeGuin. Her books and stories have made me sob with the hopelessness of it all, then turned right around and inspired me to do better and see the world as full of possibilities rather than obstacles. There's a collection called The Word for World is Forest, titled after one of the stories it contains, which does that to me every time I read it.

* K.J. Parker, and I would recommend you start with the Engineer Trilogy. (This author I categorize more like speculative history, by the way.) There's not a single person in any of her (I'm assuming KJ is a female, it's a hunch, and there's great mystery about it) books wholly innocent and endearing. The characters are portrayed as difficult or damaged people, enduring difficult times, making difficult decisions. The psychologies are extremely well-written and the stories are compelling. My favorite independent, non-series book is The Folding Knife, although The Company was mind-blowing.

sisoon posted 8/27/2012 15:41 PM

And I cut my teeth on science fiction that at least pretended to involve, you know, science. Or advanced technology. Not swords, sorcerers... or dragons and elves.

I'm with you, TH, I'm with you.

If the Aubrey-Maturin series doesn't grab you, my list may be useless to you. Or maybe I'm too enthusiastic about the series. Hmm...maybe I'll check some Forester out of the library next time I'm there....

Another vote for:

Cornwell's Sharpe series (nowhere as good as Aubrey-Maturin, though )

Lindsey Davis's Falco series.
Michael Connelly - especially his Harry Bosch series
Ian Rankin

I'm pissed at Elizabeth George and will continue to be until she writes more books. Of course, the books she HAS written make me feel that way....


J. M. Maddox's SPQR series - Rome at the time of Julius Caesar - not as good writing or plot as Davis

Dorothy Sayers' Peter Wimsey series

Barbara Cleverly has a series that moves from British India to Europe - Joe Sandilands. Her Laetitia Taylor series is too precious and too anachronistic for me.

Sandra Balzo has a small series centered around the coffee shop business. I wish she published more books. (I like coffee. Go figure.)

John Lescroart

Stephen White has a good series about a psychologist in Colorado.

Stephen Hunter has a good series written around an ex-sniper sheriff in Arkansas (IIRC). Combine his books with some target practice, and you can kill anyone....

Elliott Pattison has a series about colonial America (I find it hard to take) and Tibet under modern Chinese occupation that seems very authentic (I'm an ex-China scholar, so I doubt that it's authentic - it just seems to be)

Diane Mott davidson has a series about a cook/caterer in Colorado that is pretty good fun

Adam Hall's Quiller series

John LeCarre

I hesitate to say this, but: Isaac Asimov, the Dirty Old Man himself....

[This message edited by sisoon at 4:38 PM, August 28th (Tuesday)]

Return to Forum List

© 2002-2018 ®. All Rights Reserved.     Privacy Policy