My Kind of Summer Blockbusters

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  • Monday, May 13, 2013
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  • Sean Ellis
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  • Used to be, summer was when folks worked a bit less and enjoyed life a little more.

    Or so I’ve heard.

    I’m told that summer is when a lot of folks take their vacation (or ‘holiday’ as my friends across the pond might say) and that is supposedly the time when people kick back in a chaise lounge poolside with a festive drink and a little light reading.

    Or so I’ve heard. 

    Most people of my acquaintance who enjoy books—and that would be most of them—do not think of reading as leisure activity.  It is as much a part of their life as eating and sleeping.  Nevertheless, the publishing industry, ever bound to old, die-hard traditions, believes that summer is the season of the “beach book”—which seems to be the category all the books that I enjoy fall into—so for the next few months, the floodgates will open...and I'll be very broke, but very happy.

    Here are the books I’m most looking forward to:

    The Barbed Crown by William Dietrich -- released May 7
    The Ethan Gage series by fellow Thriller Central contributor William Dietrich first caught my eye when The Dakota Cipher was released back in 2009, and I put it on my to-be-read list, but it wasn't until last year that I finally embarked on the journey.  I wish I had  taken the plunge sooner because Ethan Gage is my kind of hero. 

    Inferno by Dan Brown -- May 14
    Earlier this year, I challenged best-selling procrastinatory Dan Brown to...well, you know  "go," or get off the pot -- The Lost Author (or Dan Brown, where are you?) -- and I guess he was listening because a few weeks later the announcement was made that the fourth Robert Langdon novel was on its way. 

    You're welcome.

    Zero Hour by Graham Brown and Clive Cussler -- May 28
    See what I just did there?  I think most of you know that I have a special place in my heart for all things Cussler, but I'm a big fan of Graham Brown.  I'd really rather read the next installment from Brown's Laidlaw/Hawker series, but I'll take what I can get. 

    The King’s Deception by Steve Berry -- June 11
    I was not always a Steve Berry fan.  Back in 2006, while spending a night at a remote FOB in Afghanistan, I read the first few chapters of The Romanov Prophecy...Didn't hate it, but didn't like it enough to swipe it for my own.  A couple years later, I tried again, starting with The Templar Salvation, and had the same reaction.  To be fair, back then it was all I could do to get ten minutes of uninterupted reading time, but if you had asked me, I would have said: 'I'm just not that into Steve Berry.'

    Which just didn't make any sense.  I mean, look at those titles; it's like these books were written for me.  So late in 2011, I tried again, and this time I finally got it.  I have now read every single one of Berry's novels, including his stand-alone works (which all tie-in with the Cotton Malone series one way or another) and I'm eagerly looking forward not only to reading the latest, but also meeting Steve when he rolls through here on the book tour.

    The Eye of God by James Rollins -- June 25 
    If there's an author that has inspired me to keep going it's James Rollins.  Several years ago, when my literary agent was shopping one of my books around, he was told by a publisher that 'aside from Clive Cussler, there's just not much demand for adventure novels.'  I never believed that to be true, but Rollins' success is elegant testimony to just how wrongheaded that editor was. 

    So that's my top five picks for the summer, in order of their release.  What's on your reading list?


    David Wood said...

    You forgot "Fortune Favors." Can't remember the author's name ;)

    Steve Manke said...

    I have Zero Hour and The Eye of God on order. I'll add Boyd Morrison's new book, The Loch Ness Legacy (July 1st) and Hidden Order by Brad Thor (July 9th) to the list.

    You're right, there are some great books coming our way!

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