For The Phoenix

For part two I'm doing something fun. Well, at least for me it's fun. I'll provide a clip of something I wrote about the book being recommended way back when it first came out.

Then I'll tell you who to buy it for. This ought to be a useful "gift guide" afterall.

Blood's A Rover by James Ellroy. Fiction. Hardcover. $28.95. ISBN: 978-0679403937

"Those that have read Ellroy have goose bumps already. They know that cocksure paranoia and down low hipster jingle jangle is best when filtered through the terse language of a true professional. James Ellroy doesn't write novels; he ties bows on bomb boxes."

Blood's A Rover is the stand alone finally in James Ellroy's supreme achievement, the U.S.A. Underworld trilogy. Readers who enjoy crime fiction, politics and noir settings will love Ellroy's short, but heavily charged prose.

Think along the lines of L.A. Confidential (Ellroy's most successful book to movie) meeting Casino Royal at a bar and hitting it off.

The Angel's Game by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. Doubleday. Fiction. Hardcover. $26.95.

"Every reader knows the kind of book the title above evokes. Even when reading at the end of a long day, when dog tired and in bed, somehow the book keeps tired eyes open and formerly fatigued fingers turning page after page. You were all set to read one chapter and grab some shut eye and next thing you know thirty pages have gone by.

Dutifully you close the book. Falling asleep isn't as easy now, as your mind is awake in the author's fictional universe. That and the fact that you are deeply disturbed by what you just read."

The Angel's Game is the prequel to Zafon's stunning English language debut, The Shadow of The Wind and is a page turner par excellence. To understand what kind of reader would like Zafon I need say two words: Dan Brown.

Zafon writes the same kind of mystically charged thriller, that is Dan Brown could plot or write a real sentence. Give a Dan Brown fan a Zafon book and you are not just giving a persona book, you are saving them from the banal.

Last Night In Montreal by Emily St. John Mandel. Unrbidled Books. Fiction. Hardcover. $24.95. ISBN: 9781932961683

"Emily St. John Mandel's debut novel is intoxicating. Like strong drink, the tale puts the reader in a different state. Addictive character development and a quickly moving plot may upgrade the status from strong drink to narcotic. You will inhale this book and will probably find yourself wishing that there was a little more left.

Borrowing plotting and an episodic nature from crime fiction or thrillers, Last Night In Montreal is yet essentially a love story. The combination is interesting and makes for good reading. The moments of tension and mystery melt seamlessly into the passages of quiet bliss and because of the tension and mystery exists, the calm moments are always colored by violent potential."

This one is for the book club warriors on your gift list. Not only has this book flown under many a mainstream store's radar it is the first work of a very confident writer.

This means two things in gift giving language: One, they don't already have it and two, they'll love it.

Last Night In Memphis will satisfy nearly any booklover's reading appetite. Better still the author has a new book nearly out. So not only do you get to turn your loved one on to a new writer but will also have the distinction of being remembered every time they go and pick up the next book by Emily St. John Mandel.

Oh, and best of all? You can buy all three of these books at Wolfgang Books right here in Phoenixville. No mall lines. No stressed-out cashiers. Just knowledgeable staff and a well-stocked bookstore.

You can thank me later.

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