Sunday, February 25, 2007

The Guards -- Ken Bruen

I didn’t take to Ken Bruen’s fiction when I first tried to read it. I think it took me some time to warm up to his very distinctive style. But once I did, I found myself enjoying his books quite a bit.

In fact, I’ve just gone back and read THE GUARDS, the first book in his Jack Taylor series, which I’d started before and didn’t finish. This time through, I liked it quite a bit. The rhythm of the prose is remarkable, and Bruen has a way of capturing a character with only a few words. True, there’s not much plot, and what there is kind of sprawls around (like real life). But I doubt if many people read Bruen’s novels for the plots, anyway.

I’m coming at these Jack Taylor books out of order, which bothers the obsessive-compulsive in me. The first one I finished was actually the fourth in the series, THE DRAMATIST. But I also have copies of the second and third, THE KILLING OF THE TINKERS and THE MAGDALEN MARTYRS, so at least I can read them in the proper order and then try to keep up with the series from now on.

In other news, I’ve been pushing hard on the writing the past few days and finished up a book yesterday, always a good thing. So I’ll be starting a new one today, also a good thing. Yesterday we had worst dust storm I’ve seen around here in probably thirty years or more. It looked like half of West Texas was blowing past outside. The strong wind (gusts of 60+ mph) also did some minor damage to our roof, so it looks like I’ll be up there hammering on new shingles sometime this week.


Randy Johnson said...

I'll have to give Mr. Bruen a try. Sounds like he might be worth a look. Have you read Ian Rankin? He's Scottish and very good also.

James Reasoner said...

I've read the first of Rankin's Rebus novels, KNOTS AND CROSSES, and enjoyed it quite a bit, but I haven't gotten back to the series. However, I've got an ARC of the newest one, THE NAMING OF THE DEAD, and I may go ahead and read it despite my aversion, as mentioned above, to reading a series out of order.

Unknown said...

I watched that dust storm from an 11th floor window at the hotel where ConDFW was held in Dallas. Very impressive!