Recent Books: Thirteen, Monsters of Templeton, Glasshouse, Ghost War

More airplane reads, I have been doing a lot of air travel:

* “The Ghost War”:amazon by Alex Berenson. Good cloak and dagger tale, china and the us brought to the brink by a rogue megalomaniac general. No new ground here but well written with a nicely flawed hero.
* “Glasshouse”:amazon by Charles Stross. Far distant future, nano-enhanced humans fighting off bad guys who are infecting human society with the nano equivalent of a virus. Fun romp, nicely imagined. Stross is reliably entertaining
* “The Monsters of Templeton”:amazon by Lauren Groff. A young woman returns to her hometown in a moment of personal crisis and delves into her own surprising past, uncovering a lot of dark family secrets. Oh and there is a sea monster too. And a ghost. Tho the titled monsters are generally the human and personal kind.
* “Thirteen”:amazon by Richard Morgan. Wow, way better than I anticipated. Crazy mix of biotech, world domination schemes, secret agents, super humans, social criticism, with some extreme objectivism thrown in.

Recent Books

* “Darkmans”:amazon by Nicola Barker. This tale is strangely engrossing. Very long. The author challenges you with structure and plot all over the place. One of the reviewers compares it to a david lynch film and that feels about right. None of the characters are fully sane — or are they completely sane and at the mercy of some supernatural being? Or all at the mercy of some incredibly gifted con artist? Or is there something else going on just out of their grasp? Or just out of your grasp?

* “Christine Falls”:amazon by John Banville. Set in Ireland and in Boston, a twisted tale of adoption for sale. Family intrigue, betrayals, murders, deeply flawed and human characters. Great fun.

* “Blasphemy”:amazon by Douglas Preston. Love/hate the book. Fairly typical airport adventure, but with some additional plot depth, which is unfortunately telegraphed, but wrestles with some deep issues about religion, but in a kind of sophomoric way. At times I thought this book would really break out of the genre but then it would collapse back.

* “Sunstorm”:amazon, “Firstborn”:amazon, “Time’s Eye”:amazon by Arthur C Clarke and Stephen Baxter.   Some alien agency mashes up earth’s time/space physics for unknown reasons.   The first is zippy, the second drags a little, the third picks it back up tho is a little choppy.  Overall an OK series tho I might recommend Farmer’s Riverboat series as a more memorable attempt.