The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Summer Reading List

Posted on | June 26, 2018 | 1 Comment

— by Wombat-socho

Good heavens, it’s been almost six months since I sat down and bashed out a book post. I’ll try to be a little more regular about it, maybe step it up to quarterly from semi-annual. We’ll see how it goes.For those of you who have forgotten how these posts work, here’s the FAQ from about five years ago. I am also amenable to bribery if you have a book you want my opinion on, whether it needs praise or burial. There’s a master list of previous book posts here.

Going from most recent to most aged, I’ll start off with the first two issues of Castalia House’s long-awaited Alt*Hero comics, Crackdown and Rebel’s Cell, which take us to a world where superheroes are mostly government-controlled, especially in the EU where the first issue is set. But as we can see in the closing pages of that issue, even in Europe there are superpowered people not on board with that plan…I read both issues on my Kindle Fire, which does a very good job of rendering the comics, and as far as art and story go, the series is off to a good start.

Back in 2017 I reviewed Mark Wandrey’s Cartwright’s Cavaliers, the first book in the Revelations Cycle he co-wrote with Chris Kennedy. The good news is that the other three novels (Asbaran Solutions, Winged Hussars, and Golden Horde) that set the stage by introducing you to the other companies of the Four Horsemen are every bit as good, and even the short story collection A Fistful of Credits, which includes some names you might recognize -Brad Torgerson, Chris Nuttall, Jon Del Arroz, etc. – upholds the standard. I admit that I jumped ahead to read Chris Kennedy’s A Fiery Sunset, in which the war the Revelations Cycle sets the stage for breaks out, before finishing all 12(!) of the books in the cycle, but I couldn’t wait to see where this was going. This is a great series, full of interesting characters with serious problems in a universe where there’s a lot of strange things and stranger aliens yet to be (re)discovered. Highly Recommended.

On a more practical note, Maggie Hogarth has a second how-to book for artists, writers, and other creative types: Business For The Right-Brained. This is another Three Jaguars book, chock-full of illos featuring Business Manager, Marketer, and most importantly, Artist, but also loaded with practical advice, including the all-important question: do you really want to make a career out of art, regardless of the medium? I can’t recommend this book highly enough; in fact, I took the unusual step of buying it in paperback.

Finally, in the It’s Old But It’s Good Department, Mike Williamson’s A Long Time Until Now is another entry in the “modern soldiers in the past” subgenre, and a very good one it is. Two MRAPs full of assorted grunts, Air Force civil affairs troops, and an engineering lieutenant who’s feeling very much out of his depth wind up being dropped into Paleolithic times, along with small bands of other displaced people including Romans. It’s an absorbing read, and handles the complex personal relations of the squad as they try to figure out what’s going on and deal with it. There are supposed to be sequels on the way, and I for one am looking forward to them.


One Response to “Summer Reading List”

  1. FMJRA 2.0: Station To Station : The Other McCain
    June 30th, 2018 @ 10:51 pm

    […] Summer Reading List EBL […]