Weekly Roundup January 13, 2012 / by Matt Burkhardt

It's been a bit of a busy week for me on the reading front. On Sunday night into the wee hours of Monday morning, I finished Part 3 of Stephen King's 11/22/63, which I've since pushed forward in and am now approaching the halfway point. I posted my review of parts 1-3 here.

Between finishing Part 3 and picking up with Part 4, I took a break for a couple of days and devoured the audio version of Matthew Norman's debut novel, Domestic Violets, which I enjoyed so much I'm struggling with where to begin praising it. A review is coming, though. I promise.

I also listened to a short story called "The Book Case," by Nelson DeMille.  It features one of his best characters, John Corey, who appears in such novels as Plum Island, The Lion's Game, Night Fall, Wild Fire, The Lion, and his upcoming novel The Panther.  "The Book Case" features John Corey in his early days as a Detective with the NYPD, called in to take a look at the scene of what looks to be an accident, a bookcase toppling over and resulting in the death of a New York City bookseller.  Corey deftly surveys the store, determines that this death is no mere accident, and follows through to the conclusion where he elicits a confession from the murderer and their accomplice.

I think the John Corey novels are fantastic.  Corey's sense of humor resonates with me and his adventures in the novels in which he stars make for an enjoyable read. "The Book Case" did not disappoint.

I also discovered great news that I had not seen before while perusing the Fforde News Fflashes at British Author Jasper Fforde's website.  Namely, the seventh volume of his spectacular Thursday Next series, to be titled Dark Reading Matter was, as of October, predicted to be in draft form by December 2011 and "probably" slated for publication in May of 2012.  Even better, The Last Dragonslayer is slated to be published in the United States for the first time in September of this year.

I've been a huge fan of his work since a friend turned me on to A Big Over Easy a few years ago, and I recommend his books to anyone and everyone.  Even though One of our Thursdays is Missing came out in March of 2011, I feel like it's been an age since I had a new book from Fforde, so the prospect of not one but two this year is thrilling, and I will have to make room in my schedule for them.

If you love reading (and, if you don't, I'm not sure why you're reading this) you will love Jasper Fforde's books.  Start with either A Big Over Easy (his first Nursery Crime) or The Eyre Affair (the first novel featuring Literary Detective Thursday Next).  I daresay you'll thank me.

I'll be diving back into 11/22/63 again soon.  I hope to accomplish as much reading as I can manage over my three-day Martin Luther King, Jr. Day weekend so that I can dig into new things.

On Deck: I still intend for my next read to be Mario Puzo's The Godfather, but, depending on how long it takes me to finish 11/22/63, that may wait until February.  I wish the borrowing of ebooks from the library was a little more user-friendly.  Currently, I request something and I get an email when a copy is available.  Then I have three days to download the borrowed book to my Kindle and two weeks to read it.  I got as far as the end of the introduction to The Godfather, but I'm trying not to get into too many books at one time because I've a bad habit of starting things but never finishing them.  Most recently this happened with Ben Mezrich's Sex on the Moon, which I will get back to, but by the time I do, I expect I'll have to start over.  Sadly, I don't expect I'll get to The Godfather before my borrow period expires.

In any event, the plan is to finish 11/22/63, preferably much sooner than January 31.  Then The Godfather, followed by Tony Hawks' Round Ireland with a Fridge.