Inquiring Minds….

MercedestheVolkswagonMechanicSo all of us are readers, right?

We’re the ones who were “born with a book in our hands” and who are reading in the carpool lane, or in the doctor’s waiting room, or on the metro, subway, bus or train, and miss our stops.  We’re the people who keep a running list of books we’re waiting to see “appear” on the bookshelf or in the Kindle or Nook “Forthcoming Books” list.

And, if you’re like me, you have a list of those books you WISH the author had written – the sequel, the prequel, the sidekick’s story – a book that just never got to market, for whatever reason.  Thanks to the new face of publishing, with independent publishing and e-books, sometimes authors can give you that book.  Sometimes now, you see that wonderful story you’ve always wanted appearing, like magic, on the Amazon or Nook bestseller list.

Then there’s the book-out-of-the-blue, that you never expected to like, and never expected to WANT to like.  A story you stumble across or someone recommends, that just POW! hits you.   You then read everything that author ever wrote and anxiously look them up on GoodReads or Wikipedia, praying that they’re still writing, still producing that series, or those stories.

Like you, I’m always reading.  It recharges my batteries, both as a person and as a writer.  Something about escaping into a storyteller’s world – an alternate reality, if you will – lets me relax, and enjoy and get away just enough to be able to come back to my “real” world a better, more able to cope person.

LanierSterlingE-TheUnforsakenHiero  What’s a book you wish an author had written?  For me, there’s an author named Sterling Lanier and he wrote a book called Heiro’s Journey.  There was a second book in the series, but it left us all hanging and will, now, forever be “unwritten” as he’s passed away.  (As an aside, he was an editor first, and is credited with getting Frank Herbert’s Dune series published.)  And I would have so loved for there to be more stories from David Eddings, and Michael Crichton, both of whom have also gone on to the Writer’s Guild in the Sky.

And much as I love the Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs (pictured above with Blood Bound) I’d LOVE, LOVE, LOVE to have more stories set in her original world of Dragon Blood and Dragon Bones.

Is there a character from a famous author you’d like to see get their own book?  There are a few of these for me too.  I’d love to have known Duncan Idaho’s story – his whole story – from Frank Herbert’s Dune.  Or had the couple from Casablanca have their HEA. 

Is there a book you’re anxiously awaiting?  Entangled in You, by Sylvia Day is one I’m waiting on. kingofswordandsky The next Sophia Nash book.  Bandit books that are in the pipeline, and so on.

If you’re looking for a new author to read, where do you look?  Amazon Bestseller lists?  NYTimes bestseller lists?  The RITA lists? I’ve stumbled upon some wonderful authors while reading for contests – CL Wilson’s Lord of the Fading Lands (Tairen Soul) series is one I first read in a contest.  So is Darynda Jones’s First Grave on the Right and it’s follow on books.

Do you take a friend’s recomendation?  For me, it depends on the friend…. Grins.  I have one friend who reads what I like to call “Oprah Book Club Books.”  You know, books full of angst and despair with nary an HEA in sight.  She loves them.  I loathe them.  If she loves it, I stay away. 

On the other hand, if y’all, or my Bandita Sisters recommend a book, I’m usually going to go buy it and give it a try.

Have you ever read a book that was just terrible – poorly written, or badly edited – but the idea was so compelling that you read it anyway?  There was one of these for me, the book was so lonnnnnnnng and it should have been 100 pages shorter, and it needed a pruning of the narrative description SO badly, but the story was so good, I read the whole dune_frank_herbertdarn thing anyway.

Is the book you’re reading right now from a favorite author, or from a recommendation?

Our guests seem to feel that you Bandita Buddies rock – which you do – and they always want to come back and visit with us and talk to you.  Do you go look at our guest’s websites, check out their excerpts?

Do you find books on Facebook, Goodreads or Twitter?  And, while we’re on that subject, have you liked your favorite Bandits on all these cool Social Media thingies?  Grins.

Let’s talk books!!

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  • Mary Preston says:

    Hi, a great post thank you.

    Just lately most of the books I’ve been reading have been recommended by my daughter. I’m reading BATTLE ROYALE by Koushun Takami right now. It’s a page turner.

    Instead of excerpts I prefer to check out first pages. By the end of the first page I generally know if it’s a book or author for me.

    • Mary – Looks like the GR is staying with you today. Someone should write a book about him!

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hey Mary! So the Rooster is taking up roost at your house, eh? :>

      I’ve not heard of that author you mentioned. I’ll have to go check it out. I love it when you have someone who reads things you like and recommends a new author! My sister and I laugh about our different taste. She’ll say, “Oh, I read the BEST book….you would hate it…” Grins.

    • Mary, congrats on the rooster!

  • Jane says:

    Hi Jeanne,
    Right now I’m reading one of Ken Jennings’ trivia books. I’ve seen a few of his tweets and he’s pretty funny, so I decided to check out his books. I do check out a guest author’s site for more info about their books and read the excerpts. I’m not on FB, but I find books through the various blogs and review sites I visit.

    • Hey Jane – You nabbed the GR. Congratulations! Now there’s the hero of a future book!

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hi Jane! So you do check things out from blogs? Some studies that Romance Writers of America did suggested that people DID use blogs as a source for finding new authors/books. Good to know it’s true of one of our most avid readers! :>

      I like Ken Jennings too. Hadn’t thought to follow him on Twitter. I’ve checked out the book by the guy who wrote the irreverent, equally offending book on God, The Last Testament, a Memoir by God. He does not pull his punches at all. Funny but it’ll make you wince sometimes. His Tweets are always worth a chuckle, though.

  • Helen Sibbritt says:


    I have so many books to read and love it deciding what to read next is always a hard chore for me LOL so many great books and so little time to read them all. I have got so many fantastic recomendations from here and goodreads and friends and ARRA truly I am blessed.
    Facebooks and guest websites are a great place to find new books for me.

    At the moment I am reading a book that I am doing a review for ARRA for a Kallie Lane one the 3rd in a series I read the other 2 and loved them and am really enjoying this one also.

    Have Fun

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hey Helen! I’ll have to go look up Kallie Lane if you liked her. :> You always have good suggestions. This is the thing though – the studies show that you’ll trust a friend’s recommendation far more than something like Publishers Weekly, or something like that. Is that true for you?

  • Jeanne – Interesting post!

    I’m currently reading a favorite guest author’s book, Sandy Blair’s The King’s Mistress. Loved the cover from the day she guest blogged with us.

    There are several books that I’ve bought from our guest bloggers. I hope I’m not unusual in that way (grin). While a personal recommendation is still the best way to find a good book, I find many here from the blog and from judgeing contests. While I’m on Facebook, it doesn’t do it for me.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Thanks, Donna! Oh, Sandy’s books are good, aren’t they!! I frequently whip out the Kindle just after reading the guest post or the excerpt and buy right then.

      Does anyone else do that?

      I too get a lot from judging contests. That’s such an interesting way to find a new author. I’ll look at books I see people recommend on Twitter, but not from Facebook, for some reason. Myabe I’m just overloaded on Facebook! Hahaha!

    • Donna, Sandy is one of my all time favorite story tellers. Good thing since I usually read them before they go to publication. She has a new one she’s working on that goes back to the Castle Blackstone Novels, she’s republishing as an Indie author! Can’t wait to get my hands on it…it’s titled THE WARRIOR.

  • catslady says:

    I find books to read from so many various people and places that it’s hard to keep track lol. My current read is The Heir by Grace Burrowes. I won that book and now I’ve gone on to buy many of her other stories – I just love when that happens.

  • landra graf says:

    Love this post!
    I’ve currently got my eyes on several books, but I just wrapped up Eloisa Jame’s serial novel, As You Wish.

    Now, I’m diving into a few oldies that were recommendations on forum boards. I’m also searching for best Alpha Male or the Tortured Hero recommendations so I’ve found a few classics that would have otherwise skipped my notice. I’m always on the lookout for new Bandita books too.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Grins. Well, on behalf of all the Bandits, THANKS!, Landra!! :>

      I’ve got As You Wish in my queue for reading. I heard it’s good.

      Glad you find good stuff here, as well as on the forums and boards. Are you doing a post on the Tortured Hero? Add Anna’s Matthew from Untouched to that (he’s MINE, I tell you, MINE!!) And pretty much all her heroes. She likes to torture them….then give them their best reward ever. Grins.

  • Janga says:

    What’s a book you wish an author had written?
    Growing up, I loved and frequently reread Maud Hart Lovelace’s Betsy-Tacy series. Betsy Ray, the main character ends up with Joe Willard, the perfect hero for her, but she breaks the heart of a Tony, a lovable “bad boy,” in the process. Betsy’s younger sister Margaret adores Tony. I will always wish Lovelace had written a book in which Tony returned to Deep Valley and fell in love with a grown-up Margaret. I like to see all the characters I love with their HEA. 🙂

    Is there a character from a famous author you’d like to see get their own book?
    I’m practically dancing with joy that Connie Brockway has announced that the story of Giles, Lord Strand, (No Place for a Dame) will be released in September. I have been waiting for this story since I read All Through the Night in 1997.

    Is there a book you’re anxiously awaiting?
    Many of them. I keep a book calendar of the release date of books I’m eagerly anticipating, and I have more than 150 titles on my list for May-December. I’m sure I’ll be adding others. There’s a wealth of Bandita titles on the list along with the Brockway mentioned above and new books from Jo Beverley, Marry Jo Putney, Loretta Chase, Sherry Thomas, Joanna Bourne, Miranda Neville, Virginia Kantra, Rachel Gibson, Lauren Willig, and several dozen others. I have a dozen titles on my Kindle list for the next two weeks. Some are preordered; others are on my order-as-soon-as-the-budget-allows list. Among those, two that I will read as soon as they are downloaded are His Hesitant Heart by Carla Kelly and Barefoot in Sun by Roxanne St. Claire.

    If you’re looking for a new author to read, where do you look? Amazon Bestseller lists? NYTimes bestseller lists? The RITA lists?
    I look at all the bestseller lists and the RITA finalists, but I usually don’t spend my money until I have back-up recommendations from a friend or a trusted review source. I discovered Fiona Law from last year’s RITA list. I checked the reviews for Boomerang Bride and was persuaded to buy it. I loved it. So far I’ve bought Zoe’s Muster by Barbara Hannay using the same process. I hope for the same results.

    Do you take a friend’s recomendation?
    I echo your response, Jeanne. It depends on the friend and on the genre. I have friends who rave about paranormals, urban fiction, and thrillers, all of which I rarely read. I have other friends who determine a book’s worth by how esoteric and “challenging” it is. Their recommendations send me scurrying in the opposite direction. But I’m familiar enough with some reviewers to trust their recommendations, and I have a core of friends who know my reading tastes well enough that I trust anything they recommend. I have confidence in some author recommendations. Eloisa James, Julia Quinn, Anne Gracie, Anna Campbell, for example, have all led me to some great reads.

    Have you ever read a book that was just terrible – poorly written, or badly edited – but the idea was so compelling that you read it anyway?
    Often. The most recent was last week. If I fall in love with the characters, I can forgive almost anything.

    Is the book you’re reading right now from a favorite author, or from a recommendation?
    I’m reading Darius, the first in the Lonely Lords series by Grace Burrowes, who has become an autobuy author for me, but I read her first based on a GoodReads recommendation.

    Do you go look at our guest’s websites, check out their excerpts?
    Sometimes. It depends on the genre/subgenre. Not infrequently, I do better than read an excerpt: I buy the book.

    Do you find books on Facebook, Goodreads or Twitter? And, while we’re on that subject, have you liked your favorite Bandits on all these cool Social Media thingies?
    I check out some books that I see recommended on social media. I downloaded one recommended by a favorite author yesterday, but only after I had read a summary and several reviews. I think I’ve connected with all the Banditas I know are on FB or Twitter. My GoodReads friends are much more limited since my activity is pretty much limited to one GR group and to posting my own reading record and reviews. Other than Anna C., I’m not sure which Banditas are on GR.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hey Janga! I must now go look up Lovelace as I recognize “Deep Valley” for some reason. And isn’t it so wistful about those books? Sterling Lanier left that series hanging, I think, because he didn’t get a new contract for that series. In 2007, when he died, he didn’t have the options we do now of going Indie if the publisher bombed out on us.

      I hadn’t heard about the Brockaway Lord Giles story! WOOT!!

      I’m impressed with that list. I have some of my favs too, but not quite so extensively. I’m going to have to do better there! Hahaha!

    • Janga, right back atcha on the recommendations. Often your recommendations become autobuys for me – thank you so much for putting me onto Julia Spencer-Fleming, by the way. She’s phenomenal and I’ve spread the word far and wide. I’m not sure she would have come into my orbit without your recommendation. Even if the authors you recommend don’t grab me by the throat, I’m yet to read a book you’ve recommended that I haven’t enjoyed. That’s a pretty fabulous record!

  • Hey Jeanne!

    Sigh. So many books, so little time.

    Currently I’m reading:

    Addison Fox’s Tempting Aquisitions on my iphone. Love it!

    Shanna McKenna’s Blood and Fire (paperback) My oldest gave it to me for Christmas.

    AFTER I finish writing the RS novella SEIZED, that I’m working on, I plan to take time to read the new JR Ward book, LOVER AT LAST

    And of course, the next Amanda Quick comes out on my second child’s birthday, so that will be a must buy for me. 🙂

    I stumbled upon the AQ series years ago in the groceries. No recommendations for that, but I’ve recommended her to literally hundreds of people.

    The JR Ward series was a recommendation from Addison Fox…and I’ve loved everyone of them. (They’re a long, slow read for me, but only because I want to savor each scene.)

    Suzanne Brockmann’s early works were a recommendation by a friend who reads about 300 books a year. She gave me 7 of the Tall, Dark & Dangerous books. Read them all in a week. Have read most of her other works, too, although with shelf space limiting, she’s not always an auto-buy these days.

    So, yes, I do listen to recommendations from friends.

    BUT I do NOT read anything that Oprah’s book club has recommended. Like you, I can’t deal with the depression in them!!

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hey Suz!! I second that “so many books…” comment! :>

      You’re a great connector there yourself, ma’am. I’ve picked up many a book – including Addison, Dee Davis, and others – based on your recommendation. Like Janga said, you get to know who’s reading taste is similar and go with their recco’s! :>

      And “hear, hear!” on the depressive nature of the book-club-books. :>

  • Cassondra Murray says:

    Hi Jeanne,

    To be honest. I get most of my new reads from Romance Bandits or our guests. I also get a few from friends who say, “You HAVE to read this book!!!” I have one from Steve called “The Secret Life of Bees” that I haven’t read yet, but that everyone says is amazing. I’ve been putting it off because I know an HEA is not guaranteed, and I have to be in the right mindset for such a thing. I have such a long backlog of books that are to-be-read that I never have trouble finding a book. I wish I could read more often, and read faster, but I”m a SLOOOOOOOW reader. *heavy sigh* So many books, so little time.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hey Cassondra! I’m with you on that. Most of my TBR pile folks are Bandit Guests. Also, books my Bandit Pals, and the Bandit Buddies recommend. I love being able to check out new authors that our Buddies recommend, right along with chicking out authors you and the other Bandits bring on as guests.

      I read fast, but with writing and family, the time TO read gets cut down. Ah, well….thankfully books are always there!

  • Minna says:

    Right now I’m reading The Ruby Knight by David Eddings. It’s a real pity he didn’t have the chance to finish the book he was writing. And I can barely wait until Suzanne McMinn’s new book will be available -in October! A long wait…

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Oh, I love that series, Minna! I didn’t know he had a book he was working on when he passed away. So disappointing not to have that finished. I love his work, esp, the Belgariad.

  • Jeanne, how a propos your post is – but then they always are, dahlink! On a blog somewhere, a reader put me onto the wonderful Maisie Dobbs historical mysteries by Jacqueline Winspear. Finished the latest ELEGIE FOR EDDIE yesterday and it was fantastic. Can’t wait to see what happens next. Then the next book I picked up was strongly recommended by my wonderful critique partner and regular Bandita visitor Annie West. They’re the Bruno Courreges mysteries by Martin Walker. This is the second in the series – the most luscious descriptions of French food and countryside and great characters. Again, not someone who would have come into my orbit without recommendation.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hey Anna! I’ll have to give you the same kudos on the Dunnet mysteries! Now, I’m going to go check out these beauties you just mentioned. They sound right up my alley!


      Love your recommendations, and Jangas, and the other Banditas…and The Dishies…so many…

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Is Pardonable Lies the first one in the Maisie Dobbs books?

      And Bruno, Chief of Police the first in the Martin Walker series?

  • Becke says:


    I brought home the Iron King-Julie Kagawa from Nationals one year. I had never read a YA, but she hooked me and I read the entire series. I’m curious what she’s going to do with Puck. She hasn’t told his story.

    I like to use the Rita’s to help me with selections.

  • Pissenlit says:

    What’s a book you wish an author had written?
    I’ve always wished that Patricia C. Wrede had added a book(or more!) to her Mairelon duology. I wasn’t ready to leave those characters behind so I often reread the two books.

    Is there a character from a famous author you’d like to see get their own book?
    I’d like to see Patricia Briggs write a book about Bran or even a novella about him and what it’s like being the Marrok. Including the day to day little problems he has to deal with. I bet kiddie Mercy’s peanut butter sandwich in the Marrok’s car prank would’ve been fun to see from Bran’s POV. 😀

    Is there a book you’re anxiously awaiting?
    I’m really wanting Alex Hughes – Mindspace Investigations 02 – Sharp. It’s been out for a few days already but I haven’t been near a bookstore lately. Awhile back, I had trouble being patient so I went back and reread the first book.

    If you’re looking for a new author to read, where do you look?
    I’m afraid to say that I don’t actually pay much attention to bestseller or awards lists. I’ll sometimes glance at them but mostly, I look in the “Readers also enjoyed similiar books” sections of Goodreads and here!

    Do you take a friend’s recommendation?
    Depends on the friend, what they’re recommending and why(as in what they liked about it). So…huh…I guess, not so much just because they’re recommending it…heh.

    Have you ever read a book that was just terrible – poorly written, or badly edited – but the idea was so compelling that you read it anyway?
    Yes, though not TOO poorly/badly. I don’t like to, though because it just makes me feel bad at the end because of what potential it had…and that I just read something poorly written/badly edited.

    Is the book you’re reading right now from a favorite author, or from a recommendation?
    Yes! I’m currently reading Julie E. Czerneda’s A Turn of Light and I just started Kate Carlisle’s Peril in Paperback last night! Happy page turning all around!!

    Do you go look at our guest’s websites, check out their excerpts?
    Sometimes, if their books look like my kinda reading. Excerpts, not so much. I’m only a sometimes reader of excerpts because the concept sort of hits my radar as spoilers and I don’t like spoilers.

    Do you find books on Facebook, Goodreads or Twitter? And, while we’re on that subject, have you liked your favorite Bandits on all these cool Social Media thingies?
    I use Goodreads to find books all the time but not at all on Facebook or Twitter because I’m not on either of them. As for that liking thing, no, I got Goodreads so that I could keep track of my reading and to see what my friends(of the in town variety) are reading, no so much for being social…it also aids in instances of Hey!-Can-I-Borrow-That?? 😀

  • Hi Jeanne, popping up from deadline cave to say what a fun post! I must say I’m much less organized than you when it comes to reading. I like that it’s the one part of my life that doesn’t need to be organized!

    I usually wish my fave authors wrote faster. I tend to love glomming on a certain author and read book after book of theirs, so prolific authors are great. I tend to take recommendations from Foanna and of course, from this blog, when it comes to books. I really don’t quite know how I come across new authors and books. They seem to be everywhere I look!

  • Jeanne, what a fun post! I remember carpool books. I had ones I kept for reading while sitting in line.

    As for books I wish authors had written, I would’ve liked to see a followup to The Final Encyclopedia by the Late Gordon R. Dickson from the point of view of protagonist Hal Mayne instead of spending a couple of books with antagonist Blais Ahrens (not sure of the spelling). Dickson died before he ever got back to Hal.

    I’m reading Iron Kin by M.J. Scott, who’ll be my guest in the Lair next week. I’ve been enjoying her Half Light City series. I picked up the first one while browsing in a bookstore.

    I find new books partly from the NYT but mostly from word of mouth, which includes, of course, guests here in the Lair.

    I’m a big believer in reading excerpts and am always baffled when an author has a multi-page website but does not include a sample from the book. I’m not inclined to go hunting one, and I don’t want to download a sample. I want to click on it and read it and decide with no other fuss, muss, or bother.

    I’m anxiously awaiting many, many books, not that there is any shortage in our house. Dee Davis will wind up A-Tac this summer, and I’m looking forward to that despite dreading the series’ end.

  • Tawny says:

    Jeanne 🙂 I love books *ggg* Which means I’m horribly ashamed to admit that I’m way behind in my reading. And because I’m so behind, I tend to stick with my total faves. I do listen to friend’s recommendations, but rarely any others.