The Self-Made Detective: IQ by Joe Ide

Joe Ide’s debut novel, IQ, won’t revolutionize the detective genre, but it does tell an entertaining story about well-drawn and complex characters. It wasn’t the most exciting crime novel I’ve ever read, but I’d be happy to follow the future exploits of Isaiah Quintabe wherever they lead.

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Insert Gritty Reboot: Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys: The Big Lie

Maybe Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys: The Big Lie would have resonated for me a bit more if I’d ever read Nancy Drew or the Hardy Boys. Instead, I’ve only ever seen their cover illustrations and imagined the sort of squeaky-clean peril they might get themselves into. I think, though, that I still wouldn’t have gotten much from this too-serious gritty reimagining of the classic teen mysteries.

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That Which Unravels: The Readymade Thief

The Readymade Thief by Augustus Rose Published: August 1st, 2017 Publisher: Viking Genre(s): Adventure, Thriller, Mystery Format: Hardcover Length: 384 pages I originally picked up The Readymade Thief by Augustus Rose because the cover caught my eye, but the summary and a few blurbs from some of my favorite authors finished the sale. I started …

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Empty Inside: The Beauty, Volume 1

The Beauty Volume 1 has one cool idea and not much else: there is a new sexually transmitted disease that makes you beautiful. If you contract it, you become young, thin and pretty within minutes. The only apparent side effect is a constant low-level fever, so people go out of their way to get infected. It isn’t long before half the population has The Beauty.

There are factions who object to The Beauty for political and religious reasons, but the real problem is that people with The Beauty are starting to spontaneously combust and nobody knows why. When a woman combusts in public, two police detectives (one of whom is infected) try to find an explanation. They are opposed by government officials trying to cover it up and a shady pharmaceutical CEO who just wants to make a profit. The story turns into a by-the-numbers conspiracy thriller/mystery after only a few pages.

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The Private Eye is Weird Neo-Noir for Luddites

Brian K. Vaughan might be one of the busiest writers in comics, and every new project he announces is weirder than the last. The Private Eye was the first series published through Panel Syndicate, a digital-only, DRM-free, pay-what-you-want imprint that releases comics designed specifically for tablets.

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Bad Medicine Volume 1

Story: Nunzio DeFillipis & Christina Weir Art: Christopher Mitten Colors: Bill Crabtree Published: January 30th, 2013 Publisher: Oni Press Genre(s): Graphic Novel, Fantasy Format: Paperback Length: 120 pages Bad Medicine follows disgraced former cardiologist Dr. Randal Horne and hard-nosed NYPD detective Joely Huffman as they work together to solve strange murders apparently caused by fringe …

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One of Our Thursdays is Missing by Jasper Fforde

Published: March 8, 2011 Publisher: Viking Adult Genre(s): Fantasy, Mystery, Satire Format: Hardcover Length: 384 pages If you happen to be a book nerd who likes fantasy, mystery, satire and a healthy dose of metafiction, the Thursday Next series will be right up your alley. It quickly became one of my favorite series after I …

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iZombie Vol. 1: Dead to the World

Published: March 22, 2011 Publisher: Vertigo Genre(s): Fantasy, Graphic Novel Format: Trade Paperback Pages: 144 Pop culture has been in zombie/vampire/werewolf overdrive the past few years, and it’s pretty rare to find a story that has a unique twist on the mythos. iZombie, an ongoing series from Vertigo by Chris Roberson and Michael Allred, isn’t …

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Across The Universe by Beth Revis

Published: January 11, 2011 Publisher: Razorbill Genre(s): Young Adult, Science Fiction, Romance Format: Hardcover Pages: 416 Across the Universe is a mash-up of scifi, mystery, and young-adult fiction, with a bit of romance thrown in for good measure. In a nutshell, it tells the story of a colony seed-ship on a journey towards a distant …

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You Were Wrong by Matthew Sharpe

Published: August 31, 2010 Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Genre: Literary Fiction Format: Paperback Pages: 192 You Were Wrong is a short book, but manages to wear out its welcome in no time at all. I was ready to throw it against the wall after two chapters, but forced myself to continue reading so that I could …

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2009: My Year in Reading

Another year has come and gone, and as I have since 2006, I kept track of my reading. Last year I managed to read (or listen to) a total of 60 books, which is a personal record. I think what helped me along was the large amount of traveling I did this year. I went on more than one business trip, flew to Pennsylvania for a friend’s wedding, and drove from Redmond, Washington to Sugar Land, Texas with my brother over the Thanksgiving break. That’s a lot of time spent on planes, in airports, and on the road.

Also, I may have read more books this year, but the total number of pages for 2009, 21,718, Is actually lower than my 2008 total of 23,411. I think my ’08 page count is much higher because I read a few giant books that year – The Count of Monte Cristo, which came in at 1488 pages, Cryptonomicon at 1168, Clash of Kings at 1040, and so on. A lot of the books I picked up in 2009 tended to be quick reads, and were comparatively short as well.

A lot of my reading for the year was pulled from the Hugo nominees for best novel, which was an excellent place to find some good books to read. As you’ll note, a number of the books I thoroughly enjoyed last year were nominees. After the jump, I’ll include the list of my favorite books read in 2009, in the order that I read them.

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