Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Flat on my back and novels #7 & 8

Have you ever tried to write while in a prone position? I'm tellin' ya, it ain't easy, that's why there's been little to no activity on this blog for over a week. After almost a month and seven or eight trips to my very wealthy chiropractor, I'm still not up to sitting for long periods. Standing is slightly better. Walking is great, but I find it difficult to do for eight hours straight. Keep running into walls, chairs, co-workers and friends.

However, I have read two other novels since my last post, A Clue for the Puzzle Lady by Parnell Hall was the first. I enjoyed this one. It was a mystery of the old school. Fun characters, fun clues, and a free crossword puzzle, which I didn't do. I figured the librarian would complain. I recommend this one for cozy mystery fans and authors. It maintains the basic spirit of a good mystery and the crossword gimmick is great. Donald Maas mentions it in his Breakout Novel book.

Grift Sense by James Swain was the second. This, too, was an enjoyable mystery, one that involved no corpse, by the way. I'm not a gambler, having a simple knowledge of statistics and all, but I enjoyed the character of Tony Valentine, a retired cop who now spends his days sniffing out hustlers in Vegas and other such places. Tony has morals in his totally corrupt surroundings. He doesn't gamble himself, doesn't drink, and **gasp** has only slept with his wife, now dead. I did find it hard to feel sorry for the casino owners getting ripped off. I mean, really, poor babies. Those who've made vast fortunes taking money from suckers now find themselves getting swindled. Swain makes it fascinating, though, going into a bit of detail how the scams are pulled off and the excessive measures casino owners, cops, and state gaming agencies take to prevent the cheaters from prevailing. While the book contained the language expected from this type and the sex was present, though minimal, I enjoyed it. Tony Valentine is a detective we feel lilke we can get behind and root for.

Okay, I've done my duty and updated my blog. If you'll envision me lying on my bed, in sweats, two pillows under my legs, one on my stomach, with my laptop propped on it and tilted downward, you'll understand why writing is a chore. Maybe I'll invent a two-piece keyboard so I can lay them on either side of me and type that way. I'd never get the numbers straight, though.


Dineen A. Miller said...

Good grief, man! What did you do to yourself? I leave for a week and you get yourself in trouble. ;-) Praying for a speedy recovery.

Robin Cynclair said...

Dare I ask what you did to throw out your back so badly? Sheesh...we can't leave you alone for a minute! Prayers you'll recover quickly.

Camy Tang said...

Sorry to hear your back is so painful. I'll be praying. In the meantime, just enjoy the time to read. :)