Hi everyone and welcome to August!

First the bad news – there will be no mid-month newsletter this month. I know many of you like to wait to reply to the reader mailbag until that newsletter. Just a heads up that I won’t be sending out a mid-month newsletter, so you may wish to get your replies in to this one.

And now for the good news – the reason why there will be no mid-month newsletter.

I’ve mentioned in this newsletter over the last couple of years about a new book website I am building. One with so many more features. More than double the amount of authors on Order Of Books.

With the ability to track your favourite authors, and get notified when new books are released. Your own personal book calendar. Ability to mark books read, rate and review them, keep tabs on your reading list. All that good stuff.

Well, the site is live! It’s online! You could visit it right now if you knew the URL.

I just can’t share that with you quite yet!

A lot of the site functions just aren’t live yet. And there are a few other things we hope to get working prior to unveiling it to the public. Such as the ability to import your book lists from websites such as Goodreads etc.

So that’s why I’m skipping the mid-month newsletter. All my focus work-wise is going into that website right now and getting it ready to go.

So just a little bit longer. When the site is good to go, I’ll be sure to send a one-off e-mail notifying everyone of the new website! I’m hoping it will be this month, although we’re not rushing it. It’ll be ready when it’s ready.

Speaking of websites – thanks to Keith who shared LibraryExtension.com.

I actually couldn’t get the extension to work correctly but what it does is when you are browsing the likes of Amazon etc, it will tell you if the book you are looking at is available in your current library system and you can borrow or place holds on the books. Pretty cool.

Another neat website – RecommendMeABook.com. It gives you the first page of a book, and if you are interested in it you can click to reveal the title and author. You can filter it by genre as well.

And one quick additional note. The stomach pains I mentioned last month ended up being gallstones and I have a “fair amount”. So I need to have surgery to have my gallbladder removed. Unfortunately, the Canadian health care system isn’t all it’s made out to be, and I’ve been told that could be a year or so away. So we’ll see how it goes.

Okay onto book discussion for this month.

Still watching Bosch. Loving it. I’m a few episodes into Season 5 now. It’s cost me many sleepless nights. One, in particular, was when I was away last weekend for my anniversary. It was about 1 am, my wife was asleep and I decided to watch a little bit before bed. I had 20 minutes left in Season 4, Episode 8 so aimed to wrap up that episode.

Well that episode ended in a crazy manner, and there was nothing I could do but watch the “first 5 minutes” of episode 9. Which turned into the entire episode. Then I only had the finale left, so had to watch that of course!

I wasn’t the best company the next morning at breakfast!

I watched The Gray Man movie on Netflix, based on the books by Mark Greaney. Eh. It just felt like a very paint-by-the-numbers action thriller, and really missed the excitement and thrill of the novels. I was on the edge of my seat when reading the book. I didn’t feel that way at all when watching the movie.

Not a bad movie, just a tad dull.

Haven’t had the chance to see Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens yet. I’ll probably wait for it to hit streaming services.

I read Upgrade by Blake Crouch. I enjoyed it but it wasn’t anywhere near as good as Recursion, or Dark Matter. It felt like Blake had invested a massive chunk of time in learning everything there was to know about genomes and DNA, and really wanted to make that clear. It sort of bogged down the book, which was light on action.

If you enjoyed it, I’d highly recommend you read the Brilliance Trilogy by Marcus Sakey. Similar concept, but I much preferred that trilogy.

I read the new standalone thriller by Ruth Ware, The It Girl.

This was an interesting one. The timeline jumps from when the characters were at university, and one of them was murdered, to the present when the murderer died in prison. He always claimed he was innocent, and now some evidence has come to light that makes it look like it’s a possibility.

The characters and the story itself? Very average at best. But what made this book was the whodunnit aspect. There were a solid 6 or 7 people who could have murdered the girl – including the man found guilty of the murder – and it really kept me guessing. I thought the ending was excellent, and if you’re a fan of whodunnits, this was extremely well done. Highly recommended.

I struggled a bit with audiobooks this month. Last month I mentioned that I read Two Nights in Lisbon by Chris Pavone. That was the first time I read Chris, and I loved it and wanted to read more.

Well, I started The Travelers, a standalone that Chris wrote. One problem. I mentioned that some people complained that Two Nights in Lisbon was a bit “wordy”. While I didn’t mind that in reading format, it resulted in this audiobook being over 17 hours long and you REALLY notice all of that extra verbiage.

I’ve stopped listening to it and have started to read it instead. I’d listened for about an hour and it felt like almost nothing had happened. Much easier to read these.

I decided to go with a John Grisham novel, and started listening to The Whistler only to realize after an hour that I had already read it. Oops.

Funny how the mind works. While I only have vague recollections of the book itself, I remember exactly where I was when I read a large chunk of the book. I was waiting for my wife in the car while she was shopping in another city, and I read a good few hours of it while there.

I’ve started listening to True Believer, the second book in the James Reece series by Jack Carr. I’d read the first book a couple of years ago and found it quite dull, which is surprising as it normally checks all the boxes for what I like in that type of book.

So I’ve decided to listen to this one and hopefully get into it because I know many of you love that series.

Very sad to hear of the passing of Stuart Woods. I was always impressed with how many books he put out each year even later in life. A very popular author and he will be missed. Eric Flint also sadly passed away this month.

As is per usual with author deaths – I find out in a way that always bothers me. I get a notification that an author is trending on my website and getting 800-3000% more traffic than usual or something like that. Then I look to see if there is a reason for it and yep – that’s why.

Alright, that’s it from me. You won’t hear from me until September unless we manage to launch that website before then.

Each month we give away 5 $25 Amazon gift certificates to random subscribers.

To win all you have to do is be a subscriber. Nothing more! When we go to hit “Publish” we take a list of all of our subscribers, throw them into a random draw and those are the winners.

Our winners this month are:

Linda from Newport, NH (email begins with o2)
Patty H. from Naples, FL
Lois, C. from Cleveland, OH
Dianne B. from Spokane, WA
Jim from Phoenix, AZ (Email begins with sta)

All of you have been e-mailed. If you don’t see anything, check your junk folder or contact me.

Graeme
OrderOfBooks.com

Quote of the Month

“I have lived a thousand lives and I have loved a thousand loves.  I’ve walked on distant worlds and seen the end of time,  Because I read.”

George R.R. Martin

Submitted by Donald.   Submit your own quotes; just hit reply.

Book Recommendations

Last month I featured book recommendations from prior newsletters.  Many of you wrote to say how much you loved this and as I am under time constraints this month, I will do it again.  Thanks for the feedback!

In this section, I give 5 random book recommendations.  They can be old books, they can be new.  But either way – I recommend you read them if the type of genre they are in appeals to you.   Feel free to e-mail suggestions to site@orderofbooks.com as many of the suggestions each month are from our readers.  If you wish to add a description for the book around the same size as the ones below that’d be great too!  I should note we also have a huge backlog of recommendations so if you don’t see one that you recommended then don’t worry – it’ll show up eventually!

Alphabet House by Jussi Adler-Olsen

(April 2017)  You may know Adler-Olsen from the popular Department Q series but he has written one incredible novel outside of that series known as The Alphabet House.  A psychological thriller which takes place in WWII Nazi Germany – it’s about two UK pilots whose plane is shot down.  They basically go in disguise as wounded SS officers to avoid detection but end up in a mental hospital.  It’s an amazing story – particularly the first half – and an interesting look at a side of the war we never see.

Before the Fall by Noah Hawley

(September 2016)

This was our book of the month a few months ago and I finally got around to reading it.  Noah Hawley’s Before The Fall is an excellent book and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.

He’s a very fresh writer with a great style and he takes an airplane crash and turns it into a book you just can’t put down.  Highly recommended. 

Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn

(August 2016) I’m sure the majority of you have read or at least heard of Gillian Flynns Gone Girl but have you read any of the other novels she has written?  Flynn has 2 other full novels and Sharp Objects is my favourite – about a reporter who is fresh out of a psych hospital and has to go back to her home town to cover some murders.  

Flynn does an incredible job – you’ll feel like you were right there.

The Ranger by Ace Atkins

(March 2018) First book in the Quinn Colson series.  Reader N. Stevenson sent the below:   Colson is a former Army Ranger from Tibbehah County in northern Mississippi.

In the first book, he goes back to his small southern hometown to attend the burial of his uncle Hamp, the long-time sheriff of Jericho. Shenanigans abound. 

Atkins is a strong writer, capable of narrative fiction much deeper than the Quinn Colson series, most noticeable in “Crossroad Blues” and his Nick Travers series. He occasionally flexes his literary muscles in The Ranger series (“I’m not shy, but I draw the line at pregnant teens” is one of Quinn’s early lines, and to me demonstrated Atkins’ ability to portray a strong moral character without blustering about Faulkner-like.)  Colson is NOT Jack Reacher.

Nothing he does is superhuman, and his lifestyle is unremarkable. Still, Atkins has created a strong protagonist, one the reader can’t help but admire.  The cast of recurring characters is complex, a black woman deputy who was the captain of the Rifle Shooting Team at Ole Miss; a grizzled barber who served three tours in Vietnam; a fellow Afghanistan vet who lost an arm to an IED and struggles with drink but (with no schmaltz) makes his way back; an old high school girlfriend recognizable to every man who reads the series as THAT girl; a mother who worships Elvis; an estranged father who was a Hollywood stunt driver, most famous for the creek-jumping scene in Smoky and the Bandit; and a deliciously greasy-evil antagonist a generation past Quinn, who owns most of Jericho (including the strip club) and manages to make enough trouble to interest the FBI.  A fun, well-written, engaging series. 

Turtles All The Way Down by John Green

(December 2017) You’re going to see this one on a lot of “Best of 2017” lists and for good reason.  John Green is a really refreshing author.  It took a little while for him to write after the hugely successful The Fault in Our Stars but it was worth the wait.  An extremely powerful book about a teenage girl who is living with OCD and anxiety  Absolutely captivating and one book that I couldn’t put down.  

August 2022 Book of the Month

Girl, Forgotten by Karin Slaughter

I really enjoyed the novel Pieces of Her which I read earlier this year (reminds me; I still need to watch the Netflix series), so I’m really looking forward to this book.

Girl, Forgotten is another book featuring Andrea Oliver, the protagonist in Pieces of Her.

This is a sequel and Andrea has changed from when we last saw her.  She’s now a US Marshal and is visiting a town under the guise of protecting a judge.  In reality, she’s here to explore a 40 year unsolved murder.

Releases August 23rd.  Pre-order now.

10 More Notable Books Releasing August 1-31

August Charities

While I appreciate all offers of donations to show your appreciation for the site and newsletter, I’d much rather you do that by supporting some great causes.  Each month I pick a few select charities broken down by our most popular countries or topics that you can support instead.   Thanks! 

No-Kill Shelter: The Finger Lakes SPCA
Animal Hospice: Angels with Misplaced Wings
Guide Dogs: Guiding Eyes
Trees: Archangel Ancient Tree Archive

I rotate this list each month.  Feel free to suggest a favourite charity – hit reply.

Picture of the Month

Amazing book related tattoo submitted by Rachel. 
Love this.  Both the idea, and the work!  
Send in your own to site@orderofbooks.com or by replying!
Images, jokes, etc.  We’ll take it all!

Your Thoughts

Last month I asked what questions you would ask your favourite authors if you could sit down and chat with them. The replies are later in the newsletter.

This month’s question is:

What is your favourite book to movie/TV show adaptations?

I asked this question in March 2017 and thought it would be fun to revisit it, especially with so many new subscribers since then.

Back then I mentioned The Firm and The Runaway Jury by John Grisham, as well as Gone Girl.  I also mentioned Absolute Power by David Baldacci which surprises me as thinking about it now, I don’t think I would rate that one high at all.  I mean it was decent but nothing special.

I would of course add Bosch to the list.  I’d also add the Reacher series on Netflix.  I also really liked what they did with The Flight Attendant as they put a lot of effort into that one.

The Martian was another really good adaptation.

What about you?  What is your favourite book to movie/TV adaptations?

E-mail us your feedback to site@OrderOfBooks.com  or just reply to this e-mail, and we’ll pick the best comments and feature it in next months newsletter.  Five people will also randomly win a $25 gift certificate to Amazon.

Reader Mailbag

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Order of Books » Newsletter » August 2022 Newsletter

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