Category Archives: Reading List

If you like Cross, you may also like Kincaid Strange


If you like my Cross books, you may want to check out Kristi Charish‘s new Kincaid Strange series. Strange is a voodoo practitioner in Seattle who lives with the ghost of a dead grunge rock star and solves supernatural mysteries. What more do you need to know than that?

Charish is also the author of the Owl series of books, about a relic hunter who travels the world encountering various magical artifacts and supernatural baddies. It would make a great video game!

Check out the interview I did with Charish about the first book in the new series, The Voodoo Killings, if you want to learn more.


Bookshelf: Waters of Versailles by Kelly Robson


I enjoyed the hell out of this novella by Kelly Robson, who happens to be an amazing person as well an insanely gifted writer. You can read it for free at Tor or buy it through Kindle, etc. Here’s the blurb:

“Waters of Versailles” by Kelly Robson is a charming novella of court intrigue in 1738 Versailles as a clever former soldier makes his fortune by introducing a modern water system (and toilets) to the ladies of the palace. He does this with magical help that he may not be able to control.

It’s witty, charming, funny and surprisingly touching. Joy.

A welcome diversion


I’m happy to be reading the latest poetry from my pal George Murray. It’s a crazy little book, with poems made of the ceaseless babble of modernity’s data streams (here’s a teaser). They read like Facebook updates crossed with news headlines crossed with overheard conversations and all the rest of the cacophony of our daily lives. Only, you know, poetic. Plus, the quote on the back cover is from me!

Read This! The Burning Dark


I just finished The Burning Dark by Adam Christopher and I loved it. What’s not to love, after all? It’s a space station ghost story starring a troubled war hero who won an important victory against the mysterious alien Spiders — at a great personal cost. A war hero whose war records have strangely disappeared when he arrives at the space station, which orbits a dark star that will fuck you up. It’s a little bit of action, a little of military sci-fi and a whole lot of suspense. If you’re a fan of the sci-fi film Event Horizon, you’ll like The Burning Dark. Plus, it looks like there’s a sequel!

Thanks to My Bookish Ways for the recommendation!

Read This! – Operation Arcana


Swords and sorcery! Assault rifles and arcana! Elves and evil! Wizards and weaponry! Military maneuvers and eldritch evasions! What more do you want out of an anthology?


Just finished the fine Shakespeare’s Rebel by CC Humphreys and now I’m off to interview him about what it was like to write the character of Shakespeare into his book. It’s a challenge, as I know all too well….

Read This! – The Devil You Know

devilThe Devil You Know follows Evie, a young reporter working on the breaking Paul Bernardo story. (For those of you who don’t remember Bernardo, he was a serial killer and rapist who terrorized the Scarborough area in the 1980s.) Evie is haunted by the memories of a childhood friend who was murdered — which parallels author de Mariaffi’s own life. She spends her time researching other murdered and missing girls, to the point where she spends more time with the dead than the living.

Evie is also being stalked by a man who lurks on her fire escape, just outside her kitchen window. Or is she? The stalker is a phantom, never truly seen. He may be a killer waiting for the right moment to strike or he may just be someone she’s dreamed up. To say any more would be to give away too much of the story.

The settings of The Devil You Know are modern-day gothic: a newspaper vault that bears more than a passing resemblance to a tomb, the eerily empty cottage at the edge of civilization — hell, the man on the fire escape invokes the spirit of the vampire at the window. It’s a creepy, eerie book, one that’s made all the more powerful because it makes you realize that this is simply the daily life for many women around the world. The Devil You Know is the devil we all know.

B.C.’s bookish blades

I’ve published a piece called B.C.’s Bookish Blades over at the Province. It features three insanely talented writers from B.C. talking about their new books: CC Humphreys, Sebastien de Castell and Ian Weir. These are the writers who make other writers insane with jealousy because they have both the commercial chops and the literary language. Great stuff. Check out their books today!

Historical thrillers are nothing new. In fact, they’ve been around since we started recording history. What are The Odyssey and Beowulf if not their era’s version of Dan Brown or Andrew Pyper?

But a trio of B.C. authors are writing a new chapter for the historical thriller genre, and they’re turning to past masterpieces for inspiration. C.C. Humphreys, Sebastien de Castell and Ian Weir are also breaking down some of the walls between genre fiction and literary fiction to write perhaps the most literary thrillers yet.


Why YA?

Lots of people have been arguing online about whether or not adults should read YA books, so I decided to chime in over at The Province.

Admit it. You’ve done it. You’ve read a YA book and you liked it.

That’s YA as in young adult. And the odds are that if you’re reading this, you’re a fully grown adult. Maybe even a senior citizen.

So why are you reading books meant for teens?

Join Team Squid!

Help fund the first all-women Lovecraftian anthology, edited by editors extraordinaire Silvia Morena-Garcia and Paula Stiles. Why a woman Lovecraft tome? Silvia explains:

Why did you decide to do this?

Do girls just not like to play with squids? That’s the question an editor asked on Facebook, wondering about the lack of female writers in his TOC. What followed was a long discussion on Lovecraftian fiction and women, and the need for an answer.

At first I threw the idea of collaborating on a book of Lovecraftian fiction by women on Facebook and it seemed like it could be a small project between friends. But somehow the word spread and suddenly I was getting dozens of messages and e-mails from women asking if they could contribute to the project. I realized that there were a lot of women who were suddenly very interested in getting together. These responses prompted me to crowdfund an anthology.