I’ve written about Jonathan Carroll before at Scranton Page Turner.  Clicking on his name will bring you to my previous entry.  Carroll does it again. He has written another magical piece of literature. Teaching the Dog to Read touches on all that is quintessential Carroll: Death Love Philosophy Talking Dogs   It’s all here.  At less than one hundred pages, Teaching the Dog… is no less a masterpiece then many of Carroll’...

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Time Traveler’s Wife Audrey Niffenegger In 2009, this book caught my attention, as I’m a huge fan of time travel stories.  I cracked the cover and was immediately enthralled.  Claire and Henry are time crossed lovers.  What I found completely fascinating about Time Traveler’s Wife is the mechanics behind time travel in this story.  It is NOT what you’d believe it to be.  I will leave it at that. Emotional, thrilling and surprising this book ca...

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Robert McCammon is a writer I read during a fantasy phase I went through several years ago.  Boys Life and Gone South are two of my favorites although I’ve read others by McCammon.   Boy’s Life Image from: Wikipedia This is likely Robert McCammon’s quintessential book, the novel that put him on the map.  Boy’s life is a fantastic tale of family and loss.  The novel takes place in Zephyr, Alabama.  The protagonist, a young boy named Cory is wor...

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Moon Dance SP Somtow     Moon Dance is a story of a werewolf clan raised in Eastern Europe who escape their homeland for fear of persecution. Does that sound familiar?  This is why I love dark fantasy when done right.  The stories are all merely allegorical.  For those who shun this genre I implore you yet again to read one of my recommends here at Scranton Page Turner and look for the deeper meaning behind the fantastical story the write...

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What Dreams May Come Richard Matheson   Image from: Wikipedia I read Matheson’s What Dreams May Come originally in the early 1990s and the book had such an impact on me that it changed my entire perspective on Life and Death.  There have not been too many books that have had such life altering experiences for me.  What Dreams May Come is on a very short list of such books.  This book should be on EVERYONE’S shortlist of books to read in their ...

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A new Jonathan Carroll book always warms my literary heart.  Mr Carroll is one of the few authors whose books I will buy sight unseen.  A few weeks ago, on October 21st when I returned from dinner I received an email from Jonathan Carroll’s website telling me his new book Bathing the Lion was out in stores.  On my way back to work at the Scranton Library in Madison I made a detour across the street to RJ Julia Booksellers so I could hope beyon...

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September was a wash.  Didn’t get around to writing my columns for September.  It’s the first time I missed the schedule and I apologize for that.  I’m going to a bi-weekly schedule.  These columns will be publishing now the second and fourth Tuesdays of every month to the best of my ability.   Today let’s talk about an old favorite of mine.   Dean Koontz is an author I’ve read consistently in the past.  Haven’t read much of his recent fiction...

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Clive Barker has been a favorite writer of mine since I discovered Weaveworld in 1987. Weaveworld is one of my favorite books of ALL time.  And it is one of the few books I’ve re-read.  In fact it became an annual ritual that at the end of EVERY school year while I attended Southern Connecticut State University that as a release I would pick that book up and read it.   I treasure Weaveworld to such a degree that I own multiple copies of t...

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  Ben Bova has been writing Science Fiction for many years.  I discovered him in the early 1990s when I picked one of his books in the Planet series: Mars This was the first book I read by Bova and the first in the series.  He has since written Planet books: Venus Jupiter Saturn Mercury   He has written sequels to several of the of these.  In my opinion the best in this series is Mars.  I have yet to read any of the sequels.  I’ve pretty ...

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Alright: I’m starting something new at Scranton Page Turner.  Not sure how often this will occur here, however here is the inaugural essay.  This essay will discuss my favorite genre and why I believe it doesn’t get the attention it deserves. Image from: Flickr Science Fiction and Fantasy seems to always get a bum rap, always seems to be the child in the corner, when in actuality, without Science Fiction, many of our technological advancements...

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Out of Captivity
Adventure , Non Fiction / June 15, 2016

I’ve written about survivors of plane crashes before at Scranton Page Turner here: Into the Abyss And here: An Adventure, Law of Attraction and a Lion     In February 2003 three American contractors, Marc Gonsalves, Tom Howes, and Keith Stansell were travelling to South America when their plane went down.  They survived the plane crash only to be captured and held hostage for over five years, by FARC.  At just under 5...

Cuba Strait
Crime , Destination Fiction , Fiction , Mystery / June 8, 2016

Cuba Strait by Carsten Stroud   is full of unexpected twists and turns.  This is the mark of a novelist at the top of his game.  I’ve enjoyed writers who write about Florida crime fiction since discovering Carl Hiaasen several years ago.   Carsten Stroud is another writer to look at specifically Cuba Strait if you like southern crime fiction.  Easy to get into, Cuba Strait had me hooked from the beginning.  An ex cop is bao...

Thunderstruck
Non Fiction , Science / June 1, 2016

Thunderstruck by Erik Larson   I’ve read most of Erik Larson’s books and Thunderstruck as with his other’s hooked me from the first page.  About the invention of wireless this book takes place primarily on the open water.  Thunderstruck tells the story of Guglielmo Marconi, a man obsessed with finding a new way to communicate while away from all known communication devices.  As with Larson’s Devil in the White City, he uses a mu...

Archeology/Adventure
Adventure , Mystery , Science / May 18, 2016

Raptor Red Robert T Bakker Robert Bakker, a contributor to the film Jurassic Park wrote Raptor Red in a style that initially  caught me by surprise but after settling into the narration, I found the style worked very well.  Raptor Red is the name of the dinosaur whose story is being told, oddly enough in the first person with Raptor Red as the protagonist.  Left on her own after an attack killed Red’s mate, she joins forces with her ...

A Whole New Mind
Non Fiction , Science / May 11, 2016

Without the Right Brainers and imagineers, our world as we know it would surely cease to exist as we know it.  Pink goes a step further to suggest that the Right Brainers that imagineers are going to play a bigger role in the future than they did in the past.  Being a Right Brainer myself, this gives me great joy to see.  Do you know if you’re a Right Brainer? Take this Right Brain/Left Brain Test and find out. If you feel like comme...

A Thousand Naked Strangers
Medical , Non Fiction / May 4, 2016

A Thousand Naked Strangers: A Paramedic’s Wild Ride to the Edge and Back.   As I’ve written here at Scranton Page Turner many times, I’m so fortunate to have the job that I do.  Being the book lover that I am, I feel so grateful to have followed this path and didn’t let anyone dissuade me with comments like: How do you expect to make a living doing THAT?   Making a living shouldn’t be what it’s about.  Enjoying your living ...

The Teammates
American History , Non Fiction , Sports / April 20, 2016

The Teammates: A Portrait of a Friendship David Halberstam   Boston Red Sox teammates Bobby Doerr, Dominic DiMaggio, Johnny Pesky, and Ted Williams–who remained close for more than sixty years.  This is the story these six teammates through their years playing for The Boston Red Sox and one last trip some of them took to visit Ted Williams who they knew was dying.   A fabulous book written by a quintessential American...

Dancing on the Head of a Pen
Non Fiction , Uncategorized , Writing / April 13, 2016

Being a writer, I’m always on the lookout for books on writing.  Last month when I found myself between books (A horrible feeling to have if you’re as voracious a reader as I am) I stumbled across Dancing on the Head of a Pen:   A short little book packed with amazing detail.  This book won’t tell you how to write.  It will give you one writer’s advice about how HE writes.  You’re free to take his advice or find another way.  So...

Last of the President’s Men
American History , Non Fiction , Politics / April 6, 2016

I’m changing up my schedule for Scranton Page Turner: It will NOW publish on Wednesdays. History is one of my favorite non fiction genres, especially recent history. History that happened in my lifetime. Because I read it and can recall that it occurred. One of my favorite times to read about is President Nixon’s time in office. All the President’s Men And now to come full circle with Bob Woodward perhaps final story abou...

Gary Braver
Fiction , Medical , Medical Adventure / March 22, 2016

Elixir When a Boston Massachusetts medical research team is sent to Papua New Guinea in search of medicinal plants. the team discovers a plant whose extract can prolong life.  With huge consequences if consumed, the question then becomes: Do you take the elixir? A roller coaster ensues with scenes that appear to have been written for the big screen which is in no means taking away from the written word on the page.  I’ve read several...