Every writer I know is a reader at heart. We all grew up devouring great books, and then some switch tripped in our brains and made us want to create our own. I’m always fascinated by what other folks are reading, too—every flight or train ride, I catch myself looking at the covers of the books people around me bring along, almost without thinking about it.
I can’t read fiction while I’m drafting a novel, because it messes up my writing voice, so the in-between times on my writing calendar are pretty sacred to me, because I still buy books when I see something I want. That leaves me playing a lot of catch up with my teetering to-be-read pile when I have a break. Every once in a while, though, something comes out that jumps to the top of the stack, and 2018 was an extraordinary year for crime fiction here, because that happened three times, and each book was the kind you cannot put down.
I will share which stood out to me over the next couple days, starting with:
Jar of Hearts, by Jennifer Hillier
Jennifer is not only a talented writer, she’s a wonderful person and a fantastic friend, and I was thrilled to bits when this book, a passion project she wrote without a contract, came out last summer to truckloads of critical acclaim. Jar of Hearts is, at its core, a story of friendship and bonds and jealousy and human error, all woven into a wonderful mystery with a twist that caught me off guard. It’s dark, and gory in places, but one of those books that keeps you thinking about the story long after you’ve read the last page.
Come back tomorrow,