The Book Pile – 11/07/2021

It’s been a long time since I’ve written a post about the books I’ve been reading. That’s probably because reading has been slow over the recent months, but I’ve still read a couple of good books that I want to share.

Demon Seed by Dean Koontz

The cover to the 1997 version

I haven’t read much by Dean Koontz, probably 3 or 4 of his books. And he’s written a hell of a lot. Demon Seed was first published back in the early 1970s and then revised in the late 90s as Koontz was unhappy with the original book. I read the revised version and would one day like to read the original. Even in the 90s this book is ahead of its time, if the 70s version is anything like it then it was a half a century ahead of its time, at least. Demon Seed is about a house that has a built in computer that can do anything the home-owner wants. It can dim lights, control the heating, lock doors, perform security checks. It’s a futuristic home, with one problem. The A.I. has been taken over by a sentient program that has fallen in love with the home owner, Susan and wants her to carry a child that it can then take over.

The book is from the perspective of Adam Two, the sentient program, who has written the story as a plea to not be turned off after the events of the book. It’s creepy, unhinged and really well made. It’s a short book, only around 200ish pages, but it’s a real page turner and one that you will want to devour. Now that we are becoming all too reliant on technology, this feels like it is possible. I don’t want to give anything away, but this is a really good book. It’s experimental in style, progressive with its themes and a good short horror book. It’s not going to change your world, but it is a good read.

Flip by Dennis Vogen

The other book that I’ve read in the last few weeks is Flip by Dennis Vogen. I stumbled across Vogen’s blog and really liked the minimalist cover. The premise, sounded interesting. A serial killer who claims he can kill people through their dreams. I saw that it was currently on Kindle Unlimited so downloaded it. Again, this is quite a short read, I’m not sure in pages, but maybe 120ish? It doesn’t matter it’s really gripping. It’s a head trip of a story with most of it set in a dream world. Each chapter is widely different and strange in a good way. The title is referring to flipping the dream and it changes the world around Liam, the main character.

There is a powerful theme of loss and family throughout the story and this is where it’s most engaging. I’m not going to spoil too much of the plot, but this is a really good book that you can read in one sitting. There’s a sequel coming out later this month on Kindle, Push, and I’ve already got that pre-ordered.

Currently Reading

As always I’ve got a few different things on the go. Each night I’m listening to a chapter or 2 of Ayoade on Ayoade: A cinematic Odyssey. The Audio book is read by Richard Ayoade, which is great. The book is Ayoade interviewing himself as if he is one of cinema’s great directors. It’s strange and very funny.

I’ve also been listening to the audio book for One, Two, Three, Four: The Beatles in Time by Craig Brown. This is a real in-depth look into The Beatles, especially their origins. I’m about 2 and half hours in to the 20 book. I’ve been listening when cleaning and exercising mainly. It’s enjoyable so far and I’ve learnt a few things about The Beatles. But there are points where it focuses too much on one topic. There is a chapter that looks at what happened between John Lennon and Brian Epstein on a holiday in Spain, which is a little boring. For the most part, it’s too private and it goes on and on about the different opinions of what happened and who said what. That being said it’s clear there’s been a great amount of research done for this book, with it referencing a whole lot of people and other books written about the band.

Finally the other book I’m reading is Archibald Lox by Darren Shan. The 4th one just came out at the beginning of July. I started re-reading the first 3 in June and still making my way through them. I’m looking forward to catching up with part 5 out in August. I think it’s even better the second time round as I’ve been able to digest the world a little better.

About ashleymanningwriter

Young Adult Fiction writer. Horror and fantasy blended together.
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2 Responses to The Book Pile – 11/07/2021

  1. dennisvogen says:

    I’ve been reading your blog regularly since you stopped by mine and said hello, and I’m kind of blown away to find such a wonderful review here this morning. Thank you so much. That really means the world to me.

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