One of the first “real” books I read as a kid – meaning not one for school or just aimed at kids – was The Texas-Israeli War: 1999 by Jake Saunders and Howard Waldrop.
I believe I bought it (for $1.25!!) in 1974 or 1975 at Greenwich Village’s legendary Science Fiction Shop. The picture above is of that very copy.
As the description on the cover says, Texas has left the Union, kidnapped the President, and tank-driving Israelis are going to get him back. As a kid I thought this was awesome.
I even did a book report on it in school and actually got a decent grade.
Many years later in 2003 I found Jake “Buddy” Saunders via Google. Buddy founded Lone Star Comics in Texas in 1961 and in the 2000s started MyComicShop.com. I emailed Buddy through the site, asking if he would sign my book.
Buddy was awesome. Not only did he sign it, but he then forwarded my book to Howard Waldrop who signed it as well. Howard continues to write and he has won Nebula and World Fantasy awards.
This post appeared in a slightly different form on my previous site. I have made some updates to it. One thing remains true in all versions of the post: You should be reading Seanan McGuire.
Seanan McGuire, who also writes as Mira Grant, is quickly becoming one of my favorite writers. I first became aware of her writing when I read a rave (and well deserved) review of her book Feed, book one of her Newsflesh trilogy. It is the story of a post-zombie apocalypse world, where humans won the war, but the threat remains. Two internet journalists are embedded on the campaign trail with a candidate for president. Through their eyes we see the post-zombie apocalypse world, and witness as they uncover a conspiracy. It is brilliant, smart, a fantastic read and I cannot recommend it highly enough.
I recently finished reading Indexing, a Kindle serial written under her own name. It too is amazing. Think “Once Upon A Time” meets “Fringe” with an edge. Also highly recommended.
On March 21st of this year Seanan McGuire did a Reddit AMA, which I just became aware of. All writers should read this, especially her writing schedule. She works a full-time day job, but still tries to get in at least 2,000 words a day, more on the weekends. Inspirational, and frankly, a kick in the butt for me to hunker down and write way more than I am currently.
Seanan McGuire, whether writing as herself or as Mira Grant (whose latest book is Parasite) is a real find. Get on this now or when you finally do (and trust me, you will), you’ll say to yourself, “Why didn’t I check this out earlier? This is great!”