So, today’s question on the 30 Days of Books list is:
Day 03 – Your favorite series
I thought about this question on and off over the weekend. Sometimes the “on” was when I awoke last night about 3 a.m. and it kept clogging my thoughts instead of getting my brain to shut back down so that I could get back to sleep. Anyway…
Toughie… definitely a toughie. It would be easy to go with the series I indicated as the one I’ve read the most often – The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant – but that seems sort of like a cop-out, though it is certainly up there.
A few years ago, I might have said the Song of Ice and Fire series from George RR Martin was my favorite, but in the last several years, George and I have had a bit of a cooling off. Also, I would consider Ursula K. LeGuin’s “Earthsea” trilogy pretty high on the list of fantasy creations – though much like the Star Wars movies, only stick to the original three.
More recently, the Harry Potter books have certainly been a great joy and would be an understandable choice. JK Rowling managed to create (and more importantly) mature a wonderful world full of great characters to root for – and against. And Steig Larsson’s “Dragon Tattoo” series has been immensely popular over the last couple of years – and would be a pretty reasonable selection, too.
For me recently though, I have really enjoyed the Bernie Gunther mysteries by Alfred Kerr, starting with his great set of three mysteries Berlin Noir. When we first meet him, Gunther is a private detective in Germany in the early 1930s and over the course of several books, we follow his adventures before, during and after the Second World War.
Bernie is a classic hard-boiled detective who likes dames, smokes, and booze, and Kerr imbues him with a great blend of cynicism and humanity. Bernie is one of the “good” guys but has enough grey areas in his thoughts and actions to make him a very compelling character.