A Canadian Werewolf in New York

Cannonball Read 9 - review 1

A Canadian mystery writer lives in New York city and gets involved in some supernatural/criminal hijinx. Also, he’s a werewolf (which is kind of obvious right from the cover, so, like, not a spoiler).

This book started life as a stand-alone short story called “This Time Around”. I read that and totally loved it. The author has a nice touch and a good sense of humor so I was interested to see how the whole story played out.  The short story serves as the start of the book, rolling into the continued action.

Michael Andrews (the werewolf) wakes up naked in a park with a bullet in his leg. Apparently something unusual happened during his wolf out the night before. A few little misadventures and he gets home, to find his old girlfriend waiting for him. She needs him to snoop around and find out what her fiance is up to. He agrees to do it, despite the fact that he has a deadline from his agent and an appointment to be on Letterman that night.

You’re going to need a little suspension of belief to get through it. Not because of the werewolf thing but because of all the events Andrews has to go through in the space of a few hours.  There is a LOT of action crammed in there and a few times when it’s a miracle he manages to disappear from places before the cops show up.

There’s a few things that bugged me.  I’m not sure why it had to be Letterman specifically he was appearing on. Not only does that date the story, but the scenes that take place during the taping don’t really match with how Letterman runs.  A generic late-night talk show might have been a better idea. I suspect the only reason it was Letterman was for the whole “all Canadians know each other” joke with Paul Shaffer. And maybe Mark Leslie is just a huge Letterman fan.

The other thing that bothered me was a pretty huge typo that made me laugh.  At one point there’s a newspaper headline about a “vicious wolf attack” only… it says “viscous” instead. Wince.

Also, for me, it was a little hard not to picture Nathan Fillion as Michael Andrews.

This isn’t a stellar book, but it’s short and fun and sometimes funny, and I would happily read anything else Mark Leslie decided to write in this series.

I've linked both the book and the original short story below.

How is it May Already?

The last time I wrote anything it was March and it was snowing. The snow amounted to nothing. Early April was still cold. On April second I had to turn the heat on. By April 29th I had to turn the air conditioning.  Now it's May first and the weather is back to being a little more springlike. It was a little humid this morning, but not in a bad way. It made the neighborhood smell like damp wood and dirt and leaves and it made me think of camping.

I haven't been camping in about 18 years. Certainly not in the last 15 years, because I have been living with Ian (the partner-in-crime, the other guy, "him indoors", etc.) fifteen years as of April 20th or 21st or so.  FIFTEEN YEARS. Anyhow, he doesn't camp. He would probably go "Glamping". At 46 glamping might be a better idea for me. I might be too old and soft for sleeping on the ground. Also it'd  be easier to keep the dog from wandering off. But there's a part of me that doesn't recognize that as actually camping.

I'm still doing all my Reading Challenges. I haven't written a single Cannonball Read review yet, but it's still early.

I don't know if I'm going to any cons this year. Financially it's not a good idea.  Ian still has medical bills outstanding, and potentially more medical bills coming. I had so much fun at Balticon last year and learned a lot -- but there were also a lot more authors I really like. I keep trying to talk myself into joining the Baltimore Science Fiction Society because they aren't that far from my house, but ahhhh - social anxiety.

American Gods started on STARZ last night. If you haven't read the book, you really should. The show won't match it exactly, but the book is something you shouldn't miss.

2017 Reading Challenge

I don't know if I'm going to attempt to do a full Cannonball in 2017. I'm terrible at writing reviews. I may go for a quarter Cannonball. If I go further than that, it's only a bonus.  But I am kind of interested in PopSugar's 2017 Reading Challenge list:

  1. A book recommended by a librarian
  2. A book that’s been on your TBR list for way too long
  3. A book of letters
  4. An audiobook
  5. A book by a person of color
  6. A book with one of the four seasons in the title
  7. A book that is a story within a story
  8. A book with multiple authors
  9. An espionage thriller
  10. A book with a cat on the cover
  11. A book by an author who uses a pseudonym
  12. A bestseller from a genre you don’t normally read
  13. A book by or about someone who has a disability
  14. A book involving travel
  15. A book with a subtitle
  16. A book that’s published in 2017
  17. A book involving a mythical creature
  18. A book you’re read before that never fails to make you smile
  19. A book about food
  20. A book with career advice
  21. A book from a nonhuman perspective
  22. A steampunk novel
  23. A book with a red spine
  24. A book set in the wilderness
  25. A book you loved as a child
  26. A book by an author from a country you’ve never visited
  27. A book with a title that’s a character’s name
  28. A novel set during wartime
  29. A book with an unreliable narrator
  30. A book with pictures
  31. A book where the main character is a different ethnicity than you
  32. A book about an interesting woman
  33. A book set in two different time periods
  34. A book with a month or day of the week in the title
  35. A book set in a hotel
  36. A book written by someone you admire
  37. A book that’s becoming a movie in 2017
  38. A book set around a holiday other than Christmas
  39. A first book in a series you haven’t read before
  40. A book you bought on a trip
  41. A book recommended by an author you love
  42. A bestseller from 2016
  43. A book with a family-member term in the title
  44. A book that takes place over a character’s life span
  45. A book about an immigrant or refugee
  46. A book from a genre/subgenre that you’ve never heard of
  47. A book with an eccentric character
  48. A book that’s more than 800 pages
  49. A book you got from a used book sale
  50. A book that’s been mentioned in another book
  51. A book about a difficult topic
  52. A book based on mythology

So I'm taking suggestions and recommendations! A few of my own:

4. Any of the Neil Gaiman audiobooks. "Anansi Boys" is read by Lenny Henry and is amazing. The ones read by Neil Gaiman are magical.

48. "Winter" by Marissa Meyer (Although it's the 4th book in the Lunar Chronicles so you might wan to read them all. If you haven't read any of them...)

39. "Cinder" by Marissa Meyer - first book in the Lunar Chronicles.

41. Any of these books count because you love me.




Prepping for the New Year

2016 has been a bit of a clusterfluff hasn't it. 

So far this year the partner-in-crime has had several serious bouts of illness. My car has been in the shop a few times. One of our cats has had some health issues. Everything is disorganized.

Now that it's December I'm starting to get things organized for 2017.  Let's do better next year, right?  I did start seeing a therapist this year about my out-of-control stress levels and it's starting to help. Getting things organized may also help. Should help. In theory.

I'm going to make another attempt at Bullet Journaling. It really helped me at work and maybe it'll be good for me at home to keep things from getting out of control.

As far as other kinds of journaling...

My reading journal is on Goodreads. (Dear CannonBallRead6 - I have been reading! Just not reviewing! (that totally doesn't count, I know.))

My movie watching journal is on Letterboxd (and I saw almost no movies this year. igh.)

I'm going to try to be better about updating this "blog". More stories about my critters. Things that might invite feedback (because hi? I hope you're out there reading this and you're someone other than my mom?) and a little interaction with people.



You Know You Don't Update Enough When You Can't Remember Your Password

Over on my Patreon page I'm doing a series of posts for patrons-only. For as little as a dollar a month you can get 30 short stories or scenes. It was supposed to be one a day for 30 days, but this week the non-writing life got a little stressful and while sitting down to write would have been a great stress reliever, sleep was also a pretty tempting stress-reliever. Also on Wednesdays the channel ION has a Law & Order (mothership) Marathon.  I'm still going to do the 30-topic challenge, but it's obvious that it's not going to be a daily thing.

I do a lot of writing longhand when I have some downtime at work: waiting for SQL queries to execute, while processes are running, and during lunch. So when work is busy I don't always get those chances.  When it's busy at work I don't really have the attention span or the energy to spend more time at a computer typing things. 

This means I'm also way behind on my Cannonball Read reviews. I'm only seven books behind in my reviews because I'm not reading a lot either. So I'm actually fourteen books behind, because I have seven to review and I have seven to read to catch up with where I should be in order to read 52 books this year.

The year is just about half over. Time to finally start all those New Year's resolutions and keep moving forward.