It would be an understatement to say I read a lot of books. My preference is to read new authors who have just published their first book although I love the classics and seasoned authors too. This past year I read some great first books and not all of them were published in 2017. But after reading many books this year, there is no doubt that Allen Eskens is my favorite author for 2017.
Allen Eskens is the best at reader foreplay
The first book I read by Mr. Eskens was his first book published in 2014 by Seventh Street Books, Amherst, NY, The Life We Bury. My initial attraction to the book was the title. Don’t we all have a life we have buried or would like to? I was also familiar with the book’s geographical setting in Minneapolis as I have traveled there often for business.
Eskens is a criminal defense attorney that lends credibility to his stories in the crime mystery genre. Not only does he know his topic, but the author is great at character and plot development. When I say he is the best at reader foreplay, he takes his time with the story with enough intrigue and surprises to causing the reader to impatiently want more but yet at the same time not wanting the story to end.
I couldn’t wait to meet up with another of Mr. Eskens novels again so I hurriedly purchased his next two novels, The Guise of Another published in 2015 and The Heavens May Fall published in 2016. These next two meetings were even better than his debut novel. In all of the four Eskens books I read in 2017, a few of the characters reappear in each novel. And what I love best about what Eskens has done with each of his novels is the storytelling stands on its own. The reader need not read the first novel to understand and thoroughly enjoy the next novel, or the novel before for that matter. Each novel reading experience is pure bliss.
I pre-ordered his last novel that finally arrived on bookshelves last October, The Deep Dark Descending. Oh my dear, Mr. Eskens, dare I say it? Not only are you the best at reader foreplay, you are the best at the finish line too. The ending of each novel is not quite how the reader may anticipate but assuredly takes the reader’s breath away.
Rolling over and sipping the last in my scotch glass and wanting to light a cigarette (I don’t even smoke), how can each novel be better than the last? That’s what makes Allen Eskens my favorite author for 2017.
I do hope another Allen Eskens novel is in my future in 2018.
Sidebar: Blogging Owl Book Reviews
In 2017 a few authors sent me their books in exchange for an honest review in which I happily complied; however, in 2018, I will no longer accept this book-for-a-review arrangement. (I purchased all four Allen Eskens novels.)
If authors would like me to review their book, authors may email me at Hoot@TheBloggingOwl.com with the following criteria:
• The title of your book
• Honestly answer why you wrote the book you would like me to review
• Your publisher’s contact information
I respond to all emails. Because of the sheer volume of books I read, I cannot offer a deadline for when a review will be given. The Blogging Owl gives a 1 to 5 Hoot Rating.All book reviews are posted here at The Blogging Owl and shared on social media. I will also post book reviews on Goodreads, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble websites. All genres and reading age-levels are considered.
The books I purchase for review either remain in my personal library or are donated to non-profit organizations, schools, and libraries. (Sorry, I am not giving up my Allen Eskens novels.)
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Happy Reading in 2018!
(and to better selfies)