Book/Reading Pet Peeves
got me thinking about... what about the good things in books?
So instead of thread-jacking here we go. What things do you like?
. Not actual "funny books" but books that include humor or wit in the right time & place. Too much humor and you end up with something that looks like Xanth with more puns than plots, and too little and it can be pretty dry... but just enough in the right spots, can do wonders.
A classic example is of course Shakespeare; his tragedies often had the funniest lines, used to break up the drama a bit. But modernly... I'd have to say Dean Koontz - or rather Odd Thomas. I fell for that series in the first chapter of book 1, with the dry wit the protagonist clearly had.
Knowing what you're writing about,
or at least doing your research.
Good examples, John Ringo's military books, also the Deed of Paksenarrion with the military tactics (Elizabeth Moon is a former Marine officer).
Another good one is "A Stitch in Time" by Andrew J. Robinson. Now normally actor-written books are on my peeves list because most of the work is done by the ghost/partner writer. However this one is an exception. Robinson (who played Garak in DS9) didn't have any helper-writers. His editor gave him a lot of material for research into writing his book but... he did the grunt work himself. Consequently this is on my "good list" because of the amount of research he did before writing, and because it was actually well-written.
Which brings me to my last category for now: being well written
. I've read books with confusing plots, and yet still enjoyed them, even as the plot bewildered me. This came simply from the fact that the author actually knew how to write well. My example for this is Ray Bradbury and "Let's All Kill Constance"... I'm still not really sure wtf happened in that book, but Mr. Bradbury's gift for setting scenes was, as ever, good enough that I didn't really mind being confused.
I'll probably think of more along the way but these are the first that come to mind.