Recommended Reading 2016

Every year, I take a moment to post some books I read over the past twelve months that I think you should consider. This was a crazy-busy year for me, so I didn’t get a lot of reading done, but here is this year’s crop of recommended titles:

  • The Wild Robot by Peter Brown
  • Uprooted by Naomi Novik
  • When Friendship Followed Me Home by Paul Griffin
  • Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen

Billy’s Tattoos: An I Hunt Killers Tidbit

“Where do you get your ideas?”

I hear that question a lot, and the answer is that I’m not really sure (but read this guest post of mine anyway for some thoughts). Still, I know where some of the smaller ideas come from.

This Tumblr post reminded me of a tiny tidbit from the development of the I Hunt Killers series. So…

I came up with the name “Billy Dent” pretty early in the process of writing the series. It was there right from the beginning, really. And then something wonderfully serendipitous happened.

Many of you may know that I always try to put a Bruce Springsteen reference into my books. Sometimes it’s brutally obvious, as in Hero-Type. Other times, as in Goth Girl Rising, you gotta look for it.

The nature of I Hunt Killers dovetailed perfectly, though, with a specific lyric from the Springsteen song “Cautious Man:”

On his right hand Billy tattooed the word love and on his left hand was the word fear

And in which hand he held his fate was never clear

Pretty perfect, eh? I couldn’t have asked for a better reference. And the fact that it suggested an actual plot twist made it even better.