Thursday, March 12, 2015

3 Authors You Should Be Reading, on the Thursday Afternoon #MINI post

You're at the airport, staring at the bookshelf prior to catching a twelve-hour plane ride to Bali, desperately seeking a fresh voice in #thrillers. Let's not take anything away from Lee Child or James Patterson or Steve Berry or James Rollins or Gillian Flynn or Michael Connelly or David Baldacci (great authors all) but you have read their excellent books already and Daniel Silva writes only one--phenomenal--book a year, so what does one do? One consults the infinite wisdom of the #MINI, that's what. This is what the #MINI says: There are many other great thriller authors out there--too many to name on the #MINI--but here are three that you should not ignore:

1) Joseph Kanon:  Everyone has a bias, and I believe in stating your bias from the get-go. I have a soft spot for superbly written thrillers with a literary feel, in which the setting becomes another character in the book. That summary screams Joseph Kanon, the author of seven novels including Istanbul Passage, The Good German and Leaving Berlin. There are so many things I like about Kanon's writing--the rules of the #MINI are clear, short and sweet--but I will mention just two. If you like to escape when you read a book, try Kanon: when I read Istanbul Passage I was in Istanbul (no, not literally), post-war Istanbul, that is. His writing can take you not only to places but periods of history, not an easy trick. But it's Kanon's prose I like best, straightforward and at the same time convoluted, deep and yet superficial, simple but sometimes as complex as the plots Kanon weaves with deft touch. My fellow Daniel Silva fans, give Kanon a try. Here are some selected reviews:

LA Times Review of Istanbul Passage
The Telegraph review of Leaving Berlin 
The New York Times Review Of The Good German
Joseph Kanon's Website

2) Olen Steinhauer: Espionage is a complex, multifaceted world, and nobody paints this world better than Steinhauer. So subtle are his brushstrokes that the reader is often confused about who the good guy is. (Who is the good guy, anyway?) And yet Milo Weaver, the protagonist from Steinhauer's Department of Tourism trilogy, is sympathetic despite the ambiguity, the shifting loyalties, and the violence. If you are wondering what the life of a modern day spy is like, pick up a Steinhauer novel (start with The Tourist.) My fellow Le Carre fans, give Steinhauer a try. Here are some selected reviews:

 The Washington Post review of The American Spy
Cleaveland Plain Dealer review of The American Spy
Olen Steinhauer's Website

3) Robert Wilson:  Robert Wilson could write a book about watching grass grow, and I would enjoy reading it. That isn't to say that his plots aren't interesting, because they are--layered, serpentine and unpredictable--but it is to say he puts words together in such a way that makes for good reading. And he stitches characters together as well as the best writers of literary fiction, characters that live and breath and think like we do. I love Wilson's cerebral style, his elegant prose. Wilson's A Small Death in Lisbon is on the short list of my all time favorite books, but all of his books are good, and I would recommend any of them.  My fellow Ken Follet fans, give Wilson a try. Here are some selected reviews:

The Guardian review of The Ignorance of Blood
Publisher's Weekly review of A Small Death in Lisbon
Robert Wilson's Website

Ok, that's a wrap. Thanks again for tuning in, and do NOT forget to check out The Intern, the serialized novella I am writing on #wattpad. (The Intern is approaching its conclusion, and continues to close in on the top 10 of the General Fiction genre on #wattapd.)  For those of you wondering about first book of The Jesuit thriller series (my mother and her Canasta group,) my agent is in the process of submitting to publishers as we speak, so I hope to have some news within a few weeks (or months.) I appreciate your support.

Peter Hogenkamp is a physician and author living in Rutland, Vermont. Peter's writing credits include ABSOLUTION, the first book of The Jesuit thriller series; THE LAZARUS MANUSCRIPT, a stand-alone medical thriller; and The Intern, a serialized novel based loosely on Peter's internship, published bi-weekly on #Wattpad. Peter can be found on his Author Website as well as his personal blog, PeterHogenkampWrites, where he writes about most anything. Peter is the founder and editor of Prose&Cons; a frequent contributor and reviewer at ReadWave; the founder and moderator of groups on Facebook (The Library), Google+ (Fiction Writers Anonymous); and a Beta-reader at StoryShelter. Peter tweets--against the wishes of his wife and four children--at @phogenkampvt and @theprosecons. He can be reached at or through his literary agent (Liz Kracht of Kimberely Cameron & Associates) at