Genre time of year

by Scott Smith

I’m not much of a pop fiction reader. I’ve been reading or listening to more history and business books than ever before, but my book wheel house is literary fiction.

On my last visit to Wal-Mart, I saw Michael Crichton and Thomas Harris (Hannibal novels) both released new books. And, Carl Hiaasen has as well, ‘Nature Girl.’ These guys are the only pop fiction writers I read now — I dropped the ‘Prey’ series from the must-have list.

Well, I grabbed Crichton and Harris. Finished both novels in a week. It wasn’t hard to blow through Harris’ book because the typeface was something like 14-point and was only 300 pages. That is one sloppy book, a boring book.

Crichton’s ‘Next’ held up for the first 300 pages or so, and then the weight of a hundred major characters doomed the ending. A seriously silly ending. To make it worse, we get a preachy Crichton essay at the end. Hell, no.

Here’s hoping Hiaasen won’t let me down. I need a good pop fiction book to flush away the crap I experienced this week.

No matter what, though, it will be the last pop fiction for awhile. Crichton gets another chance but not that Harris fellow.