It’s the holiday season. The economy is, well let’s just say that times for many, many people have been better. As we all struggle to bring more joy with less money to this year’s festivities, Grit-Lit would like to humbly suggest some inexpensive gifts that will put the Merry into Happy Holidays.
Excellent books can be had for as little as one measly buck (a quality used paperback classic) to around $25 for the latest, undiscounted hard cover best seller. Trust me, any thoughtfully selected ebook, paperback or hard cover will be received with great pleasure. Your reader doesn’t care about the condition, as long as all the pages are there.
A carefully selected novel guarantees hours of book induced bliss. After which it moves, as it should, around the world, hand to hand, friend to friend, creating joyful sleepless nights wherever it lands.
If you are new to grit-lit or need help finding a good thriller for your favorite reader, start by check out the following books and authors.
If your favorite reader likes modern tough guy novels that aren’t over the top violent (mostly) and are GP to R but not X-rated these authors are for you.
Lee Child. Warning, if you start reading Child’s Reacher series you might not be able to stop. There are more than 14 outstanding international bestsellers in the series.
Robert Parker. At Grit-Lit we prefer the Spenser series. His Jesse Stone series is also good. And if you are in a cowboy mood, the Virgil Cole/Everett Hitch western series is one of my personal favorites.
Clive Cussler. Like Child and Parker, Cussler is an institution. The entire Dirk Pitt is outstanding.
Michael Crichton. Ton’s of best sellers that have been made into great movies. If you haven’t read Crichton, get thee to a book store and look for the section that begins with “C.”
Interested in something a little bloodier?
The Bob “The Nailer” books by Stephen Hunter are outstanding.
Or try David Morrell. In addition to his Rambo series, Morrell’s trilogy, “Brotherhood of the Rose”, “The Fraternity of the Stone” and “The League of Night and Fog” is captivating.
Looking for something a little twisted or different?
Andrew Vachss Burke character is a criminally bad, bad guy who is also a good guy. The story lines cover a lot of territory related to sexual predators and child abusers. Not for the faint of heart or the prudish, but incredibly engaging. The early Burke series books are his best.
Joe R Lansdale writes a great series featuring a gay sidekick. There’s lots of graphic violence and almost x-rated hetero sex. Not for the squeamish.
Two authors who wrote so many best sellers over so long a period of time I think of them as the founding fathers of grit-lit are Mickey Spillane and John D Macdonald.
Spillane’s immortal Mike Hammer is a tough guy’s tough guy. Racy when they came out, today the books would to be rated PG-13.
My personal favorite of the “old guys” is John D Macdonald’s Travis McGee. You can pick up a Travis McGee paperback for less than ten bucks and guarantee someone hours of happiness.
For the reader who likes a strong female lead character Grit-Lit recommends the Caitlin Strong series by Jon Land and Robert Parker’s Sunny Randall books.
If you want beautiful writing like no one else in the genre there is nothing like the Dave Robicheaux series by James Lee Burke.
Want a gritty cooking and travel book? Anthony Bourdain’s written several. Really. I’m not kidding. Honest.
Need more? Check out any of these excellent authors.
Robert Crais, Michael Connelly, Randy Wayne White, Harlan Coben, James Swain, Timothy Hallinan, David Liss, Joseph Finder, Steven Gore and Shane Gericke.
And if you want a book for your young adult or teenager, Veronica Rossi’s upcoming sci-fi post apocalyptic thriller, “Under The Never Sky” is going to be the next “Twilight” or Harry Potter.
Spend a few dollars on a novel by any author on this list and guarantee someone a very happy holiday!