Still on a spy kick. In the past couple of weeks, I've read the second Alex Rider teen spy book by Anthony Horowitz, Point Blanc, which I found to be a huge improvement over the first book in the series, Stormbreaker. Although it homages Ian Fleming's On Her Majesty's Secret Service (as Stormbreaker did with Fleming's Moonraker), the villain's plot is friggin' ingenious and original, and the use of a 14 year-old-agent makes a lot more narrative sense in Point Blanc than in the first book.
I liked it so much that I picked up the third novel, Skeleton Key, yesterday, and intend to read it just as soon as I finish the third – and latest – Young Bond novel, Double Or Die, by Charlie Higson... which I bought at the same time.
Sticking with the spy genre, last week I read the second "Mallory & Morse" spy novel by Forrest Devoe Jr (Max Phillips), Eye Of The Archangel, and found it too to be an improvement over the first in the series, Into The Volcano. I believe there's only these two M&M novels so far, but I hope Phillips writes at least one more and makes it a trilogy.
Other recent reads include Luck Be A Lady, Don't Die, the second "Rat Pack" mystery by Robert J. Randisi, and the excellent Hard Case Crime paperback original, Money Shot by Christa Faust. Speaking of Hard Case Crime, I've also got the Double Novel, Spiderweb and Shooting Star, by Robert Bloch, on hand to read soon.
I also read two Conan comics trade paperbacks from Dark Horse Comics, The Blood-Stained Crown & Other Stories, a collection of Conan stand-alone adventures, and Rogues In The House & Other Stories, writer Tim Truman's adaptation and expansion of the titular tale by Robert E. Howard. The first collection is mixed bag, story-wise, but has some really gorgeous art by veterans like John Severin, Rafael Kaynan and the aforementioned Truman, while Rogues was a solid adaptation with decent – if under-detailed – art by Cary Nord & Tomas Giorello.
It's been a while since I've managed this much recreational reading, and it's nice.