This morning I was greeted by a wonderful message from Amazon.com -- the notice of shipment of a pre-ordered item. Soon I will have in my clutches the new book, Fluke, Or, I Know Why the Winged Whale Sings by my favorite author, Christopher Moore. My heart goes pitter-pat with anticipation.
For those of you unfamiliar with Moore (or, perhaps, with me), Chris possess wit and talent with the pen, writing some of the funniest and coolest stories I've read. Here, below, for the first time ever, I will rank his previous works as I see fit (by favorite).
- Bloodsucking Fiends: A Love Story. (1996). Let's just dispense with the rumours right now. Yes, this happens to be my favorite book of all time. Yes, I own two copies of the book, one for lending and one for safe keeping (it was one of the best birthday gifts I ever received -- a signed copy from the author to me). Yes, the first time I read it, I was driving home from the beach (i.e., literally could not put it down). Yes, I've read passages aloud to small audiences. Yes, I seek therapy. Okay, that all aside, it's a story of the girl-next-door turned vampire and a young writer-hopeful who move in together. Moore combines a new angle on the traditional vampire genre with the awkwardness of two people getting to know each other, and it works beautifully. But when it boils down to it, I am sucker for this book because the two main characters interact with wonderful chemisty. Yeah, I'm a closet romantic, so sue me.
- Island of the Sequined Love Nun. (1998). Moore followed up Fiends with what most readers consider to be his best book, and it's difficult for me to disagree. Generally, if someone wants me to recommend one of his works, this is the one I'll go to first. This novel is chock full of laugh-out-loud situations, and I think it's still his best to date. For my tastes, I'll still go with Fiends because I'm a sap and I like vampire stories, but Nun is the funniest.
- Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal. (2002). This is one of the exceptions to a famous rule. You should judge this book by its cover, for it gives you a good idea of what to expect. Irreverency, wackiness, history explanations, outrageous adventures, and maybe, just maybe, a smidgeon of the truth. Well, probably not, but this is a great book for anyone who doesn't thwack themselves with a board while praying.
- Coyote Blue. (1995). Moore really started coming into his own with this one, laying a lot of groundwork for his best romantic book. I think I'll read it again this weekend, actually. So there.
- The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove. (1999). While I still have quite a few strong images from this book, and it is certainly funny, it felt to me more like he was trying to outdo the level of silliness in Love Nun, foresaking any sense of grounding. Like slapstick gone awry. But hey, it's tough to follow Love Nun with anything.
- Practical Demonkeeping. (1993). His breakout novel, it's a good introduction to his style and work, but you can tell it was his first novel. Still, Chris' least favorite of mine is better than a lot of authors' best works out there, and recommended reading if only for introduction to the demon Catch, who makes a cameo in Lamb.