Nov 21, 2016

Seven days in the book world with Mason Cross

Mason Cross is a Scot (he hails from Glasgow) who writes crime novels set in America. His Carter Blake series, Killing Season, The Samaritan and The Time to Kill (Winterlong in the US) are edge of the seat thrillers. Mason Cross isn't his real name. He's married and lives with his wife and kids in Glasgow.

Here is Mason's week in his own words.

To be an author, two things are absolutely essential: writing a lot and reading a lot. Writing a lot is the easy part: deadlines make sure of that. I try to read as much as possible, but between working, being a dad to three young kids and turning in a book a year, it’s not always easy to find the time.

2016 has been an unusually news-heavy year, too, so I’ve found a lot of my reading time lately has been sucked into keeping up with the escalating insanity of planet Earth. I try to read actual books as much as possible, and ideally that means on paper. I love the convenience of my Kindle, but it doesn’t feel as though I’ve really read a book unless it’s a hard copy.

At the start of the week I finished Lawrence Wright’s The Looming Tower, which is an exhaustively-researched study of the origins of al Qaeda and the road to 9/11. For such well-trodden ground, I was surprised by how much I learned. I read quite a bit of nonfiction – sometimes when I’m researching for my own work, sometimes just for its own sake. The next one I’m hoping to get to is Ann Rule’s The Stranger Beside Me, about her experience of working alongside Ted Bundy, not suspecting his true nature.

Fiction is important to me too, though, as you would expect. I’ve just started reading Sarah J. Naughton’s debut novel Tattletale, which is published next year and is already getting major buzz. It’s a twisty psychological thriller about the way a tragic incident impacts the lives of two very different women.

I like to have an audiobook on the go at all times. When I go for a walk or a long drive I can listen to a book and it feels like I’m winning the time back. Right now I’m listening to Harlan Coben’s The Innocent, read by Richard Ferrone. You know what you’re getting with Coben: action, mystery and an emotional kick, and so far this one is no exception.

I’ve always been an avid reader of comic books, and this week I’ve been reading a couple of volumes. Love in Vain is a graphic biography of legendary bluesman Robert Johnson by the French creators J.M. Dupont and Mezzo. I’m also reading a hardcover collection of Batman stories from the 70s written by Len Wein. Some of the stories are dated and a little goofy, but the art is gorgeous and the sheer creativity packed into each twenty-two-page story is breathtaking.

So when I stop to think about it, I’m actually reading more than I thought I was this week!

The Looming Tower (2007)
The Stranger Beside Me (2000)
Tattletale (Pubs 2017)
The Innocent (2009)
Tales of the Batman (2014)
Love in Vain (2016)

Killing Season is out in paperback 9781605989525
Samaritan is out in hardcover 9781605989532
Winterlong comes out February 2017 9781681773148

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1 comment:

Mason Cross said...

This was fun! Thanks for asking me