Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Geological Mysteries (Of the Book Kind)

So far, in the Frankie McFarlane mystery series by Susan Cummins Miller, I've read these books, listed by title, publication date, series number; the ones I haven't read yet are in parentheses.

Hoodoo, 2008, #4
Quarry, 2006, #3
Death Assemblage, 2002, #1
Detachment Fault, 2004 #2
(Fracture, scheduled 2011, #5)

In the Em Hansen mystery series by Sarah Andrews, I've read these books, by title, publication date, series number (ones I haven't read are in parentheses):

(Tensleep, 1994, #1)
(A Fall in Denver, 1995, #2)
(Mother Nature, 1997, #3)
An Eye For Gold, 2000, #6
Only Flesh and Bones, 1998, #4
Bone Hunter, 1999, #5
Fault Line, 2002, #7
Killer Dust, 2003, #8
Earth Colors, 2004, #9
Dead Dry, 2005, #10

I read An Eye for Gold first, after the author gave a talk about her books at a GSN meeting in Reno a few years back. I've followed on with several other books by both authors more recently, but not always in the correct order. Reading either of these series in order provides continuity with regard to the heroines' lives, but otherwise isn't necessary (though I do recommend it). At the moment, I'm enjoying the Frankie McFarlane stories more than the Em Hansen stories: the geologists seem more realistic to me, and the books seem to have less of an emphasis on romance than than in the Em Hansen books I've read so far. But I recommend all of them!

I'll try to update my reading of these books on this post - if I remember!


Anonymous said...

Is "auther" intentionally spelled that way for feminist reasons?

Coconino said...

I keep a lookout for the Susan Cummins Miller books at my local bookstores, to little avail. I think I've only been able to read one of them. I had to laugh when I read "Dead Dry," as I had been asked to work on some EISs for large water supply projects in the Front Range at the same time I was reading the book.

Marciepooh said...

I actually liked Sarah Andrew's "In Cold Pursuit" better than the Em Hansen stories but I've read all of the ones my local library has (they seem to have skipped #5-7 and 10). I'll have to try and check out the S. C. Miller books; they have 2 of them at the, oddly, least convenient branch.

Tony Edger said...

Glad to have the informed recommendations. My local library system is awash in the Sarah Andrews mysteries, and draws a complete blank when it comes to Susan Cummins Miller (which dovetails with other comments).

Silver Fox said...

@mountainbeltway (Callan): Oops! Fixed. :)

@Coconino I'll have to read "Dead Dry" - but first there are several more on the list.

@Marciepooh Thanks for the info about "In Cold Pursuit" - I'll try it!

@Tony Edger (and everyone) Susan Cummins Miller started writing her books after Sarah Andrews had done the legwork of creating a niche market. Andrews may have received considerably more press (not sure), and her series has been running longer.

My favorite titles in each series:

Detachment Fault and Fault Line. Hmmm... there must be something about faults. (Though "Killer Dust" is a good title - it reminds me of yesterday.)

Lee Allison said...

I've read all of these and eagerly wait for the next from both Sarah and Susan.

In 1997 Sarah and I arranged for her to do the first book signing at a national GSA meeting (Salt Lake City) and it's turned into a big event at the annual icebreaker reception. Sarah reciprocated by putting me in drag in "Bone Hunter" and bumping me off in "Fault Line."

Coincidentally, Susan and I were undergrads together at UC Riverside back a long time ago (although she's much younger than me). We both have ended up in Tucson.

There really is only one degree of separation in the geoscience community.

Silver Fox said...

Lee, I noticed you were mentioned in the Acknowledgements, and thought that was pretty neat. And yeah, one degree of separation is the norm. :)

I enjoyed meeting Sarah at the GSN meeting several years back - maybe 2000 or 2001, Eye for Gold had just come out, and she gave an inspired and upbeat talk for all of us in Reno.

Next time I'm on a book-ordering spree, the rest of Sarah's series, and In Cold Pursuit, will be on my list.

Tony Edger said...

I wonder if another factor influencing differences in availability is that Miller is published by a university press (Texas Tech) and Andrews is with a mass marketer (St. Martin's Paperbacks).

Garry Hayes said...

I've read and enjoyed all of the books, usually through Amazon or one of the others. I look forward to the next ones. "A Fall in Denver" has a great opening line, sort of paraphrasing: "If I'd seen the body fall by the window, I would never have taken the job...."

Silver Fox said...

Tony, I hadn't noticed the difference in publishing presses, that might also have resulted in different promotional styles.

Silver Fox said...

Garry, so you'd probably recommend that I skip back to the beginning of the series and read the first ones, rather than going ahead from the middle onward?