Ray Stickle

Biography

Ray Stickle is the author of THE FOOTNOTES, RUIN'S WASTEFUL ENTRANCE, and STAY, ILLUSION. He graduated from Ohio State University with a degree in history. He lived and taught in South Korea for four years, returning to his home in Ohio in 2006 to finish a master's degree. He currently lives in Ohio with his wife and sons.

Smashwords Interview

What do you read for pleasure?
Whatever strikes my fancy! Shakespeare, Dickens, and Aeschylus. Arthur C. Clarke and Neal Stephenson. Charlotte and Emily Bronte. A thick biography of Stalin, a thick history of the Korean War. Michael Connelly and Ken Follett. Mysteries, espionage, thrillers, historical fiction, science fiction, fantasy, and horror are my favorite genres for escape. I have a thirty minute drive to work and listen to a lot of non-fiction audiobooks--Erik Larson, Bill Bryson, biographies and histories.
Who are your favorite authors?
I could easily do a top 40--there are so many books I love. Even a top 10 seems a bit much, but it would be difficult for me to leave any of these writers off of a list of favorites. So here they are.

Top 10:

#10 Bill Bryson - A Walk in the Woods, One Summer: America, 1927, and A Short History of Nearly Everything are all brilliant--humorous and full of delicious stories. I enjoy listening to him read his books as much as I enjoy reading them myself.
#9 Dennis Lehane - Mystic River blew me away. A common theme that runs through this list is that certain scenes from these writers' books inhabit my mind like I lived through them. A certain character's death in Mystic River stands out to me as one of the best murder scenes ever written--sad, powerful.
#8 Daniel Silva - I plan my reading around when the next Gabriel Allon book gets released. The brilliant plots and international settings are always a treat.
#7 Michael Connelly - I also plan my reading around when the next Michael Connelly book gets released. The plots are always brilliant, but he adds something more. When Harry Bosch goes home and turns on the jazz, it's just a reminder that I've been living with him since The Black Echo. Connelly also does a masterful job of making Los Angeles a character in his novels. He has more or less defined that city for me.
#6 Russell Banks - The Darling, Continental Drift, and Lost Memory of Skin are a few novels that are must reads for anyone. The Darling is probably my favorite of his. I learned quite a bit about Liberia, and there were scenes so devastating I walked through the rest of the week dazed. Powerful stuff.
#5 Michael Ondaatje - Novels like The English Patient and Anil's Ghost contain such beautiful passages. Want to see how a master opens a novel? Read the first few pages of The English Patient. Ondaatje, like Harrison (#1 on this list), is also a poet. There's something to be said about novelists who write a lot of poetry. Stunning language.
#4 Stephen King - Of all the authors on this list, I've been reading King the longest. From the early greats like The Shining and The Stand to the new greats like Under the Dome and 11/22/63, I love going where he wants to take us--it's always somewhere unique!
#3 Nick Hornby - High Fidelity and About a Boy. If I had to (gasp in horror) sell off my book collection, these wouldn't be going anywhere.
#2 Haruki Murakami - Norwegian Wood is the novel of my twenties. I was living in Korea at the time, and the setting of the book reminded me a lot of where I was living. Many of Toru Watanabe's experiences as a young college student spoke to me. It was a great companion. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle and Kafka on the Shore are brilliant as well.
#1 Jim Harrison - For the philosophy, the poetry, the sheer love of life. Legends of the Fall, Dalva, The Road Home, Songs of Unreason, the Brown Dog novellas, and everything else he's written. I don't know if any other writer on this list has taught me quite as much about life as Harrison has. I'll be rereading his stories and poetry for the rest of my life.
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Where to find Ray Stickle online


Books

This member has not published any books.