Wednesday, 27 May 2015

The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

(May 2015)



I want to write more about this book. This book deserves to have more written about it. Unfortunately though I’ve had a ton of deadlines recently, so while I only read this a couple of weeks ago my mind’s been so cramped since then I’m not sure I’ve got much in the way of intelligent – or at the very least interesting – comment left to pass. No change there then, eh? (Etc, etc, and so forth.)

Monday, 18 May 2015

Rat Queens

Kurtis J. Wiebe, Roc Upchurch, Stjepan Sejic, 2015
(May 2015)



Less of the sass this time around, which is no bad thing. Rat Queens continues to be best described as bloody good fun.

Monday, 4 May 2015

Honest Abe



Abe Shinzo gave a speech to congress a couple of days ago, and now I am conflicted.

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

The Devil Made Me Do It

Lucifer vols 1-10, Mike Carey et al, 2000-2006
Ghost Rider vols 1-4,  Daniel Way et al, 2007-2008
Ghost Rider: Road to Damnation, Garth Ennis et al, 2007
(Spring 2015)



My headlong plunge into Mr. Salaryman’s MASSIVE BOX OF COMICS continues apace. You’ll forgive me for being a little vague with the details, I’m sure, but when I said there were a couple of hundredweight of them I really wasn’t exaggerating. Anyway, at this point I’d like to do a little pondering about the nature of the Devil. The old ones are always the best, eh?

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Boy, Snow, Bird

(April 2015)



This is a beautiful book, both in terms of the cover (it’s even better in reality than on the screen) and the contents. Based on this it’s very easy to see why Oyeyemi has been lauded as one of the best British writers of her generation. It’s not quite a masterpiece though. The first 90% is outstanding, but I’m still not quite sure what happened at the very end, or how I should deal with it. That shouldn’t detract from the rest of the book but somehow, y’know…

Thursday, 9 April 2015

Lust, Caution

(April 2015)
  


I need to read more of this kind of stuff: mid-twentieth century writing by vaguely dissolute women. Of course, all that most female writers from that era needed to do to gain a ‘vaguely dissolute’ reputation was to speak their minds and openly enjoy something other than childcare or macramé, but on the occasions I do read them they seem infinitely more contemporary to the present day than male writers of the same period. I’d be the first to admit that my sample sizes for both populations are pitifully small, but there’s something to be said for the theory that in order to compete with the men women had* to be better than them. Clearly this was grotesquely unfair, but as a reader it does mean that you get access to books that are, well, better.

Friday, 27 March 2015

The Race

(March 2015)



I came into this book almost completely blind, buying it simply on the back of its appearance on this year’s shortlists for both The Kitschies and the BSFA Awards and the reasonable cost of the ebook edition (price-point matters, kids!). I think I lucked out massively in this regard, because the less you know about this going in the better. However, it’s almost impossible to talk about without spoilers, so why don’t you track yourself down a copy and come back once you’ve had a chance to read? There are dogs in it, if that helps.

Saturday, 21 March 2015

She Weeps Each Time You’re Born

(March 2015)
  


This is very good. The obvious point of comparison is Midnight’s Children, in that it’s also a magical realist novel in which a mystical child offers a prism through which to view the inevitably traumatic business of colonial separation and the ensuing intranational turmoil of independence, but in Vietnam and not India and, well… Better.

Thursday, 19 March 2015