Sunday, November 01, 2009

Read in October

I do these monthly lists mostly for my own benefit, and to serve as an index of my reviews (either here or elsewhere). I do scatter a few new capsule reviews into each one, of books that I didn't write about at greater length elsewhere. Links are mostly to those reviews, with a few (the capsule reviews) jumping straight to a certain online bookseller for immediate gratification.

This time out, you'll find short reviews of Top Shelf Under the Big Top, Scott Pilgrim Vs. the Universe, Sundome, Vol. 5, and Naruto, Vol. 37 within the trackless waste of links below.
  • P.G. Wodehouse, The Inimitable Jeeves (10/1)
  • Brett Warnock, editor, Top Shelf Under the Big Top (10/2)
    This was both older (from 1999) and more generically indy-comics (deliberately crude and often low-life short stories) than I expected, with a lot of stories that I respected rather than liked and even more that I couldn't bring myself to respect. It does have work by K. Thor Jensen, Dylan Horrocks, Matt Madden, Josh Simmons, and Craig Thompson, but there are no lost gems here -- just decent early comics from people who were still learning the ropes and would later do better work. It's a shame, since I was hoping to be led from this book to cartoonists I haven't read before, but that didn't happen.
  • Leland Gregory, Idiots at Work (10/2)
  • Joshua Glenn & Mark Kingwell, The Idler's Glossary (10/3)
  • Bryan Lee O'Malley, Scott Pilgrim vs The Universe (10/4)
    After five months of reading these incredibly entertaining twentysomething-life-as-a-videogame graphic novels, I'm finally caught up...and that means I'll have to wait for the sixth (and last?) book like everyone else. This one only came out in February, so I'd expect at least a six-month wait -- hmm, I probably should have spaced these out more. If you've been avoiding this series because you thought it looked too juvenile, I'd recommend taking another look: I'm about the worst person in the world when it comes to tolerance of dumb behavior by child-men protagonists, and Pilgrim didn't come across that way to me at all -- he's immature, yes, but he's a sweet, realistic kind of immature rather than the usual full-of-himself media-product immature guy. (If that makes any sense.)
  • Guy Talese, Thy Neighbor's Wife (10/6)
  • Kazuto Okada, Sundome, Vol. 5 (10/7)
    I reviewed the first four volumes of this series for ComicMix -- here's a link to the most recent one, and you can track backwards from there -- but I didn't have anything new to say this time, so I bumped it down to a mention here. It's still a creepy, disconcerting look at obsessive teenage sexuality -- alternately horrifyingly broad in that stylized, templated manga way and cuttingly precise and true -- and just as compulsively readable as ever.
  • Jack Vance, This Is Me, Jack Vance! (10/7)
  • Susumu Katsumoto, Red Snow (bound galleys) (10/8)
  • Shane White, Things Undone (10/9)
  • Jesse Lonergan, Joe and Azat (10/12)
  • Matthew Hughes, Template (10/12)
  • Arvid Nelson, Will Conrad, & Jose Villarrubia, Kull: The Shadow Kingdom (10/13)
    Look for my review in the February issue of Realms of Fantasy.
  • L. Frank Baum, adapted by Eric Shanower & Skottie Young, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (10/14)
    Look for my review in the February issue of Realms of Fantasy.
  • Anthony Strong, Chemistry for Beginners (10/15)
  • David Small, Stitches (10/15)
  • Lewis Trondheim & Fabrice Parme, Tiny Tyrant, Vol. One: The Ethelbertosaurus (10/16)
  • James Strurm, Andrew Arnold, & Alexis Frederick-Frost, Adventures in Cartooning (10/19)
  • Edgar Allan Poe & Gahan Wilson, The Raven and Other Poems (10/20)
  • Jessica Mitford, Poison Penmanship (10/20)
  • Shinobu Ohtaka, Sumomomo, Momomo, Vol. 2 (10/21)
  • JinHo Ko, Jack Frost, Vol. 2 (10/22)
  • Svetlana Chmakova, Nightschool: The Weirn Books (10/23)
  • Richard Sala, Cat Burglar Black (10/26)
  • Jeff VanderMeer, Finch (10/26)
  • Joann Sfar, Lewis Trondheim & Christophe Blain, Dungeon: The Early Years, Vol. 2: Innocence Lost (10/27)
  • Bill Willingham, et. al., Jack of Fables, Vol. 4: Americana (10/28)
  • Peter Greenberg, Don't Go There! (10/28)
  • Masashi Kishimoto, Naruto, Vol. 37 (10/29)
    At this point in a series -- that would be roughly 7400 pages in to a complicated story with a cast of dozens and nearly as many factions, martial arts styles, and secret ninja villages to keep track of as well -- there's really no point in trying to give a synopsis or review; it would only be for the people who are at roughly the same point in reading the series. So I'll just say: after a long time, I finally found the next volume at the library, and I am still trying to keep up with this one. Make of that what you will.
  • Bill Willingham, et. al., Jack of Fables, Vol. 5: Turning Pages (10/30)

1 comment:

K. Thor Jensen said...

Oh my God, people are reviewing work I did ten years ago. That will make a brother feel old.

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