Monday, August 27, 2007

Black Cherry

Doug Tennapel is a very odd writer, even by my standards. He thrives on crossing boundaries in his stories. He gleefully merges genres, throws in themes you don't normally see in fantastic literature, and even his inks have a tendency to bleed through his panels.

Black Cherry is quite possibly his most ambitious work to date. It's a first contact/mafia/exorcism story that takes some surprisingly dark turns for the person who gave us Earthworm Jim and Tommysaurus Rex. It's also his best book yet.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

The Thirteen Clocks

James Thurber in undoubtedly a genius, and the Thirteen Clocks is probably his best work. Not only that, but it is one of the best fairy tales ever written, up there with the finest of the Brothers Grimm. This story quite literally features tears of laughter, tears of joy, and "something very much like nothing anyone had see before". In this book are princesses and monsters and nonsense that would make Lewis Carroll proud. This book is a masterpiece.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


I always get the feeling when reading Joe Casey that he must be the coolest guy in any room he's in. I still feel oddly smug that I can claim to have been of fan back when he was just doing fill-in issues of Cable. I've just finished the third volume of Godland, and this is probably the best thing he's written since the early demise of Automatic Kafka.

This book just showcases the author's love of Jack Kirby, and glorifies everything the King of comics accomplished, both good and bad. And if Casey's writing wasn't enough of a draw, there's Tom Scioli's art as well. Every panel literally crackles with energy (thanks to another Kirby tribute). This is just a great book.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Crooked Little Vein

I began reading Crooked Little Vein with very high expectations. When Warren Ellis is at the top of his game he's one of the best comic writers today, as well as being one of the few S.F. writers who still instills his books with a true sense of wonder. However, he also has a tendency to write situations that are so over the top that they obscure the story, which is very much the case here.

Overall the story makes for a pretty good novel, but I suspect it would seem better to those who are unfamiliar with Ellis comics work. Too much of the story rehashes themes from his previous books, which were better in many cases.

Saturday, August 04, 2007


It took awhile, but I've finally finished my Hugo reading list for the year with Michael Flynn's Eifelheim. Of this year's crop of nominees, this was by far the best written of the lot. Flynn is a very gifted writer, with an unbelievable grasp of European history (I had the pleasure of hearing him speak on the subject 2 years ago).

However, I'm still leaning towards Blindsight for my non-existent Hugo vote this year. In a year packed with so many big ideas books that are actually well written to boot, Eifelheim just feels a bit underwhelming.