Monday, October 29, 2007

Oh Yeah, There's a Reason I Don't Update During the Week

When I got home, I didn't feel like spending time in front of the computer. I guess the update's going to have to wait.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Rain Check

Spent the afternoon helping Steve move, and didn't feel like updating in the evening. I'll try to get caught up tomorrow. But no guarantees.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

My Birthday

I turn 40 today. I'm not freaking out about it. No huge plans, either. Teena & I will go out for dinner tonight, and that's about it.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

The Books I Read This Week

  1. Alpha Flight Classic, vol. 1 by John Byrne. More 80s comics that I enjoyed at the time. Fortunately, I still enjoy them now.
  2. The Drifting Classroom, vol. 7 by Kazuo Umezu. More histrionic manga. (Checked out of the library.)
  3. Ghost Rider: The Road to Damnation by Garth Ennnis & Clayton Crain. When I checked the hardback edition of this book out of the library a few months back, I felt that this had a certain In Nomine-like feel to the story. It still does, what with the personable demon, Hoss, and the relentless angel, Ruth. I liked it then, so I picked up this paperback copy at that comic book store sale a few weeks back.
  4. Fullmetal Alchemist, vol. 14 by Hiromu Arakwa. For a while (about the time that the story in the manga diverged from that in the anime*), the story dragged. But with this volume, it's turned back around, and I'm interested again.
  5. Superman: The Man of Steel, vol. 5 by John Byrne, Marv Wolfman, & Jerry Ordway. Still more 80s comics reprints. This book features a story in which a hypnotized Superman nearly stars in a porno film. No, really. Read it yourself to see.
  6. Iron Wok Jan!, vol. 13 by Shinji Saijyo. (Library.)
  7. Polly and the Pirates, vol. 1 by Ted Naifeh. Lots of fun. Highly recommended.
  8. Dr. Blink, Superhero Shrink, vol. 1: Id. Ego. Superego! by John Kovalic & Christopher Jones. The title says it all.
  9. Ocean of Lard (Choose Your Own Mind-Fuck Fest, no. 17) by Kevin L. Donihe & Carlton Mellick III. A parody of Choose Your Own Adventure Stories, this book is striving to be daring & dangerous, but it comes across as transgressive simply to be transgressive. It's very weird, but there isn't any meaning to the weirdness other than being strange. As you may have gathered from reading this blog, I like weirdness, but I like it best when the weirdness is in service of a good story. That's not the case with this book.
  10. Days Like This by J. Torres & Scott Chantler. Sweet story about the beginning of a record label and a girl group.
  11. Project X: Seven Eleven by Tadashi Ikuta & Naomi Kimura. Another documentary manga volume; this one about the introduction of convenience stores to Japan. Thrill to the gripping contract negotiation scene. Marvel as the characters tackle the inventory tracking problem. Wonder who thought there'd be a US market for a translation of non-fiction manga. (Of course, there is: me and others like me. But how many of us are there in the US?)
  12. X-Men: First Class: Tomorrow's Brightest by Jeff Parker & Roger Cruz. Yesterday, at the book fair at her school, Teena picked up a digest-sized reprint of four issues of the X-Men: First Class comic. I don't think this book is available anywhere besides from Scholastic Books, since I can't find a listing for it. Anyway, Teena was kind enough to let me read it before adding it to the stock of books in her classroom.

*Really that should be when the anime diverged from the manga, but I saw the former before the latter.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Unread Book Meme

Finally passing this meme on from Michael. Below is a list of the top 106 books tagged as "unread" at Library Thing. The ones I have read are in bold, and the ones I have begun, but not finished are in italics.

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
Anna Karenina
Crime and Punishment (got half-way through, set aside for a while, never picked up again)
One Hundred Years of Solitude

Wuthering Heights
The Silmarillion (begun, barely, not finished)
Life of Pi: A Novel
The Name of the Rose
Don Quixote

Moby Dick
Madame Bovary
The Odyssey
Pride and Prejudice

Jane Eyre
A Tale of Two Cities
The Brothers Karamazov
Guns, Germs, and Steel
War and Peace
Vanity Fair
The Time Traveler's Wife
The Iliad
The Blind Assassin
The Kite Runner
Mrs. Dalloway
Great Expectations
American Gods

A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius
Atlas Shrugged
Reading Lolita in Tehran
Memoirs of a Geisha
Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West

The Canterbury Tales (read {in Middle English} a decent portion of this for a class)
The Historian: A Novel
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Love in the Time of Cholera
Brave New World

The Fountainhead
Foucault's Pendulum
The Count of Monte Cristo
A Clockwork Orange
Anansi Boys
The Once and Future King

The Grapes of Wrath
The Poisonwood Bible
Angels & Demons
The Inferno
The Satanic Verses
Sense and Sensibility
The Picture of Dorian Gray
Mansfield Park
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
To the Lighthouse
Tess of the D'Urbervilles
Oliver Twist
Gulliver's Travels
Les Misérables
The Corrections
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
The Prince (read selections for a class)
The Sound and the Fury
Angela's Ashes
The God of Small Things
A People's History of the United States

A Confederacy of Dunces
A Short History of Nearly Everything
The Dubliners
The Unbearable Lightness of Being
The Scarlet Letter

Eats, Shoots & Leaves
The Mists of Avalon
Oryx and Cake
Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed
Cloud Atlas
The Confusion

Northanger Abbey
The Catcher in the Rye
On the Road
The Hunchback of Notre-Dame
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
The Aeneid
Watership Down
Gravity's Rainbow
The Hobbit

In Cold Blood
White Teeth
Treasure Island
David Copperfield
The Three Musketeers

Sunday, October 14, 2007


After a busy weekend last week, this weekend has been nicely uneventful. Which means I've got the time to catch up on the books I've been reading.

  1. Knights of the Dinner Table Bundle of Trouble, vol. 21 by Jolly Blackburn, et al.
  2. Korgi, Book 1 by Christian Slade. Adorably cute silent story about a young girl and her fire-breathing dog. (Borrowed from Teena.)
  3. Making Money by Terry Pratchett. The latest Discworld novel. Perhaps not prime Pratchett, but still very good. (Borrowed from Teena.)
  4. The Question, vol. 1: Zen & Violence by Dennis O'Neil & Denys Cowan. One of my favorite comic series from the 80's is finally being reprinted. The first issue was okay, but it didn't really grab me. However, since it ended with the hero being beaten, shot in the head, and dumped in a river, I had to buy the second issue to see where the creators would go from there. That issue blew me away, and I was hooked. I have to admit that the story doesn't quite have the same power for me it did twenty years ago, but it's still damn fine storytelling. I hope this does well and more volumes will be forthcoming.
  5. Godland Celestial Edition, vol. 1 by Joe Casey & Tom Scioli. Probably the best Kirby pastiche I've ever seen. Helped in no little part by not using Kirby's creations. (Checked out of the library.)
  6. Monster, vol. 10: Picnic by Naoki Urasawa. (Library.)
  7. New X-Men: Academy X, vol. 1: Choosing Sides by Nunzio DeFilippis, Christina Weir, et al. Superpowers & teenage drama. (Library.)
  8. Return to Labyrinth, vol. 2 by Jake T. Forbes & Chris Lie. I don't know who decided to go a manga-style sequel to a 20-year-old movie, but I am enjoying this, even if it is a bit angsty.
  9. Action Philosophers! Giant-Sized Thing, vol. 2 by Fred Van Lente & Ryan Dunlavey. I love stuff like this: explorations of what can be done with comics. In this case, an explication of several philosophers' schools of thought. And it doesn't hurt that this comic is funny.

See, I said I hadn't read much last week. Not much this week either.

On the video game front, I recently finished Shadow Hearts: Covenant, which I borrowed from Alex. I have mixed feelings about the game. The story never really grabbed me, and there are large parts of the game you will never figure out unless you have a guide. But I did like the combat system. I stuck with the game through the end, but I did not even attempt the many side-quests that show up at the end. Since then I have begun playing Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass. Teena gave me an early birthday present of a Nintendo DS Lite, and I'm enjoying the hell out of it. Phantom Hourglass is fantastic. I love the way the touch-screen interface works, and it's great to see the Wind Waker art style again. Lots of fun.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Peanuts Quiz

Which Peanuts Character are You?

You are Schroeder!
Take this quiz!

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Lazy and a Liar

As you probably noticed, I didn't update yesterday. It's time to admit that I won't do so until this weekend. Don't worry; I didn't get a lot of books read last week anyway.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

A Short Delay

Sorry for no update. This weekend was taken up with the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival. I should be able to update tomorrow.