4.08.2007

Currently Reading. Sorta.

When it comes to reading, I tend to have a very short attention span. That is to say, I'll reading multiple books, and "books," at a time (say in a week, or month), without much difficulty switching up material. Anyone else like that? Currently, I'm reading 5-10 comics a week (that's 20-40 different storylines per month), two novels, and a big ol' graphic novel. Here's what distracts me when it's not TV, Interweb, or booze:

Slaughterhouse Five - Kurt Vonnegut

Thanks to the fine people at H&R Block for making me wait so goddamn long last Friday, I managed to squeeze in 65 pages of Slaughterhouse Five before I had my taxes done. I finished Cat's Cradle late last year (or early this year), and I loved it. Loved the shit out of it. I loved it so much that I'll occasionally think about life in terms of Bokononism, a fictional religion from the book. Anyway, Slaughterhouse starts out under the veil of a war memoirs book, but it just took a turn into time travel. Well, not so much time travel as time transcendence. I like where it's headed.

On The Road - Jack Kerouac

I've owned this one for a long time without cracking the cover. I think 5 years, give or take. I'm finally into it now, a few chapters. I've been reading this one during orchestra rehearsals, when the conductor rehearses other sections (like the motherfucking boring-ass violins). The only problem is that I get at most 2-3 pages, 1/2 a page at minimum, per opportunity. It's cool so far. A bunch of beatniks, bumming around, drinking and trying to get trim. I'll take longer to finish this one than the Vonnegut, not because Slaughterhouse is shorter, but because On The Road doesn't entice me to read it. And it doesn't care. I'll get it done. I'm just not in a rush.

Essential Doctor Strange, Vol. 1 - Marvel Essentials

I blogged about this one a few weeks ago, in my super nerd comics post. I'm somewhere around the 400th page of the 618 page volume #1. Doc Strange has been the most entertaining silver age comic I've read in a while. I tried Essential Fantastic Four, but it didn't hold my attention. Doc Strange is just the right balance of nostalgia, corn, and originality. I've got to give it up to Stan Lee & Steve Ditko. Usually I read a Stan Lee-written book, and I cringe with the misogynistic dialog, and redundancy used therein. But with Strange, it's not as big of a distraction. Anyone looking to completely geek out need look no further.

Batman: Snow - JH Williams III, Dan Curtis Johnson, & Seth Fisher

I had no idea about this book until someone recommended it on BKV's Top 5 thread last week. The writing's great, but what drew me to this book is the art by Seth Fisher. He died last year in an urban climbing mishap, and I had no idea about his work until after he passed. His art in Batman: Snow is incredible. He's really in a style all his own, but if I had to compare him to someone, I'd call him a cross between Pia Guerra & Frank Quitely. I begrudgingly compare him to anyone, tho. It's a retelling of the origin of Mr. Freeze, and I've never cared about that icy bastard until reading Batman: Snow. The art is evocative of what the characters are feeling. There's a great deal of storytelling done through Fisher's panels, though the writing team is top notch as well. It's a great TPB/graphic novel for anyone looking to read a good Batman story, but not looking to get involved in current continuity. If you know that Bruce Wayne is Batman, you're ready to read this book.

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