Giving Thanks

Hello y'all,
Well here we are at Thanksgiving (at least here in America anyway). As is customary we start to reflect on what we have to be grateful for. Here's a list of things that I am currently thankful for in no particular order:

*My mom.

*My jobs. Although they may not pay much I count myself as very lucky to be able to be involved with something I love.

*Books. Really must I explain?

*Movies. Well the really great ones anyway. And new ones to be discovered.

*Podcasts. Never enough time y'know.

*Sunday Brunch at Fiddler's Elbow.

*Steven Gerrard, Liverpool.

*Lost. Enuf said.

*Anyone that reads this blog. Yeah that means you Constant Reader.

I think that we will leave it at that. Have a great Thanksgiving! Book Slave.


Some Challenging Lit

Hello folks.
I hope you are enjoying this Thanksgiving week. I am thankful for the wonderful 3 days off that I've been granted. I hope you all are just as lucky! Well Onward!

In Persuasion Nation
This is a book I definitely wouldn't have picked up on my own. I ended up picking it up as part of my book club and it's definitely unique. Using a mixture of satire and Pynchon-esque storytelling in this collection Saunders makes pointed social commentaries. In several of his stories Saunders focuses in on the corrosive effects of advertising and materialism. While I found some of his stories very funny, such as "Samish-Sex Marriage," I also think that the writing is very dense. It took a discussion with some other readers for me to understand Saunders better. Some of his stories I found to be emotionally detached and I'm not sure whether that was on purpose or not. So if you are interested in "something different" perhaps give this a shot.

Other reviews
curled up|Entertainment Weekly|Blue Rectangle

Selected Poems William Carlos Williams
"I think some people just read poetry to seem smart"
"I don't really like poetry. Most of the time I just don't get it."
--Overhead on the train from some folks sitting next to me

I like poetry. In college I actually spent more time studying poetry then prose. I think that because of that I'm pretty good at understanding it. I especially enjoy modern non-form poetry which is why I picked up this collection of William Carlos Williams. Now I will admit that WCW is not for the weak. He doesn't give it to you on a silver platter. However I also don't think that human existence, love, death, et al. are easily explained. It is as complex as WCW makes it. This is a great collection of his "greatest hits." I enjoyed it immensely.

Biographical Info
William Carlos Williams

The Reading List
In Our Time
Loser's Guide to Life and Love

Dynamo #18


Check Out Count: A Bit Overloaded.
Comic Pull List:Batman #681, Buffy The Vampire Slayer #19, Daredevil #113, Garth Ennis Battlefields Night Witches #2, Northlanders #12, Runaways 3 #4, Superman #682, Trinity #26, Umbrella Academy Dallas #1, Wonder Woman #26

Well Have a Great Thanksgiving y'all! Book Slave.


A Day Without Computers

Hello folks,
Howse it going? Good I hope, I'm doing well. I had a fascinating day at the old bibliotech (that a fancy schmancy way of saying library folks). It's been awhile since I've thrown down here with some library talk. Yes to remind y'all I do spend time working as a librarian in a fabulous facility known for it's architecture. And I love it for many reasons.

The main reason is that it combines my love of books with the emotional wonderfulness of helping people. I won't lie, some days it can be trying. Crazy homeless people or teenage kids that forget you are a human being with feelings take time to get used to. Worse are when people lie to your face and then accuse you of doing wrong. There are some diamond hard-hearted librarians out there who don't care about books. I've worked really hard to stay positive and cling to the good experiences. Nothing beats putting a patron together with a great book.

Today was a real test. See when I got in this morning all the computers were down. No catalog, no internet, no computers at all. Yes it was back to old school brothers and sisters. Rather than be daunted by the lack of technology, however I loved it. It was a great challenge. Do you know your shelves? How well do you know books and authors? I enjoyed the test. Sometimes I fear that I'm chained to my desk. It's a problem in modern librarianship that people are stuck to their computer screens. So today there was no excuse whatsoever to be stuck at the desk. I wandered around, filled displays, even shelved some books. It was awesome. In fact, and this may be heresy, but I think we should do it every three months.

Have a great weekend! Book Slave.


It can be a long road...

Hey folks,
Having a great week? I'd have to say things here in the City of Salt are going pretty great. Onward baby yeah!

Dark Tower: Long Road Home
I've been looking forward to this sequel since I enjoyed the first series Dark Tower: Gunslinger Born. The story depicts the title character of Roland Deschain as he returns to Gilead from Mejis with his katet. He ends up engaging in psychological warfare in the End-World with Martin Broadcloak. Meanwhile his ka-tet, Alain Johns and Cuthbert Allgood, are on the run from the Hambry posse. While I still am not really clear as to what is going on, I love the art in this series. Illustrators Jae Lee and Richard Isanove are incredible and the colors are so vibrant. I also love the sarcastic tone of the storyteller narrator. This is a great series that I will continue to read in trades, because I think that it's easier to keep track of the story all at once.

Other Reviews
Comic Book Resources | Comic Critique

Dispatches From the Edge
Since 2005 I've been meaning to pick this book up. Anderson Cooper is not only my favorite newsman but until this book came out I had no idea what a fascinating story he has. For those who don't know Cooper is the son of Gloria Vanderbilt and writer Wyatt Cooper. His father died when he was 10 and his brother Carter committed suicide when he was 22. This autobiography juxtaposes those life changing events with his experiences in crazy places such as Somalia, Sarajevo, Hurricane Katrina, etc. Rather than a chronicle of life events this book is more of an emotional examination. I was more interested in the segments that were about his father and brother, but I also understand that he is a journalist. As a journalist he wants to tell personal stories that we may not have heard, particularly in these insane places. Ultimately I connected with his battle between jaded cynicism and emotional connection. As a naturally cynical person I can have a tough time dealing with some of the horrible things that happen in this world. This is a great read.

Other Reviews
USA Today| Blog Critics | Book Addiction

The Reading List
In Persuasion Nation
William Carlos Williams:Selected Poems

Four Four Two

Trinity #23

Check Out Count: Highly Coveted.

Comic Pull List: Batgirl #5, Batman And The Outsiders #13, Deadpool #4, Goon #30, Trinity #25

Have a great week! Book Slave.


Some Masterful Dickens

Hey folks out there,
Y'all doing good? I hope so. Today was a great capper to a fun week. The weather was awesome, people were protesting inequality en masse, and there was beer to be drunk. Good times ahead it seems.

This week the series Masterpiece Theater announced their new group of programs for early next year. I loved their Jane Austen series from last year, which was followed by the amazing Cranford. If you haven't seen the new 3 hour Sense and Sensibility they put out here's a preview.

I highly reccomend it. It was spiffy.

Anyway they are going to be following it up with a Dicken's series. Here's a rundown:

Little Dorrit- 8 hour mini-series. Stars Matthew Macfadyen, Tom Courtenay and Alun Armstrong. Adapted by Andrew Davies.

The Old Curiosity Shop- 90 minute single. Stars Sir Derek Jacobi, Gina McKee and Toby Jones.

Oliver Twist- 3 hour mini-series. Stars Timothy Spall, Tom Hardy and Sophie Okonedo.

David Copperfield- 3 hour mini-series. Stars Daniel Radcliffe, Maggie Smith and Ian McKellen.

After the brilliant adaptation of Bleak House a few years back color me excited. The Brits are incredibly adept at creating quality top shelf lit adaptations. One part of it is that they are willing to take as long as they need to tell a story right. ITV and BBC don't blink at the idea of spending 3 hours minimum, whereas in the US we freak out over expanded sitcoms. The other element that the Brits have is writer Andrew Davies. The man is the best writer working today. Yeah I said it!
Here's a list of his triumphs: Pride and Prejudice (1994), Bridget Jones's Diary, Tipping the Velvet, Wives and Daughters, etc. For these anglophilic reasons I have complete confidence and can't wait for this coming January 2009.

This got me to thinking what other authors would I like to see adaptations of their works. Here's a list.
1. Wallace Stegner
2. Willa Cather
3. S.E. Hinton
4. Kurt Vonnegut
5. Sherwood Anderson

It would be great to see these authors get "The Complete" treatment. It would be awesome if the American public could pull it together intellectually and demand an upgrade in our standards. No instead we'll be excited for Dancing with the Stars.
Oh well.

Have a great weekend! Book Slave.


Baby Baby Baby We're out of time...

Hello Y'all,
How are you doing? Awesome I hope. Apologies for the lateness, but this gal had a big day yesterday. After such a success I felt compelled to go out and howl at the moon. Good things seem to be following this gentle writer around these days. Let's see how long it lasts eh?

Super Spy
I had read Matt Kindt's Two Sisters a few years ago. I somewhat enjoyed it due to the art style and subject, but found the story confused. With this in mind I picked up the sorta-sequel Super Spy. This graphic novel follows a group of spies during World War 2 which includes the main character Elle, who was featured in Two Sisters. It is difficult to describe the non-linear narrative style employed here but I loved it. The reader is as confused as the main characters are; Kindt is using the narrative style to reflect the crazy world of these spies. It is also the little details and spycraft that Kindt slips in that was wonderful. Highly reccommend checking this out.

Other Reviews
shuffleboil | ComicMix | Daily Cross Hatch

Scalped Vol. 3
This is volume 3 of this amazing series written by Jason Aaron. Quite frankly I think that this is one of the best comic series being written today. Dashell Badhorse is confronted by his troubled relationship with his mother when he finds out she's dead. Using flashback and parallels Aaron fleshes out these complex characters in a realistic way. These characters are so damaged. Again if you love human stories, why are you not reading this?

Past Reviews
Scalped Vol.1 | Scalped Vol. 2

All Star Superman Vol. 1
My tear through the canon of Grant Morrison continues with this volume. I was surprised by how faithful and earnest Morrison's take on the iconography of Superman. He portrays Clark Kent/Superman as someone with a solid morality. Then Morrison challenges the fact that Superman cannot save everyone. Having that weight on his shoulders is the backbone of Superman's inner conflict. It is amazing that Morrison sees this so clearly and does not engage in his general anarchy. I was shocked by Morrison's traditional and conventional take.

Other Reviews
Specusphere | blogcritics| BookLove

The Reading List
Dispatches from the Edge
Dark Tower: Long Road Home

Four Four Two


Comic Pull List: Batman Cacophony #1, Captain Britain And Mi 13 #7, Detective Comics #850, Fables #78, Green Arrow Black Canary #14, Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane Season 2 #4, Stand Captain Trips #3, Trinity #24, Wolverine #69

Check Out Count: Hold Heavy.

Have a great week! Book Slave.


Some Small Bits

Hey world,
What an awesome couple of days eh? I don't know why but all of a sudden I feel a little bit happier. A little more hope. A little more cheerful. I can't explain why. What could it be? Well enough sarcasm and snark.

It's been a couple of sleepless nights for this gal, so tonight I'm just going throw some little bites at you.

*I just got my copy of In Persuasion Nation by George Saunders for the Hard Boiled Book Club. Looking forward to reading it.

*Saw the film version of Appaloosa based on a novel by Robert B. Parker. I loved the film and instantly went out and picked up the book.

*While I am tragically bummed that the film adaptation of The Road has been pushed to next year, I was instantly captured by the trailer for The Reader based on a book by Bernhard Schlink *sigh* Another book to pick up.

*RIP Michael Crichton and Tony Hillerman.

*I have finally cleaned my front room so that it's livable. But really I just shifted my piles of books and comics to other places.

Have a great week folks! Book Slave.


Hope and Anarchy

What a night! Being a cynical person most of the time I am always surprised when a people decides that it's time to accept hope and optimism. Yes We Can!

Kill Your Boyfriend
This was a book that I have been interested in, but it's been out of print. When I found out that a reprint was coming out I jumped for it. Grant Morrison is a writer for the future, he writes outside the box. I loved the happy anarchy of this book. It follows a young couple of murdering punks who decide to cut a path across England. Morrison clearly mocks this psuedo-rebellion that is seen in teenage culture. His antagonists are laughingly obscene. I can clearly see the influence this book must have had on Millar's Wanted and Ellis's Preacher. Highly enjoyable, but not for the weak.

The Reading List
All Star Superman Vol. 1

Battlefield: Night of the Witch

Four Four Two

Check Out Count: Improving
Comic Pull List:Gemini #3, Secret Six #3, Trinity #23

Have a great week in America! Book Slave.