Saturday, January 30, 2010

More books I've read in 2010

I picked up "Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader" because I like Neil Gaiman, and because Alan Moore's "Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow" (after which this boook is obviously patterned) is one of the classics of Western literature (in my book anyway). This is very different from the "last" Superman book though, as Batman dies not once, but many, many times -- and yet never dies. It was a hard concept to pull off satisfyingly and kudos to Gaiman and Kubert for making it work.

Also on the graphic novel shelf I got "Defenders: Indefensible" because I liked what the creators -- Keith Giffen, J.M. DeMatteis and Kevin Maguire -- did with the Justice League many moons ago (although now that I think about it, a little of that went a long way) and I thought the childish, petulant, argumentative characters that these guys can't help but create would work well with the Defenders, who never really got along anyway.

I was wrong though. Although there were a few laughs in it, humor in super-hero comics is probably best utilized like meat in Chinese cuisine, i.e. as seasoning not the main dish. And it is misleading in the extreme to have the Silver Surfer on the cover as he does not help his compadres fend off the Dread Dormammu's latest attempt to conquer the universe, but instead hangs out on a beach with some surfers who for some reason speak the "rad" and "gnarly" lingo of 80's wave riders.

Oh, and I did read one book with no pictures in it. "Inconceivable" by Ben Elton. I had never heard of the author before, but I saw him compared to Mil Millington somewhere and you know I love Mil. This book is about a couple trying to conceive a child without much luck. In addition to barrenness there are also break-ups and betrayals -- and it is hilariously funny, maybe not Millington level funny, but enough so that I didn't mind the absence of pictures and I will be reading more from Mister Elton.

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