Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Delilah Dirk Webcomic

I'm just in chapter one of this webcomic about a woman warrior who confounds the chauvinists of Constantinople, and it's already given me a bunch of chuckles: http://www.delilahdirk.com/

Sunday, July 22, 2012

The bad old days

A remininiscence about the bad old days when you could get beaten up for admitting you liked comic books turns into a nice rumination about bullies and real-life superheroes:  http://goodcomics.comicbookresources.com/2012/07/20/the-bad-old-days/

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

_The Girl who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of her own Making_ by Catherynne M. Valente

This is a kids or young-adult novel, or anyway it's being marketed that way. It's a good one that should be of general interest to all.

I really like that title. It says a lot: I didn't really need to see more than the title to know I was going to want to check this book out. It says "plucky girl" and sets the tone.

And the tone, the voice of the novel is great. It's warm and funny and I could read it all day.

The structure of the book is pretty loose. Given the nature of Fairyland as described here, geography isn't important, giving this a picaresque feel. One could imagine adding any number of extra chapters: the chapters are organized around encounters with various characters of Fairyland. It's an interesting and fun choice and must have made this fun to write. Apparently the book was originally delivered as episodes on the web, which this structure would contribute to.

The general storyline reminded me a lot of Oz, but an Oz that has grown up, gotten some post-modern ideas, and doesn't feel at all dated.

Definitely the sort of book that makes me feel, "Man, I wish I'd written that."

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Girl-Circumnavigated-Fairyland-Ship-Making/dp/1250010195/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1341405676&sr=1-1&keywords=girl+who+circumnavigated+fairyland+in+a+ship+of+her+own+making

_Brain Camp_ by Susan Kim, Laurence Klavan, Faith Erin Hicks

This graphic novel has the same artist as previously-mentioned Friends with Boys, but where that one is also written by the artist, this one has Susan Kim and Laurence Klavan as writers.

It's got a great, weird premise: the main characters are underachieving kids whisked off to a camp that's going to make geniuses out of them. But it's clear early that weird things are going on at the camp ... our viewpoint characters are there to replace kids who had something bad happen to them.

I liked how this one ended a lot ... it ends with our main characters not having fully resolved the threat, but prepared to meet it head on in the future. Neat stuff.

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Brain-Camp-Susan-Kim/dp/1596433663