Comics Collector in Hot Water

29 05 2009

I wrote about this on one of my other blogs.  I’m not surewhy I didn’t put it here.





Recent Reading

11 03 2009

inhobokenFirst up is the Christian Bauman novel In Hoboken.  It’s the story of Thatcher, a young folk singer recently discharged from the army, who moves in with his friend James in Hoboken (of course).  The book chronicles Thatcher and the people he meets, including members of the music community and Orris, a mental patient who at times feels like the most real character.

Overall, I found the book well written and enjoyable, but the plot ambles along never really going anywhere.  It ends kind of flat, failing to wrap up or even address some of the issues in the characters’ lives.  

The second thing I’ve been reading is Marvel’s title, Secret Warriors.  

secretwarriors_01_cover1

Nick Fury has discovered that the only person he can trust is himself and it’s kind of crazy awesome.  So far we’ve had a new team of young heroes, Skrulls, and Hydra.  I like how this book is trolling the back alleys of Marvel’s Dark Reign. I’m hoping to see this book cross over into the rest of the Marvel universe (and vice versa).  It would be great to see Captain America and others all show up.  

Well, off to the pile of comic books and books remaining.

I almost forgot to mention, I recently also finished Stewart O’Nan’s a Prayer for the Dying.  A beautiful but heartbreaking book that can be difficult to read.  Essentially it’s a tale of a small town after the U.S. Civil War that experiences a diphtheria outbreak and is threatened by wildfires.  Written in the second person, the book grapples with the moral implications of what must be done and then often asks, how do you live with it?

prayer_for_the_dying1Overall, this is one of the best books I’ve read in the past year or so.  That being said, there were times I had to put it down.  What happens throughout the story is sometimes depressing and disheartening.  Not only do you feel for Jacob, the main character, but you cringe as you feel the novel’s world sliding slowly out of control.  

That being said, I’m starting to really admire O’Nan and his writing.  He can change voice, style, and subject so easily from book to book, yet still manages to produce great work.





Review: The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

7 02 2009

oscar-waoI just finished  The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao and I have to say I was quite impressed.  The novel is the rambling story of Oscar and the DeLeons, a Dominican family with a rough history.  Originally appearing in pieces in the New Yorker, the story follows not only Oscar, but his mother Beli, his sister Lola, his grandmother La Inca, and his reluctant but best friend Yunior.

The story weaves its way in and out of Patterson, NJ and the DR.  Moving through time to show the parallels between three generations of a family obsessed with the Fuku.  

The narrator is largely Yunior, speaking as though he were Uatu thexmen8a1 Watcher, helpless to prevent the story from unfolding.  He tells much of the story using sci-fi, fantasy, and comic book metaphors comparing Beli (Oscar’s mother) to Unus the Untouchable of X-Men fame.  Using almost the omnipresence of the Watcher, Yunior moves back and forth through time, showing the troubled history of Lola, Beli, Beli’s father & La Inca, and Oscar.  Each story reveals more and more that hint at the fate of Oscar’s story.  

In the end, Yunior is much like Nick from The Great Gatsby, a part of the story and struggling against larger forces.  His life never quite turns out the way he hopes and he’s unable to stop the hand of fate and movement of the Fuku through the family.  

I can totally see why this book was the winner of the Pulitzer Prize and think that so far it’s the best book I’ve read in 2009.  While it’s still early in the year, it’s going to set a high standard for the other books I read this year. 

Shannon also read this book and reviewed it here.

Up next for me, Steward O’Nan’s A Prayer for the Dying.





MUGATO!!!

23 01 2009

Mugato!!

Just so there is no doubt that I’m still a giant nerd.  My office is slowly turning into that of a five year old’s.





The Oscars

22 01 2009

The Oscar nominees came out today. While for the most part I’m not surprised or upset by the choices, I am horrified that The Dark Knight was snubbed for best picture. When pieces of crap like Titanic and Chicago can win, but The Dark Knight is locked out of contention it makes the Oscars look like the Grammy’s or the Emmy’s.

Essentially I believe the Academy has lost all the credibility it built up with last year’s win for No Country for Old Men.





Captain America #42

28 09 2008


Apparently issue #42 of Captain America marks the end of the current story arc. First off, I can’t believe that I’ve just finished a forty-two issue story arc in this day in age. It’s been absolutely wonderful. The art, writing, and consistency of this run has reminded me why I love reading comic books. If you haven’t read the issue, go to Marvel’s website and preview it here. I don’t want to give too much away considering that the Red Skull/Agent 13 story line ties up and we discover the fate of The Grand Director (also known as the Cap of the 1950s). The important things that come out of this include:

  • James continues to struggle with the idea of being Captain America, but he also starts to get it.
  • The Black Widow and the Falcon continue to be treated as quality characters.
  • James is going to be Captain America for the foreseeable future.
Do I miss Steve Rogers?  Yes I do.  Am I excited to see where this title is going to go now (especially since Thor met James in the Secret Invasion series)?  You bet.
If you want to read more about this issue check out reviews:




Long Time No Blog

21 09 2008

So it only seems like 100 years since I’ve posted a roundup here.  Work, baby, life are all enough to distract me greatly.  Where to begin this week:

Let’s start in literature & books

In comics, we continue to have Secret Invasion…
Off to the rest…
Ok, I’ll try to do better about posting.  Wish me luck…