Sunday, September 04, 2011

The Summer 2011 Reading Spectacular #8

Not far from the finish line for another summer...

First up in this entry, Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins. The final entry in the Hunger Games trilogy, it was a satisfying conclusion to the series, though I can't deny that the love triangle thread (between Katniss, Peeta, and Gale) has become a bit tiresome by the time we reach the halfway point in this, the third book in which it figures. I was unbothered by the unresolved pieces of the puzzle (I'm not a fan of everything being too tidily resolved, at the best of times). All told, it's a young adult series worth reading, and adults will find it an enjoyable light read, too. I'm hoping the film adaptation doesn't mess it up. Previews look good, at least.

Another issue of The Believer (No. 82 -- The Music Issue) was completed early in August. Who knew that they tried putting turntables in car dashboards in the 60s (other than those who were looking to buy luxury cars in the 60s)? Where else would an article about the bassoon (and its reputation as the orchestral comedian) be entitled 'The Farting Bedpost'? Did you know that KPOP (Korean Pop Music) had a rabid fanbase that would make Beatlemaniacs blush? Good times (with bad comics, again).

Showcase presents The Flash, after a shelf-sitting hiatus, came back into the reading circulation and was finished at last. A collection of black-and-white reprints from the 60s (over 500 pages' worth!), it is highly amusing to see how the tone of comics has changed since the Silver Age. Apart from a general sense of camp in the storytelling, it's also entertaining to see how the prevalence of "radiations" of all sorts reflects the times.

Keeping in the comics genre, I re-read the graphic novel Batman: Dark Joker - The Wild, an Elseworlds story from 1993. I'd pretty much forgotten the whole thing until I unearthed it while sorting things from the basement in the Spring. While the concept is intriguing (in a Medievalesque fantasy land, Dark Joker is a powerful and evil wizard; the Batman is the disfigured hero who will bring about his fall), the storytelling itself isn't quite as strong as I would like. The artwork, on the whole, is quite nice, though, with a little gore to spare.

No comments: