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2018 Reading Wingding


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#1
Cashmere

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Welcome to the 2018 Nightly Reading Wingding! The place to keep track of your reading this year. To get things started here's my list:

 

Read

1. Turtles All the Way Down by John Green (L) 2/6

2. Nowhere Wild by Joe Beernink 2/20

 

 

In Progress

 

 

Next Up

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott


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#2
pavonis

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Thanks for starting this thread, Cashmere!

 

1. Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson. I haven't read it in years, and though I remembered the gist of the story, I had forgotten enough to make it interesting again. 

 

In progress - The Journals of Lewis and Clark, edited by John Bakeless. It's been in my to-read pile for many years (since Borders closed, I think), so I figured it was about time I read it. 

 

Next up - Green Mars by KSR



#3
irishdancer2

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Currently Reading

Read
1. Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief / Rick Riordan (1/30)
2. The Fifth Witness / Michael Connelly (2/6)
3. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince /JK Rowling (2/7)
4. The Drop / Michael Connelly (2/16)
5. Black Box / Michael Connelly (3/4)
6. The Burning Room / Michael Connelly (3/16)
7. The Crossing / Michael Connelly (4/6)
8. The Wrong Side of Goodbye / Michael Connelly (4/12)
9. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (4/13)
10. The War of the Worlds / H. G. Wells (4/19)
11. Defy / Sara B. Larson (4/26)
12. The Help / Kathryn Stockett (5/14)
13. Two Kinds of Truth / Michael Connelly (6/25)
14. Finders Keepers / Stephen King (7/11)
15. Queen Underneath / Stacey Filak (7/15)
16. The Shawshank Redemption / Stephen King (7/16)
17. Harry Potter and the Sorcerers Stone (7/25)
18. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (8/12)
19. Throne of Glass / Sarah J. Maas (9/5)
20. A Clash of Kings / George R. R. Martin (10/9)
21. Crown of Midnight / Sarah J. Maas (10/14)

#4
Darth Krawlie

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1. Wytches, by Scott Snyder
2. Dr Strange volume 4: Mr Misery, by Jason Aaron
3. Ilium, by Dan Simmons
4. Knife of Dreams, by Robert Jordan
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#5
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^Ilium! I enjoyed that book! Maybe I should read it again this year. 



#6
Darth Krawlie

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I'm picking up Olympos from the library after work today. Trojan War in space!


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#7
Darth Krawlie

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5. Olympos, by Dan Simmons
6. Saga volume 8, by Brian K Vaughan
7. The Gathering Storm, by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson
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#8
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2. Green Mars by KSR. Less science fiction, more social fiction, which is interesting, too, but not quite the "antidote" to the WoT fantasy I was looking for. Robinson is well-known for his harder science fiction, and while he doesn't break any laws of physics in the story, he stretches them pretty far. He has the terraforming of Mars raising the surface temperature 50 K over the course of a century, which would take something like 100 GW annually (not to mention hundreds of billions of dollars). Not impossible, but a significant amount of effort.

 

On to Blue Mars, while still reading The Journals of Lewis and Clark.



#9
Cashmere

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1. Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

I finally got a library card at the local library. I miss the huge, amazing library from my former home, but I'm going to make do with what I have. I enjoyed this book even though it was a little bit weird. 

 

 

2. Nowhere Wild by Joe Beernink

My mom loaned me this book. She bought it because my cousin's husband (who I have never met) wrote it. It was somewhat disturbing but overall an interesting/engaging story.



#10
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2. Green Mars by KSR. Less science fiction, more social fiction, which is interesting, too, but not quite the "antidote" to the WoT fantasy I was looking for. Robinson is well-known for his harder science fiction, and while he doesn't break any laws of physics in the story, he stretches them pretty far. He has the terraforming of Mars raising the surface temperature 50 K over the course of a century, which would take something like 100 GW annually (not to mention hundreds of billions of dollars). Not impossible, but a significant amount of effort.

 

On to Blue Mars, while still reading The Journals of Lewis and Clark.

I always liked Red Mars.  The other two weren't really for me though.



#11
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1. David Mazzucchelli, Asterios Polyp.  After making a lasting impression on the 1980s comics landscape with Daredevil: Born Again and Batman: Year One, Mazzucchelli abruptly walked away from the corporate mainstream and never worked on superheroes again, toiling away contentedly in obscurity on self-published works such as this experimental longform hardcover. Our unreliable jerk of a protagonist is a pretentious professor with architectural design skills but no follow-through, a wife who takes years to stop finding reasons to be impressed by him, and a comeuppance that forms a secondary narrative thread in which he seemingly learns humbling lessons about common decency and about his fatal flaw of embracing false dichotomies, including but not limited to the Duality of Man. The art styles shift from scene to scene to keep apace of the timeline, recurring motifs, and reductionist deconstruction that digs more deeply inside the cast's emotions and physical forms, daring the reader to go meters below the surface of Rich Man Becomes Better Person.

 

2. Neil Gaiman and Colleen Doran, Troll Bridge. A fairy tale for adults about a boy who evaded a troll by making it a long-term promise, then making more sacrifices to save his own hide. It's naturally bizarre, and so short that I debated whether or not to include it, but then I remembered the internet brightens a few extra watts whenever someone types the name "Neil Gaiman", so here I am. Lovely painted illustrations by Doran, too.

 

3. William Gibson, Pattern Recognition.  Presumably one of the first American novels in which the MacGuffin was a viral video. I'm woefully behind on Gibson's stuff and made the mistake of reading its follow-up Spook Country first. Even though it's fifteen years old, it's odd that so much of its featured technology hasn't yet become totally obsolete. Call it an advantage of writing speculative fiction instead of science fiction, I guess.

 

4.  Kyle Baker, You Should've Killed Me When I You Had the Chance! Collection of funny comics, strips, panels, and ephemera from one of my favorite cartoonists (The Cowboy Wally Show, Why I Hate Saturn). I'd already read one-third of the contents in their original forms, but enough time passed that all the punchlines were new again.

 

5.  Derf Backderf, Punk Rock and Trailer Parks.  Before his autobiographical graphic novel My Friend Dahmer was turned into a 2017 indie film, Derf's first full-length work was a roman à clef about the late-'70s punk rock scene in Akron, spawning ground for the likes of Devo and the Pretenders. The tale of one gangly, socially awkward scenester who finds his niche in life at the clubs is a fine excuse to walk through music history with the Ramones, the Clash, and other dissident voices who made Midwest stopovers on their road to fame that made a world of difference to thousands of disenfranchised misfits. Two parts nostalgia, one part comedy, three parts celebrating the lives of happy outsiders.

 

6.  Jeff Parker and Sandy Jarrell, Meteor Men. Breezy, inventive first-contact tale from two of the gents responsible for DC's recent Batman '66 comics. Things get weird in an average small town when meteorites land everywhere, strange beings emerge, and the townspeople disappear one by one. It sounds generic laid bare like that, but there's a light twist to it I hadn't seen done before.

 

7.  Paul Allor and Paul Tucker, Tet.  Vietnam War murder mystery about two unconnected men left dead -- one local, one American -- and the veteran whose investigation puts a strain on his own burgeoning relationship with another local. In this case it's not so much a whodunit as a whydunit, for a motive that ultimately reminds the reader this was written within the past ten years. The art is shaky in spots but largely conveys what's needed.

 

8.  Dara Naraghi and Brent Bowman, Persia Blues, vol. 2: Love and War.  Two alternating stories whose connection is never explicitly defined: one of a young Iranian woman trying to live free and be herself despite her government and an overly cautious father; and one of an identical medieval warrior with the same name having Iranian D&D adventures.  The present-day tales are sufficiently eye-opening on their own, much in the vein of Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis but from another persppective. The exploration of Persian mythology in the side-stories becomes more engaging as it dives further in. The art in the first volume left some practicing to be desired, but improvement shows as the stories move forward.



#12
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8. Slobberknocker: My Life in Wrestling, by Jim Ross

9. Towers of Midnight, by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson

10. Cloud Atlas, by David Mitchell

 

Finally time to get the last Wheel of Time book. It's been a hell of a journey and I'm very ready to finish it out.


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#13
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11. A Memory of Light, by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson

 

Man, what a hell of a ride. Extremely cathartic ending--I can't think of too many series' that tie up just about every loose end as well as that did. It made up for the slog of the middle 6-8 books where absolutely nothing happened. Definitely improved my opinion of Sanderson, but I still can't say I have any interest in reading anything else he's written.

 

Now what's going to fill the giant WOT sized hole in my life?



#14
pavonis

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Ha! That's what I felt when I finished AMoL. But at this point, 3 months later, I barely remember the plot and don't miss the slog. You'll get there soon.

#15
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3.  Blue Mars by KSR. It was pretty good. I enjoyed the depiction of high technology, like transparent dams the thickness of paper, and constant acceleration spaceships that reduced the travel time to Mars from months to days, but it was a bit of slog at times. The characters grew very philosophical in their superold age, and I guess I just wasn't interested in the memory problems of the superelderly that was the primary focus of the last third, or so, of the novel. I probably won't re-read this one for a few years.

 

4. The Journals of Lewis and Clark edited by John Bakeless. Sometimes dry and sometimes funny, so I had to read every entry to figure out what kind of day the expedition had. I would probably read it again after reading a history of the expedition that could provide me more context. They weren't heading into uninhabited territory, and I knew almost nothing about the societies of the native people, so I would like to learn more about the history of the natives.

 

5. Star Trek: Department of Temporal Investigations: Watching the Clock by Christopher Bennett. A long title for a short book. I don't read much tie-in fiction anymore, but this one seemed like an interesting perspective on the time travel aspects of Star Trek. It was actually fun, and the author managed to bring some sense to the various incidents and types of time travel used in Trek (slingshots around stars, black holes, ancient portals like the Guardian of Forever). He even cites some sources in his acknowledgements, so I'm going to have to dig into those, just for fun.  

 

Next up, Africa: A Biography of the Continent by John Reader and 2312 by Kim Stanley Robinson (supposedly not set in the Mars Trilogy universe, but apparently has a great deal of shared backstory and is set late enough after Blue Mars that I can pretend they're related, if I want to). 



#16
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9/10/11. Charles Soule & Alberto Jimenez Alburquerque, Letter 44, v. 2: Redshift; v. 3: Dark Matter; v. 4: Saviors. Six-volume sci-fi epic in which a new American President learns his predecessor secretly funded a zillion-dollar space mission to go investigate a mysterious alien craft at the edge of the solar system, which required much advanced military tech research that stayed hidden...until the new guy decides why not take it all out and start using it at once. World war is soon to follow, not helped by the previous President's demented background shenanigans. Meanwhile the space crew's long-term mission goes weird, the aliens' motives turn out to be long-term, there's a killer meteor and the later arrival of a guy with superpowers, and...the consequences keep piling on as everything goes off the rails. Fascinating fun in which solutions keep making things worse and nobody's safe, which is technically realistic in the face of an onslaught of so many tropes at once.

 

12. Various, Regular Show: Parks and Wreck. Short-story collection based on the Cartoon Network series that I usually liked more than Adventure Time. Most of it is no less than what I'd expected, but I'm particularly fond of Hannah Blumenreich's "Fancy Dinner", a simple story about a selfish dude trying to do something nice for his girlfriend even though he has no idea what he's doing, and the only friend who can help him is equally ignorant. Hilarity ensues, but so does heart.

 

13.  Evan Wright, Generation Kill: Devil Dogs, Iceman, Captain America, and the New Face of American War.  A Rolling Stone journalist's harrowing recount of his 2003 ride-along with a US Marines First Recon unit in the month leading up to the fall of Baghdad. This was later adapted into an HBO miniseries by the creators of The Wire, and now I think I know why -- the ground-level look at average American guys who signed up post-9/11 compares and contrasts their initial motivations with their later attitudes in the face of countless discomfiting front-line experiences, nasty confrontations, frequently shifting Rules of Engagement as commanded from on high, civilian deaths that should've been avoided, unforgiving climate, and the later discovery that, by and large, their unit was basically used as one big decoy to distract the opposition while the larger main force headed for all the important places in Iraq. Curiously, I bought this in a small-town antique store, leaving me with questions about the local who originally owned it but decided to kick it off their bookshelf.

 

14.  Raina Telgemeier, Smile.  I got tired of hearing endless chatter about how the celebrated YA graphic novelist routinely outsells all the monthly comics I collect combine, and decided to check out her work for myself. One of a few memoirs she's done, Smile covers the time she had to wear braces for years through all the really awkward ages, but also endured trauma and procedures above and beyond those of the average kid with crooked teeth. As someone who grew up in a lower-class family that could never afford orthodontics and wound up cursed with vampire fangs and buckteeth, I sympathized with her experiences, I laughed, I recoiled at the worst bits, and I applauded her determination to see the grueling process through. This was better than at least 80% of the monthly comics I collect.

 

15.  Kate Beaton, Step Aside, Pops.  Another collection of comic strips and one-panel gags from the popular webcomic saturated with historicity, feminism, and deep-dive references to lots of 19th-century novels I've never read. 75% razor-sharp wit, 25% me not getting it, which isn't Beaton's fault.



#17
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6. Life Ascending by Nick Lane. A good book on the process of evolution, particularly the molecular basis for it. Fascinating stuff. It's really piquing my interest in biophysics.



#18
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7. Star Trek: Department of Temporal Investigations: Future History by Christopher Bennett. I had to read the sequel/prequel (it's all about time travel, so it can be set both before and after the first book and still have characters interact) to see if the author could pull off a good time-travel story (within the context of Trek) again. He did. 

 

Still moving slowly through Africa and 2312. I'm way behind.



#19
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12. The Man in the High Castle, by Philip K Dick
13. Ship of Magic, by Robin Hobb
14. The Stars My Destination, by Alfred Bester
15. The Mad Ship, by Robin Hobb

#20
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16. Ken Pontac and Leonardo Manco, Wacky Raceland. Mad Max meets Cannonball Run in this grim-'n'-gritty reboot of the cutesy old Hanna Barbera cartoon. The characters have the same goofy names and the cars talk, but bloody carnage abounds and now Dick Dastardly has a pitch-black origin rivaling Chris Evans' in Snowpiercer. Maybe it makes sense coming from a former Happy Tree Friends writer, but it might have worked better as a Death Race 2000 sequel without pointlessly repurposing yesteryear's Saturday mornings.
 
17. Adam Glass and Patrick Olliffe, Rough Riders, vol. 1: Give Them Hell. Harry Houdini! Jack Johnson! Annie Oakley! Thomas Edison! And their leader, man's man Teddy Roosevelt himself, unite to track down the real perpetrators behind the sinking of the USS Maine. This early 20th-century American take on League of Extraordinary Gentlemen remixes real historical figures instead of penny-dreadful heroes, drawing from their combined wealth of true background details to formulate one rousing adventure. Guaranteed 100% less NC-17 than LoEG!
 
18. Charles Soule, The Oracle Year. An unremarkable NYC bassist wakes up one morning with 108 prophecies mysteriously spoken into his head out of nowhere. When a few innocent examples come true, at first he finds way to profit from the results. As his words are broadcast and his reach expands, the consequences reach farther outward, their ripples slowly intersecting in unforeseen, catastrophic ways. Weird, increasingly suspenseful reminder of the differences even the least among us can make over the extreme long term, the aftershocks they can create on the world stage, and the responsibility inherent in choosing our words and messages carefully.
 
19. Jeff Lemire, Roughneck. A disgraced hockey player tries to find redemption in protecting his estranged sister from her abusive boyfriend by retreating deep into the Canadian wilderness. Beautiful watercolored art belies occasionally ugly conflict over the poor choices that get us stranded in such situations.
 
20. Tom King, A Once Crowded Sky. One of DC Comics' hottest writers, a CIA analyst during the second Iraq war, Tom King kicked off his radical career change years ago with this debut novel about a world where all the superheroes (except one) gave up their powers to defeat an evil menace from beyond, only to find themselves helpless years later when a new threat begins murdering them one by one. Definitely influenced by Watchmen, early Brian Michael Bendis, and other post-superhero works of the past thirty years, the book picks up steam as it delves deeper into its deconstructions, but has a few early chapters that are sluggish chores to endure whenever the third-person narration adopts the rambling, repetitive voice of its drunker, more irritating characters.
 
21. Markisan Naso and Jason Muhr, Voracious, vol. 1: Diners, Dinosaurs and Dives. A hotheaded young chef at a low point in his life inherits a time machine from a long-lost relative, stumbles back into the age of the dinosaurs, and embarks on a new business venture: a restaurant whose dishes are based entirely on the dinosaurs he hunts, kills, butchers, and brings back into the present to serve with finesse. Culinary sci-fi has become a sort of micro-mini-subgenre niche in comics (cf. Starve, Flavor, and more than a few manga), and this one is the weirdest and funniest I've seen to date.
 
22. Noah van Sciver, The Hypo: The Melancholic Young Lincoln. The inspired-by-a-true-story recount of the future President's years in Illinois as a novice lawyer with a run of hard luck and undiagnosed depression inhibiting his demeanor and career. We tend to think of Lincoln in such reverent, deified tones that it's unusual to see him examined from a humbled, humanizing position of weakness. If anything, though, seeing him overcome such trials -- as much as one could in the nineteenth century, at least -- adds a relatable dimension to his legacy without diminishing it.
 
23. Joe Pantoliano, Asylum: Hollywood Tales from My Great Depression: Brain Dis-Ease, Recovery, and Being My Mother's Son. You may remember him from such films as Memento, The Matrix, The Fugitive, Daredevil, Midnight Run, and TV's The Sopranos. The Emmy-winning character actor's most recent memoir dives into a fair number of weird Hollywood anecdotes -- his friendship with Robert Wagner and Natalie Wood; his fight for more screen time on The Fugitive; that time he ran and hid from a physically violent Rosie Perez during a bad Broadway experience; that other time he snuck into a party Harvey Weinstein threw for new U.S. Senator Hillary Clinton. But the crux of the book is candidly discussing his late-life diagnoses of multiple lifelong conditions (ADHD, dlyslexia, depression) that manifested in a lengthy list of addictions (alcohol, painkillers, sex, shopping), all told in that distinct, inimitable voice of every character he's ever played. Come for the acting backstory and frequent name-checking; stay for the reassurance that others like him aren't alone out there, as expressly stated in the name of the mental-disease awareness charity he founded called No Kidding? Me Too!, which he brings up repeatedly for good reason.


#21
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16. Blood Meridian, by Cormac McCarthy
17. Ship of Destiny, by Robin Hobb
18. Starship Troopers, by Robert Heinlein

#22
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24. Anthony Bourdain, Joel Rose, and Ale Garza, Get Jiro: Blood and Sushi.  Origin prequel to a previous graphic novel about an ex-Yakuza guy turned L.A. sushi chef. I bought this from the artist at a convention last year, but had planned to leave it in the reading pile until and unless I could find the first one. In light of today's horribly unexpectedly tragic news, I cleared my reading schedule and zipped through it anyway as my idea of a tiny tribute.



#23
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8. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson. It was OK. Catchy title, good ideas (don't care too much about things that you can't really control) but the sustained use of "give a ****" throughout got to be very unsubtle and annoying. 

 

9. 2312 by Kim Stanley Robinson. Despite not being set in the same universe as the Mars Trilogy, there's so much backstory implied to be roughly the same as the trilogy that you might only make sense of 2312's setting if you had read the trilogy. Anyway, it was fun to read about such a radically different society with such advanced technology.

 

Still reading Africa: A Biography of a Continent, and enjoying it. Started reading Lise Meitner: A Life in Physics by Ruth Lewin Sime and The Great Unknown: Seven Journeys to the Frontiers of Science by Marcus du Sautoy. Maybe I should finish a book without picking up two more first? 

 

Update: Finished Africa! Though the history only runs up to about 1997, so I guess I have to find out what happened next!



#24
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25. Tyler Ellis, Chimera, v. 1: The Righteous & the Lost. In a sci-fi/fantasy universe where a holy cult runs and oppresses everything, a motley crew of humans and animal humanoids -- one with superpowers, one a secret traitor -- is tasked to retrieve a MacGuffin without getting killed by acolytes, giant locusts, or a Dark Side version of Splinter. Deeply influenced by Brian K. Vaughan, Ellis builds up a cast of unusual characters, drains away the clichés, loads them with surprises, and sets about to murder or at least damage as many of them as possible. Risky storytelling reaps engrossing results.

 

26. Adam Fotos, The Panopticorn.  An elderly farmer reeling from months of drought pins his last hopes on a big batch of genetically modified corn swiped from the local giant evil farming corporation. He plants all the kernels on the same night as a strange meteor shower and finds himself overloaded with crops straight out of the Twilight Zone. It's an unconventional premise in one of the least glamorous settings possible, but it kept me turning the pages because I had to know where such a bizarre premise was headed.

 

27.  Amy Chu, et al., Poison Ivy: Cycle of Life and Death.  The longtime Bat-villain is the star of her very own whodunit. Pamela Isley tries to go straight and get a benign STEM job, only to see her coworkers begin dropping dead from vaguely plant-based causes. In between suspect interviews and famous guest stars from the DC Universe, further complications arise from her own pet project -- creating her own children. Several artists pitch in throughout a mere six issues' worth of story and make for jarring transitions from one chapter to the next, all of which leads  to an anticlimactic killer reveal, plus the day is saved by a bonus superhero shoehorned into the finale. Regardless, it's interesting seeing Ivy have the time to explore her motivations at length instead of just making lots of plant puns or ordering Venus fly traps to attack Batman.

 

28.  Carl Potts, Denny O'Neil, and Terry Austin, Last of the Dragons.  In a 19th-century Asia where dragons are endangered but still around, a faction of monks decides it would be an awesome idea to import them to America's west coast and start tearing stuff up. Only a handful of characters can save the say, including an elderly martial artist past his prime and a half-Japanese/half-American redheaded ninja. Potts was a longtime Marvel editor who didn't have a lot of time to write, draw, or create his own works (see also: Alien Legion), but this one was the longest project he ever drew. Some parts haven't aged well, but Potts was an underappreciated artists among tons of 1980s competition. And hey, there be dragons.

 

29.  Jeremy Haun and Seth M. Peck, The Realm, v. 1. Post-apocalyptic fantasy in which an evil wizard with a floating fortress has plunged the world into chaos, and the landscape is cluttered with weird warriors and Dungeons & Dragons orcs and other humanoid classes. It's like Walking Dead by way of Bright, which I still haven't worked up the nerve to watch yet, but this is probably way better.

 

30.  Jonathan Hennessey and Justin Greenwood, Alexander Hamilton.  Graphic novel biography that tries to cover some of the same ground as Ron Chernow's massive tome, but at a fraction of the page count and with a lot more drawings.  It's a handy deep-dive for anyone who only knows him from the Aaron Burr story or from listening to Miranda's soundtrack online, though I'm not convinced that the numerous pages spent on explaining the design of the original American banking system translated into an interesting use of words plus pictures. Points for trying, though.



#25
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31.  Sholly Fisch, Rick Burchett, et al., The All-New Batman: The Brave and the Bold: Help Wanted. Collection of tales based on the erstwhile Cartoon Network series, the one that starred Diedrich Bader as Batman. If you liked the cartoon, this is a worthy extension full of old-fashioned DC Universe superhero adventure. Fisch writes at an all-ages level but has fun plucking lots of villains from ye olde DC Who's Who. He continues the show's tradition of making Aquaman basically a competent Zapp Branigan, shows the Golden Age Green Lantern teaching Batman the difference between justice and vengeance, serves up a neat story about a henchman that just can't win, and at one point tosses in an obscure in-joke that only Comics Buyer's Guide readers from the mid-1990s would get. Now I'm mad at all other comics fans for not telling me about this sooner.

 

32.  Frank J. Barbiere and Brent Schoonover, Howling Commandos of SHIELD: Monster Squad. The premise is clever: Nick Fury's old pal Dum-Dum Dugan is technically brought back to life as an LMD and put in charge of a team of Marvel monsters tasked with special missions involving other Marvel monsters. It's amusing more in concept than in execution, weakened by the insertion of half a dozen characters into the mix without actually introducing any of them except Dum-Dum but expects us to play along and care anyway. "It's funny because monsters!" is not a joke in itself. Also, 700 demerits for getting the silent but deadly Man-Thing wrong.

 

33.  Gail Simone and Jim Calafiore, Surviving Megalopolis. The sequel to their Kickstarter'd Leaving Megalopolis, about an entire major city taken hostage by a superhero team driven psychotic. Last time around, a group of humans tried to get out of town alive. This time around is the obvious follow-up: a human rescue team going inside to extract one (1) human trapped inside the chaos. Simone excels at writing bad guys vs. worse guys -- the more unhinged, the better -- and Calafiore, her frequent collaborator on the awesome Secret Six before the New 52, delivers on Simone's demands for creepy moods, scary metahumans, and darlings killed left and right when everything goes wrong. Superhumans don't get much more engrossingly Dark Side than this.





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