healyg: (Frown)
You might be wondering when that one post I promised at the end of my last review is coming up. Well, for whatever reason, I can't seem to find my writing mojo this week; I'm also trying to get my Shufflecomp game done before the April 25th deadline (I've already greatly simplified the concept for it). Given this I can't expect that I will get around to writing it before Sunday, April 26th; in the meantime, let me review the books I've been reading this week:

Uncle Scrooge: The Seven Cities of Gold by Carl Barks: This is a solid collection of adventure and humor comics by the master of the Disney Duck comics, Carl Barks. Like most people nowadays I got into Barks through Don Rosa's superb The Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck; Barks' comics are generally more old-fashioned, for lack of a better term, than Life and Times, but no less good. Not all of the stories are big hits, and some of them are a little... racially sketchy, let's call it, but they're all cracking entertainment.

Alice's Adventures: Lewis Carroll in Popular Culture by Will Brooker (re-read): A rather fussy book about the myths and motifs we carry about Alice in Wonderland and her writer, Lewis Carroll. Goes into a bit of detail about the pedophilia allegations that have cropped up around Lewis Carroll over the past century, although it's far from the only subject discussed. There's a chapter that's devoted to the then-recent video game American McGee's Alice; as someone who is only familiar with it through the Old Man Murray Review, I found it rather amusing. There are also chapters about Alice adaptations, Lewis Carroll societies, and a rather touching one at the end about sites associated with Lewis Carroll and the Alice books. The author also wrote a book about Batman, which I'd like to read.
healyg: (apology)
Sorry I haven't been here in a while! I was trying to write this big ol' post but the whole thing collapsed on me.

Anyways, since this is about three days late, let's go ahead and review three different books!

Book numero uno: How to Torture Your Brain, by Ralph L. Woods, is a compilation of brainteasers, paradoxes, and other weird brain junk. Some of these are going to be a little familiar to most folks, like the infamous question "What happens when an irresistible force meets an immovable object?" and the infinite hotel problem, but others, like selections from Greek philosophers, or a parody of the twisted logic Anti-Stratfordians work themselves into, are fresh, at least to me. Be warned that it's a pretty old book, so that some of the examples it uses are a little UnP.C. these days. Here's its Amazon pages, or you could check and see if it's at your local library.

Second book, same as last look: Alan Moore, Storyteller by Gary Spencer Millidge, is a coffee table book about perhaps the most famous British comic book writer of all. Frankly I find the aggrandizing tone of it all a bit wearying (did you know that Alan Moore wrote the very first serious superhero story? And also the first feminist comic book heroine, and also the first interracial relationship, and and and), but hey! That's what you get with these types of books. I don't know, I'm more of a Grant Morrison fan, so maybe this book just isn't for me.

Book number three, oh my oh me I've got a big collection of most of Lewis Carroll's major works, so I'm trying to make some headway into Sylvie and Bruno. So far it's slow going; the joke-to-sentiment ratio is nearly inverted from his Alice books. Mostly I've just been skipping around, and reading an article here or a short story there. There's this one really great story about photographic plates that can write a whole short story from your mind that's just amazing, and I may transcribe the whole thing over here so I can show it off.

Next time, hopefully on time: Next time I really want to play a text adventure, because the IF Top 50 is having another round again and I don't want to miss out. We'll see how that goes.


healyg: (Default)

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