015) Batman: The Black Glove by Grant Morrison and Tony Daniel and J.H. Williams III, finished February 23
- I didn't really care for the first book in this series so I've been letting this one sit on my nightstand for months. A shame, really, because this one I liked quite a bit.
Interestingly, one storyline reflects stories from this 1989 volume of "the greatest" Batman stories that the Big O and I are now reading together. So having read the decades-old antecedents heightened my enjoyment of this book. And the storyline under discussion also redeemed, in some measure, Batman and Son.
The first storyline was disappointing however. It started off great, throwing Batman in to an Agatha Christie superhero novel. A bunch of heroes trapped on an island, getting murdered one by one. Great setup. Lots of potential. Set up brilliantly. Resolved before any real suspense or intrigue could get going. A waste of a great idea.
All that said, I hope Mr Fob buys the third volume in Grant's Batman run soon so I can borrow and read it as well. I've been drawn back in.
014) The Hot Zone: A Terrifying True Story by Richard Preston, finished February 22
- All the hype is true! Or would have been had I read this fresh, fifteen years ago! But Marburg and Ebola are still really scary! Boo!
Seriously though, good book. It's been my stays-in-the-car book since we bought the 5 and the Big O would ask me to read The Scary Book to him at times we were waiting for Mommy. I don't think he followed the story too well, but when his mother came back I would sum up the horrors for her and no doubt that made for great spectator conversation.
Horrible, horrible, true, horrible stuff.
013) Lex Luthor: Man of Steel by Brian Azzarello and Lee Bermejo, finished February 19
- As an archetype, Superman may provide more insight into the modern psyche than any other invention of the past century. As a modern, as an American in 2009, I appreciate Superman's power in this regard. But I'm not that interested in reading about Superman or watching Superman --- I still haven't seen the recent movie for instance. And peripheral characters like Lex Luthor interest me even less. All I really know about him is Gene Hackman and that he became president.
"Everyone is necessarily the hero of his own life story." ---John Barth
This book gives us Luthor's perspective. And at first, his perspective is compelling. He is anxious to protect humanity from an alien power who could, at any moment, on a whim, kill us all.
And Luthor does seem to be a hero. The first to die under his instructions are nothing more than Chechen terrorists. They're badguys, right?
But then his what-used-to-be-called monomania becomes more and more apparent and his thinking more and more obviously warped.
This is the same writer-artist team that gave me The Joker a few days ago, but both are working at a higher level here.
Let's talk art. It's less experimental yet more successful than Joker's art. Most notably is the fearsome representation of Superman. His alienness is gross and plain, his glowing red eyes and unnatural movement disturbing.
And, in the end, we are left without pat answers.
No one seems to be a true hero in this Metropolis.
All have sinned and come short of the glory of God.
a day or two
012) Blue Beetle: Shellshocked by Keith Giffen and Cully Hammer, finished February 18
- What's not to like? Chipper youth. New setting (El Paso). Fun supporting cast. He's the new Spider-Man!
011) The Joker by Brian Azzarello and Lee Bermejo, finished February 17
- Not as fanTAStic as the MSM buzz had led me to believe. Really, the most interesting thing about this book was the art from Bermejo --- the fractured lines followed by paintings followed by computerized blurs topped with primary-color blood. Very ugly, but ugly to a purpose and really quite excellent. I'm looking forward to seeing more from him. As I will as I've already borrowed another from this team from Ben. We'll see what I think, shall we?
hour or so
010) Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons, finished February 18
009) Superman: Red Son by MJR&M, finished February 11
008) The Best American Comics 2008 edited by Lynda Barry, finished February 9
007) The Blot by Tom Neely, finished February 6
006) JSA: Darkness Falls by Goyer, Johns, et al, finished January 28
005) The Road by Cormac McCarthy, finished January 24
004) Poor Sailor by Sammy Harkham, finished January 19
003) The Waitress was New by Dominique Fabre and translated by Jordan Stump, finished January 19
002) Stagger Lee by Derek McCulloch and Shepherd Hendrix, finished January 12?
001) The Arrival by Shaun Tan, finished January 8