Favourite authors include John Connolly, Lee Thompson, Ed Lorn, Craig Saunders, Joe Hill, Kealan Patrick Burke, Mark Lawrence, Joe Abercrombie, Michael McBride, James Newman & Stephen King. Just to name a few.
I also collect Signed first editions, wish I'd got more money, there's so many books I want and there needs to be more hours in the day.
Not a bad month to be fair, there's a number of short stories as I chased my 200 book target and finally finished on about 205.
The best thing by far about December is the rediscovery of the one and only Neil Gaiman, two of my favourite books of the year came with Neverwhere and The Ocean at the end of the Lane + ranking alongside Bedlam as my best Graphic Novel was Sandman: Overture. All top class.
I will do a top 10 of the year tomorrow but for now its Decembers reads and I need to knock some reviews out.
More Gaiman to come this month for sure.
I've lowered my target to 180 next year after doing 200+ for the last two years but that as ever includes shorts, graphics ... the lot.
And a Happy new year to everyone.
Well I'm forty and some loose change years of age and I never, ever thought I'd be reading children's books again. I can't even remember reading them when I was a kid but Neil Gaimans 'are but aren't reeeeaaaally' children's books are an absolute delight, so much so, that I've bought all of them. There's gentle murmurs and mutters of darkness within and Gaiman is a master wordsmith that wraps you up in his stories, and its impossible to get out until the very end.
Fortunately, the Milk sees Father return slightly late from the shop with the vital life saving breakfast cereal milk and armed with legendary excuses of alien worlds and time travel. A thoroughly entertaining guilty pleasure that's kinda hidden from everyone who matters.
How spoilt are we going to be for films this year, Dead Pool, Suicide Squad, Revenant, Batman Vs Superman... I can't wait.
Ok I'm on it, first issue done.
Thanks to Kate (you're a star) for joining in and Grim a bit later.
My first thought, the artwork is just the kind of thing I like, dark and dirty. There's no clean lines and panels this is raw and really edgy. Love it.
And Ben Templesmith (one of my faves) does the artwork for issues 10-16.
Ashley Wood is issues 1-9 and to be honest he's every bit as good as Temp. I have flicked forward to the latter issues just to check the artwork, this is gonna be wicked. Hopefully some of the backstory comes in soon.
There's two side narrators Hertz and Fastbender, not sure who they are yet maybe the history will come via them. The Clown is pretty disturbing, pretty awesome.
With a Voice that is Often Still Confused But is Becoming Ever Louder and Clearer by J.R. Hamantaschen is a bit of a mouthful of a title and I was expecting big things from this book which is probably an unfair way of approaching it. I've seen lots of positive things about With A Voice from friends and also from his first short story anthology You Shall Never Know Security.
My favourite story with a quite apt title was Soon Enough This Will Essentially Be a True Story about a goodreads reviewer who receives a free book from a local author, the author starts hounding for a review and things are turning nasty but I wasn't prepared for this nasty. A bestseller beckons but in bloody unlikely and brutal circumstances, after reading this you'll think twice before leaving a negative review, I guarantee it.
Another favourite was I’m A Good Person, I Mean Well and I Deserve Better, starting off with a pretty normal date between Robin and Bryce at the good old Deer and Fox, rudely interrupted by Bryce overcome with desperation for a trip to the white house to drop some visitors in. Embarrassment doesn't cover it and the clocks ticking, how long will she wait, gotta get off, help. No need to worry though, well, tell a lie, there's every need to worry at what's going down in the dining area. It's all gone mental, there's a strange bloke who's controlling all kinds of monsters and ripping people to shreds, monsters are referred to as minions but these ain't little yellow funny fuckers. These are demons but before and after the carnage is some consuming emotional shenanigans and a little toilet humour. I did enjoy this with the violently weirdish interlude that certainly changes tact.
'He wanted an adjustment to his face, something to scare the shit out of people right before he killed them — wanted his mouth to spread out like the wings of a manta ray, little suckers and teeth embedded into his checks. But he couldn’t will that, for some reason.'
I found With A Voice to be a bit of a mixed bag, for the most part the stories started off walking down Normal Avenue with intriguing characterisation, well written and sometimes delightful prose that deserves to be fully appreciated and absorbed. You're just getting used to what's occurring and thinking where it's going because there's considerable time spent on the setup when quite suddenly we turn off Normal Avenue and abruptly head down Weirdfuckingville Alley. Which is not a negative slant it's just something different to wrap your head around.
Now it's a good job there's an easy to use dictionary on kindle because I'd swear J.R. Hamantaschen is making sweet, sweet love to and then battering his thesaurus with his third leg because at times it was like showing off with I know some big words that you'll never understand kinda writing. Call me thick if you like but if you immediately know without looking what this lot means then congratulations you need a fucking life platitudinous, meretricious, Cognitive dissonance, solipsistic, stentorian, didactic tone and finally, enunciation inchoate. Joking aside do you ignore or interrupt the flow, I interrupted and just thought, why man?
So on the whole we've got some seriously weird, dark fiction that even now I'm still in two minds about, I can appreciate it but I don't think I'll ever truly love it. There's certainly brilliance here, a touch different maybe, the more I think back the more I like it, it just takes some assimilating and some smaller titles would be good.
Thank god for kindle dictionary, this book feels like a competition to fit as many big words in as possible.
A few examples.
stentorian, didactic tone.
I mean he writes well, content branches into very weird quite often but this kind of thing is a bit too much, I don't want to feel dim when I read a book.
Does anyone fancy reading Hellspawn the complete collection, I think its going to be cracking and the cover is wicked. Grim will join in at some point as she's already started.
I will start probably next week sometime, my copy is still in the plastic wrap and has been on my shelf for ages, desperately needs breaking out. Be really nice if a few others joined in, a bit of support if you like. We've pulled together for other Booklikers in peril and dire straits (or just in need of a friendly action), I thought maybe we can do so again. Raise your hands if you fancy it and leave a comment also, that'd be good.
Its on Kindle so take a look, also hardback is around $30