Comics and More (was Re: Best of 2001)

Gross Family argross at bigpond.net.au
Wed Jan 16 06:58:10 EST 2002




> On Tue, 15 Jan 2002 18:32:52 +1100, Gross Family wrote:
>
> >As synchronicity would have it, I happened to get a copy of a fanzine
today
> >that mentioned _The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay_ by Michael
> >Chabon, and the person who wrote about it is Australian Bruce Gillespie,
so
> >I can ask him where he got his copy from. It sounds like something I
would
> >definitely like.

Melissa replied:

> I've been raving about it to everyone I meet, but most of my friends
> probably wouldn't like it.  I think a few of them might be turned off by
the
> homosexual theme, which I think is very tastefully done and makes certain
> subplots more poignant.

I'm more likely to be offended by the people who are offended!

[stuff snipped]

> And I thought we had it bad paying $7 for a cheaply printed paperback.
Ugh.
> _League_ is a favorite of mine because (as you might recall from my
ranting)
> I am passionate about superhero-team stories.  I love the idea of people
> with disparate abilities working together, complementing each others'
> strengths.  I know it can be cliched (a la Voltron or Power Rangers) but
> it's dear to my heart.  _League_ is also packed full of literary
references
> and subplots, and tackles a number of Victorian era literary
> types--including, I should warn you, Victorian pornography.

I'm very hard to offend, especially when it comes to reading. :-)

I don't know much about superhero teams as such (though I do remember Power
Rangers from when my kids were small), but as I said before, I'm passionate
about the idea of people with special powers, so this sounds delicious.

[stuff snipped about _Red Heart of Memories_]

> I can't figure it out myself.  I've read both _Red Heart_ and _Dreaming_,
> and in both cases was left feeling as though I hadn't understood what the
> real story was.  I enjoy the prose, but I can't seem to identify the
central
> point of the narrative.  Like, in _Red Heart_, I thought the story was
going
> to be about the search, and it turned out to be about the gold dust magic
> stuff (that's incoherent, but I haven't read it for a while), and I felt
as
> though I'd missed something that would have indicated that plot twist.  I
> don't know.

Yep. I know what you mean. It lacked a central organizing idea, maybe. And
it certainly didn't seem to have a climax of any kind.

> >I would *love* to belong to a reading group that reads the kind of book I
> >read, but most of them seem to read stuff I'm just not interested in.
>
> As we were waiting for everyone to show up, two of the ladies told me
about
> how the book group got started.  It turned out that all of them had been
in
> another, much larger, discussion group many years ago.  Theoretically each
> member was supposed to have a chance to choose a book and lead the
> discussion, but in practice it was always the same people and they always
> chose whatever was popular and depressing.  One woman was a real
> intellectual, and chose classics, and my friends liked those but the rest
of
> that group thought they were too hard.  So these women all got to talking
> and concluded that they would much rather read science fiction and
fantasy.
> And, as I said in the other post, it's been going for about 16 years now.
I
> feel very fortunate to have been invited to join.  It is hard to find good
> reading groups, but so worth it if you can.

This sounds wonderful! I have individual friends with whom I discuss books
sometimes, but a group discussion of a particular book would be marvellous.
I belong to the Nova Mob, a group that gets together to discuss SF/F, but it
tends to be a paper that someone gives on some aspect of SF, or a book
review given by one person--all of which is nice, but not quite a book
discussion group.

> I sure hope you find some of these comics, Ros.  I was surprised to
discover
> not only how many of us read comics, but how much agreement there was on
> what we like!

Now that I know what I'm looking for, I'm sure I will. Thanks again for all
the suggestions. I had no idea that comic books were still around in this
profusion.

Ros

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