Friday, September 27, 2002

good to read

kushiel's dart

Last night, I picked up a novel Nikki had finished reading, "Kushiel's Dart" by Jacqueline Carey. Knowing my propensity for loathing new fantasy books (with the exception of work from Ursula Le Guin, George R.R. Martin, Robert Silverberg and Guy Gavriel Kay), Nikki raised an eyebrow and told me I'd like it. I love it. How to describe... This is from the site:

"Born with a scarlet mote in her left eye, Phèdre nó Delaunay is sold into indentured servitude as a child. When her bond is purchased by an enigmatic nobleman, she's trained in history, theology, politics, foreign languages, the arts of pleasure and above all, the ability to observe, remember and analyze. Exquisite courtesan, talented spy... and unlikely heroine. But when Phèdre stumbles upon a plot that threatens the very existence of Terre d'Ange, she has no choice."

The best conceit is that the heroine is an anguissette - a masochist, in a world where pain is too easily given. Masterfully written, dark and challenging, this book won the Locus Award for Best First Novel

the golem's mighty swing

I also browsed through my little growing collection of comic trade paperbacks and reread what must have been one of the best comics of last year - The Golem's Mighty Swing by James Sturm. It is the story of Jewish baseball players and the season in which they introduce a golem in their team. The very simplicity of the artwork works with the razorsharp writing, producing a work of many textures.

true swamp

But my favorite mindbenders I that return to every once in a while are a couple of books by Jon Lewis - True Swamp: Underwoods and Overtime, and True Swamp: Stoneground and Hillbound. These are meditations on identity, life, death, love, friendship, loyalty, ambition, learning, belonging, fantasy, and so much more, seen through the eyes of animals. A funny animal story this is absolutely not.


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