WWW Wednesday – August 25, 2021

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently Reading

Axiom's EndOver the weekend I started reading Axiom’s End by Lindsay Ellis. I’ve been slacking on reading quotas once again, so unfortunately I’m only 76 pages in right now. It’s not a pitiful amount of progress, but I could’ve gotten further. Nevertheless, I’m enjoying this book a lot. The protagonist is a young woman named Cora, whose father runs a website that notoriously leaks government documents, particularly related to aliens. He’s an absentee father, but the spotlight shines on Cora and her family nonetheless. Ellis has done a great job of making the anxiety of Cora’s life palpable, almost making me feel it second-hand. The escalating extraterrestrial events on top of that have been exciting too, so I’m eager to see what happens next.

No progress made on Hope is the Thing with Feathers: The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson. Whoops 👻


Recently Finished

SensorOver the weekend I read through Sensor by Junji Ito, which I also managed to post a review of on Monday. Unfortunately, I didn’t like this book very much. It wasn’t without its interesting ideas, and the art was great as always, but the story just lacked a solid direction. It was also constantly repeating itself, since each chapter was originally published serially. For what it’s worth, though, the first chapter functions as a pretty good little cosmic horror story. It could almost work as a short in a collection. While he may not have lost his touch as an illustrator, it seems to me that his more recent stuff just isn’t as good as what he used to produce, which is too bad, because I know how brilliant of a horror author he can be.


Reading Next

I’m not really sure what I’ll read next. No comics come to mind and I’ve only just gotten started with Axiom’s End. In the next week or so I’ll hopefully have a better idea of what future reading will look like.

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.

Comic Book Review – Sensor by Junji Ito

Sensor

Sensor by Junji Ito is the latest horror manga by the author to be published in English by VIZ media. A young woman named Kyoko Byakuya hikes at the foot of Mount Sengoku, unsure as to why she is there. Despite the mountain’s volcano being inactive, she stumbles across an area covered in strange volcanic glass fibres that look uncannily like golden hairs. Soon after she is met by a man who says he’s been waiting for her, leading her to a village covered in these golden fibres. Referred to as “the amagami”, these gold strands allow the people of the village to psychically communicate with each other and commune with the far reaches of outer space. Despite this oddity, the people seem harmless enough, inviting her to star-gaze with them before she departs. If only the appearance of mysterious lights in the sky weren’t a portents of things to come.Read More »

WWW Wednesday – August 18, 2021

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently Reading

I’ve not made any progress on Hope is the Thing with Feathers: The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson since last week. I’m also between books at the moment. Things have been a bit busy. Essentially, I’ve started training for a freelance remote job, on top of my full time one, which has and (hopefully) will be taking up more of my time, so my reading progress will likely slow as I rearrange my priorities.


Recently Finished

Hellboy The God MachineOver the weekend I finished reading Hellboy: The God Machine by Thomas Sniegoski, and even managed a pretty quick turn-around on the review and got it up on Monday afternoon. Go me! This book has wound up being my favourite among the Hellboy spin-off, mostly non-canon novels, though ultimately I only rated it a little higher than average. The book’s focus on the villainous characters really helped it to stand out among the pack, making them both monstrous and sympathetic. A few of them were a little too one-dimensional for me by the end, but their leader and a couple others stood out well. The climactic showdown was conceptually fairly rote, but in the execution managed to be something quite memorable and exciting too.


Reading Next

Axiom's EndI meant to have started reading Sensor by Junji Ito already, but like I said I’ve been busy, so I haven’t had a chance to just yet. It isn’t very long, so hopefully I can have it read and reviewed by next week. I also plan to start reading Axiom’s End by Lindsay Ellis. I’ve followed the author’s video work on and off for years now and even preordered this book for its release last year, but sadly I let it languish instead of reading it. Now, the sequel is coming out soon, so I’d better actually read this. Getting this done will keep me on top of the reading challenge books I put together for a Summer TBR too.

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.

WWW Wednesday – August 11, 2021

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently Reading

Hellboy The God MachineI really wanted to have finished Hellboy: The God Machine by Thomas Sniegoski by now, but you know how inconsistent I can be with those goals. I’ve wavered a little on the reading quotas this past week, so I’m blaming it on that. I should reassert those to get back on track. Regardless, I’m happy to report that there really is something to this Hellboy novel, compared to the others. The villains are really intriguing, and it’s made the wise choice of giving our titular, big red hero a more diminished role. It’s also taking a lot of inspiration from the real-world story of John Murray Spear and the Association of Electricizers, which involved the construction of “The New Motor,” a supposed mechanical messiah. It’s a wild story and it’s been fun to see how that idea has been morphed into something more unnerving and apocalyptic.

I also made a little progress on Hope is the Thing with Feathers: The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson last night, reading through the first section of her second series of poems. Sometimes I absorb very little while reading, it varies from poem to poem. Some of it is lovely, but it also makes me feel dumb. I’m thinking poetry like this may not be for me.


Recently Finished

Immortal Hulk The Keeper of the DoorOver the weekend I read through The Immortal Hulk: The Keeper of the Door by Al Ewing et al, the eighth volume in the series. Once again I am reminded of how much I love this series, and I can’t believe I haven’t cracked open a volume since 2020. One of these days I’m going to have to read through them all over a shorter period of time. There was a great blend of physical and psychological horror in this book, as The Leader actively puts his plans in motion. A lot is taking place within mindscapes, not reality, but I really have to wonder about the fate of some of the characters. I’m surprised by how graphic some of the visuals were in this volume too. I hope the next volume comes out soon, if it hasn’t already.


Reading Next

SensorIn a surprise twist, as I forgot that it was coming out soon, I received my copy of Sensor by Junji Ito last week, the newest translated book by the horror manga author. So I’m definitely going to start reading this really soon. My expectations have been tempered the more of his stories I’ve read, but I’m nevertheless excited by the fact that I know very little about this book. It seems to be a singular story too, which I typically prefer. He does better work when he gives an idea room to grow.

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.

WWW Wednesday – April 21, 2021

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently Reading

I’m between books at the moment, so nothing! Boo! 👻


Recently Finished

LovesicknessOver the weekend I read through Lovesickness by Junji Ito, the newly released story collection of the manga author’s work. I posted a full review of it on Monday. The headlining story was quite good, which came as a surprise since it took me a while to warm up to it. I was also surprised by how long it was, expecting at first that it would only be one chapter long. Turns outs “Lovesickness” is 60% of the collection, so this book wasn’t the same type of story collection as Shiver, Smashed, or Venus in the Blind Spot. The remainder of the book brought the reading experience down tremendously though, which was a shame because I think that main story was one of the best Ito stories I’ve read in a while.

Where Have You Gone Without MeLast night I finished reading my eARC copy of Where Have You Gone Without Me? by Peter Bonventre. Since my last proper update about this book, I warmed up to it considerably. I’m not sure this will make me crazy for mystery thrillers going forward, but it certainly hasn’t turned me off of them. It was something of a slow burn, taking its time to build up the case. I kept expecting it to take a sudden, sensational turn, but it kept things fairly low-key and down to earth, though still compelling, for the most part. I should have a full review up soon, I’m still collating my feelings on the whole thing. I can’t remember the last time a singular story made my feelings fluctuate so, but I’m happy they ended up more positive.


Reading Next

Light of the JediI’m of two minds right now, because I haven’t really chosen what I’m going to read next as far as my to-read lists go, but I have decided I want to read Star Wars: Light of the Jedi by Charles Soule finally. I keep meaning to start this book as one I almost exclusively read at home, a supplemental read, but so far that’s just left me not starting it at all. I really want to start getting into these High Republic books, though, so I’m just going to start it, and that’s that. I’ll decide on another book from my lists to pick up soon too, I just can’t make up my mind on that right now.

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.

Comic Book Review – Lovesickness by Junji Ito

Lovesickness

Lovesickness by Junji Ito is the latest story collection by the horror manga author to be published in English by VIZ media. The featured story stars Ryusuke, a middle school student who has returned to the foggy town of Nazumi after his family moved away eight years previously. Soon after moving back and reuniting with some old friends, rumors begin swirling about a bewitchingly handsome young man who has been compelling girls to commit suicide after telling them their fortune at the crossroads. Eerily reminiscent of a dark secret of Ryusuke’s from before his family first moved away, the boy takes it upon himself to confront the beautiful boy of the crossroads and bring an end to the mystery once and for all.Read More »

WWW Wednesday – April 14, 2021

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently Reading

I’ve only gotten a little further along in Where Have You Gone Without Me? by Peter Bonventre, since I was more focused on getting Norse Mythology finished and getting the Feet of Clay review written. So, I haven’t got much more to say about the book itself right now. With those other things out of the way, though, I’m hopeful I’ll be able to finish this up by next week.


Recently Finished

The other night I finished reading Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman, which served as an excellent introduction to the subject. I’ve actually got another book of Norse tales that seems a little denser, and I’m hoping that will be more accessible now that I’ve read this as a primer. It’s so amusing how this mythology seems to have no real concept of scale, describing so many beings as impossibly massive, yet gods like Thor, who is sized more or less like a regular person, is so easily able to kill such massive beings. That really must have been some hammer. I’m surprised the book didn’t include a story of how Loki came to be blood brothers with Odin and dwell among the gods in Asgard, especially considering he causes them as much trouble as he helps to resolve.


Reading Next

Though I’ve got a few books on the brain for what to read next, I’m most certainly going to read Lovesickness by Junji Ito next, which is the newest collection of the manga author’s short horror stories. I haven’t been enamoured with all of the author’s short fiction, but I think my expectations have been decently tempered after having read so much of his work over the passed couple of years, I’m hoping that’ll help me enjoy the book more overall. All the same, I do hope there are some gems in this book that I haven’t heard of before.

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.

WWW Wednesday – December 30, 2020

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

Decided to take an impromptu week off last week, but now I’m back and ready to read more WWWs 🙂


Currently Reading

SpiderlightI’m just about 3/4 of the way through Spiderlight by Adrian Tchaikovsky, and oh boy am I enjoying this book. It takes its setting and lore so seriously, yet has such a hilariously tongue-in-cheek attitude towards it at the same time. I take the characters, the quest, and their personal tribulations very seriously, but it’s also made me laugh many times. One of the main characters is a giant spider named Nth, who is made to join the band of heroes and turned into a man-spider thing by their magician. His involvement in their quest compromises the group, while he himself is miserable, and it makes for some great group dynamics. I’m just waiting for the other shoe to drop between him and the Chosen One of their band, as she is still far from accepting him as anything more than a thing of the Dark.


Recently Finished

During the holiday I did very little reading, so over the past few days I’ve done a blitz of reading graphic novels to catch up on my Goodreads challenge. Let’s have a look, shall we?

Shortly after my post on December 16, I read through Remina by Junji Ito, which you can read my full review for here. Though a longer book, it felt more like an expansion on a short story idea the author had, rather than something of the caliber of his other longer works. I was a little disappointed, but it still made for a decent cosmic horror story, with some fantastic imagery on two-page spreads.

I finally decided to crack open more Berserk by Kentaro Miura, reading through volumes 22, 23, 24, and 25. It’s great to be reminded again of why I love this dark fantasy series, simply by coming back to it, and it was great to see some of the veils of its world peeled back and explained more clearly than ever before, though it was a lot to take in. Manga volumes read so fast, so now I need a bunch more that I will quickly finish once I get to them.

Finally, last night I read Koshchei the Deathless by Mike Mignola, Ben Stenbeck et al, which takes place in the Hellboy comic book series. It was a fantastic little side story about the titular character’s life, told retrospectively by the old lich to Hellboy, the two of them sitting together in a bar in Hell. Unlike other books “From the Pages of Hellboy” that I’ve read, I really connected with this one emotionally.


Reading Next

The Force Awakens The Visual DictionaryIt’s safe to say that the reading plans I laid out aren’t going to come together, so no Master & Apprentice until the new year. If nothing else, I want to complete my Goodreads challenge. So, as one last graphic novel for the year I’m going to reading Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: 1956 by Mike Mignola et al, continuing the series set during Hellboy’s early years, after not having read any since the middle of 2019. Hopefully I can recall all the little plot threads. Additionally, I’ve decided I’m going to read The Force Awakens: The Visual Dictionary by Pablo Hidalgo. As of Christmas I have all of these books for the Sequel Trilogy, and decided I ought to read them instead of just sit on them. I expect it will be quick and fun, and a bit different as I don’t usually read through reference books.

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.

Comic Book Review – Remina by Junji Ito

Remina

Remina by Junji Ito is the latest horror manga by the author to be published in English by VIZ media. This cosmic horror story was originally publish in 2005 as Hellstar Remina. In the not-too-distant future, year 20XX, the existence of a wormhole is finally proven after the emergence of a strange planetary body is observed from within it. Its discoverer, Dr. Oguro, christens the body “Remina” after his teenage daughter. The media around the event notices his daughter’s beauty, and it isn’t long until her own star rises to fame. All seems well, until the object is observed to be picking up speed and heading straight for Earth. Fear and panic begin to grip the populace as the extraplanetary Remina gets closer and closer. With seemingly no hope to be found, hysterical mobs begin to blame the girl Remina herself for somehow inviting the infernal planet’s attention.Read More »

WWW Wednesday – December 16, 2020

www_wednesdays

WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme run by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. Check out her post and others over on her blog!

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently Reading

SpiderlightLast night I started reading Spiderlight by Adrian Tchaikovsky, though I’ve only read up until the end of the first chapter, which is just over 30 pages. I’ve had a vague notion of what the book has in store for me for a while now, but this first chapter alone has given me a much clearer picture and I’ve got a feeling I’m in for a treat. A ragtag band of heroes is on a quest to defeat a Dark Lord, armed with the Light on their side, as foretold by prophecy. Wouldn’t it surprise you to hear, then, that the book opens from the perspective of a giant spider? His home in “Mirkwood”, along with countless others like him and their Mother, is beset upon by these heroes as they seek an item crucial to their quest. Right from the get-go the dynamics of Light and Dark are turned on their head, at least figuratively so far, and I love it.


Recently Finished

MaskeradeOver the weekend I finished reading Maskerade by Terry Pratchett and you can read my full review for it here. I ended up liking this book a lot more than I even realized when I finished it. While reviewing it I had a little trouble settling on my rating, because I was surprised to realize that I couldn’t think of anything I had a problem with. In my estimation, nearly everything fit together so neatly that I could appreciate it even more in retrospect. I especially loved how much a of smaller scale problem Granny Weatherwax and Nanny Ogg were up against. It wasn’t about the fate of the world or that of kingdoms and kingship, just a murder mystery in an opera house. It felt like the characters had more room to breathe, and allowed for some hilarious sequences along the way too.

The Rise of Kylo RenI also read Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren by Charles Soule et al. I haven’t read many of the comic books related to the sequel trilogy yet, but this one was very good. It gives a closer look at the criminally underused Knights of Ren, what they were about, who their former leader was, and encounters they had with the likes of Luke Skywalker. The book also shed some appreciable light on some of Ben’s relationships at Luke’s Jedi Temple and clarified some of the events on that fateful night when everything changed for the worse. My only real problem with it was it was too short. I’d love an entire series about Ben’s turn towards the dark side and becoming Kylo Ren, expounding on his activities with the Knights and when he eventually joined up with the First Order.


Reading Next

ReminaWith only a little over two weeks left in December, I’ve got a pretty good idea of what I’ll be reading next. I’m not sure I’ll meet my revised goal, but I do know I’ll be reading Star Wars: Master & Apprentice by Claudia Gray next, which is about Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi before the events of The Phantom Menace. Gray’s Star Wars books have been excellent so far, so I’m especially looking forward to this one. Before then, though, I am going to read Remina by Junji Ito. I picked up my copy last week, it just came out, and I’m eager to check it out. It’s a longer, single story that looks like it will be dealing with cosmic horror. What more could I possibly want?

Until next week, thank you for reading! Feel free to share your own post down below.