In Comics, Dorothy Gambrell, English on 2011/08/26 at 09:41
Typing the title for this post, I realized that the author’s name is nowhere on the outside of the book. Or inside, except for the copyright notice in tiny letters on the inside of the back cover. I’m not sure if that’s some kind of self-effacing gesture or if there is some larger meaning at work that my tiny brain is just not able to see. My guess is that whatever the reason, it’s not because she forgot to stick it on there. Because, you know, there is some hard thinking at work in this book. Dorothy Gambrell is a hard-thinking artist.
I’ve read Cat and Girl on the intertubes for years and you can too! It is all up there for free, which is pretty awesome and makes your day when you are maybe not so happy and need a little cheering up, but in a thoughtful way. But I am of the sort that likes to give financial support to artists who are making things that I think are worthwhile, and I like to hold books in my hands (I am very old school that way), so when Gambrell collected a bunch of the strips in a book, I bought it. And I read it and enjoyed it and then I put it back on my shelf and basically forgot it was there until the other day. So I read it again, because when you have forgotten it is even there is the perfect time to re-read a book. Read the rest of this entry »
In D.H. Lawrence, English, Fiction on 2011/08/19 at 08:47
Is a mini-book still a book? Because Penguin put out this line of “modern classic” mini-books, and they are making me swoon. (I can’t find the mini-books on their site though, and if I didn’t have two of them on hand, I would wonder if it had all been a dream.) All uniformly sleek and silver, they are a little bite of a book for that modern urbanite on the go. (Is that sentence the result of too many advert soundbites getting into my poor brain?) And even though my floor is threatening to buckle under the stack of books waiting to challenge my brain, I could not resist the temptation of a bite-sized bit of D.H. Lawrence.
Oh David! His words resonate with me like I am his harp. I can’t explain it. Ever since I read Women In Love, he owned me. I’ve read and re-read his work to the point where pages fall out, but it never fails to stir something in me. I can’t quite understand this since he writes about so many things so far from my own experience, and often quite irritating to me. Like his compulsive and florid descriptions of the English countryside, the mining towns. I have rolled my eyes at these more than once; I can understand the Lawrence haters. But then you get lines like “‘There are odd moments when I hate you starrily’” and all is forgiven. Read the rest of this entry »
In Mara Hvistendahl, Nonfiction, Science on 2011/08/12 at 09:33
This book depressed the hell out of me. Really. Page after page detailing just why I, as a member of the lady subset of humans, am really not wanted, and all the terrible things that people are doing to get rid of me. Mostly they are having sex selective abortions. And they are mostly having them in Asia and Eastern Europe, thanks to Western pressure and technology.
Unnatural Selection is yet another non-fiction book with an unwieldy subtitle that says it all: Choosing Boys Over Girls, and the Consequences of a World Full of Men. Hvistendahl spends the first third of the book, “Everyone Has Boys Now”, documenting how people are choosing boys over girls, mostly in the developing world. Right off the bat, she makes a depressing point: “Sexism might be an obvious culprit for imbalance if it weren’t so universal. Parents in nearly all cultures say they prefer boys, and yet sex selection only strikes in part of the world.” Almost all parents would rather have boys. Read the rest of this entry »
In ebook, Hwang Joon Ho, manhwa on 2011/08/05 at 08:55
The first Brain vs. Ebook! Brain’s first manhwa! A post full of firsts!
It’s both surprising and unsurprising to realize that until this point in my life, I had never read a manhwa. Given my voracious appetite for manga, it seems natural that I would turn to Korea to satisfy my ravenous appetite for comics. But then my love of languages comes into play. A lot of the reading I do is studying. Although I am a translator, I haven’t spent much time reading translations in languages I don’t know. I should be out there supporting work in translation, I guess, but I only have so much time for reading, so I end up focusing my reading in the languages I speak. And Korean is not one of those. (Although I have been assured by many Koreans that it is an easy language. At least, they tell me, it’s easier than Japanese. And I tried to pick it up from the NHK Korean programs, but learning Korean through Japanese was even harder than learning Russian through Swedish, so I gave up on that pretty quickly.) Read the rest of this entry »