Friday, April 1, 2011

Heather's Resolution #1: My Reading List thus far

Until Buffy the Vampire Slayer made the leap from the small screen to the drawn page, my comics reading experience was limited to Archie digests I picked up at the grocery store as a teen. Between Buffy and Heroescon, I started reading more comics, but I tended to stick to comics involving adorable animals and female lead character. Taking part in the wonderful monthly discussion groups run by Andy Mansell for Heroes Aren't Hard To Find has helped me expand my reading and I decided for 2011 to make more of an effort to read outside my comfort zone.

  1. Jimmy Corrigan by Chris Ware: This was the January Discussion Group selection and a daunting read, at least in the beginning. I got a very mixed reaction when people found out I was reading this book. They either love the book or hate it for being the most depressing book they've ever picked up. Surprisingly, I enjoyed Jimmy Corrigan. Ware's art is beautiful and his inclusion of nature is a wonderful treat. I came away feeling hopeful rather than depressed.
  2. Blacksad by Juan Diaz Canales and Juanjo Guarnido: A friend lent me this anamorphic crime noir hardcover. My non-graphic novel reading includes a lot of crime and suspense fiction so the subject matter of this book appealed to me. The art, particularly the cityscapes was absolutely gorgeous.
  3. Daytripper by Gabriel Ba and Fabio Moon: Another Heroes Discussion Group selection. Wow, they made some good choices. Beautiful art and a beautiful story that's hard to discuss without potential spoilers. With that, the overarching message I took away was to value everyday for the joys and sorrows that we all experience.
  4. Ultimate Spider-Man by Brian Michael Bendis and Mark Bagley: I haven't read a lot of superhero comics and I happen to find the first trade of this series on my brother's bookshelf. This is a fun series. Most of my Spider-Man experiences are limited to the movies and while I really like the Toby McGuire version of Spidey (outside of the third movie), I am really enjoying getting to know teenaged Peter Parker as he balances being a super hero with his high school life of bullying, dating, and being grounded.  I've knocked out three volumes in no time and looking forward to starting volume four.   
  5. Scenes from an Impending Marriage by Adrian Tomine: Originally written and drawn as a gift for his wedding guests, this little gem warmed by heart. Scenes gives the reader a peek into Tomine's life and what it's like for a normal loving couple to plan a wedding. For my complete review of this book, you can check it out at the Dollar Bin.
  6. Batman: The Long Halloween by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale: Batman, the mob, and the usual Rogues Gallery mixed in with the Holiday Killer? Color me intrigued.  I read a lot of crime novels in my non-graphic reading and I enjoyed the mix of super heroes and villains in this story.  I also liked the "will they/won't they" vibe between Batman and Catwoman as well as their alter egos. 
In addition to the books above, I'm continuing to read Zatanna monthly.  For the most part, it's a monthly I look forward to as it has had a good storyline, although the art has been a little inconsistent as no one has settled into a long arc as the sequentials artist.  The covers on this one have been beautiful, especially Stephane Roux and Adam Hughes.  #11 was Adam's first cover in the series and I hope it won't be the last as it was gorgeous. 

I've also been reading the second Cinderella mini-series in single issues.  Last time I waited for the trade.  Cinderella's life as a spy is very entertaining, especially as we are introduced to a beloved childhood Fable who is now a ruthless assassin.  Chrissie Zullo's covers are topping her beautiful efforts on the first run. 

I've been very lucky to have generous, comic reading friends who have shared their collections with me.  The stack in the above photo is only part of the books I'm currently working my way through.  I'm still open for suggestions so feel free to share your recommendations in the comments. 


  1. Heather, I need to let you (and if Seth hasn't him to) my copy of Hicksville. It's my favorite graphic novel of all time and I think you would enjoy it.

  2. I like reading new books. You should bring it to Sketch sometime. Thanks for the offer!