François Schuiten and Benoît Peeters, The Theory of the Grain of Sand

The Theory of the Grain of Sand by Benoît Peeters and François Schuiten My rating: 4 of 5 stars The Theory of the Grain of Sand (2016; originally published in 2007-2008 in France) is the 13th entry in Franco-Belgian collaborators Schuiten and Peeters's series of graphic novels, Les Cités obscures. It is the first I've read, so there is … Continue reading François Schuiten and Benoît Peeters, The Theory of the Grain of Sand

Alejandro Jodorowsky and Moebius, The Incal

The Incal by Alejandro Jodorowsky and Moebius My rating: 4 of 5 stars This classic 1980s science fiction graphic novel is the tale of John DiFool (i.e., the fool of the Tarot, representing humanity's freedom and stupidity). DiFool journeys to save the cosmos in the company of his sometime lover Animah (i.e., his Jungian anima, … Continue reading Alejandro Jodorowsky and Moebius, The Incal

Neil Gaiman and J.H. Williams III, The Sandman: Overture

The Sandman: Overture by Neil Gaiman My rating: 3 of 5 stars [Spoilers.] My thoughts on the original 10-volume Sandman series can be found here. Overture, Gaiman's prequel, serialized between 2013 and 2015 and now collected in a deluxe hardcover, does not refute my thesis that Sandman narrates a contest between absolutism and pragmatism, but complicates … Continue reading Neil Gaiman and J.H. Williams III, The Sandman: Overture

Kazuo Ishiguro, The Buried Giant

The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro My rating: 5 of 5 stars Kazuo Ishiguro is one of the few living Anglophone writers I'd bet the proverbial farm on. If literature in this language is still being read in 200 years, they'll be reading him. His fiction has that quality that I've never been able to … Continue reading Kazuo Ishiguro, The Buried Giant

David Mitchell, The Bone Clocks

The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell My rating: 2 of 5 stars It was about a decade ago that John Banville rightly called Ian McEwan's Saturday "a dismayingly bad book," and I am sorry to say that I would make the same judgment about this new novel by another maven of mainstream British fiction. I … Continue reading David Mitchell, The Bone Clocks

Ray Bradbury, Something Wicked This Way Comes

Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury My rating: 3 of 5 stars Read on the occasion of Halloween. I enjoyed Bradbury in my youth and surprisingly loved his short stories when I decided to take an adult look at them after his death. His stories, it seems to me, merit Borges's praise of … Continue reading Ray Bradbury, Something Wicked This Way Comes

Occult Diptych, for the Children’s Room

[My amateurish dabbling in formal poetry continues with two more villanelles. Something about the restriction and repetition leads one on to these legendary-fantastical themes that are otherwise not to my taste. Maybe there is a future in YA verse?] The Seer The seer hears the pulse flutter under the stone. As a boy he bundled … Continue reading Occult Diptych, for the Children’s Room

James Wood, David Mitchell, and the Metaphysics and Morality of the Novel

While I enjoyed number9dream, Cloud Atlas, and The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, I haven't read David Mitchell's The Bone Clocks, and I don't know that I will.  The high fantasy trope of immemorially-warring clans who represent good and evil may secretly structure most political commentary today, but the peculiar virtue of literature is … Continue reading James Wood, David Mitchell, and the Metaphysics and Morality of the Novel