Monday, April 14, 2008

Heidelberg Here We Come!

I'm off to Germany on Thursday so probably won't post again until next week. I'm visiting Heidelberg on a gentleman's weekend tour. Wikipedia reliably informs me that approximately 600,000 years ago, the "Heidelberg Man", whose jaw-bone was discovered in 1907, the earliest evidence of human life in Europe, died at nearby Mauer. I'll probably be feeling pretty similar by the end of the weekend.


Read 'Something from the Nightside' by Simon R. Green last week. This was one of the books I purchased on my excursion to London as the books are currently only available in US versions. I was really looking forward to the start of this series as the ideas contain everything that I find exciting in a story. The books are set in London and the Nightside, a world entwined within the real city where pretty much anything goes. It's a disturbing, threatening, evil place that cares for no one or no thing. The Nightside is well described and Green obviously took his time in thinking the fantasy world up. That said it's just a little bit too 'stateside' in its build to be the other side of London. It feels more like a dark and disturbing Chicago than the capital.
The story itself is very 'pulp', and for me just not complex enough. However I plan to read the next couple before giving up.

'Lost Girls' has been much talked about in the press due to its 'adult' nature and uncompromising position on lesbianism and sexual liberation. It was even briefly banned in the UK as Great Ormond St. Hospital worried it cast a bad light on the character of Wendy from Peter Pan. To be honest I think its a big hoopla about nothing. The book is nicely put together, the art work attractive and the story simple. It's not an erotic masterpiece and I doubt very much that it would shock many people today. I think its a curiosity from another time, something that would have been burnt earlier in this century but can be read and understood from (thankfully) a more mature outlook. Praise must go to Alan Moore and Melinda Gebbie for at least trying something new in the comic book world.

Read this week:

Something from the Nightside by Simon R. Green
Lost Girls by Alan Moore and Melinda Gebbie.

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