The crowd at National Book Store’s Free Comic Book Day celebrations.
First of all, I’d like to apologize to the handful of people who read this blog. Real life has been a lot hectic lately, and it’s been really hard trying to find the time and the energy to finish reading a book, much less update the blog.
I did, however, manage to squeeze in National Book Store’s (NBS) Free Comic Book Day (FCBD) celebrations last Saturday. I couldn’t stay until the afternoon like I wanted, but I did manage to catch a little bit of the morning activities while I was there.
When I was a lot younger, I was really into the film “Snow Falling On Cedars”, so much so that I had to cut back on my obsessive buying of buttered corn (Don’t ask.) just so I could save up to buy a copy of the book. More than a decade later (!), I still haven’t gotten around to reading the book, and David Guterson has won the Literary Review’s “Bad Sex in Fiction” award. (Source)
Should I be worried that Amazon has acquired Marshall Cavendish Children’s Books? (Source)
Aside from buying Marshall Cavendish, Amazon is also investing $6 million dollars for the authors who participate in its Kindle Lending Library. (Source)
I have to admit that as of late, my resistance to ebooks and ebook readers has been slowly but surely deteriorating. I’ve been eyeing the Kindle Fire for a while now, and if I get my finances in order — probably sometime the next millennium — I may actually get one. So what to do when even diehard “solid book” fans like myself are considering changing sides? Publishers seem to have decided that making books prettier is the answer. (Source)
That painting over there is supposedly Jane Austen, author of “Pride and Prejudice”, “Sense and Sensibility”, and “Emma”. Certainly looks better than the other famous Jane Austen portrait, where she looks like she just noticed someone farted in the drawing room. (Source)
In England, poet laureate Ted Hughes — who most people probably know more as Sylvia Plath’s husband — is being honored with a slab at Westminster Abbey. (Source)
I was introduced to the works of Kurt Vonnegut by Taylor Hanson (Don’t ask.), and I’ve loved his works ever since. Even the new biography that paints him as a bitter, angry man with a temper isn’t going to change that. (Source)
FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT. Here’s what “Watchmen”, “V for Vendetta” and “Lost Girls” creator Alan Moore has to say about “300” author Frank Miller (TEAM ALAN MOORE!) (Source):
“Frank Miller is someone whose work I’ve barely looked at for the past 20 years. I thought the Sin City stuff was unreconstructed misogyny; 300 [a 1998 comic book series] appeared to be wildly ahistoric, homophobic and just completely misguided. I think that there has probably been a rather unpleasant sensibility apparent in Frank Miller’s work for quite a long time.”
To be honest, the only reason I even thought of picking up this book was because of the trailer. I’m the easiest person to market stuff to: just mention that there’s going to be some shirtless boys with accents in your product and I will be good to go.
However, making life decisions based on the availability of attractive guys hasn’t always worked out very well for me in the past. It was precisely because of “Hot-Guys-On-Book-Covers” that I ended up reading such delightful reading material like Becca Fitzpatrick’s “Hush, Hush” and Holly Black’s “White Cat“.
Would “Red Riding Hood” be a similar disappointment?
If it wasn’t clear from my numerous posts on “Lost Girls“, let me say it straight to everybody: I grew up on comic books.
I think my relation ship with comic books started in much the same way it did for a lot of middle class Filipino kids — from reading those Filipino serials that they used to rent out to everybody back in my home province of Marinduque. Nights would be spent that way: gathered around a pile of komiks and just reading.
With war on the horizon, Alice, Dorothy, and Wendy bring their tales to a close. Their tales get more lurid, just like the sexual configurations they get involved in at the hotel they are staying in, but all of that becomes window dressing to the arguments for sexual fantasies, erotica, and pornography that Moore lays out in the final book of “Lost Girls”.
It’s amazing that despite the very graphic illustrations, one really doesn’t end up touching themselves while reading “Lost Girls”. Like Neil Gaiman has remarked, this is not a “one-handed” read. It is an intelligent and beautifully-illustrated book that succeeds at an incredible balancing act — that of championing sexual imagination and its expression in the arts, while at the same time warning and condemning the excesses one commits if they let it take over their lives.
I’ve already talked about Moore’s prose and Gebbie’s artwork in the previous posts, and suffice it to say that they maintain that same sterling quality throughout the work. This is a work of love, and is definitely worth the hefty price tag.
This is a fantastic read. If you can still find copies, I suggest you guys should buy it.
PS. There are no pictures for this one because there is precious little in book three in the manner of clothing or people not engaged in some sort of sexual act. C’est la vie.
I’m not one to shock easy, as most of my friends can tell you. I don’t act all offended in front of pornography (unless it involves feces or animals). I’m pretty sure that I’ve seen some stuff online that would warrant more than just a raised eyebrow. I’ve encountered people online that are pretty out there when it comes to their proclivities. And yet, “Lost Girls” can make me end up looking like that cat over there with some of the stuff within its pages.
I’m not shocked because deep inside I am actually a conservative. What shocked me was that “Lost Girls” manages to give these acts that you would normally only see on your friendly neighborhood porn sites a gloss of artistry and grace.
Just to keep everyone on the same page, aside from lesbianism, shoe fetishism, drug use (opium), patronage of pornography (how meta!), incest, and pedophilia, Alice, Dorothy, and Wendy have admitted to taking part in some BDSM (bondage, dominance, and sadomasochism), piss play (quite explanatory, I think), pseudo-bestiality, and the insertion of various objects — from chess pieces to braids — into vaginas.
DUDE. If I walked into a room and that was going on, I’d have that exact same face too.
From the very first page, Alan Moore and Melinda Gebbie make it very clear that “Lost Girls” is most definitely for adults. And they never let up throughout the ten chapters of this first book, continuously exposing the reader to many different kinds of “deviant” behavior.
Here’s a quick list of what “deviant” behavior readers will encounter just in this first book: Lesbianism, shoe fetishism, drug use (opium), patronage of pornography (how meta!), incest, and pedophilia.
Will all of these squick readers? I’d understand why it would. But does it give those readers the right to ask that this book be pulled off the shelves, as some have wanted to do in the States? Hell no. I would suggest that they leave everybody else alone and do what Miss Miranda Priestly commands in that GIF above.
Yes, I know it’s already been out in the States since 2009, but this is the year that “Lost Girls” actually becomes available in Philippine bookstores. Actually, used to be available would be a better description as the three big bookstores the country has all seem to have sold out or have what copies they have already reserved.
If it weren’t for my stubbornness and persistence — as well as some helpful pointing in the right direction by RL friend Meann — I would not have been able to get my hands on this heavy and controversial work.
Actually getting the book involved about an hour and a half walking around three (interconnected) malls and some snickering from the sales staff when I asked them if they had a copy of it.