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Blog: Reading In Bed

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I was poorly (AGANE) at the end of last week, so had a couple of days IN BED. The first of these was spent SNOOZING, being FEVERISH, and being looked after by The Nurse On My Ward, while the SECOND involved MORE being looked after by same but also more being Almost Normally Conscious, so I got to read some BOOKS.

The first was A Head Full Of Knives by Luke Smitherd, which is one of those Self-Published Amazon Bestsellers. I'd previously read The Stone Man by him, and both were CRACKING reads, despite me feeling A Bit Snobbish about them. The first time I felt thus was stupid enough - I know as much as ANYONE that The Gatekeepers Of Culture are FLAWED and that whether something is published or not (or released by a "proper" label or not) has absolutely no bearing whatsoever on its quality - but goodness knows why I retained this attitude the second time around when I had already READ one of his books and loved it. Anyway, mine own idiocy aside it was dead good, i recommend it!

Alongside this I read "Shamballa". a Judge Anderson collection from the Judge Dredd Mega Collection, a GRATE series of lovely books collecting together various stories from the history of Judge Dredd. My brother had got me a BUNCH of them for Christmas and I'd already got through "America", "Origins", "Mechanismo" and "The Apocalypse War" (the latter especially being AMAZING and BONKERS) but had put off reading the Judge Anderson one because I remember it being a bit BORING when I'd read it at the time. I think maybe it works better all collected together, because in this format it was GRATE! And the ART by Arthur Ranson: COR!

(SIDENOTE: halfway through reading the above book I watched a video podcast featuring Mr J Dredge talking about Look-in, including halfway through an appreciation of the artwork of... Arthur Ranson! "What a coincidence" I thought. Then my phone rang and it was... Mr J Dredge! RATHER SPOOKY! NB he was ringing with some VERY exciting news which I am not at liberty to reveal as of now, but WILL VERY MUCH DO SO when I am able!)

Reading books just for FUN is a bit of a treat at the moment, as I have been up to my ears in ACADEMIC TEXTS for the past couple of months. I mean, yes, they're academic texts about COMICS, but still, a lot of them are a bit heavy going. I was thus planning on reading another FICTION book next, but then my eye was caught by The Best There Is At What He Does by Jeff Powell. It's an "appreciation" of Chris Claremont's ENTIRE RUN on Uncanny X-Men, in which the author talks about every single issue one by one and it is RIVETING. It's pretty much EXACTLY like the (SEVERAL) Beatles books I have read when they go through every single song, or (BEST OF ALL) every single tape from the Get Back Sessions, and talk about them in EXTREME DETAIL. It is, in short, SO far up my alley it is round in my back yard knocking on the kitchen window. I don't AGREE with some of it - he does seem to think C Claremont is a POET, for instance - but it's a LOT of fun to read, especially now it's getting into the 1990s issues, a time during whcich I read almost no comics whatsoever.

And alongside THIS I read all of "Civil War 2", the recently completed Marvel Universe crossover series. "I wonder if it will make more sense and be all round better when read in one sitting?" I wondered. It didn't, and it wasn't!

posted 23/1/2017 by MJ Hibbett

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