Having difficulties coping during this turbulent time? We are all struggling. If you need somebody to listen, you can reach out to https://www.takethis.org.
Trish -started implementing some homeschooling for the girls, which is going well, especially since her husband is home with her. And she’s on the mend from the swine flu, finally!
Jeremy – Isolation, my ass! Jeremy is working at lightning speeds again and after throwing away an unsuccessful novel, he’s back into it. He’s hoping to release his urban fantasy superhero prequel series in the next couple of months.
This month in Pop-Culture History
- 1655 – Saturn’s largest moon, Titan, was discovered by Christiaan Huygens.
- In 1963 Tony Stark premiers in Tales of Suspense #39 by Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, and Don Heck
- In 1964 Scarlet Witch premiers in X-Men #4 by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby
Deep Dive: Book Club Edition
Trish’s Selection: The Binti Novella Trilogy by Nnedi Okorafor
The first novella is a Hugo and Nebula award-winner where we are introduced to a young Himba girl named Binti who has the chance to attend the prestigious Oomza University. Binti has a talent for mathematics and is a master harmonizer. But on the way to the planet where Oomza is located, aliens called the Medusae attack, leaving Binti as the lone student survivor. She has to fend for herself and survive the five-day journey with a shipful of the aliens. Binti discovers that the Medusae are planning an attack and so she has to try and broker a peace agreement between them and the leaders of Oomza. What happens transforms her in more ways than one, and Binti’s life is forever changed. She becomes even more of an outsider to the Himba people than she was by simply leaving, and becomes an object of curiosity at best and revulsion at worst by those around her.
The three novellas have themes of transformation, being an outsider and the courage to enact necessary change when everything is resisting that change. They are simply and beautifully written, the world-building is simply done without a lot of explanation and yet I wasn’t lost at all. I highly recommend reading the trilogy as one complete novel because you get a really compelling, complete story.
Jeremy’s Selection: Daredevil: The Man Without Fear
By: Frank Miller (Author) and John Romita Jr. (Artist)
Originally created by Stan Lee and Bill Everette in 1964 and known as the Devil of Hell’s Kitchen. However, amongst the many stories about this “street level” vigilante, one will always rise to the top. In 1993, a limited edition, five issue comic was released blending the solemn and poetic words of Frank Miller along with the gritty and violent artwork of John Romita Jr.
The story delves into the origin of Daredevil, taking key moments from his childhood, teen, college and adult life that led him to wear the suit. What we quickly learn is that Matt Murdock is not the hero we need, he’s the hero we deserve. Surrounded by tragedy, first with the death of his father, then the abandonment of Stick and later Elektra, Matt tightly holds onto the shred of humanity that puts him just slightly on the right side of good and wrong.
What makes this story unique does come from the origin story itself, or the tragedy Murdock faces on his way to becoming a masked vigilante. No, the beauty of the story comes from an almost cold detached narrator giving us insight into what we’re seeing. Written in third person, we are left wondering if these words are from some godlike figure, or if they’re Murdock himself from the future looking back. The simple statements packed with emotion, both good and bad, rope in the reader and take them on a turbulent ride. By book five, when we finally see Murdock don the classic red devil costume, it feels earned, as if he was given no other option. We the reader are left feeling that it is the only choice we could have made. In five issues, we are given an emotional landslide that provides context for the existence of another person, or at least, a devil.
Rating: Five out of Five Stars
Want to Join our Book & Comic Review for April:
Trail of Lightning: By Rebekah Roanhorse
The Walking Dead: Volume 1