So What Have I Been Reading?

This last month and a bit has seen a change in my reading habits, more novels than comics. It's not that I'm going off of reading comics, I just seem to be enjoying my reading without the aid of pictures at the moment. Please don't read into that last comment.

First off, I was pretty ill a few weeks ago, not the head kind that normally plagues me and inspires my art, the, 'oh-my-God, I'm going to die' kind that leaves you laid up in bed for several days at a time whilst you shiver like a naked person in the snow and your temperature reads like the surface of a sun. In these times I always retreat to one of my oldest books for some comfort reading, Star Wars and Star Wars The Empire Strikes Back. (I do own Jedi, however I'd recovered by the time I finished Empire). I have owned these two books since I was a kid back in the late 70's and the early 80's respectively. The pages are worn and yellowing, they have an 'old' smell about them, and there are even some really bad drawings of the characters scattered about the pages from my younger self - awesome reads, both.

Reading both of these books gave me a hunger for some more Star Wars, something new though. Digging into my pile of Star Wars books I unearthed my as unread copy of Labyrinth of Evil. This is a book I've owned for many years but until now have never made the time to read. It comes down to my ever flapping love/hate of the new Star Wars cannon, it's my age. I don't like it when things change.

Much to my pleasure it was a really good read, the story being set in the build-up to the start of the film, Revenge of the Sith. This is a nice story that really fills in some gaps for the film and has General Grievous as the terrifying monster I feel he should have been. So clearly this book was penned well in advance of the final edit of the film. I only say this, as from watching the original Clone Wars cartoon at the time, General Grievous was a nasty Jedi slaying cyborg. Not the cowardly, wheezing one dimensional character that he ended up being in the film. Anyway, this aside, a very good read.

The Engineer ReConditioned, whilst I'm talking Sci-Fi books, was a fantastic read. It is a collection of short stories by Neal Asher set in his own universe, of which I know nothing of as the The Engineer ReConditioned is the first of his novels I have ever read. You know what, it is so good I'm lining up more of the books to read. I loved this book, it was such a good read that halfway through I had to put my socks back on! If you love really good, well conceived sci-fi with a little bit of a fantasy twist. This is a book I can highly recommend.

As for fantasy books, this month I've started on a mission to read all of the Terry Pratchett novels, back-to-back and in order. I don't know if I will achieve this goal, but I'm going to give it my best! Why? I'm not to sure, however I used to read Mr Pratchett's books every time one would come out, and then for some reason I stopped. So I have gone back to the start and I've already got two in the bag: The Colour of Magic and The Light Fantastic. I must admit I loved these books just as much, and if not more, as when I read them the first time around and I can't wait to wade into that big box in my attic full of the others.

My final, and most recently finished, novel this month was Gaunt's Ghosts, Honour Guard. This is another series of books I'm slowly making my way through and loving every page. Being a huge fan of Warhammer 40,000 I love reading the novels set in the universe, however, the Gaunt's Ghosts books are simply awesome books on their own, add in the WH40k element and, well, my mind explodes with each and every read. My only question is, when is a TV producer going to pick this up and make the TV show?

The final two comics I've read are, Empowered Volume 2 and Ultimate Elektra. One was awesome, Empowered, the other sucked, Elektra. So skipping past the, wake-me-when-it's-over Ultimate Elektra, let's get into Empowered. Volume 2 is just as awesome as Volume 1 moving the stories, universe and characters on from where we left them and setting up for Volume 3 nicely. Of which I will be plowing into shortly.

Best read this month (novel) is a tie between Gaunt's Ghosts, Honour Guard and The Engineer ReConditioned, as for comics, Empowered Volume 2 - hands down!

That's it for this month!



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