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1. Feral Cell by Richard Bowes.
2. Orlando by Virginia Woolf.
3. Fractured by Karin Slaughter.
4. Orsinian Tales by Ursula K. Le Guin.
5. Living to Tell the Tale by Gabriel García Márquez.
6. Undone by Karin Slaughter.

7. Thor by Walter Simonson Omnibus by Walter Simonson, Sal Buscema, et al. This is a pricy item--I was lucky enough to get it as a gift--but man is it worth it. This collection includes Simonson's entire run--The Mighty Thor #337-382, minus 2 non-Simonson fill-in issues but with the 4-issue limited series Balder the Brave included. It is, in my opinion, the second greatest extended run on any regularly published comic ever, the first being Koike and Kojima's Lone Wolf and Cub. Until a couple of years ago, Marvel had never managed to collect the entire run into trades, but this 1100+ page monster (I won't bore you with the complexities of attempting to read it in bed) has it all in glorious color on durable glossy paper, along with an extended glossary of sketches and character designs. But here's why it's great: Simonson blends Eddic source material with a Silver Age Marvel aesthetic, updating the mythmaking of each while walking the line between reverence and disrespect. There's a lot of the Kirby aesthetic to the art--Simonson draws the majority of the run, with Sal Buscema ably filling in for the last several issues--but the story is a little less angsty and a little more coherent than the Stan Lee tradition. The plot is complex without being confusing, with a multi-threaded foreshadowing approach similar to the best of Chris Claremont's X-Men. It starts with the introduction of this guy:

That's Beta Ray Bill, by the way, and if you don't know who he is you're going to love him.

From there the story runs the gamut from the cosmic--Surtur and the fire giants invade Asgard by way of the Big Apple--to the gleefully ridiculous--a transformed Thor leads the frogs of Central Park against the murderous rats of New York City.

And it climaxes with an issue composed entirely of glorious splash pages, as a Thor cursed with brittle bones by Hela battles the Midgard Serpent.

If you can't swing a copy of your own, bug your local librarian, because this is spectacular stuff.


( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Feb. 25th, 2012 05:21 am (UTC)
I read all that in its original run. Fantastic stuff.

Beta Ray Bill's face is based on a horse skull that Simonson found in the desert, btw.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )


David J. Schwartz
Mumble Herder

Recent and Forthcoming



US Edition

UK Edition


"The Sun Inside," part of the Electrum Novella Series from Rabit Transit Press

Short Stories:

"Escape to Bird Island" at The King's English, Winter 2008-9 Issue

"Bear In Contradicting Landscape" in Polyphony 7, Coming Soon

"MonstroCities" in Tumbarumba: A Frolic of Intrusions

"Mike's Place" in Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet #22

"Proof of Zero" in Spicy Slipstream Stories, Out Now!!

"The Somnambulist" in Paper Cities: An Anthology of Urban Fantasy, Out Now!!

"Oma Dortchen and the Pillar of Story" in Farrago's Wainscot, Summer 2007

"The Ichthyomancer Writes His Friend with an Account of the Yeti's Birthday Party" in Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet Number 13, Fall 2003 (Honorable Mention, The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror: Seventeenth Annual Collecion); Reprinted in The Best of Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet


""Stardust" at Strange Horizons


"On Making Noise: Confessions of a Quiet Kid" in Brothers and Beasts: An Anthology of Men on Fairy Tales edited by Kate Bernheimer



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