awkwardly

Friday

Books I've been digging lately:
Doctor Dogbody's Leg by James Norman Hall. Co-author of Mutiny on the Bounty writes about a British Naval surgeon in the age of sail telling tall tales about how he lost his leg.

The Tortilla Curtain by T. Coraghessan Boyle. BBC Radio "Book at Bedtime" ran an adaptation of this story read by David Soul. A white liberal California guy hits an undocumented Mexican immigrant with his car. Their paths cross off and on as the white guy wrestles with his community become a gated community, then walled community, and the immigrant tries to find work and feed his pregnant wife. It could have turned out really trite, and some people might say that it did, but I sympathized with the characters. I read it within a few days, so it pulled me along. As polemics go, I'd say it's at least better than Carl Hiassen novels, which read like environmentalist Batman revenge fantasies. Put it this way, Tortilla Curtain was good enough that I'm going to try some other TC Boyle novels from the library.

Vogelein: Clockwork Faerie a graphic novel by Jane Irwin, who rode my schoolbus for years! I am totally jealous. I checked it out from the library for the novelty of having known Jane, but it's a great story about a clockwork faerie who can't wind herself up each day. Having lived 300 years, Vogelein has to find new human caretakers every so often to keep her wound, or else she'll lose her memory. It left me wanting more (in the best possible way), and I assume there will be more because it's billed as a collection of the first five issues of a comic series. Hopefully more collections will be issued in years to come. Dammit! Envy!

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