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Rusty’s Reading List 2019

May 11, 2019
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Disclaimer: I am the Spoken Word Editor for ARC Poetry Magazine

Which doesn’t mean I can’ enjoy it! This is the latest issue and from a Spoken Word perspective it was great to see an old friend, Lara Bozabalien, with a poem in this issue.
Half a lifetime ago I did a Southern Ontario tour with The Recipe and that included a workshop and performance at the high school where Lara was teaching. She does incredibly good work getting poetry to the kids and helping them find their own voices. I was blown away by the caliber of writing I heard from them.
This issue also includes a feature with P-I-R David O’Meara and work by Billy-Ray Belcourt, an article by Ben Ladouceur and much more!

I would REALLY like to see more Spoken Word poets submitting to Arc. If you have a poem you would like to submit to the magazine, go here: http://arcpoetry.ca/submit/

The page says we are not accepting submissions right now, but that is not true IF your submission is on the theme of ‘labour’.

Also, if you have a performance video or a different sort of video ABOUT poetry or spoken word, hit me up!

2019 Reading List

ARC Poetry Magazine #88
The Fifth Season – N.K. Jemisin
The Walking Dead Vol. 7 – The Calm Before – Kirkman / Adlard / Rathburn
A Pretty Sight – David O’Meara
Avengers: The Korvac Saga – Shooter / Michelinie / Mantlo / Perez / Various Artists
Indiana Review Vol.40, No.2
Avengers: Death Trap: The Vault – Fingeroth / Lim
This Wound is a World – Billy-Ray Belcourt
The Auteur Vol.1 – President’s Day – Spears / Callahan / Anderson
Astro City Vol. 2 – Confession – Busiek / Anderson / more
Astro City Vol. 1 – Life In the Big City – Busiek / Anderson / Ross
Animal Man Vol. 2 – Origin of the Species – Grant Morrison / Various Artists
Power Ball – Rob Neyer
Denver Quarterly Vol. 52 No. 3

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Rusty’s Reading List 2019

May 7, 2019
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I had been thinking that I hadn’t been reading enough fiction. I mean, I love poetry, but there is more to life than just that. I used read a lot of fantasy novels… and if I am going to pick up a fantasy series, why not the one that won the Hugo award for THREE STRAIGHT YEARS?

There are a lot of changes going on in the SF/F lit world right now… changes for the better. If I look at those books that I devoured, they were almost universally written by white men. (The only name that leaps out at me as NOT being that is Marion Zimmer Bradley, though there were certainly others.) I have nothing against any of those writers that I enjoyed, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t other perspectives that wouldn’t give a different, but still enjoyable, perspective.

And this book certainly does that. There isn’t too much I can go into without giving away things that are better discovered by reading, but I will say the the standard travel narrative is in here, but handled differently. We get to see different parts and aspects of a fascinating world, looked at in different ways depending on which thread we are currently following. The different threads are expressed in different ways (though I can’t say I loved the second person perspective – effective, but kind of annoying).

I strongly encourage others to read this. I look forward to book two.

2019 Reading List

The Fifth Season – N.K. Jemisin
The Walking Dead Vol. 7 – The Calm Before – Kirkman / Adlard / Rathburn
A Pretty Sight – David O’Meara
Avengers: The Korvac Saga – Shooter / Michelinie / Mantlo / Perez / Various Artists
Indiana Review Vol.40, No.2
Avengers: Death Trap: The Vault – Fingeroth / Lim
This Wound is a World – Billy-Ray Belcourt
The Auteur Vol.1 – President’s Day – Spears / Callahan / Anderson
Astro City Vol. 2 – Confession – Busiek / Anderson / more
Astro City Vol. 1 – Life In the Big City – Busiek / Anderson / Ross
Animal Man Vol. 2 – Origin of the Species – Grant Morrison / Various Artists
Power Ball – Rob Neyer
Denver Quarterly Vol. 52 No. 3


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Rusty’s Reading List 2019

April 27, 2019
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I picked up the next (to me) volume of The Walking Dead comic.
I really enjoy the comic, though I do think the show is better in a lot of ways. This volume reminded me of that a lot, especially as it relates to Carol. Carol on the show is great. Carol in the comic is, well, pretty pathetic. Take the Carol circa the death of Sophia and have her not evolve at all. Devolve, really.
This story deals with that.
It also deals with the birth of Judith. Unlike the show, Lori survives giving birth.
Mostly this volume, as the title implies, is interlude. They are in the prison, waiting for the Woodbury folks to show up and starting to think that they won’t.
Guess what happens on the last page?

2019 Reading List

The Walking Dead Vol. 7 – The Calm Before – Kirkman / Adlard / Rathburn
A Pretty Sight – David O’Meara
Avengers: The Korvac Saga – Shooter / Michelinie / Mantlo / Perez / Various Artists
Indiana Review Vol.40, No.2
Avengers: Death Trap: The Vault – Fingeroth / Lim
This Wound is a World – Billy-Ray Belcourt
The Auteur Vol.1 – President’s Day – Spears / Callahan / Anderson
Astro City Vol. 2 – Confession – Busiek / Anderson / more
Astro City Vol. 1 – Life In the Big City – Busiek / Anderson / Ross
Animal Man Vol. 2 – Origin of the Species – Grant Morrison / Various Artists
Power Ball – Rob Neyer
Denver Quarterly Vol. 52 No. 3


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Rusty’s Reading List 2019

April 19, 2019
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I have known Dave O’Meara for years, but somehow I only had one of his books (‘Noble Gas, Penny Black’), despite loving it. I rectified that by picking up ‘A Pretty Sight’ at VERSeFest.
It starts out on the right note, as the book includes ‘Occasional’, which is the first poem I ever heard Dave perform – at the very first VERSeFest. It is told from the point of view of the Poet Laureate of the Moon.
If you think that sounds amazing, there is also a poem in here that is a conversation between Socrates and Sid Vicious. It is as incredible as it sounds.
Right when I was thinking he should have ended the book on ‘End Times’ (due to it being appropriate, not because of a lack of quality following it), Dave drops a poem about Old Hoss Radbourne! Yes!
This is a very worldly feeling book and I highly recommend it.

2019 Reading List

A Pretty Sight – David O’Meara
Avengers: The Korvac Saga – Shooter / Michelinie / Mantlo / Perez / Various Artists
Indiana Review Vol.40, No.2
Avengers: Death Trap: The Vault – Fingeroth / Lim
This Wound is a World – Billy-Ray Belcourt
The Auteur Vol.1 – President’s Day – Spears / Callahan / Anderson
Astro City Vol. 2 – Confession – Busiek / Anderson / more
Astro City Vol. 1 – Life In the Big City – Busiek / Anderson / Ross
Animal Man Vol. 2 – Origin of the Species – Grant Morrison / Various Artists
Power Ball – Rob Neyer
Denver Quarterly Vol. 52 No. 3



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Rusty’s Reading List 2019

April 19, 2019
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It is no secret that I am a big Avengers fan, yet most people don’t know what that really means. The current style of Avengers, like what is shown on the movies, is not what the Avengers used to be. My formative time was under the writing of Roger Stern, but as I put together back issues, the best story of that period – past the early days but before the modern reworking of the concept – was the Korvac Saga.
It was written in a style that wouldn’t work anymore. There was a slow burn as stories overlapped and subplots ran through multiple issues. Now every story has to be self-contained, so it can easily be reproduced in collection form. This was not that. The story refers to odd appearances by Thor, that made little sense at the time, but were designed to feed into the Collector story, which was a way to launch the Korvac finale. The vanishing Avengers. The random battle with Tyrak that seemed to have little to do with the greater story around it.
This was the best of on-going, episodic storytelling.
(Side note: Did they ever explain how Vance Astro survived this story?)
It is too bad that George Perez wasn’t the artist for all he parts, but aren’t the parts he DID do beautiful?
Anyway, I have this story in the original comic form, but it is nice to have this collection as well.

2019 Reading List

Avengers: The Korvac Saga – Shooter / Michelinie / Mantlo / Perez / Various Artists
Indiana Review Vol.40, No.2
Avengers: Death Trap: The Vault – Fingeroth / Lim
This Wound is a World – Billy-Ray Belcourt
The Auteur Vol.1 – President’s Day – Spears / Callahan / Anderson
Astro City Vol. 2 – Confession – Busiek / Anderson / more
Astro City Vol. 1 – Life In the Big City – Busiek / Anderson / Ross
Animal Man Vol. 2 – Origin of the Species – Grant Morrison / Various Artists
Power Ball – Rob Neyer
Denver Quarterly Vol. 52 No. 3


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Rusty’s Reading List 2019

April 10, 2019
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I don’t have my notebook handy but I believe I submitted something to the Indiana Review, which comes at the price of a subscription. I don’t mind that at all because this was a great issue!
The crowning glory was a story entitled ‘Ever-Guests’ by Migueltzinta C. Solis which had a first line: Luke and I wake up one morning in mid-December 2017 and find that we have moved to Canada.

2019 Reading List

Indiana Review Vol.40, No.2
Avengers: Death Trap: The Vault – Fingeroth / Lim
This Wound is a World – Billy-Ray Belcourt
The Auteur Vol.1 – President’s Day – Spears / Callahan / Anderson
Astro City Vol. 2 – Confession – Busiek / Anderson / more
Astro City Vol. 1 – Life In the Big City – Busiek / Anderson / Ross
Animal Man Vol. 2 – Origin of the Species – Grant Morrison / Various Artists
Power Ball – Rob Neyer
Denver Quarterly Vol. 52 No. 3


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Rusty’s Reading List 2019

April 10, 2019
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Am I trying to convince myself not to get back into comics by reading bad ones? Last was The Auteur, which was horrid, and now this one.
It is no surprise that I have this OGN, since it was from back when I collected all Avengers comics. The bigger question is, why was it published?

This does nothing to warrant the better format. It could have been an okay Avengers arc, but this was not their creative team. Ron Lim got fame for being the Infinity Gauntlet artist, but he doesn’t really stand out.

Oh well. It is still better than The Auteur.

2019 Reading List

Avengers: Death Trap: The Vault – Fingeroth / Lim
This Wound is a World – Billy-Ray Belcourt
The Auteur Vol.1 – President’s Day – Spears / Callahan / Anderson
Astro City Vol. 2 – Confession – Busiek / Anderson / more
Astro City Vol. 1 – Life In the Big City – Busiek / Anderson / Ross
Animal Man Vol. 2 – Origin of the Species – Grant Morrison / Various Artists
Power Ball – Rob Neyer
Denver Quarterly Vol. 52 No. 3


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Rusty’s Reading List 2019

April 9, 2019
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I bought three new books at VERSeFest this year, and this was the only one that was written by someone I don’t know personally. (The others are by Doyali Islam and David O’Meara.)
After hearing Belcourt read, I HAD to have this book.
Look at the cover. Griffin Poetry Prize. CBC Books Best Canadian Poetry Book. Governor General’s Award Finalist.
After reading it I can confirm that these accolades are well-deserved.
This book is almost a case study for intersectionality, as Belcourt speaks about issues relating to him being both Indigenous and gay, bu seven that simplifies things too much. Forcing this into a box is reductionist and the book doesn’t deserve that.
I HIGHLY recommend this book.

2019 Reading List

This Wound is a World – Billy-Ray Belcourt
The Auteur Vol.1 – President’s Day – Spears / Callahan / Anderson
Astro City Vol. 2 – Confession – Busiek / Anderson / more
Astro City Vol. 1 – Life In the Big City – Busiek / Anderson / Ross
Animal Man Vol. 2 – Origin of the Species – Grant Morrison / Various Artists
Power Ball – Rob Neyer
Denver Quarterly Vol. 52 No. 3


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Rusty’s Reading List 2019

April 1, 2019
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So, I had this book recommended to me. I read it and it not make a real positive impression.
I decided to read it again to see what I was missing… and nope, this is pretty terrible.
You know those Comicgate trolls who follow Ethan Von Sciver and think there needs to be less diversity and ‘politics’ in comics? They would probably love it.
I won’t be reading any more.

2019 Reading List

The Auteur Vol.1 – President’s Day – Spears / Callahan / Anderson
Astro City Vol. 2 – Confession – Busiek / Anderson / more
Astro City Vol. 1 – Life In the Big City – Busiek / Anderson / Ross
Animal Man Vol. 2 – Origin of the Species – Grant Morrison / Various Artists
Power Ball – Rob Neyer
Denver Quarterly Vol. 52 No. 3


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Rusty’s Reading List 2019

March 28, 2019
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I said I only had two volumes of Astro City, so here is the other one!
The first volume was all single issue stories. This time we get a longer arc. I’ll admit I prefer the one-offs, but Confession is still incredibly well done. Virtually every aspect of the story is a standard comic trope, but Kurt Busiek manages to breathe new life into each one and make them his own.

The revelation of who the Confessor is was very well done. Still, with all of that, the best issue in the book was the Hanged Man issue that wraps things up. It is the one-and-done stories that stand out.

2019 Reading List

Astro City Vol. 2 – Confession – Busiek / Anderson / more
Astro City Vol. 1 – Life In the Big City – Busiek / Anderson / Ross
Animal Man Vol. 2 – Origin of the Species – Grant Morrison / Various Artists
Power Ball – Rob Neyer
Denver Quarterly Vol. 52 No. 3


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