Another short stack for the month. One a collection of drawings, three novels and a slim volume of children's stories. I don't remember what I was doing but it sure wasn't reading. Hittin' the bricks too much I guess.
The Wolverton Bible is a collection of drawings that Basil Wolverton did for Herbert Armstrong's Worldwide Church of God. I've been hoping for a collection of these drawings for ages. The only place to get most of them is the 6 volume set of Bible Stories that the Church put out. There are 2 editions that are pretty costly. The first usually runs about $300, if you ever see them. The second edition is a bit cheaper. I wouldn't want to pay that and after waiting for a long while someone at Fantagraphics put the whole shabang out in one 304 page hardcover. And it's only $24.95. What a gret collection. The drawings are nicely printed, very black, on nice white paper. The cover is printed on the book, there's no dust wrapper. The book is sturdy and feels good.
That's got to be Eve hangin' in the garden and a nice shot of the moon, which I think is from God's POV. I've been a fan of Wolverton's art for ages and have always wished more was available. This is a windfall. It's a wonderful additon to any art collection. There are some more Wolverton books out there to be had. He's one of those guys with a unique style that isn't mainstream enough to have made him real popular. Lucky, for me, there are some publishers, and his son Monte, who have worked to keep his work in print much of the time. He's definately worth a look. Here's a page of one of his wonderful science fiction stories, and silly picture of Basil himself.
The Mirror of Merlin by T A Barron is the fourth of the series. Merlin has a bit of a run around and after passing through a magic mirror he meets himself. I don't know if I would like to meet the older me, not being magical and all. I'm still not groovin' on these books but wanted to read them and put them in the trade in bag. That bag is getting really full. I actually need a second bag. If I would have read faster and more often that bag could be even fuller.
Hellboy - The Fire Wolves by Tim Lebbon was pretty entertaining. Hellboy travels to Amalfi Italy and fights some evil demons who appear in the form of a firey wolves. They hide as humans when they aren't being fire wolves. They are rich and evil and Hellboy takes them down after some major damage to people and places. It's a tough world that Hellboy universe, people are getting slaughtered by the handfulls. Big giant handfulls too. It was pretty well told and since I was pretty interested in the story I was breezin' through this one quickly. I can't say that for my next book.
The Strain by Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan was an ok thriller but once I found out it was some new version of the vampire tale I kind of checked out. I slogged along and the book would often sit the day without a page being read. Not a good sign. Greg had loaned me the Advanced Reading copy he got at DreamHaven and I finally got to it the same week the actual hardcover came out. I just wasn't too keen on reading it. I'm not a big thriller fan and this is pretty much that formula. Plane lands and just about everyone is dead and drained of blood. Oh, what's that going to lead to? The dead will rise warns the old pawn broker with a complicated backstory involving Nazis and Vampires. Man, this books got everything, you'd expect in a vampire thriller. I've never read any Chuck Hogan but this the sort of book I figured he'd write based on his book's covers and thickness. I'm just not a big fan of the genre. I don't think Del Toro, whom I like as a director and movie story teller, had written any books before. If I get to read the rest of the trilogy, I'll be surprised. Too many other books to read and time is getting short. No matter what's left it's short. I can't count on being turned into a vampire in our "real" world. That's probably for the best, I never liked lying on dirt. There's always some bugs in there.
Mr. Pink-Whistle Has Some Fun by Enid Blyton was really entertaining. It's a collection of short stories about a little guy with magical powers. He turns invisible and helps people out. He usually goes right after the bad kid and makes him do the weirdest things. He's really good at tormenting people into being better. In one story he turns invisible and picks on two bullies in the local elementary school. They get the treatment and soon learn their lesson. Nice. A great book for people who like the get their own back. That's a great British term for revenge. Everybody loves them some revenge. The edition I have squeezes 6 stories out of the two books here. These were stories that had originally run in Sunny Stories for Little Folks or The Enid Blyton Magazine. Enid wrote a bi-weekly magazine from 1926 to 1959, all by herself. Many of the short stories that she wrote got collected in books. Mr. Pink-Whistle was one series, Brer Rabbit was another, and a couple more characters I'll be looking at next month. I love the covers on these old editions. You can read more about Enid Blyton, an amazingly prolific writer at The Enid Blyton Society. It's hard to find her books in the USA, she was never that big here. In Canada we had her books in the libraries and bookstores all the time I was growing up there. That's when I read her Adventure series. I re-read them in the last 5 or 6 years and plan to read them again soon. They are my favorite series by Blyton.