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473 weeks ago @ Mark Reads - Mark Reads 'Good Omens... · 0 replies · +12 points

This, so much. I am Catholic, and I love this book so very much (would have re-read along, if not for mountains of really awful summer reading). It has fun with all the theological concepts without being mean-spiritedly mocking, and it makes you think about humans and angels and the way the world works. Not to mention the writing is utterly brilliant. It's completely awesome.

488 weeks ago @ Mark Reads - Mark Reads 'The Sandma... · 2 replies · +14 points

Holy crap, this was so good. Oh. My. Gosh.

Seriously, that was the most amazing thing in Sandman to date. I love fairies- the legit kind, the ones that'll take your children and leave you a changeling, the ones that'll pay you in fool's gold, and the ones that'll get you lost in the mountains so they can laugh at your struggling. And the fact that they're audience to a Midsummer Night's Dream- one of my favorite plays by Shakespeare- is the coolest thing in the world.

I liked that the way Oberon and Titania were commenting seemed almost similar to the manner in which the six couples in-play comment on the Pyramus & Thisbe play- except in this case, the commentary is good- they like it. And I love that Puck is the one giving the equivalent of "This is the silliest stuff I have ever heard" and then steps in to make it better. And the commentary of the other fairies almost had me in tears.

Ending it with Puck was brilliant. Puck is so fascinating to me because for all that he's presented as somewhat benevolent in the play- he's still a hobgoblin, and he's still not necessarily very nice. I love how his speaking the final epilogue (one of my favorites monologues in that play) is rendered sinister and yet still captivating. Ending with "Robin Goodfellow's whereabouts remain unknown" is chilling and brilliant. Is he still out there to cause havoc? He may be a wanderer of the night, but merry he is not.

The subplot of Hamnet was heartbreaking to me. I wonder if we'll ever see the full aftermath of what happened there, especially since Morpheus was mentioning the price. It was hinted at, and I can't help but wonder if Hamnet was the other half of that bargain. I was actually expecting Hamnet to get stolen by the fairies at the end, since he was speaking to Titania and I'm pretty sure he was eating something she'd given him- which in all the old fairy tales means you're in their power. If it wasn't for the fact that they'd left, I would speculate that they'd left a changeling for Hamnet- not that Shakespeare would notice if they did. It doesn't seem like that occurred, unless I'm missing something, but I kept thinking about it ever since I saw Hamnet and Titania talking.

489 weeks ago @ Mark Reads - Mark Reads 'The Sandma... · 0 replies · +13 points

So that was bizarre, but really neat. I loved looking at this issue- the way the artist drew all the cats was really spectacular, and I liked how they all seemed to have their own personality. The bit of the story where the Siamese was going through the wood of ghosts and thought she heard her children calling to her was so sad. "But I straightened my tail and I walked on." How did Gaiman manage to make a story about a cat in the dream world so depressing? It sounds like something that should be cute! And then when the cute at the end does come it's all rendered nightmarish by what the cats are dreaming of. To quote Terry Pratchett: "What you can say about Neil Gaiman that hasn't already been said in 'Morbid Imagination: Five Case Studies'?"

489 weeks ago @ Mark Reads - Mark Reads 'The Sandma... · 0 replies · +7 points

Urg, I read about that line of his, and it pissed me off so much. I haven't even seen "The Avengers" yet, and knowing that that's coming is going to have me mad even before I get to the theater.

I do like some of Whedon's stuff but most of it just isn't really my thing. I loved Firefly for that reason; even though that show had some problems of its own, it felt like he was just trying to tell a futuristic story about real people in that time and then you could take what you could from that. Plus I love a good worldbuilding tale, and Firefly had that in spades. But on the whole, I keep hearing about how feminist Whedon is- and I don't know, it just rubs me the wrong way sometimes, given some of the things I've seen on his shows. I honestly can't explain it. Maybe I'm just contradictory or something, but he seems *so* aware of himself in his shows that it bothers me. :/

489 weeks ago @ Mark Reads - Mark Reads 'The Sandma... · 4 replies · +6 points

Are you not a Whedon fan then? I've always been spectacularly lukewarm on his stuff myself and sometimes wonder if I'm the only one.

And in response to the self-confidence and writing- I know what that feels like. It doesn't help that when you're just starting out writing, it's almost a certainty that what you write will be complete and utter crap. I think a lot of times what kills it for me, isn't as much a lack of confidence in the idea as much as a doubt of my ability to convey that idea. I just don't think I can do it, I sit and the writing stagnates, and then it only gets worse. Oddly enough, fanfic was what got me out of that slump... But yeah, writing and trying to tell a story is one of the hardest things out there, and much as I like to pick on various published works, they did one thing right: they got it finished and were able to sell it. I'm still at the "Damn it, stop playing solitaire and get back to your WIP stage."

489 weeks ago @ Mark Reads - Mark Reads 'The Sandma... · 0 replies · +1 points

Thanks so much for linking this! There goes the time I need to spend finishing a short story... :D

489 weeks ago @ Mark Reads - Mark Reads 'The Sandma... · 3 replies · +8 points

Able to comment, for once! I was really distracted by the title of this story ("Lost Hearts" shares a name with an MR James ghost story) and Fiddler's Green, who reminded me so much of GK Chesterton (who I think Gaiman said is one of the writers he liked growing up? I can't really remember and it's early for me...). But there was so much to like in this issue- principally Unity, holy cow. She was so amazingly badass, calmly telling Morpheus that he's not the brightest bulb in the chandelier, and then taking Rose's place so her granddaughter could live. It was an amazing scene, though I can't help but wonder what kinds of effect the 'lost heart' will have on Rose. I have no idea if we ever get to see Rose again, but it would be so neat if there was something with Desire not being able to touch Rose, or something like that, since Desire is described to have lived in the heart. I don't even know. I love the ending to this, and how it takes Rose time to wake up, so to speak, but I want to see more of her and her brother. I have so many questions about this family and I don't know how they're going answered. Have we seen the last of Rose and her brother? Or is it going to go on with the ideas and leave the characters behind?

490 weeks ago @ Mark Reads - Mark Reads 'The Sandma... · 0 replies · +8 points

Okay, so I have no idea what the hell is going on. That whole sequence with Desire was so damnably confusing and nightmarish, and I had a really hard time figuring out who was talking to who (for the record, I initially started typing 'stalking' there; it fits too). Anyway, yeah- I'm still not very good at this whole comic-reading thing, but I'm trying, I swear! It's just so different from manga, which has been pretty much my only recent experience with this kind of storytelling.
The main thing I took away from this is Unity. If she becomes a major character in this, I will be so very happy, since she suffered a particularly nightmarish trauma as a result of the Dream sickness. If she gets some sort of closure through this, it will be very nice to see. And I can't wait to see what role Rose ends up playing in all this as well.

490 weeks ago @ http://litbites.blogsp... - SERE* is Not a Bloggin... · 0 replies · +2 points

Thank you for writing this. It's immensely frustrating that she's getting so much support when what she did undermines the efforts people who do work really hard for their blogs WITHOUT stealing their ideas. I never really visited her blog (her reviews seem way too much like blurbs rather than actual reviews) but her prominence is what makes this so hard to swallow. Why is she getting a free pass because of it?

492 weeks ago @ Mark Reads - Mark Reads 'The Sandma... · 1 reply · +7 points


*cough* Right, so I love that in the beginning portrait for this chapter we can see burned bits and pages of the Divine Comedy. Classical reference strikes again!
I'm really really starting to like Morpheus. Like, a lot. Maybe I just have a thing for anthropomorphic personages? (rot13'd for Discworld reference- Qrngu pbzrf gb zvaq. Zna, V ybir gung punenpgre) I'm guessing from other comments that Etrigan is some other character from the DC-verse? I do have to admit I found the whole speaking in rhyme is a sign you've risen (fallen?) in the ranks of Hell bit rather neat. Having taken a poetry class last quarter I can sort of see why.
The battle between Morpheus and Chronzon was so cool! But I think what I liked most about it was that Morpheus says straight up that he's not sure he has power enough to win. But he doesn't even look ruffled or nervous. He just says something to the effect of "All right, I'm not sure I can actually win this. If I don't I'm a slave for eternity. OH WELL LET"S GET STARTED." It's kind of awesome how matter-of-fact he is about the whole thing. And his parting shot to the demons was pretty awesome.

Random other thought- I liked how Lucifer sort of seemed like a sulky child in this. Maybe I'm only getting this vibe because he looked so young, especially compared to Morpheus, but it kind of fits with how Satan is personified in some retellings of the heavenly war- specifically Paradise Lost where he seems like the kid who when told to go to their room responds with "All right! But when I leave the house with a broken heart and get lost for all eternity, then you'll be sorry!" (I may or may not have been this little kid on occasion when I was younger... regardless, that's what his current mood reminds me of in this. The child sulking afterward).
I can't wait to see what's coming next!