According to GoodReads, I read 32 books during 2018 and . . . here they all are:
Exhaustively researched and entertaining.THE TWO-BEAR MAMBO by Joe R. Lansdale
Quirky deep south Texas/Louisiana mystery. Inspired me to check out the Hap & Leonard TV Show and I'm glad I did.
GOOD OMENS by Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman
Simply brilliant and entertaining blasphemy that will make you laugh out loud.
Factual and disturbing in how quickly a single malignant narcissist could dangerously dismantle the spirit of America and the constructs of self-government by the people and for the people.
18 STRAIGHT WHISKEYS by Michael Easton
An author who speaks to my deepest self like no other and in this brilliant collection of poetry he runs the gamut of rapturous love to the darkest corners of our most personal hells. And somehow he finds humorous wordplay on one page and slices your heart open on the next.
OUT OF THEIR MINDS by Clifford D. Simak
Originally written in 1970, this book is a product of the time it was written but stays entertaining as it explores the nature of fictional realities crashing into each other and invading our own.
A movie I had seen but had never read the novel before. This rewritten and modernized version of the novel that the 1977 Fritz Weaver film was based on. It was impossible to put down. The satire is strong in this one and I laughed while reading it at the same time I was horrified.
LAST WORDS by George Carlin
So interesting to hear Carlin's autobiography read by his soundalike brother. Great insight into George's brilliantly conflicted mind and how he found his comedy voice.
HE IS LEGEND: AN ANTHOLOGY CELEBRATING RICHARD MATHESON Edited by Christopher Conlon
I love anthologies and this one was a very good collection of stories based on or inspired by the writing of Richard Matheson.
Gripping graphic novel from Marvel Comics told in the spirit and style of the old pre-comics age pulp fiction magazines but with all new characters that should have existed in the Marvel universe but did not...until now.
THE EVOLUTION OF FAITH: HOW GOD IS CREATING A BETTER CHRISTIANITY by Philip Gulley
Excellent book to provoke some thought in those of us who were raised in the Christian faith but have realized how badly the institutional Church has concocted a God that is incompatible with the idea of love incarnate. Gulley provides much to ponder and challenges each of us to pursue our own path and views on God rather than panderously cowtowing to the weight of the propaganda orthodoxy.
SAGA: VOLUME ONE by Brian K. Vaughn (author) & Fiona Staples (illustrator)
Maybe I'm not the target audience, but while I recognize that it was well-written and well-drawn, it did not resonate with me.
I was introduced to Iain Spence's atavistic trending model in SUPERGODS and I was curious to read more about it. It's mostly incoherent but there's some germ of something inside the theory that feels like there's some germ of truth buried inside the incoherence. But damned if I could crack that nut.
SO, ANYWAY... by John Cleese
So anyway...this book is hilarious and insightful. If you get a chance, I recommend the audio version read by Cleese himself.
THE SHADOW: MIDNIGHT IN MOSCOW by Howard Chaykin
Nobody does Shadow comics as well as Chaykin. Fantastic Shadow adventure set during the early days of the burgeoning Cold War.
Sometimes painful to read but fascinating insight into and opportunity for greater understanding of generational abuse, trauma, and just exactly how in the HELL those who would benefit the absolute least from a Trump presidency were so easily deluded into voting against their own (and the country's) interest.
PARADOX BOUND by Peter Clines
Essentially the closest I've ever come to an American version of Doctor Who. And it's entertaining as Hell as our intrepid time traveller hops through "history" not "time." It's a subtle but very important distinction as the race to find the lost American Dream is on!
THE MEGAROTHKE by Robert Ashcroft
New author and a great sci-fi horror thriller but one that delves deeply into dark archetypal fears and excellent social commentary with relatable and challenging characters.
One of my favorite authors, Bart Ehrman's latest book explores just exactly how a little band of 1st century apocalyptic cultists turned their cult into the religion that changed the world.
HEAVENS ON EARTH: THE SCIENTIFIC SEARCH FOR THE AFTERLIFE, IMMORTALITY, AND UTOPIA by Michael Shermer
Another one of my favorite authors, Michael Shermer takes an open-minded but scientific approach to exploring concepts, beliefs, and alleged proofs of life-after-death, immortality, and other related ideas.
TRUMPOCRACY: THE CORRUPTION OF THE AMERICAN REPUBLIC by David Frum
Another one of my favorite authors, THE ATLANTIC editor David Frum details in convincing and convicting ways how insidious the influence on our country's soul and spirit by placing a malignant narcissist into the most powerful political seat in the world.
The brilliant 2017 collection of all-new Bloom County comic strips.
GREEN LANTERN: EARTH ONE—VOLUME ONE by Gabriel Hardman & Corinna Sara Bechko
My favorite graphic novel of the year. This is what the GREEN LANTERN movie should have been.
SUPERGODS: WHAT MASKED VIGILANTES, MIRACULOUS MUTANTS, AND A SUN GOD FROM SMALLVILLE CAN TEACH US ABOUT BEING HUMAN by Grant Morrison
Engrossing examination of the history and cultural influence of the super-hero comic book.
Good idea but mediocre execution. Great title, though.
THE OUTSIDER by Stephen King
Fantastic old-school King that also furthers some of the more obscure aspects of the shared King-verse.
INSPIRED: SLAYING GIANTS, WALKING ON WATER, AND LOVING THE BIBLE AGAIN by Rachel Held Evans
Interesting insight into Rachel Held Evans and her personal journey from the collapse of her evangelical faith in embracing a new and greater view of God and how to find value in the Bible again.
More information than you ever thought possible about every single song ever recorded by The Monkees and somehow they made it all very enlightening and entertaining.
LIVE LONG AND...WHAT I LEARNED ALONG THE WAY by William Shatner (with David Fisher)
I always enjoy Shatner's memoirs and reflections. This one felt especially poignant and vulnerable.
ALWAYS LOOK ON THE BRIGHT SIDE OF LIFE: A SORTABIOGRAPHY by Eric Idle
Entertaining as hell. As with the Cleese book, I recommend reading this as an audio book so that you can hear Eric reading it in his own voice.
I read this long ago when I was a child. I reread it again in 2018 as an adult. The book garners a lot of criticism but I appreciate the simple metaphor and the message that we must be bold and push ourselves always higher.
KIRBY: KING OF COMICS by Mark Evanier
Very little new to me in this book, but it was a nice overview of comic artist and creator Jack Kirby's life and career by someone who knew him very well.
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