Archive for August, 2010


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Hat Tip: Sadly, I do not own Ginger Meggs, Jason Chatfield, Gocomics, Australia or England, but there you go.  We can’t have everything in life, can we?

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HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

 

Disclaimer: I do not own Bill Amend, Fox Trot, GoComics, or pretty much anything else. 

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Two books in one?  Well, there’s a reason; it’s a two parter story!  Ta-da!  Question answered.

Moving on.

I recently discovered Terry Pratchett (and I’m fully aware that I’m about 5 years behind the rest of the world, thank you very much.  There are extenuating circumstances!) and get a kick out of his work.

The Discworld series is a hoot.  The End.

Anyway, the books “The Colour of Magic” and “The Light Fantastic” are his two first Discworld stories about a failed wizard, the first tourist, a barbarian, a wizard that is not so much a failure, and the end of the world.  I think that about sums up a rather summed up story.  That I can tell you, without giving away any of the fun or funny stuff.

The wit is dry, mostly fatalistic sense of humor throughout, the absolutely horrible things that happen to people, or that people do, in this book are done with such finesse that you can’t help but burst out loud with laughter, and maybe even snort a little bit.  From the miss-named landmarks to dragons to whole cities burning to the ground: it is not high brow – but it is definitely high hilarity!  It’s British humor, in a sense, that people are so nonplused by everything and yet the things happening would cause us to gasp in alarm and horror.

The first book opens with all the trouble getting into a good rolling motion and ends with a cliff-hanger.  The second book brings the windup and the pitch, and ends on such a note that you could almost feel cheated if you were looking for a slam bang right out of the movies finish.  It ends fairly quietly without much fireworks (other than a few people exploding).  However, if you look at the background behind the humor, it is a funnier story and the ending would not work any other way.

 

Oh, I would recommend reading the books and foregoing the “Color of Magic” movie, simply because you need the narrator for the story to be as funny as it is.  Of course, I’m not saying it was a bad movie…okay, yes I am saying it was bad.  Pretty, pretty bad.

 

Hat tip: Amazon for use of images.

C. S. Lewis was, perhaps, a genius.  Well, let’s just say, for the sake of my argument, that he was indeed a genius.  If he was a genius, which I am saying he was, then this book gives readers a good glimpse of his genius at work.  The Great Divorce was just that good a read for me today. 

Yes, I read it in a day – the thing is barely 200 pages long – and between waiting in line at the DMV, to sitting in a pancake house eating not pancakes, to sitting in the basement of a the parish office waiting for my phone to ring – signaling a time to go home – I was completely lost in the beauty of the words.

There is something a little surreal about reading Lewis.  First of all, he is descriptive enough that you can understand the images he wishes to produce.  However, he is intelligent enough to sometimes make those images hard.  If there is one bad thing about being able to clearly define your settings for your readers, it is that readers then tend to let you do all the work and they just skim pages, only sort of getting the message you wish to convey.

However, and here is where I think C.S. was a bit of a genius, if you every now and then change how you describe, just ever so slightly, you force the reader back into the story as they pause and say “Wait a minute, I just missed something because I was there and now I’m here…I better back up a few…” and suddenly the reader is taking in what you wanted them to know twice  – and it becomes solidified further into their subconscious.  it’s magical!

As to the story itself, I cannot say it was all perfectly clear but I was forced to stop and really consider the facts C.S. was forcing the readers to face; the truth of the matters that everyone, especially Christians (I believe) take for granted.  Like love, for instance.  But that is a discussion I’ll leave for either people who know what they’re talking about or people who might read this blog and want to discuss it further.

 

Either way, I recommend The Great Divorce not just on a day when you’ve got nothing else to do.  It’s a book that you can easily carry with you everywhere and read quickly in between whatever takes up your time of day.