starlady: Peggy in her hat with her back turned under the SSR logo (agent carter)
What I'm Reading
Well, kind of several different things including She-Hulk vol 2, and also none--I've been trying to get some reading done in Japanese, which takes a while and which means that I haven't been reading English books.

What I've Read
Jason Latour et al, Spider-Gwen Nos. 1-5 (2015) - So my friend B told me about this series when she came to visit me this year, it was for sale on Comixology, I bought it, and I loved it. Originally a throwaway concept in a multiverse event, Spider-Gwen (now webspinning again under the name Radioactive Spider-Gwen, post-Secret Wars) follows Gwen Stacey as she deals with the emotional trauma of Peter Parker's death and the problems of being the Spiderwoman in a New York that has no time for heroes…complicated by the fact that her dad is the police detective in charge of her case. I think I said on Twitter that the NYPD doing what the mayor says is the least believable thing about the comic; Gwen is great (though the art is pretty terrible), and I loved her sarcastic responses to the world, her problems with her friends/ex-bandmates in the wake of the changes in her life, and the glimpses we get of a villain-version of Matt Murdoch. Probably one of my favorite comics this year, ngl.

Charles Soule et al., She-Hulk vol. 1 (2014) - Cancelled too soon, this series follows She-Hulk as she struggles to set up an independent law practice and deal with being a superhero on the side. Soule has a legal background himself, and he's a great writer, so it's no surprise that the story and the character and the cases she takes are all top-notch, and that there's some interesting questions about what the law means and what it does floating around in the background. These stellar qualities are almost enough to make up for the fact that the art is frequently godawful; the covers are always the best thing about each issue. Still, I'm looking forward to the second, final volume, which I have waiting on my iPad.

Garth Nix, Newt's Emerald (2015) - Garth Nix does a Regency romance with magic, complete with cross-dressing, pining, and enough social engagements to satisfy even the ghost of Georgette Heyer. I loved it from start to finish and I would read a dozen more books set in this world, the end.

Garth Nix, To Hold the Bridge (2015) - This collects basically all the short stories Nix has written since Across the Wall and Other Stories, with the exception of the Sir Fitz and Master Hereward tales, and it opens with the eponymous Old Kingdom novella. All of the stories are excellent, though the publication of some of them evidently intersected with the period in which I was heavily into anthologies, as about half of them turned out to be ones with which I was already familiar. The one about the surfer boy vampire hunter is still one of my favorites.

Joseph Fink & Jeffrey Cranor, Welcome to Night Vale (2015) - The Night Vale novel! Listeners, I enjoyed it quite a lot; it has remarkably few of the first novel problems you might expect, and all in all it did a very good job of carving out an experience that was still recognizably Night Vale weird but was also demonstrably different from the podcast in a way that took advantage of the medium. (The final chapter!) Bring on the next one!

James Tiptree Jr., Brightness Falls from the Air (1985) - Quite a good book, and probably as happy an ending as Tiptree could have written. On to the short stories.

What I'll Read Next
I have a pile of books I want to read before the end of the year, and doubtless I won't finish all of them. I would have to read 10 books in the next two weeks to tie my 2011 record of 87 books and 11 to beat it, which may or may not be doable, but on the other hand if I knock out a bunch of my comics backlog is probably possible. Wish me luck!
starlady: The Welcome to Night Vale Logo, with clouds over the moon (welcome to night vale)
I (along with the rest of Bay Area nerddom, I kid you not, I ran into friends before, during, and after the show) went to see the new Night Vale live show, "The Investigators," in Oakland tonight. It was really great! I've seen all the touring shows and "Old Oak Doors" live, starting way back in September of 2013, and I found myself thinking about how they've changed a lot since then. They're just as good as they always were, but they've definitely changed to become their own thing, as the review of the show in The Asbury Park Press pointed out.

The APP also got something very right about Night Vale, namely that we are Night Vale, listeners. It's worth quoting the whole thing, actually:

Night Vale is real, because wherever this community congregates, wherever this show travels, wherever the podcast is heard, Night Vale can be found. The beautifully bizarre is all around us, after all. We simply need to open our eyes, our ears, and our minds to it.

That's a big part of why I keep going back to the live shows, and without giving anything away, that aspect of Night Vale definitely gets taken out for a spin in this show. I may not live in Night Vale, but it sure is a great place to visit.
starlady: The Welcome to Night Vale Logo, with clouds over the moon (welcome to night vale)
A friendly desert community that saw a lot of changes during my short visit, and which I reached through an oak door with a brass knob in a theater in Times Square in New York. [personal profile] spaiku went with me, and we had a fantastic time. Tomorrow we're seeing Cabaret.

Listeners, I think this is going to be a very good year.
starlady: The Welcome to Night Vale Logo, with clouds over the moon (welcome to night vale)
I have not talked about Welcome to Night Vale here before. Suffice it to say that I started listening to it a week or two before the huge explosion this summer, but I can never consume any media but books in a timely fashion and in particular the only activity that I can do while listening to the podcast is cooking, so it took me a while to catch up eventually. But! I am all caught up now and I love it to death. And tonight I went to The Booksmith in the Haight with [personal profile] epershand and we saw Night Vale Live! We have had excellent event planning luck lately, and we managed to time things so that we had time to eat dinner sitting down in the Mexican place next door, which is pretty good, before going back to the line and getting a place only about ten people behind where we would have been…which was enough to get us seats in the third row from the front for the show. We were feet from Cecil Baldwin and the other performers! FEET.

I was not expecting to love it as much as I did, in all honesty, but it was utter perfection in the way of our imperfect world, and I basically sat there with a huge grin on my face for the entire 45 minutes. Mild spoilers hold fast to imperfection ) And the weather was Satellite High, and he did a special outro reprise of "Waitin' for the Bus in the Rain" and it was so great, seriously, AUGH. And also Meg is seriously cool-looking. NIGHT VALE <333333 Seriously, the episode made me want to write fic for the show, which is a high compliment.

Also there was a girl there who was cosplaying the glow cloud (there was a lot of excellent cosplay, seriously), and when we were waiting at the bus stop afterward (not in the rain, thankfully) and she walked past we intoned "All hail the glow cloud" in serial and totally freaked her out, which was pretty funny because we were only like a block from the bookstore. Also, for those of you going to future Night Vale Live events, black and purple is totally the dress code.

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