Monday, 4 July 2016

#CBR8 Status Update: All the comics

Over the last year, I've had a pretty heavy work-load, to say the least. I have taught one Norwegian class (meaning at least 4 written assignments per semester to correct, two of them longer mid- or end of term-essays) and two English classes (each class again has at least two written assignments per semester, one of them mid- or end of term-length). That's a LOT of correction and grading.

Add to that, oral presentations, parent-teacher conferences, long afternoons of meetings and soo much lesson planning. The worst part is, next year, I'm going to be teaching tenth grade Norwegian and English, as well as TWO full classes of ninth grade English. So I'll have even MORE correction work. As a result, it is crucial that I feel like I get a lot of reading done this summer. Reading I've been putting off, not letting myself do, because it would add to my workload. I love the Cannonball Read, I really do. Blogging about what I read forces me to engage with the books I read on a different level, always considering what I want to be saying about to books afterwards and trying to see both positive and negative sides to the books. No matter how good I am at promising myself I'm going to review as I go along, I tend to build up huge back-logs, however, and when you're ten-thirteen books behind on your reviewing, it can be harder to really let yourself enjoy the book you're currently reading, which will add another to the back-log pile.

Comics and graphic novels are great reads, for the most part. They are also fast reads, giving me instant gratification. I can usually get through one in just an hour or two, depending on the length. Of course, that also means that I instantly get another thing I need to blog about, and it can make my back-log grow all the faster. Consequently, I have not let myself read any comics or graphic novels this year. The last ones I read were in December of last year, some of them read then to ensure I would actually manage to complete my triple Cannonball. Pictured is the pile of trade collections of various comic books, or graphic novels the husband and I own, which I have yet to get round to reading. Yes, I know it's super bad that I have yet to read American Born Chinese, Bone, Maus or Persepolis (I saw the movie for the last one, is that ok?). I was always intending to, stuff just came up! I just needed more time. Now is that time.

For those of you who can't see (my phone camera is not great, and the early afternoon light streaming in from the balcony of our flat didn't make picture taking easier), there are 18 different volumes here. When I get to the comics shop and get my greedy hands on Saga, volume 6 (which the internet assures me is out this week), there will be 19 - as I intend to read them in alphabetical order. Yes, I'm forcing myself to wait until I get to S to read the new SAGA! That is my penance for waiting so long with some of these books.

I'm not actually doing this just to bulk out my Cannonball tally, although I'm not going to lie and say that it makes me sad that I'll be adding more than 20 books in about a week. I will also have to review all of these, but now that I'm on vacation, I have that time. What else am I going to do? Go outside? Clean the house? Exercise? Binge-watch television? Pah! Reading is more important (besides, I suspect I'll be able to do some binge-watching in the evenings).

The books I will be reading are as follows (alphabetical by title):
  • American Born Chinese - Gene Luen Yang
  • Bitch Planet, book one - Kelly Sue DeConnick/Valentine DeLandro
  • Bone - Jeff Smith
  • Castle Waiting - Linda Medley
  • Captain Marvel, vol 1: Higher, Further, Faster, More - Kelly Sue DeConnick/David Lopez
  • Chew, vol 2: International Flavor - John Layman/Rob Guillory
  • Chew, vol 3: Just Desserts - John Layman/Rob Guillory
  • Hawkeye, vol 1: My Life as a Weapon - Matt Fraction/David Aja/Javier Pulido
  • Locke and Key, vol 3: Crown of Shadows - Joe Hill/Gabriel Rodriguez
  • Maus - Art Spiegelman
  • Ms Marvel, vol 2: Generation Why - G. Willow Wilson/Jacob Wyatt/Adrian Alphona
  • Persepolis, vol 1 and 2 - Marjane Satrapi
  • Red Sonja, vol 1: Queen of Plagues - Gail Simone/Walter Geovani
  • Saga, volume 6 - Brian K. Vaughan/Fiona Staples
  • Through the Woods - Emily Carroll
  • The Unwritten, vol 9: Fables - M. Carey/B. Willingham/P. Gross/M. Buckingham
  • The Unwritten, vol 10: War Stories - Mike Carey/Peter Gross
  • The Unwritten, vol 11: Apocalypse - Mike Carey/Peter Gross
  • Wonder Woman, vol 4: War - Brian Azzarello/Cliff Chiang/Goran Sudzuka
Let the reading commence!

Edit - 14/07/16 - Change of plans. There is NO way I'm going to have time to read all of them before we jet off to the States tomorrow (as was my plan) and I will therefore be saving Persepolis, the three volumes of The Unwritten and the Wonder Woman until later in the summer. Should be able to get through the rest, though. 

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