Growing up I was a Spider-Man and X-Men fan. My comic book collection consists of three boxes at this point. There are only a few scattered comics featuring the various Avengers. I haven’t been a dedicated fan of the MCU. I only own six MCU movies, but I’ve seen most of them and eventually I want to get to the rest of them. I got to a few more in the last month. I took a Thursday afternoon off to catch a Captain Marvel-Endgame doubleheader. I watched all of Iron Man 2 not long after.
C.L. Moore’s collected Jirel of Joiry stories suffer from the same problem as her Northwest Smith stories. Each is spurred by one incandescently brilliant story and one great pulp character—here, Black God’s Kiss and the titular Jirel of Joiry—and feature vividly evocative prose and imagery, but both are stymied by the remaining stories being otherwise brilliant but simply too derivative of the first to form a truly great collection. More than fine, probably, in its original pulp magazine form, but it is very noticeable if you read the stories straight through. Better to savor them. The two collections give me a better appreciation of Robert E. Howard. Moore matches or even exceeds Howard in many ways (and that is very high praise from me), but Howard wrote an incredibly diverse body of stories, even just looking at the stories featuring a particular character.
The end of May marked the four year blogiversary of Every Day Should Be Tuesday, and today marks the one year blogiversary of Hillbilly Highways, both of which deserve posts of their own. May was my second-best month ever at Every Day Should Be Tuesday for views, buoyed by Game of Thrones recaps. It was a slow month at Hillbilly Highways (unsurprising since I missed a couple Music Monday posts), but Hillbilly Highways is still running 25% ahead of where Every Day Should Be Tuesday was at this point.
I paced myself in May, only publishing seventeen posts. I am proud of myself, though, for publishing seven reviews (admittedly, three were old reviews dusted off and polished up). My Game of Thrones recaps were so successful I had to split them out from the rest of my posts for my “top 5”. Views grew over the course of the season, but it is interesting to note there was a spike for episode 3 and episode 5. Over at Hillbilly Highways, SF reviews continue to perform best, which is unsurprising considering my existing SF audience.
I read and watched and posted on a lot of fantasy in May, but I am disappointed in myself for not actively participating in Wyrd & Wonder. I am still planning to embark on a reread of The Wheel of Time, but I feel like I need a palate cleanser after Game of Thrones. I am thinking I will finally crack open my copy of Malice by John Gwynne.
It was a hectic month, if one amenable to reading, because I spent the beginning of it traveling (expectedly) and the end of it traveling (unexpectedly). So instead of a baby pic you get a picture of my early morning and late evening reading view from my second trip.
I am back home, and I have limited internet access. I don’t have time to write a long, substantive post. But I do have a bag full of action figures from when I was a kid. I haven’t seen these in 20+ years. There are several I don’t recognize. But I am looking forward to harassing my wife by decorating the house with them.
Recognize any of the more esoteric figures? Any of these you owned?
The Savage Tales of Solomon Kane is my fifth of Del Rey’s eleven collected volumes of Robert E. Howard’s work. I introduced myself to Howard with the three volumes of Conan stories and then read the collection of his horror stories (my introduction to Solomon Kane was in that volume) before picking up this one. I am feeling pretty good about my reading order so far.
I have already written a fair amount about Solomon Kane stories (I wrote posts comparing “Skulls in the Stars” and “The Moon of Skulls” to other stories, and I wrote a post on “The Right Hand of Doom,” “Red Shadows,” and “Rattle of Bones”), so I will keep this brief. The bottom line: Solomon Kane is the better character than Conan, but Conan has stronger stories.