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Bloody Shambles

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Pale Fire: A Poem in Four Cantos by John Shade
Vladimir Nabokov, Brian Boyd
Pale Fire
Vladimir Nabokov
Lords of Chaos: The Bloody Rise of the Satanic Metal Underground New Edition
Michael Moynihan, Didrik Søderlind
Under Stones
Bob Franklin
The Erotic Potential of My Wife
David Foenkinos, Yasmine Gaspard
A Corner of White
Jaclyn Moriarty
Winter's Bone
Daniel Woodrell
Progress: 99 %
Fragile Things: Short Fictions and Wonders
Neil Gaiman
The Beetle
Richard Marsh
Wreck This Journal
Keri Smith
We3 - Grant Morrison, Frank Quitely WOW. This is just awe inspiring! I have tried (and failed) several times to enjoy graphic novels, but never been able to connect with the characters. While I often enjoy the art, it seems like just that - art that I would hang on my wall, but still something flat and two-dimensional. This graphic novel turns all that on its head.My biggest weak spot is abused animals. So when I saw these three pets, who have lost their homes, been kidnapped and had their brains and bodies wired into mechanised suits, I automatically teared up. There's the emotional connection right from the very start. And then they start talking, and my heart breaks. Not only that, but there was this wonderfully designed four-dimensional art that leaped off the page. This is not wall art. It expresses time, motion, and the animal perspectives of sensory input: smell, heat, time perception. I didn't know if other graphic novels had used these techniques, but either way I was hooked. As it turns out, the techniques here are unique, and even based on a fair degree of research into animal behaviour, biology and perception. To top it all off, there are some hugely gory, forensically detailed images here that just blew my mind. They're all set inside super cool action scenes that really give you a strong sense of utter carnage, as well as fluid movements. It is absolutely worthwhile getting the Deluxe Edition that explains so well the ideas behind the images. This passage by Grant Morrison explains it perfectly: "We chose to treat the page not as a flat 2D surface upon which panels were "pasted" down flat, but as a virtual 3D space in which panels could be "hung" and "rotated" or stacked one on top of the other. According to scientists, small animals experience time more slowly, and we liked the idea of extending the gutters around the panels to suggest the immense amounts of still "zen" time a cat might pass through between the micro-seconds of human awareness." The way Frank Quitely went about drawing and designing the layouts deserves special mention here too. His story about the cardboard box full of panels, which he could place in layers and pop-ups and fan out like cards - hell, even play cards with, is just genius. The storyline is very simplistic, which was intentional to allow for more playing around with the 4D pop-up style graphics. That said, I, along with many readers, would have preferred a bit more backstory and detail. The ending seemed a little simplistic and rushed, and left out some key details around how..... certain things worked out. I won't ruin this for anyone with spoilers. It seems a fairly small price to pay, however.At the end of the day, I will always remember this book. Plus it made me cry and laugh out loud - often on the same page! For this, and for showing me what comics can do that books and films can't, I have to give this 5 stars.