Sunday, April 30, 2006

Do what you know

For whatever reason, the bold ambition that started this blog off has flagged.

So, for the time being at least, instead of writing about what I _want_ to read, I'm going to write a little about what I _am_ reading. I leave the analysis of that to the armchair psychologists.

Just now, I'm reading "The Men of Tomorrow" by Gerard Jones. This is a well-researched examination of the birth of comic books, and of Superman in particular. By now some of the people I know are probably thinking "ah, Bob's comic book geekery" and clicked on to the next thing on their surf list.

Which is too bad, because Gerard Jones tells a fascinating true story of Jews in America, of New York crime, of fads in entertainment and politics. And yes, it's all about comic books. What's more, it's a true story about
a couple of kids with big escapist dreams who nearly achieved them, but then had them stolen away, through a mixture of greed and insecurity and callousness (of others and sometimes, of their own). AND much more than that, it is that rare true story of the beaten-down men those kids became, who eventually actually bounced back and got the recognition and admiration they deserved, and died vindicated and happy.

Being unfortunately somewhat closer in age to "beaten-down man" than "kid with big escapist dreams", the notion of being vindicated and happy at last, rather than resentful of the crazy dreams of youth that came and went, is a powerful one for me.

Click here to return to Gnomicon home page