"The driver said he was lookin' straight ahead"

So: four down, five to go from the original list. I've not wasted any time and ploughed directly into...Mario Puzo! And what else could I read but The Godfather? I only started two days ago, and I'm already 160 pages in. Just as well - this baby clocks in at 500 pages, though the type is a lot bigger than in Niagara. Here's hoping book six is a bit shorter so I've time to catch my breath.

I've allowed myself some ice-cream reading in the form of some comics. I borrowed four from the library a week or two ago, and purposefully selecting one DC title, one Marvel, one Dark Horse and one independent. I've already polished off Lucifer - Children and Monsters and She-Hulk - Laws of Attraction. The latter was pretty good, though the promise shown in the premise - a superhero with the supernatural charms is accused of rape - is quickly thrown away to focus on an almost soap operatic love "triangle". (The third person in the triangle is rarely present and very ineffective, so it's very much an isosceles love triangle.) It's got better ideas than a lot of Marvel stuff, and intersects with some interesting moments from early in the Civil War storyline (short short version: government decrees superheroes must be registered, superheroes fight over whether they should play along).

Lucifer, though, well...it's damnably good. (Sorry.) As with many comics, it's taken me a long time to get from volume one to volume two of the trade paperback collections, and that's mainly because my local library branch only had volume one. Children and Monsters begins as Lucifer has secured a dimensional gateway, which he uses to further his schemes, first by reclaiming his lost wings. While he is off preparing schemes, various forces both "good" and "evil" try to claim the gate as their own. It's a mature, sophisticated work, literate and intelligent, but above all it's good storytelling full of good ideas and well-constructed narrative. I'm keen to read the rest of Lucifer; it may be sacrilege (sorry again), but I think I prefer it to its parent work, Sandman. And I do like Sandman. I'll have to look up more of Mike Carey's work, though I don't think I'll bother with the Marvel stuff I see he's been doing of late.

Well, back to the reading, though I must mention that my beloved has been into some interesting stuff of late, too. We watched Quills last night, inspired her recent foray into the Marquis de Sade's Philosophy in the Boudoir. From the parts she related to me he seems heavy-handed in his philosophy as well as his pornography, though the pornography seems better thought out. The Marquis, it seems, was a social Darwinist of the worst sort, and married that with elements of Crowley's "Do what thou wilt", but interpreted both in ways that seem to favour the sexual satiation of men over women. Fascinating, but terrible.

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