Welcome back, readers! There are seven more tally marks scratched into the inside of the front door, and that means it must be time for Weekend Reading 8.
Every week, the Beat staff checks in with their reading plans for the weekend – and we want to know what you’re reading, too! Please let us know in the comments.
AVERY KAPLAN: This weekend, I’m finally getting to read a comic that has been on my radar for a very long time: Bingo Love by Tee Franklin, Jenn St-Onge, Joy San, and Cardinal Rae. As far as prose goes, I got ahold of Parable of the Talents by Octavia E. Butler, so I’m excited to read the follow-up to one of my favorite science fiction novels in a long time!
JOSH HILGENBERG: Lately, I’ve been looking at my bookshelf, trying to figure out what’s gone unread for far too long and no good reason. When I started reading Jeff Lemire, I picked up Essex County, but since then all it’s done is prop up Where the Sidewalk Ends. Maybe I was too distracted by Black Hammer at the time. Anyway, it’s been far too long since I’ve dug into any of his solo stuff, so I’m looking forward to diving back in.
TAIMUR DAR: Last year my friend loaned me his copy of Brighter Than You Think, a collection of ten short comics by Alan Moore. I meant to return it to him before the current pandemic but didn’t get a chance. Figured it’s a great time to re-read some of these Alan Moore gems with accompanying essays. My personal favorites have to be “In Pictopia” and “Love Doesn’t Last Forever,” though the latter science-fiction tale isn’t the most uplifting thing to read during quarantine.
AJ FROST: So excited for the weekend because I’m going to sit down to read (finally!) the collected edition of Superman Smashes the Klan (DC) by Gene Luen Yang & Gurihiru. Gene has already written one of my favorite comics of the year so far, Dragon Hoops, but Superman Smashes… is a complete 180 in terms of content. Gene is just one of those writers who can elevate anything to something truly transcendent. As I said, I’m really excited. Also on the shelf this week is the latest trade paperback volume of The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl by Ryan North and Derek Charm. This volume includes issue #50, making it the last of the current run. It’s been such a fun ride to hang with Doreen Green and friends, so I know this book will be bittersweet.
ARPAD OKAY: This weekend it’s the Conundrum Press show book for the Art Gallery of Hamilton’s 2019-2020 exhibition, This is Serious: Canadian Indie Comics. The character of the Canadian scene (social upheaval through melancholy fantasy?) is collected here as four dozen artists given two pages each, bookended by critical essays. Drawn and Quarterly artists who shaped me, like Julie Doucet, Michel Rabagliati, and Geneviève Castrée, beside modern masters I love like Aminder Dhaliwal, Julie Delporte, Kate Beaton, Jillian Tamaki, Hartley Lin, Connor Williumsen, and these are just some of the names I know. Shout out to Chicago Comics’ social media and mail-order for keeping the excitement of new comic books coming out alive for me during this rough period we’re all in together.
RICARDO SERRANO: I got a book via mail that I’d forgotten I even ordered, Castlevania: Curse of Darkness by Kou Sasakura. It was an impulse buy inspired my binge watch of Warren Ellis’ Castlevania anime on Netlfix, one of the best series on the streaming service by far. The manga itself is based on a Playstation 2 game of the same name and it centers on a boy that’ll play a pivotal role in Dracula’s war against humanity. I’ve been having a good time reading comic book and manga expansions of video game universes as of late, with the Resident Evil mangas and the Assassin’s Creed comics being among the most fun. Fingers crossed on this one continuing the trend.