Wednesday, January 21, 2009

New Slew Review

In this past week I've got a slew of new books, some from Amazon, some from Hastings, some from Half Price, and some from Bargain Books. Here follows a list with short comments on each. Books in BOLD are hardback, those in italics are softcovers.

The Horror Stories of Robert E. Howard, Robert E. Howard
Boxing Stories, by Robert E Howard
More in my efforts to own the complete works of Texas' authentic Fantasy original.

The Solitudes, by John Crowley
Volume I in The Aegypt Cycle, originally titled Aegypt, now edited and issued with the other three volumes in a uniform format.

The Knights of the Cornerstone, by James P. Blaylock
A good read, but seems to me to be almost a Tim Powers story as written by Blaylock. Modern Templars try to protect their secrets from greedy interlopers.

Boxen, by C. S. Lewis and W. H. Lewis
A new issue of the Boxen stories, with added material not in the original Boxen. Excellent color reproductions of the schoolboy pictures by the Lewis brothers.

Kwaidan, by Lafcadio Hearn
Japanese ghost stories written by the American expatriate and illustrated with traditional-style Japanese woodblocks. I have some of the stories anthologized in other volumes; this is the book itself.

In The Suicide Mountains, by John Gardner
The tale of Chudu the Goat's Son, Armida the beautiful but enormously strong blacksmith's daughter, and Prince Chistopher the Sullen, who all want to destroy themselves, and why they don't.

Christ the Lord: The Road To Cana, by Anne Rice
The story of how the Vampire Queen Rice returned to Catholicism is one of the unexpected turn-ups in the land of literature. This is Volume II in her series on the life of Jesus.

Collected Short Stories, by Robert Graves
Stories by the "mad Irishman with a bee in his bonnet" about myths, who wrote the I, Claudius books.

The Magician's Book, by Laura Miller
Subtitled, "A Skeptic's Adventures in Narnia", this is a genial look at the Narnia phenomenon from a non-Christian's viewpoint, and she finds much to admire. An evenly balanced assessment and a fresh angle on the books.

Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them, by "Newt Scamander"
Quidditch Throught The Ages, by "Kennilworthy Whisp"
Two slim volumes by J. K. Rowling, faux books from the Harry Potter world. I've come to a sort of peace with Harry Potter now that the main phenomenon has settled down.

The Sandman: Book of Dreams
Book of short stories in The Sandman mythos, edited by Neil Gaiman and Ed Kramer.

Merlin: Shaman, Prophet, Magician, by John Matthews
Profusely illustrated look at the cultural phenomenon of Merlin and his image. I once started a xeroxed collection containing many of the images contained in this book; it's gratifying seeing someone carry this to its' conclusion.

English Myths and Legends, by Henry Bett.
Old Lore galore.

The Secret Commonwealth of Elves, Fauns and Fairies, by Thomas Kirk
Classic monograph from the 17th Century; the author was said to himself been taken by the fairies at the end of his life.

Chaucer, by Peter Ackroyd
Albion: The Origins of the English Imagination, by Peter Ackroyd
Ackroyd is a wonderful author, but his factual biographies and histories read better than his novels.

The Ode Less Travelled, by Stephen Fry
A book on appreciating and writing poetry by the man perhaps best remembered for portraying the mad Lord Melchett. His factual books also read much better than his novels, for some reason.

Fabulous Feasts, by Madeleine Pelner Cosman
Medieval Cookery and ceremony, with many recipes for cooking authentic dishes from the Middle Ages. Contains the recipe for Hippocras, which some readers of this blog may remember. I've wanted a copy of this book since high school.

1 comment:

Babel said...

What a "gory spread!"