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Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim

When my coworker lent me David Sedaris’ Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, I had no idea what to expect; I had never read any of Sedaris’ work. I knew his sister Amy from Strangers with Candy, a TV show I thought was okay. I then had numerous coworker comment on the book as it sat on my desk for a month as it waited for me to finish reading Please Kill Me. Their words for the book were always complimentary, and not necessarily complimentary for this specific book, but rather Sedaris’ work in general. I didn’t know that this was a series of short stories when I began… Read More »Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim

Please Kill Me

Some months back, the Blogger Brunchers were having a Yankee Swap, and with much cunning and skill, I was able to secure myself the copy of Legs McNeil’s Please Kill Me, which is subtitled “the uncensored oral history of punk.” A better subtitle, I cannot fathom. This book tells the story of New York’s punk rock scene with no holds barred. From the early days of the Velvet Underground, Nico, and Andy Warhol’s Factory, as told by those who were there, including the band members themselves. The stories are of sex, drugs, and rock and roll. Crude, hilarious, disgusting, and entertaining. I think as this is far from my life, or… Read More »Please Kill Me

Barney’s Version

Barney’s Version tells the tale of Barney Panofsky, a Montreal Jew who has married three times, and who was thought to have murdered once. The book is split into three parts “Clara,” “The Second Mrs. Panofsky,” and “Miriam.” Each named after one of his wives. An old man, Pankofsky tells his life story with a lot of memory gaps1, he also tells it without much narrative flow, jumping from the present to the past without much thought. This doesn’t make it an easy read, but it’s an interesting read. The reader isn’t sure about Pankofsky’s honestly, or clarity as he tells his own life story, and adding to that confusion… Read More »Barney’s Version

Cassettes and Paper

I’m reading zines of old. I came across some zines that were sent to me by a couple of women who played an important part of my teenage years. Nothing like that! You see, back in the ’90s I found for the first time in my life “modern music” which I enjoyed. Before that I was listening exclusively to music of the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s, a lot of which I still love and listen to, but I found a band who were contemporary that got me going. Through that band I met many great people, and I still continue to meet people because of them. Back in the the… Read More »Cassettes and Paper

I Never Liked You by Chester Brown

After having read Chester Brown’s fabulous biography of Louis Riel, I thought I should read more of his work. My choices at the Toronto Public Library was limited to his autobiographical I Never Liked You. The book is about growing up in the suburbs, bullied, unsure of yourself and how to approach women. I read this book on a beach on Toronto Island on a sunny Saturday, and I finished the book too quickly. Brown’s adolescence is dramatized and draws the reader in, as he gets bullied, deals with issues around love, whether familial love or romantic love. Brown faces the horrors of his mother’s mental health issues, and his… Read More »I Never Liked You by Chester Brown

One Bloody Thing After Another

Joey Comeau’s follow up to Overqualified is One Bloody Thing After Another. The previous was the tale of a man’s loss of his brother, as told through cover letters, while One Bloody Thing After Another is a comedy-horror. Jackie is a teenager in high school. Her mother died, and she’s been haunted since. She wants to ask out her best friend Ann. Ann’s mother is transforming into a beast, and has been refusing food, unless it was still living. Then there’s Charlie, who along with his dog Mitchie are being haunted by a headless ghost who seems to leave a lot of blood in her wake. While it’s a horror… Read More »One Bloody Thing After Another

Jews in America: A Cartoon History

I was at the Pape/Danforth Library, browsing the graphic novel section for any works by Chester Brown1, I didn’t find any, but I did find this book, Jews In America. As a Jew in (North) America, I figured much of my people’s history will be in here. Sure I knew not to expect stories of riots in Christie Pits, or the tales of Montreal Jews, but I knew there would be some connections. Well, the author, David Gantz, unfortunately doesn’t really tell much of a story. His book is so disjointed that he doesn’t get across any interesting stories, he just briefly glosses over the horrors and success that Jews… Read More »Jews in America: A Cartoon History

Louis Riel by Chester Brown

I’ve been wanting to read this book since I first found out it had been written, which was quite some time ago. I had been meaning to borrow it from my employer’s library, but never got around to it. Then I saw it in my sister’s old bedroom1 on her bookshelf. I borrowed it and read it in two days. You might be wondering “who is Louis Riel” and why should I care about him. So let’s get some facts. Basic info Louis Riel was a Métis, educated in Montréal, who returned to his home, the Red River settlement in what was then known as Rupert’s Land. The Métis are… Read More »Louis Riel by Chester Brown

Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

When I heard that Edgar Wright was directing a film based on the Scott Pilgrim series of graphic novels, I was stoked. I wouldn’t let the cynicism of a certain Pilgrim fan-girl bring me down, and I’d hope for the best. I was wrong. I was completely and totally wrong. I expected this film to be amazing, and it went well above and beyond any expectations I had. The Story A young man named Scott Pilgrim meets a foreign girl named Ramona Flowers who recently moved to his city, he falls for her, but to win her, he must defeat her seven evil-exes. That’s pretty much the story in a… Read More »Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

I’ve liked you for a thousand years…

Scott Pilgrim saw a woman in the Wychwood Library and he fell in love. The woman was Ramona Flowers, an American who had recently moved to Toronto. She was working for Amazon, as a delivery girl, and Scott used this knowledge to get her to him, and get her to go out with him. Shortly after their relationship starts, Scott learns he must defeat her seven evil exes if he wants to keep her. Books one through five chronicle his journey in defeating the first six of her evil-exes1 In Scott Pilgrim’s Finest Hour, Pilgrim faces the final evil ex, Gideon. For those who are unfamiliar with the series, it’s… Read More »I’ve liked you for a thousand years…