The Dusk Society set a… well, is it a new low? Because I’ve read some genuine shit in my time, and this book, while it was definitely bad, was mostly just dull and anti-dramatic. The villain continually thought up reasons not to kill his enemies, the photo-based art was ugly, and if there was an interesting way to get a plot point across, this book dodged it.
Sure, it’s supposed to be fore kids, so they didn’t want a lot of bloody murder, but you can’t call a villain worse than Satan if all he ever does is collect magic trinkets and tell his henches not to kill people.
The plot covers the recruitment of four modern teens into a monster-fighting society (they each have Speshul Powers Or Skills). I got bored with it less than halfway through, but my son read the whole thing, laughing all the way through.
Then you get to the end of the book, when the sexy teacher in the bad clothes who inducted the students into the Dusk Society offers a contract to the reader. Would YOU like to be a secret monster fighter???
The large size is easier to read. But here’s what the contract says:
I solemnly promise to serve The Dusk Society, with my life* if needed.
I understand that my life will at risk–everyday.
Signature of member
Notice that asterisk? What it refers to is handled in a caption, not even on the contract itself. It reads:
*UPON DEATH, ALL YOUR LIFE SAVINGS AND PROPERTY WILL BE SEIZED BY THE DUSK SOCIETY. WITHOUT NOTICE, THE DUSK SOCIETY MAY ALSO EXERCISE THE RIGHT TO ACQUIRE THE SAVINGS AND PROPERTY OF ANY SURVIVING RELATIVES.
That is one helluva clause, isn’t it? I’m tempted to make a joke about asking kids under 18 to sign contracts, or about the ways cults enrich themselves from their members, but in truth this sort of dopey story choice just makes me depressed.
By the way, that thing beside the couch is a cat.
personal: comics food games moi? publishing the wife wasting time words
by Harry Connolly
1) For folks who are still waiting for the Twenty Palace prequel, I have already self-published a number of short stories and novellas. None of them are in the 20P universe, but one is a historical fantasy set near Seattle in 1879, and the rest are second world fantasies. Some have never been published anywhere else: Kindle | Nook
2) Note for folks who visit that B&N page: I’m not the photographer, and I’ve never published scraped text through Hephaestus Books
3) Today is my tenth anniversary. The traditional gift is an ebook, right?
4) Last night we had our anniversary dinner. We ate steaks from Don and Joe’s, roast beets, green beans, and fingerling potatoes, a fancy cheese that I lost the label for and can’t ID right now, a delicious tiny lemon cheesecake from The Confectional, and a bottle of Beringer Cab from 1997 that we bought for our wedding. Thumbs up to all of it.
5) My son read a D&D comic and now wants to play the game. Do I have time to run a fantasy campaign? Shit to the no.
And The Beast’s hair, too. Here’s a picture of Hank McCoy, aka, The Beast:
Those are trunks, not underwear. You know, like wrestlers wear.
Here’s a picture of Hugh Jackman done up as Logan/Wolverine:
(I gotta get me one of those man-watches.)
Both of those guys have pointed hair on the sides of their heads, and as I’m developing a sort of “ape/monster” for the book I’m writing, I suddenly had to ask myself something unexpected: what sort of ears do these creatures have?
If they’re more primate-like, they’ll have round ears on the sides of their heads. If they stand up from the top of their heads, they’ll be more like a bear’s or a wolf’s. More human/less human.
And maybe this makes me an idiot for not realizing this before, but Wolverine’s and Beast’s hair are designed to let them have human ears while suggesting a non-human head shape.
Anyway, it’s something to think about (when I ought to be writing).
making books personal The outside world: beautiful comics i look bad internet man bites world moi? the auntie mame files the wife
by Harry Connolly
1. I have promised a thread for spoilery discussions of the Twenty Palaces books. I have not forgotten this promise.
2. Today is the day I travel around Seattle (by bus!) signing book stock in stores. Fun! Okay, not. Actually, it’ll be a good time to do some reading and thinking about item 3.
3. My agent got back to me with some notes about A Key, An Egg, An Unfortunate Remark. They seem very straightforward but will require a bit of fixing to address. Must turn on brain.
4. My agent has also shamed me into replacing my phone. Let us not speak of this further.
5. The Livestrong calorie counter is making me rethink my devotion to kielbasa and peanut butter.
6. Booster Gold is a terrific character.
7. My email inbox has been exploding for weeks. I’m not sure what to do about it, but I have to do something.
8. Last night was date night for my wife and me. Unfortunately, our sitter never showed (don’t know why) so we ended up cooking some quick, sorta-crappy food and then rushing out to Elliott Bay Marina to see “Cirque du Sail” a couple who travel around the world on their sailboat, with their kids, and pay their way by doing acrobatic shows in the rigging for donations. Last night was the final Seattle show but they’ll be in San Francisco in a few days. They’re very good. Check it out if you can.
9. One the way to the Marina last night, my wife turned to me and said “Thanks for coming to see this thing with me.” I said: “Hey, it’s Date Night! We just had bad food and now we’re going to see some unlikely entertainment. The only difference is that we’re dragging the boy behind us in a little red wagon.” Date night, everybody.
10. Time to get out of here and start signing. Have a great holiday weekend, Holiday Weekend People.
I read comics in the trade collections. Sure, that puts me months behind the main stories, but the truth is I don’t have the money to spend on them, and I’m only casually interested in the storylines. There are very few comics I genuinely care about, far fewer than I read.
Anyway, one of the comics I’ve been half-following is SECRET WARRIORS, which is a sort of spy/superhero mashup, with a pack of unknown superpowered non-heroes as the operatives and Nick Fury running it all.
It’s fun, it’s shaggy in a pleasing way, and unlike some comics the story isn’t an incomprehensible mess. It also has a hero named Druid, who I liked because he has pseudo-magical powers and because he’s a fat guy.
It’s pretty rare to see a fat hero in comics. I’m not going into the history of it, but when Blue Beetle fell into a depression and put on a bunch of weight, all he needed to do was beat up an obnoxious guy and snap out of it. Easy, right?
Well, Druid was a powerful character who didn’t have full control of his powers (magic!) and who was a little insecure because he made mistakes. See, I like him even more. Then, at the end of the previous trade, Nick Fury kicked him off the team.
In the trade I read over the weekend, we pick up his story: he’s gotten the boot, goes home, sits in a chair and is all “Now what?” Then he goes home and finds one of Fury’s agents waiting for him (a guy who’s a human head on a robot body, but never mind). Fury’s buddy is one of those grizzled old commanders who doesn’t take any nonsense, and he quickly informs Druid that with spies and Nick Fury, there is no “out.” The agent sits Druid down with a stack of papers and tells him to fill out the test, it’s the same one he’s been giving to his raw recruits for decades. Then this happens: (I’ll put in a cut for the scan) more »
There’s a new Conan movie coming out on August 19TH!
Yes, I know it will be terrible. Yes, I’m going to see it anyway. Yes, I will have a 20-sider in my pocket when I do this. Part of my Fathers’ Day present was that I could see this movie in the theaters without the family.
Made with Comic Life.
I don’t plan to be around much today. I have to brainstorm the New Thing and do some reading. Try not to be too interesting while I’m gone.