Microviews Vol. 22: Grandma Goes To War With Peter Jackson

on Thursday, February 7, 2013
The Twelve Tribes of Hattie by Ayana Mathis
Mathis swings like an experimental jazz cat in this collection of interlinked stories about one African American family in the midst (and wake) of the Great Migration. Sometimes smooth and quiet, other times explosive and angry, Twelve Tribes might not be worthy of quite so much hype (thanks a lot Oprah) but it's still one pretty damn fine debut!
3.5 out of 5 Charlie Parkers

The Amber Amulet by Craig Silvey
A very cute novella in the vein of The Curious Incident Of The Dog in The Nighttime or All My Friends Are Superheroes. Filled throughout with gorgeous artwork that is as much part of the story as the text it accompanies, you will quickly forgive the slightly derivative nature of Silvey's tale and give in to its raw charm.
4 out of 5 Petrified Spiders

The Panda Theory by Pascal Garnier
It's simple. Man enters town. Man befriends locals. Man explodes in an orgy of violence so unexpected that the reader will be left scratching their head and rubbing their bellies at the same time. Garnier is a fantastic find for 2013, but if you can make sense of the last twenty pages, you're a better person than me.
3.5 out of 5 Carnie Prizes

How's The Pain? by Pascal Garnier
Simon, an ageing assassin, befriends young Bernard then convinces the kid to drive him cross country so that he can fulfil his final mission. Along the way they acquire some unexpected companions, dabble clumsily in affairs of the heart and fill a couple of folk with lead. A dark but ultimately warm-hearted crime thriller.
4 out of 5 Rose Thorns

The Stand by Steven King
Allow me to distill this monster epic to its essence. A moderately scary guy picked up from the cutting room floor of a Cormac McCarthy novel goes to war with my great great grandmother in an America ravaged by a killer flu. Cue Armageddon Americana. The end. Widely considered King's greatest work, The Stand is reasonably engaging but about 800 pages too long. I'm surprised Peter Jackson has resisted making it into a trilogy.
3 out of 5 Infected Tissues


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