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I have only finished two books since my last Book Bag post and one of them was a comic. But the other was the hefty tomb of Joss Whedon: Geek King of the Universe, but let’s get the comic out of the way first…

Fables Vol 8: Wolves by  Mark Buckingham (Artist), Shawn McManus (Artist), Bill Willingham  (Author)

I love the Fables series! I treat each volume as a special treat, I only ever pick them up from physical comic book shops rather than buy them online and I force myself to read them slowly; lingering over the art and stopping at the end of segments so that I don’t read it all in one go.

Be warned: spoilers aplenty!

In this story we finally catch up with Bigby who I missed whilst he skulked off for the last couple of books, understandably so after circumstances forced him to be separated from his children and Snow. But Bigby is back and we actually got an exceedingly happy section where Bigby and Snow reunite, get married and have a beautiful house built in the middle of a woodland valley to raise their six (seven) children in!

Happy ever after might be a bit much to hope for but a Very-Happy-for-Right-Now feels pretty good too!

On top of that soppy love stuff I enjoyed Cinderella’s work as an ambassador to the giants of Cloud Cuckoo Land which involved some minor and gross ear surgery! There is a sentence I never thought I would type!

Joss Whedon: Geek King of the Universe- A Biography by Amy Pascale

Ejoss

OK, I have been going on and on about this book since I got it for my Birthday in October. I think this has been my favourite book this year. It just sucked me in.

I have been a casual fan of Joss since I was an avid fan of Buffy. I never got into Angel but I love Firefly, Cabin in the Woods and of course; The Avengers Assemble.

Like many others I love him for his wit, his storytelling wizardry (Hush, Out of Gas) and his female characters who are hard to think of as characters because my head thinks they are real life people who are out in the world fighting vampires and smuggling goods across the verse.

The book tells the story about how each of Joss’ creations came to be and what the process was like for the people who worked on them. It follows Joss’ life from childhood up to the premiere of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D (interestingly enough it looks like Joss only wrote the pilot of SHIELD and not the other episodes, and with as much love in the world, you can really tell when you watch the show)

What made the book interesting to me was to learn about the projects Joss has worked on that either never got produced or for which he never received much credit. There is a lot of stories about failure, about frustration, about ideas losing their life in negotiation and about the rare occurrences such set backs are overcome by innovation and by finding the right people to call to your side. It’s an uplifting read.

It was fascinating to read about the creative process of writing for TV and Film and how writers collaborate and edit each other’s work.  There is an idea that creative people are very precious and defensive about their work, so it is strange to read how everyday it is for writers to submit their ideas and have them either rejected or amended by others without stropping and throwing tantrums.

I don’t think everyone would like this book equally, you have to have more than a passing interest in Joss, but for those of a geeky persuasion this biography is a delightful look at the man behind the curtain who turns out to be as impressive as the characters he projects…although admittedly he has less superpowers…

Once I finished the book I wasn’t ready for it to be over, so I started watching Dollhouse season one. For some reason I was never interested in this the first time round, what a fool I was! I’m eight episodes in now and I am well and truly falling down another rabbit-hole of fandom!

 

 

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