Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Dust Cover Dust-Up 2013 - Round One, Part Seven

How To Tell If Your Cat Is Plotting to Kill You vs. Among Others

          Winner: Among Others

In this battle, a book of webcomics of which I found the first funny and the rest merely amusing goes up against the Hugo- and Nebula-winning Among Others. To be fair, Among Others did not set my world on fire, but it was quite fun. I loved all the references to books I'd loved growing up, and she captures this borderland between fantasy and reality very well. Sorry, Cat Plotting to Kill You. My cats may be doing so, but their antics are more amusing than the comic.

The Age of Miracles vs. Bleak House

          Winner: Bleak House

Bleak House! Bleak House! Bleak House! Perhaps not my favourite Dickens, but this one still brings The Age of Miracles to the mat handily.  The book battle starts off a little shaky, but The Age of Miracles lack of good science and addition of unnecessary hyperbole just can't stand up against the steamroller that is 19th century jurisprudence.

Hitty, Her First Hundred Years vs. Ensign Flandry

          Winner: Ensign Flandry

An evenly matched pair! Neither are at the top of their respective weight classes, neither are amazing, both are amusing. It's the battle of the books I feel unemotional about! Hitty feints to the left, with her charming story for children about a doll in Maine, and lands some good punches on my personal attachment to that state, but Ensign Flandry, in the end, wears her down with some solid but uninspiring science fiction.

The Breast vs. Half-Blood Blues

          Winner: Half-Blood Blues

Oh god, Half-Blood Blues takes this in a walkover. I never did understand the point of The Breast, in which a university professor turns into a breast. It's got nothing to say about gender, oddly, and I read this slim volume with absolute bafflement. If it's above my head, I'm happy to say that Half-Blood Blues is a beautifully written book about jazz in Nazi Germany and Occupied Paris that I would be happy to see win out over many things, but particularly in this case.

I Am Legend vs. Bonk

          Winner: I Am Legend

I liked Bonk a lot - who isn't going to enjoy reading about sex? But it just can't compare to the punch of I Am Legend, which aims to leave you in the dust with its closing paragraph, which reframes everything that came before and makes it far creepier. And it was pretty creepy to begin with. I read it for the first time knowing the twist ending, and that made it even more horrifying, as far as I'm concerned.

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