Book Reviews: Gilsdorf, Gaiman, Tobe

(I’ve decided to get caught up on my book reviews, so here’s the first of many. We might end up with multiple posts a day, who knows, but I’ll try to keep from flooding you.)

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Fantasy Freaks and Gaming Geeks: An Epic Quest for Reality Among Role Players, Online Gamers, and Other Dwellers of Imaginary RealmsFantasy Freaks and Gaming Geeks: An Epic Quest for Reality Among Role Players, Online Gamers, and Other Dwellers of Imaginary Realms by Ethan Gilsdorf

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I started reading this book with all the enthusiasm of a little kid on a shopping spree in a candy store. Literally. I devoured the first several chapters, and it accompanied me everywhere – to class, to the meeting of the Role Players Guild (of which I’m president), to the ER when the stomach flu hit me with all of the fury of Deathwing.

Then there was a point where it lost me, long before I actually gave up halfway through the chapter about World of Warcraft. As Gilsdorf’s experiences with geekdom intensify and quantify, his recollections of them become less personal, and more like a report or a magazine article. There was plenty of magic in the first chapter, with him talking about his mother and how D&D got him through high school… but by the time I gave up on his journey, he was still trying to convince his readers (and himself, apparently) 2/3 into the book, that being a geek is okay. Gilsdorf either did not have the foresight or the understanding that his audience would be comprised mostly of people who were already aware of that fact. There is no stigma on it the way there was when he was a child, but he can’t seem to let go of that, and his storytelling suffers for it.

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Dream CountryDream Country by Neil Gaiman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Neil Gaiman is possibly my first love among novelists, and the Sandman series was my first love among graphic novels. This is the third volume, following Preludes & Nocturnes and The Doll’s House.

This third volume, honestly, did not strike me as effectively as the first two did. A compilation of smaller story arcs, instead of one large one like in the other two, it took some getting used to on my part. While the stories were still very well-written, somehow they did not quite seem to match up with what I had read before.

Nonetheless, it is sitting proudly on my bookshelf next to the other copies, waiting to be followed by the other volumes in the series.

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With the Light... Vol. 1: Raising an Autistic Child With the Light… Vol. 1: Raising an Autistic Child by Keiko Tobe

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The last manga to make me cry was (and I’m a bit ashamed to admit this) Absolute Boyfriend, Vol. 1. However, in a completely different way, With the Light… had me in tears on multiple occasions. The story of how the mother of an autistic child and the child himself progress and grow despite his autism was far more touching and enthralling than I had expected. It’s a lovely story worth anyone’s time, even if you don’t have any interaction with children or people with autism in your own life.

I will very much be pilfering the other books following this one from the gal who lent it to me.

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About Kayla Rose

Leave me alone, let me drink my tea and write my snark.

Posted on December 17, 2011, in Book Reviews and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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