Monday, August 10, 2009

Finally! I've Read Some Books

Life is busy as can be of late. I've spent the summer studying the stars and the nature of human existence respectively (via an astronomy and philosophy course). Once my summer semester was over it was time to hit the books. I can't recall the last time I went so long without reading a book. So I read two over my first weekend off since May.

Anything superheroish is going to appeal to me, I picked up The Last Days of Krypton during my trip to the beach earlier this year when it was for sale for $6 at Books a Million. I read the first half at the beach and then just ran out of time.

The fact that I was able to put the book down like that is a testament of how underwhelmed I was when I started reading. I don't think I've read any of Mr. Anderson's novels before, and I've wanted to for a while - as I mentioned before, my love of anything affiliated with superheros, my obvious fascination with sci-fi... how could this go wrong?

I think the real mistake was trying to shoehorn every darn piece of superman lore ever written into the book. 70 some-odd years of history has made the destruction of Krypton a bit of a narrative mess. As the preface states, at one time or another it exploded, its sun went nova or it was destroyed by Brainiac. Kandor gets shrunk and stuffed into a bottle, Argo city gets shot into space. Then we got Zod and the phantom zone.

In the end, this book appears to be a rather noble effort to take a series of random stories about Krypton and weave them into a somewhat coherent whole. I applaud his effort, but it just didn't work. I finished it out of curiosity, partly because I was just unwilling to quit. I think I'll wait before I read another Kevin J. Anderson book. There are only so many chances a writer gets to make a first impression, this one could have been better. Thankfully for me... I hit gold with the next book I read.

I'll post my second review soon!

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