Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Examples Of New Classic Books You May Consider This Season

By Leticia Jensen

People have read books many times as a source of entertainment. However, only those publications with stories that transcend time, human experiences and culture can stand out as true classics. Another great quality about such work is their plot, emotional connection, character and conflict. Authors just know how to come up with great setting for their work to outdo others in the market. Even old good reads can fit the new classic books category due to their timelessness.

Any enthusiastic reader would want to learn about several of these classic reads. The list is long, with some published many years in the past. An adult will find various interesting reads in the book stores today.

A great one is the novel, The Poisonwood Bible, written by Barbara Kingslover. Its setting is in Belgian Congo in the year 1959. In this piece, Nathan Price is on a mission to snatch uncivilized souls in this country, Congo, from eternal fire. Accompanied by his four young daughters and wife, his efforts are frustrated as the country witness tragic political fallout with Belgium. The fiery Baptism missionary and family is trapped in this bloody fallout.

Three highly acclaimed classics are collections of short stories. These include Birds of America by Lorrie Moore, Selected Stories by Alice Munro and Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri. One can hardly talk about classic reads without mentioning such.

Another great read is Life of Pi, written by Yann Martel. In this piece, sixteen-year-old Pi Patel boards a Japanese cargo ship to start a new life with his family in North America. Leaving India, his father is a zoo-keeper and comes aboard with the animals. Pi comes out as widely knowledgeable about animal behavior and with insatiable appetite for stories. Incidentally, tragedy occurs and the ship sinks and Pi finds himself in life-saving boat with wild animals only as fellow passengers. These include an injured zebra, a hyena, Bengal tiger by the name Parker who weighs 450 pounds and an orangutan.

Having wide knowledge on animal behaviour, Pi uses this to escape death from Parker. For about 230 days, he is to co-exist with tiger at the sea. Parker disappears to the jungle once they reach the coast of Mexico. What follows is an interrogation by Japanese authorities to find out how Pi survived, but they hardly believe his story. This makes him come up with another believable story, which readers are left to determine whether it is real or not.

Young adults have numerous choices too. Good examples are The Chronicles of Narnia, The Giver, A wrinkle in Time and To Kill a Mockingbird among others. Some of these are long-time classics but can qualify as new because of their timelessness. Recent releases like The Book Thief, Harry Potter and The Hunger Games series make this list.

Since there are various classics one can explore, it is impossible to lack entertaining reads, whether you are young or old. You could begin by checking local book stores to find out what they have. At the same time, the internet provides a great shopping option with possibility of finding both hard and soft copy forms of such good reads.

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Science Fiction Comic Book Authors

By Marissa Velazquez

The fist ever comic strip in the sci-fi genre was Mr Skygack from Mars, which was written by AD Condo and could be seen in the newspapers in the 1900s. Mr Skygack from Mars was a comedy, and the first non-humerous sci-fi comic strip was Buck Rodgers in 1928. Shortly after this Flash Gordon appeared followed by Dan Dare from the UK. Sci-fi comic books have become increasingly sophisticated ever since and the science fiction comic book authors have produced more and more imaginative concepts.

Many of the first comics were sci-fi, and the introduction of Superman from Planet Comics gave rise to the super hero sub-genre. During the 1950s, EC Comics published science fiction comics to great success. The storylines and characters began to increase in sophistication, and US sci-fi comics continued into the 1960s with stories for both children and adolescents. By the late 1960s, adults became interested in the genre and began a wave of underground comics.

The Japanese Manga comics originated in the 1950s and the first Manga sci-fi comic strip was Astro Boy by Osamu Tezuka. Since then Manga has become very popular all over the world. Not all Manga comics are sci-fi but the most well known, such as Ghost in the Shell and Akira are of the sci-fi genre.

The first sci-fi graphic novels appeared in the 1960s. A graphic novel is essentially a story that uses pictures instead of words, this is very useful in the sci-fi genre as pictures can portray aspects of a storyline that would be difficult in words. Most sci-fi graphic novels include, robots, virtual reality, mecha and time travel. Graphic novels have become more and more sophisticated in artistry and storyline, and many are aimed more towards adolescents and adults as they contain complex themes and ideas.

In America the majority of sci-fi comics tend to be in the superhero sub-genre. Marvel and DC comics have been extremely successful with their Superman, Spiderman, Thor, Avengers and Incredible Hulk superhero comics. The superhero comics contain many elements of sci-fi, although most of the storylines are set in the present day on earth.

Manga comics from Japan tend to be set in a futuristic setting. The famous sci-fi Manga comics include, Akira that was the inspiration behind The Matrix films and Ghost in the shell is set in a futuristic dystopia.

A common trend in sci-fi comics is to capture the zeitgeist of the time, especially with new technology and scientific discoveries. Many modern sci-fi comics and graphic novels use computer generated imagery for the artwork, and utilise software, such as photoshop, illustrator, coral and paintbucket. However, the classic sci-fi comics and graphic novels were drawn and inked by hand by an artist that works closely with the author.

Sci-fi is a very loose term and there are many sub-genres. Many science fiction comic book authors have brought in new concepts, such as the cyberpunk idea in the graphic novel, Transmetropolitan by Warren Ellis. Warren Ellis and other comic book authors use the medium to make a social commentary. Alan Moore's V for Vendetta is a classic example of this sci-fi sub-genre that makes a social statement set in a dystopian future.

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