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Category Archives: Books

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Tasty by John McQuaid

Liver, blue cheese, candy, chili peppers. Some people like these foods, others loathe them. But why? How is it that some humans love sweets but hate hot stuff? How can some beer drinkers go crazy for hops while others prefer nothing but sweet, malty stouts? The secret goes beyond our tongues to our very DNA. Tasty by John McQuaid (Amazon, iBooks, IndieBound, Powell’s) explores […]

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Women In Clothes by Sheila Heti, Heidi Julavits and Leanne Shapton & It’s So You edited by Michelle Tea

No matter what we wear, we all think about fashion to some extent, even if it’s just to give a shirt off the floor the sniff test to see if it can go another day. To be honest, I find the whole “no judgment” trend seen on various blogs a bit disingenuous. We all judge each other’s appearance. We’re hardwired […]

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Subterranean London: Cracking The Capital by Bradley L. Garrett

As Tom Waits once put it, “There’s a world going on underground,” and in the world’s hugest and oldest cities, it’s a complicated downward sprawl of a world. The team behind Subterranean London (Amazon, Powell’s) set out to uncover and document that sprawl in an operation of clandestine exploration into places that, legally, they shouldn’t be. Their purpose in doing so is […]

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Small Press Trio

Frontier #6: Ann By The Bed by Emily Carroll Canadian cartoonist Emily Carroll excels in a form of horror that expresses its dread as much in the minds of the characters and the worlds they inhabit as with the particular terrors they face. With Ann By The Bed, she goes to lengths of perfection to craft the perfect fictional story […]

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The Wavers by Greta Pratt

Photographer Greta Pratt has long focused her lens on the examination of people’s relationships with the icons of America. Not just appreciation, but appropriation, adorning their property or themselves with the icons. One of Pratt’s better known series is that of the Nineteen Lincolns, which saw her not only shooting portraits of Abraham Lincoln impersonators, but gathering them together for a group […]

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Scaffold 1 by V.A. Graham and J.A. Eisenhower

The concept behind Scaffold is almost so big that it threatens to swallow the execution, but as the book unfolds, you realize that the concept and the execution are two sides of the same thing, working together to create a whole experience. Built around the idea of an advanced, mysterious prehistory, Scaffold takes place within a a society that uses their innovations to build […]

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Malformed: Forgotten Brains of the Texas State Mental Hospital by Alex Hannaford and Adam Voorhes 

Are you aware that the University of Texas hosts one of the most amazing gatherings of brains in the country? And I don’t mean brainy people doing some heavy thinking, I mean brains. And by gathering, I mean collection. In jars. It’s true. Photographer Adam Voorhes has photographed the brains for Malformed (Amazon, Powell’s), in series of portraits and some […]

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People of the 1980s: The Street Fashion Photography of Derek Ridgers and Amy Arbus

When I say 1980s fashion, most people are probably prone to shudder and reply “ugh!” Yes, the 80s were a bad time for mainstream fashion – big hair, big shoulders, jelly bracelets, parachute pants… it was all pretty awful. Which undoubtedly makes it confusing when I then say that the 80s were the best era for fashion – alternative fashion, […]

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Cult Horror Movies and Cult Sci-Fi Movies by Danny Peary

The three volumes of Danny Peary’s Cult Movies served as prized reference books for cinephiles of a certain age. Published in the 1980s, Peary’s books were a survey of films that had gained a devoted following thanks midnight-movie screenings and the early days of home video; in many cases, Peary was one of the first to apply an analytical perspective to movies […]

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She Wants To Tell Me by Laura Kenins

This tale of treading into unknown territory examines the more unexpected questions of doing so, ones of etiquette and meaning, ones that beg answers for what something means as part of the wider picture to which it belongs. In this context, it can be the moment one finds a discarded body part in a park and doesn’t know what to […]

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Stitched Up – The Anti-Capitalist Book of Fashion by Tansy E. Hoskins

Many books over the past few years have detailed the myriad wrongs of the fashion industry. Sweatshops, environmental damage, classism, racism, sizism, misogyny, not to mention the overall affect of rampant consumerism and debt on Western culture – all of these things come up time and again. And we read them, feel bad and then sooth our bad feelings by […]

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Doomboy by Tony Sandoval

This surprisingly sweet heavy metal-centered graphic novel follows a young guitarist named Id, whose rough edges cause conflict with the others around him, though his alienation ends up helping him create a legend of himself. At the root of Id’s battles is his cantankerous creative nature, but there’s something much more harsh going on — the death of Annie, his […]

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A Cat Named Tim by John Martz

If you were looking for a great way to add some visual sophistication to your kid’s picture book repertoire then A Cat Named Tim And Other Stories (Amazon, Powell’s) is a good choice, both for its simplicity and its demands. The narratives are basic, largely visual gags that Martz breaks up with a number of characters. Some of the best moments are […]

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The Hospital Suite by John Porcellino

This is not necessarily a fun book to read. I say that upfront because Porcellino’s art style, despite the image on the cover depicting himself in a hospital bed, is one of playful simplicity that, in a primal way, seems to promise something light-hearted. In fact, this medical-focused memoir is the chronicle of a breakdown, both physical and mental, and […]

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David Lynch: The Factory Photos

With the announcement of a revival of Twin Peaks, it seemed timely that this collection of Lynch’s photos crossed my desk, offering some insight to not only what the man gets up to in his time away from filmmaking, but also what informs his work more than anything resembling conventional narrative. Lynch’s first two films, Eraserhead and The Elephant Man, were the ones most […]

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The Motherless Oven by Rob Davis

Taken at face value, it’s hard to know exactly what to make of The Motherless Oven (Amazon, Powell’s). Rob Davis has crafted a curious adventure that might be described as falling into the genre of dystopian fiction, but that does his story a bit of a disservice. At a time when dystopian fiction is pretty literally a dime a dozen, and infected […]

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