» » Reading Comics: How Graphic Novels Work and What They Mean

Free eBook Reading Comics: How Graphic Novels Work and What They Mean download

by Douglas Wolk

Free eBook Reading Comics: How Graphic Novels Work and What They Mean download ISBN: 0306815095
Author: Douglas Wolk
Publisher: Da Capo Press; First Printing edition (July 3, 2007)
Language: English
Pages: 416
Category: Imaginative Literature
Subcategory: History and Criticism
Size MP3: 1638 mb
Size FLAC: 1829 mb
Rating: 4.8
Format: mbr azw mobi docx


In Reading Comics, critic Douglas Wolk shows us why this is and how it came to be. Wolk illuminates the most dazzling creators of modern comics-from Alan Moore to Alison Bechdel to Dave Sim to Chris Ware-and introduces a critical theory that explains where each fits into.

Reading Comics: How Graph. has been added to your Cart. At best, the book has some wonderful visual analyses of comic panels and styles. That's good, because most of the arguments require you to trust the visual descriptions. For a book about comics there aren't nearly enough illustrations, and none in color.

In Reading Comics, critic Douglas Wolk shows us why and how.

Issue Number: HC Publisher: Perseus Books Group Cover: Holiday 2007, 2. 5 Origin: United States, English Format: Black & White, Hardcover, 406 pages. Rate trending movies in seconds and rise to Ultimate Status.

Douglas Wolk /ˈwoʊlk/ (1970-) is a Portland, Oregon-based author and critic. He has written about comics and popular music for publications including The New York Times, Rolling Stone, The Washington Post, The Nation, The New Republic, Salon

Douglas Wolk /ˈwoʊlk/ (1970-) is a Portland, Oregon-based author and critic. He has written about comics and popular music for publications including The New York Times, Rolling Stone, The Washington Post, The Nation, The New Republic, Salon. com, Pitchfork Media, Vanity Fair, and The Believer.

In Reading Comics, critic Douglas Wolk shows us why and ho. Wolk illuminates the most dazzling creators of modern comics-from Alan Moore to Alison Bechdel to Chris Ware-and explains their roots, influences, and where they fit into the pantheon of ar. In Reading Comics, critic Douglas Wolk shows us why and how.

For the past 20 plus years I have been a reader and fan of comic books. For several years while in design school I worked in a comic shop (a serious comic shop) that opened in 1976 and carried only comics. No games, no toys, no shirts, no poster. ust comics. The clientele included a cross section of society, including lawyers, doctors, housewives, college students, hipsters, geeks, trekkers, cops, mailmen, teen Goth girls and everything in between. So I felt like this book was right up my alley.

Читать бесплатно книгу Reading comics. How graphic novels work and what they mean (Wolk . и другие произведения в разделе Каталог. Доступны электронные, печатные и аудиокниги, музыкальные произведения, фильмы. На сайте вы можете найти издание, заказать доставку или забронировать. Возможна доставка в удобную библиотеку.

Suddenly, comics are everywhere: a newly matured art form, filling bookshelves with brilliant, innovative work and shaping the ideas and images of the rest of contemporary culture. In Reading Comics, critic Douglas Wolk shows us why this is and how it came to be. Wolk illuminates the most dazzling creators of modern comics-from Alan Moore to Alison Bechdel to Dave Sim to Chris Ware-and introduces a critical theory that explains where each fits into the pantheon of art. Reading Comics is accessible to the hardcore fan and the curious newcomer; it is the first book for people who want to know not just what comics are worth reading, but also the ways to think and talk and argue about them.
User reviews
Kare
I am used to more traditional textbooks with more text and less images. This book seemed almost informal at times, but it got the job done.
Siatanni
I want my money back. I bought this for a college class and the teacher just lectured about how this isn't how to read comics.
Dagdardana
Dirty and paper cover was weary due to being in contact with wet beforehand.
Xtintisha
There's a lot to recommend this book. No matter how versed you are in comics (I'm not), you're sure to find something new here about an amazingly complex medium.

But it's got some annoying flaws. Particularly in the first third of the book, it can be seriously geeky when it should be introductory and welcoming. You may find yourself stumbling on what seems like fan jargon or expert knowledge. I didn't(and still don't) understand the stylistic differences between Jack Kirby's early and late work. But that's the kind of thing Wolk more or less assumes at times.

At best, the book has some wonderful visual analyses of comic panels and styles. That's good, because most of the arguments require you to trust the visual descriptions. For a book about comics there aren't nearly enough illustrations, and none in color. How about a companion website where readers could look at more than a few low-quality black and white reproductions?

But Wolk's writing style gets annoying at this length. The book's trying to be academic and authoritative, but do it with a casual writing style. It doesn't work. Wolk often writes like a smart blogger; in other words, like someone who *really* needs an editor with a sharp red pencil. For example, he'll use annoying terms like "wave at" or "poke at" to mean "show" and "examine." He has a short "interview" between himself and Mr. Straw Man which feels like a clumsy way of avoiding constructing actual prose. Or he'll discover a new ten-dollar word (like "somatic") and use it two or three times in as many pages. He uses cliched writing (calling someone "a god-awful hack") constantly.

Worst, nearly every page has at least two or three parenthetical phrases, which makes following arguments clunky. An editor would have deleted these as either truly side comments, or else rewritten them to be part of the argument.

You might not be bothered by these things, though I was. They get in the way of reading and following what's actually a pretty subtle and worked-out argument.
Amis
Having read other books on comics, like "How to Read Superhero Comics and Why," I wanted to like Wolk's book more than those I've read before it. What I found most compelling about Wolk's book was his introduction where he talks about what makes comics different from other works of art is their unique deployment of metaphor. Yes, it's in that Straw Man argument (god, that is annoying, as other reviewers here suggest). What I found disappointing is that Wolk doesn't really deliver on giving us a coherent argument about that. Instead of giving us Comics, he gives us comics.

That being said, Wolk chooses some good, some bad, some interesting comics to talk about. I found his later chapters on individual authors interesting. Particularly on Starlin's Warlock, Ditko's Spider-Man and Mr. A, Sim's Cerebus, and finally Morrison's Invisibles.

You should look at the table of contents and see if Wolk writes about any comics (or creators) you have read and then pick up this book if there are enough of them. Note that Wolk will often spoil the endings of books so be careful.

Why I see Wolk failing to deliver on his promise to talk about metaphors in comics is that he spends way too much time telling us what the text in those comics mean (can't we figure a lot of this out for ourselves? -- exception: his take on Morrison's Invisibles is passionate and fairly coherent). I was hoping he'd be able to present a consistent view on the language of the comics medium (the art), and instead I got a lot of more of regurgitation of storylines (I already knew).
Arryar
The problem with reviewing a book of criticism is the endless path it can lead you on. After all, my review itself can be critiqued in the comments area below, and those comments can be analyzed, and so on. Eventually, the main topic may be lost in all the reviews of reviews of reviews. Such is the peril that I am undertaking with Douglas Wolk's Reading Comics.

Plenty of people view comics rather negatively as shallow entertainment for children. Certainly, if you look at the standard comics page in a newspaper, the few quality strips are islands in a sea of mediocrity. As Wolk points out, however (and what many comics fans already know), comics are just a medium like television or books, and there's a lot more to it than kid stuff.

The first portion of Reading Comics looks at the medium as a whole: its history, its fan culture, what it does well and not so well and what makes the comic form unique. Actually, the term "comics" is not really that great as many comics are actually quite serious; on the other hand, other terms - including the often-used "graphic novels" - have their own problems, typically either also being descriptively inadequate or overly pretentious. When one thinks of comic books (or, as Wolk annoyingly calls them, "pamphlets"), the one genre that stands out is the superhero comic. Wolk gives superheroes some acknowledgement, but wants to look beyond that limited area.

The second part of the book looks at various comic artists and writers; often times, one person serves both functions. Among the more well-known writers/artists discussed are Alan Moore, Frank Miller, Marv Wolfman, Art Spiegelman and Steve Ditko. Other less commonly known names are also reviewed such as Hope Larson and Kevin Huezinga. Wolk's choices are of generally significant works, but he is up front about his own biases in selecting material.

Wolk sometimes come off a bit snobby in his discussions, but he usually keeps any elitism toned down. If you're reading this book, chances are you are familiar with much of the work that's reviewed and will not always agree with Wolk's opinions. Overall, however, even when I disagreed with him, he provided good arguments for his views. If you're a comics fan, and you want to start looking critically at the medium, your best introduction would probably be Scott McCloud, particularly with Understanding Comics and Drawing Comics. McCloud, however, focuses more on the "mechanics" of comics rather than particular artists. If you want to delve into comics more in depth - especially as a form of literature - Reading Comics does the job well.