What We’re Reading This Week!
Josh says: I can’t say I’ve read much lately that’s mind-blowing, earth-shattering, un-fucking-believable life-changing capital-L LITERATURE. However, I have been reading a ton of stuff that I’ve really, really enjoyed. And that’s just as good.
I’m about halfway through The Audacity of Hops, Tom Acitelli’s new beer history. Other than a brief preamble, the book’s chief concern is the craft beer movement that kicked off in the 60s and 70s in the US. It’s an essential look at the history of the craft, regional, and “micro-” breweries that dot the country and brew some of the world’s best beer. It picks up right where Maureen Ogle’s Ambitious Brew (the other essential stateside beer history) left off.
I picked up John O’Bryan’s A History of Weapons at the bookstore on a whim, and came away mighty impressed. I have a deep-seated masculine urge to ogle weapons, and O’Bryan’s breezy book covers everything from rocks and clubs to relatively modern fare. It could be dryly technical like DK’s Military History, but O’Bryan (a comedy writer by trade) injects some wicked humor. Examples? Weapons get an ease of use rank, from easy enough for your cat to only Batman and Bruce Lee need apply. A post-Revolutionary War chapter is titled “‘Merica! Eating Possum and Sh*tting Freedom.” Curses abound, with glee.
Buying Fear Agent Library Edition Vol 1 is the best $50 you’ll spend on a comic this month. The massive (seriously, we couldn’t fit it on the shelf at the store) book collects the first three trades of Rick Remender and Tony Moore’s Fear Agent in a handsome oversize hardcover. I read most of the spectacular series in trades borrowed from the library over the years, but I’m excited to have the first half of the run in a single book to dig through. The second library edition is due out from Dark Horse later this year.
Despite self-admitted science fiction superfandom, Philip K. Dick is one of my major reading blind spots. I’ve seen a few films based on his work, but I can’t say I’ve ever read a word of his short stories or novels. I asked on Twitter where to start, and a number of people pointed to The Man in the High Castle, an alternate history that concerns Axis rule of the United States. I’m psyched to get deeper into this one.