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immediate thoughts on the ephemeral environment I've been reading books since the early 70s and writing about them since the 80s.


Minds - Dave Sim This collected volume of the Cerebus comic is not for the uninitiated. Collecting as it does issues from the late 100s, it requires a knowledge of a large majority of the previously published issues or volumes. Cerebus itself is not necessarily enjoyable by those without some familiarity with its peer comics, fantasy novels by Robert E. Howard and Michael Moorcock, the Marx brothers' films, and the writings and lives of Oscar Wilde, Mick Jagger, and Keith Richards, to enumerate only some of its influences.

Minds is much more traditional in its presentation than the previous volume, although it continues Sim's idiosyncratic view of the relation between creator and creation. I liked it a lot--especially the points where Cerebus tries to come to grips with the fact that he is talking to "God." Call it meta-fiction, call it jacking off--it's unreal and poignant at the same time. Even if you think it doesn't work, you at least have to admire Sim for his audacity.

New to Cerebus? Don't start here. Find the first eponymous phone book and try that. It gets both better and worse after that, but this is truly one of those cases where you have to take the good with the bad.