teenage traumas. but that's about the only thing these works have in common.

From rural to urban. flippant to deadly serious. the range of work is impresswe. and the standard generally impresses more than it disappoints.

(Doug Johnstone)

MYTHICAL STUDY BRIAN M. FAGAN The Seventy Great Mysteries Of The Ancient World (Thames & Hudson 5:24.95) 0...

Everywhere you look there are books and TV shows banging on ab0ut the anCient worlds and how they came abOut: Or how they ended: or how simply great they were. All this over— shoulder gazing may either be a genuine post-millennial trauma abOut where we're headed or maybe Just laziness on the part of schedulers and publishers.

Whatever is behind this trend. it's rarely done as glossily as Brian M. Fagan's book. subtitled ‘Unlocking The Secrets Of Past CiviIi/ations'. Many of the standard mysteries are trotted out: ‘Who were the first Australians?‘. 'Was Tutankhanum murdered?‘ and 'Why did the Incas sacrifice their children’?'.

But I for one arias intrigued to read about how farming started. the collapse of Moche civilization and Just who actually did build Tiwanaku. But if you can't be bothered to read all these grand theoriSing, the pictures are lovely.

(Brian Donaldson)



A Local Book For Local People (Fourth Estate £8.99) 0...

The League Of Gentlemen are surely running out of media to get their savage portrayal of modern British mores across. HaVing produced an awarr‘l«Winning stage show. radio programme and TV series. and now an excellently disturbing book. there appears to be only the video game market to plunder. But who would really want a pixelated Pauline or a digitally enhanced Edward lurking in their games room?

Mind you. only the most off-kilter of characters would really need this hilarioust hellish and visually (r3xtravagant exposition of the mucky minds of messrs Gatiss. Pemberton. Shearsmith and Dyson on the bedside table. Among the aIi-too-inany highlights are the Attachments Dating Agency form, Harvey Denton's notes on the development of superior indoor conveniences and the on-going tale of Tubbs unravelling Et‘lward's secret life.

But the real Joy of A Local Book is the loving microscopic detail which you keep on discovering after many repeated visits. Not to be read alone.

(Brian Donaldson)

CRIMl] DRAMA WALT MOSLEY Fearless Jones (Serpent's Tail STIC) 0...

After his deIVing into futuristic sci-ti for his last literary platters. you'd be excused for craVing a few morsels of Walter Mosley's signature dish: pulp crime now. With Fearless Jones. he has returned to his first love With excellent results.

1950s America is the setting once again as he tells of a black

bookstore owner. Paris Minton. whose world is sent into turmoil with the arrival of Elana Love. a beautiful young woman on the run from her criin

ex-Iover. An intricate giziiii<> ()f (:zit ziiirl 'II()tIES(} unfolds. the level—headed Paris haying to recall the brutish brawn of his old friend Fearless to assist him on his gallant guest.

Despite the seemingly cliched pre'i‘ise. Mosley creates a siick. expressive narrative so atmospheric you can {tIII‘OSt see the sweat drip it'()'l‘ their bi‘o‘.'.'s and smell the cordite from the spent bullet cases, He can also externalise tension and di'aii‘a now in a he nexer could unith a lone lead character A successful progression and ‘.'/e|| \.'.'orth the ‘.'.'£l|t. 'Mai'k Robertson


David Browne Dream Brother «lot/rth Estate 5705),: The subtitle should give you a clue what this is about: ‘The Lives And Music Of Jeff And Tim Buckley. Isabel Allende Portrait In See/a (Tia/hinge No.05)» Historical novel and family saga fron‘ Peruvian—l>orn writer who does that kind of thing rather well.

Steve Bell Unstoppable It. . . li'vle hue/i 5‘70902 The latest collection of The Guardian cartoonists deeply cutting strips.

M.F.K. Fisher l'./ii‘h Bold Knife Aritl Fork (Vintage 57.99, Unpretentious and witty recipe book from doyenne of dinners. As far from The Naked Chef as it gets. Sebastian Junger Fire (Fourth Estate {‘1509) Writer of The Perfect Storm with a tour of some horriny (inhospitable corners of the globe.




Wallace Wood (FantagraphiCS) .00

Wood's work is an extension of the softcore sex spy novels that followed the worldwide popularity of Ian Fleming's James Bond books. The ad\./entures of John Cannon were originally serialised in the early 1070s in Overseas I/‘t/eeklv. a newspaper distributed to US military bases on foreign soil. So you won’t be surprised to learn Wood's strips are both reactionary ;)r<)))()giziiitlti {lll(i deeply misogynistic. In the first episode a kidnapped Generals wife- is tortured by Arabs in her nylons. What merit. then, does this anthology have? On a superficial level. the pen and inking is very good. and though Wood's strips are now as dated as Carry On films. they have become curios of their time. (Miles Fielder)


Alan Moore, Ian Gibson (Titan) 0000

In 1986 writer Alan Moore and artist Ian Gibson responded to 2000 AD comic's wide female readership and together gave birth to Han Jones. the first feminist heroine in comics. Presumany

capitalising on the Lara Croft phenomenon. Titan has reisSued the one volume collection of the three serialised ‘books' so a whole new audience can enjoy these immensely readable galactic escapades. Escaping from The Hoop. a futuristic (Jumping ground for the unemployed in book 1. book 2 involves action and adventure aboard a luxury space liner. while book 3 brings home the horrific impact of war and the dogged determinism of a plucky upstart who jUSt wouldn't let it lie. iCatherine Bromleyl

SCREENPLAY GHOST WORLD: A SCREENPLAY Daniel Clowes, Terry Zwigoff (FantagraphiCSi OOOO


This is not a comic book. but it is a book for fans of the comic and film (which should comprise many of you) and completists. Clowes and Zwigoff‘s screenplay for the film det0urs Significantly from the SOLirce comic strip. so you can't get


away with just re- reading that. Buy this and you can quote the deliciously nasty dialogue of the film's teenage girl heroes: ‘He better watch out or he'll get AIDS when he date- rapes her.‘ Also. you get a new Enid and Rebecca strip. on-set Polaroids. production drawings. Clowes' illustrated annotations to the script and Zwigoff's notes on the soundtrack.

(Miles Fielder)



Grant Morrison, Phil Jiminez (Vertigo. DC) 0...

itiiltii‘i Iii III! M.

Compilation of issues 17-25 of the magnificent freak baby comic from the man who w0uld be Stan Lee. King Mob is being tortured to death by the Archons while Lord Fanny is being held next door. Only telepathic witch Ragged Robin. Voodoo trip hop star Jim Crow. ex-New York cop Boy and newcomer buddhist gutter punk Jack Frost can save them from these extra dimens:onal horrors. As clever, funny and ab8urd|y prophetic as ever. Morrison cooks up a salty brew of dispossessed superheroes. brilliantly drawn and laid Out by Jimenez. Unless yOu own the originals this is a must from a maJOr British talent.

(Paul Dale)


The Compleat Cannon

18 Oct-t Nov 2001 THE LIST 1 1 1