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review 2020-05-02 03:19
A Collection of Short Pieces Celebrating Nero Wolfe
The Misadventures of Nero Wolfe: Parodies and Pastiches Featuring the Great Detective of West 35th Street - Josh Pachter

Wow—2 chances to talk about Nero Wolfe in less than a month? Say what you will about 2020, there are some really nice things going on, too.

 

In the same vein as the 2018 compilation that he co-edited, <b>The Misadventures of Ellery Queen</b>, Pachter (with the blessing of Stout's daughter), Pachter presents just what the title promises: a collection of short pieces featuring takes on Nero Wolfe (and, generally, Archie Goodwin).

 

There are three introductory essays—one by Otto Penzler; one by Stout's daughter, Rebecca Stout Bradbury; and then one from Pachter (which served as a typical introduction). All three of these pieces were a pleasure to read, but obviously, Bradbury's is the standout for sentimental reasons.

 

Then we move into pastiches, although some felt more like parodies to me—but why quibble? The first entry just didn't work for me, and almost put me off the project as a whole. But, it's Wolfe, so as much as I say "almost"—there's no chance that'd stick. Thankfully, the second entry more than made up for it, as did the rest. A personal highlight came from Pachter reprinting the first chapter of <b>Murder in E Minor</b>, Robert Goldsborough's first Wolfe novel—I appreciated the reminder that I did really like his work at one point. (I wish something from William L. DeAndrea's Lobo Blacke/Quinn Booker books had made it in here)

 

The next section featured a handful of parodies. By and large, I enjoyed this part, but I would've appreciated a bit more subtlety with many of the works. The story "Julius Katz and the Case of Exploding Wine" was simply fantastic—I will be tracking down more of these stories by Dave Zeltserman as soon as I can (I have a browser tab open at the moment for an e-store with the collections).

 

The final section, "Potpourri," was my favorite. It included things like a story about a circus' Fat Woman doing a fine Nero Wolfe impression (and was a pretty clever story even without that); Pachter's short story about a young man named for Wolfe, "Sam Buried Caesar," which was utterly charming; and a scene from Joseph Goodrich's stage adaptation of <b>Might as Well Be Dead</b>. The highlight of this section (and possibly the entire book) was a little story called "The Damned Doorbell Rang," about a couple who used to live next to Wolfe's Brownstone on West 35th (obviously on the opposite side from Doc Vollmer), who didn't realize who they lived next to, nor appreciate the goings-on in the brownstone. An inspired idea that was executed wonderfully.

 

As with almost every compilation ever assembled, there were a lot of high highs and very low lows in this one—and most readers will likely disagree with what I'd put in either category. But I can't imagine any Wolfe reader not finding more than enough in this book to consider any time spent with it a win. The writers all clearly had fun with the subject matter, and it's infectious. Pachter has speculated about doing another collection of Wolfean tidbits. If he does, I know I'll be more than ready to grab it.

 

For a lot more about the book—the background, more information about some of the entries/authors/whatnot—check out <a href="https://likethewolfe.com/2020/04/11/the-misadventures-of-nero-wolfe-josh-pachter-episode-10/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Episode 10 of <b>Like the Wolfe</b> podcast</a>. It's a fun episode.

Source: irresponsiblereader.com/2020/05/01/the-misadventures-of-nero-wolfe-parodies-and-pastiches-featuring-the-great-detective-of-west-35th-street-by-josh-pachter-ed-a-collection-of-short-pieces-celebrating-nero-wolfe
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review 2017-01-15 15:00
Mickey meets Dante
Disney Graphic Novels #4: Great Parodies... Disney Graphic Novels #4: Great Parodies: Mickey's Inferno - Disney,Guido Martina,Angelo Bioletto Disclaimer: ARC via Netgalley. Mickey Mouse meets Dante, how can this work? Strangely, it actually does. This is a reissue of a parody produced in the 1960s. In many ways, it is a good way to introduce a Disney fan of any age to Dante, though some of the funnier bits a child would not fully understand. The set-up works, and it is great fun to see Disney characters in place of Dante’s people. As with most parodies, however, it does seem to go a tad too long. However, the best part of the graphic novel is the closing panels. Absolutely great! Worth reading for that alone, to be honest. At least, if you like Dante.
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review 2016-09-25 00:00
Loose Lips: Fanfiction Parodies of Great (and Terrible) Literature from the Smutty Stage of Shipwreck
Loose Lips: Fanfiction Parodies of Great... Loose Lips: Fanfiction Parodies of Great (and Terrible) Literature from the Smutty Stage of Shipwreck - Amy Stephenson,Casey Childers,Na'amen Gobert Tilahun This wasn't really what I was expecting. I've read some fanfiction, but what little I've read before was different from this. If you are really into fanfic and dirty jokes, this may be something for you. I was unable to get into because it seemed like the goal was to be as ridiculous as possible. The introduction explained that this collection is actually stories from a group that gets together and acts the scenes out with props and everything. I imagine it's much funnier in person with the visuals and a group of friends feeding off of each others laughs. Maybe something necessary is lost in plain page format, or maybe it just isn't my thing.

***copy given in exchange for an honest review***
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text 2015-10-03 00:10
Is free too much?
The Dark Knight's Boner Rises (Erotic Parodies Book 2) - Raven Blackbird

Do you really want to know how I keep stumbling on these?   Didn't think so. 

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review 2015-07-09 05:58
The Fangirl's Guide to the Galaxy: A Handbook for Girl Geeks
The Fangirl's Guide to the Galaxy: A Lexicon of Life Hacks for the Modern Lady Geek - Sam Maggs

2 stars pretty much solely for the paragraph on Star Wars, all the times Stargate was mentioned, and the Enchanted Forest Chronicles recommendation.

First off, who is exactly is this written for? It claims to be written for "girl geeks" but the sad truth is that, aside from a few references and comments you'd need to be in the know to get,this offers practically zero information that geeks, or human beings in general, wouldn't already know.

At this point, is there anyone who considers themselves to be a girl geek who doesn't know what Potterheads are?? I doubt it. Or who doesn't know to bring water and cash and comfortable shoes, even if you're cosplaying, to a convention?

And Magg's brand of feminism was too strong for my taste. Not even really feminism, for most of it. Towards the end of the book, she states a general definition of feminism that was spot-on, but it didn't really mesh with the message strewn throughout the book, as the book as a whole tends to put women on a pedestal. Sure, some guys, geeks or otherwise, are bound to be jerks, but some girls, geeks or otherwise, are bitchy. We aren't these amazing incredible paragons of humanity. We shouldn't need to be told we're beautiful to be validated. And we certainty don't need to nay-say males in an attempt to prove our equality superiority.

Her section on internet trolls was at the same time absolutely true and utterly laughable. I read the first few entries and then skipped over the rest. We had a Fire Troll and a Frost Troll and approximately 7 other ridiculously named versions of trolls, some of which were legitimate trolls that she nailed and some that really weren't. One of such trolls was someone that will comment about grammar. The horror.

Additionally, this is one of the most politically correct books to ever PC. I can't even. And remember: "You don't need to identify as female to read this book!!" That's really good, because I identify as hedgehog. *eye roll*

It's essentially an mostly boring, and rarely amusing, overly feminist introduction to the world of fandom and internet.

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