Who’s That Blogger? Jeff Japp

whos-that-bloggerjeff-japp

Blogmaster:  Jeff Japp

Blog names:  Stuff Jeff Reads and The Stub Collection – both on WordPress

Type of blog:  Stuff Jeff Reads:  thoughts on books, poetry, comics, etc.
The Stub Collection:  concert ticket stubs and my memories from the show

Where in the world?  USA

Blogging since when? 2011

What’s your story?  I started Stuff Jeff Reads back in 2011, mainly because I had joined an online book club and it was just not fulfilling. In college I was an English Lit major, and instead of going the traditional teacher/professor route, I opted to do technical writing (hey – it pays). But I missed discussing and writing about literature, so I started the blog as a way to share my thoughts on what I read and to hopefully foster some discussion with like-minded individuals. So far, it’s been great. I’ve met some really interesting people from around the world, and the blog community is very supportive, even on topics where we disagree. People in politics could learn from us, I think.

The Stub Collection is a more recent project. I started it in the fall of 2015. I love live music and have been going to concerts my whole life. And because I’m a collector (my wife would say hoarder), I have amassed a huge collection of ticket stubs from concerts I attended going back to the 70’s. I started to realize that the ticket stub is a piece of memorabilia that is endangered, as more and more concert goers opt for digital tickets on their smartphones which they scan at the gate. I decided to start making digital images of my stubs and sharing my memories from the shows (which are sometimes fuzzy). It’s a fun project, and since I have probably close to 1000 stubs and have only covered 96 so far, I think this will keep me busy for a while.

What types of blogs do you follow?  Mostly literature and comic blogs, a few art/photography ones, and several dealing with mysticism/spirituality.

Early bird or night owl?  Early bird, for sure. Usually wake up around 5:00 am, meditate, make some coffee, and then read/write.

Coffee or tea?  Both, but much more of a coffee person.

Most recent binge watch:  Man in the High Castle


Check out these recent posts from Stuff Jeff Reads and The Stub Collection:

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Doctor Strange and the Sorcerers Supreme –  Issue #5
“Love’s Philosophy” by Percy Bysshe Shelley
The Kinks:  8/23/1980


Hey bloggers!  Are you interested in expanding your blogging world?  Email bvitelli2009@gmail.com to be featured on Who’s That Blogger!

Thanks for visiting – come back soon!

Archie – The Married Life Book 2 by Paul Kupperberg

Archie The Married LifeArchie – The Married Life
Two Worlds. Two Loves. Two Destinies
Book Two
by
Paul Kupperberg

Illustrated by this talented team of artists:

Archie 10Rating:

Imagine your favorite Archie comic book characters, once forever locked in the glory days of high school, now twenty-something adults, making their way in the fantasy town of Riverdale. You may ask, “Who did Archie marry? Betty or Veronica?” Well in an alternate universe, anything can happen and here is where Archie lives in two worlds, married to fresh-faced and hard-working Betty in one, and hitched to rich-girl Veronica, daughter of the ruthless, money hungry Hiram Lodge.

I didn’t know what to expect when I picked up this familiar looking comic book. I’d read plenty of Archie comic books as a girl, but I’d never read a full graphic novel before. This is a substantial work of more than 300 pages of entertaining plot, dialogue and terrific graphics, with a great variety of illustrations, bubble thoughts, plot summaries, zoom-outs, silliness, subtle jokes and amusing wordplay. In addition, there are just enough shady characters and wholesome romantic innuendo to sustain a mysterious plot.

Both stories revolve around Mr. Lodge’s obsession with controlling the town of Riverdale and the upcoming trial of Reggie Mantle, who has been charged with trying to bribe the mayor. An additional common subplot covers Jughead’s rapidly expanding Chocklit Shoppe business, soon to be a nationwide franchise.

Paul Kupperberg is a veteran comic book writer and does an excellent job presenting these modern and edgy stories, while retaining the happy fantasy of the eternally optimistic and ultimately good and universally good-looking Archie characters.

Check out these screen-shots and you’ll see what I mean.

Archie 9
Look how happy and enthusiastic the gang is!

 

Archie 5
Jughead just wants to flip burgers…

 

Archie 6
Archie may be getting into a little trouble here!

Here’s my recommendation:  if you’re looking for a fun diversion and an easy read, try reading one of these graphic novels. There’s a lot more to them than you think!

Thanks for visiting – come back soon!

What’s That Book? Promethea: Book 1 by Alan Moore

Whats That Book

promethea book 1

Title: Promethea: Book 1

Author: Alan Moore (artists: J. H. Williams III and Mick Gray)

Genre: Graphic Novel/Fantasy

Rating: 5 stars

What’s it about?  This is the story about a college student named Sophie Bangs who becomes the incarnation of Promethea, a goddess heroine who reincarnates in women throughout history.

This graphic novel is steeped in symbolism, archetypes, and mythology. Promethea is reincarnated throughout history as a result of stories written about her. It is through reading these stories and connecting with the myths that one becomes open to being the latest incarnation. So essentially, this story is about the power of storytelling and the cycles of stories, archetypes, and symbols that are part of the collective consciousness.

There is also a prominent sub-plot that is worth mentioning. The Sophie incarnation of Promethea discovers that she is destined to bring about the apocalypse. At first, she finds this terrifying, until she learns that the apocalypse is a shift in human consciousness from materialism to a creative and spiritual level of consciousness represented by a mythical realm called The Immateria.

How did you hear about it?  This was recommended to me by a friend on Facebook based upon things I had been reading. Also, when I inquired about it at Comic Envy (Asheville’s local comic store), the owner said I would love it and that it is a truly mind-blowing work.

Closing comments:  I am fascinated by mythology, symbols, and archetypes. Also, as a book nerd, I love the transformative power of the written word. “Promethea” has all of this along with beautiful illustrations that transport the reader to Immateria, the place where imagination and creativity rules.

Contributor: Jeff Japp (http://stuffjeffreads.wordpress.com)

Many thanks to Jeff for contributing to What’s That Book !   Be sure to check out Stuff Jeff Reads and his new blog, The Stub Collection, where Jeff shares memories, and ticket stubs, of great concert experiences!

Have you read something you’d like to share?  Consider being a contributor!  Contact bvitelli2009@gmail.com for more information.

Thanks for visiting – come back soon!

 

 

What’s up next? Archie: The Married Life Part 2 by Paul Kupperberg

Archie The Married LifeAfter reading Station Eleven, in which a graphic novel is a central part of the story, I was curious about the comic book/graphic novel genre. I only read one comic book series as a girl: Archie, but I’m sure I read every issue. Today I started Archie: The Married Life Part 2. I tried to borrow Part 1 from the library, but it wasn’t available. Since I remember almost everything about the Archie characters and the basic plot lines, I thought I would have no problem jumping into Part 2.

Well, a lot has happened to Archie, Betty, Veronica and the rest of the gang since the 70s, so thank goodness there are plenty of summaries. I’m only about 10% in, but I can tell you that this story is modern and edgy, and complicated! In alternate universes, Archie is married to Veronica in one, and Betty in the other. I’m having fun catching up with my favorite characters and the illustrations are true to the original Archie comic books. I’m starting to understand why this genre is so popular!

Check back soon for my review of this Archie comic. And coming soon on What’s That Book?, guest blogger Jeff from Stuff Jeff Reads will review the graphic novel Promethea.

Thanks for visiting – come back soon!

 

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Station Eleven
Station Eleven

by
Emily St. John Mandel

Rating:

In current-day Toronto, Arthur Leander suffers a heart attack onstage during a performance of King Lear. Jeevan Chaudhary is in the audience. He’s a former paparazzo, and now an EMT-in-training and he rushes to save Leander. But there’s nothing to be done. Arthur is dead and as the medics wheel him out, Jeevan notices a young actress, Kirsten Raymonde, alone on the stage, watching in fear.

That night, a flu pandemic grips the world and takes out 99.9% of its population in a matter of days. Survivors are left in a world without power. No communication, no travel, no internet. Some wander alone, some form communities to protect themselves in dangerous lands.

Kirsten survives. Twenty years later, she is a member of the Traveling Symphony, a group of actors and musicians. When they arrive at St. Deborah by the Water, a community near Lake Michigan, they hope to find their friends, Charlotte and Jeremy. But something is wrong. A woman tells them, “Your friend rejected the prophet’s advances. They had to leave.”

What follows is a series of stories that trace back to Arthur, his life as an actor and his death, the people who knew him and two curious issues of a graphic novel called Station Eleven. These are the elaborate drawings and dialogue created by Arthur’s first wife, Miranda and they describe a damaged space station that’s built like a planet and is hiding deep in space. The planet’s surface is mostly water. Most of its people live trapped in the undersea world, led by Dr. Eleven and all they want to do is go home.

Station Eleven is difficult to describe because it’s the kind of book you just have to read to understand. Mandel describes a post-apocalyptic world in which a dangerous prophet claims that they are the chosen ones and that “everything happens for a reason.” But the story is more than that. It’s a look at people who are forced to change their lives in the most drastic of ways, to build something out of nothing. Some of Mandel’s characters, like Jeevan, have already begun to change. Arthur’s best friend, Clark Thompson, is just beginning to realize how meaningless his job as an expert in changing executives is when the pandemic hits. Kirsten and other younger survivors remember little of their previous lives and do what they need to do. And twenty years later, new parents need to decide what to teach their children. Do they tell them about the world that was? What’s the point?

The book jumps around a lot, but Mandel is good at explaining the connections and before long, the jumps become seamless. And of course, they all lead to the ultimate confrontation between the good and the bad, with a satisfying finish. I like all the pieces in this story. They all work, including the parallel story of the lost space station. I like the hopeful suggestion that most people are good and noble and my favorite part of the book is the description of “The Museum of Civilization.” And I especially like how Mandel introduces Arthur at the end of his life, giving the impression of a man who has failed to achieve happiness or to understand the true meaning of life and love, until the end. Is finding peace and understand okay, even if it’s in the last hour of your life?

A great read – check it out!

Click here for more information about post-apocalyptic books.

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