(Y-11) 198 days and the 20,000 pages

It has been quite a while since I have written a proper post, so here we go because I have a lot to go thru in this entry.

Let me start with what I have been reading and what I finished reading.

First off, I finished the first volume of the fantastic run by Joshua Hickman dealing with the Mad Titan; I am referring to Infinity, where the Avengers, and heroes from all over the Marvel comic universe, come face to face with another conquering scheme by Thanos.

I love these colossal crossover events by Marvel, especially if the Kree Empire is involved, right now I am starting to read the second volume, and it started off with a bang.

The other thing I am currently working on is the sixth volume of James Tynion IV run on Detective Comics, The Fall of the Batmen, I fell in love immediately with this series, he is using characters like Anarky, Azrael and Spoiler, not the most well-known in the Batman Universe, but super cool.

Detective Vol 6

The other things I finished reading, and in the commemoration of the 25th publication anniversary of Hellboy, some volumes of the adventures of the B.P.R.D., minus Hellboy, in this particular stories, The Plague of Frogs volumes 3 and 4.

The agents confronted the flourishing threat of the now legendary War of the Frogs, and with Roger out of the picture and Captain Daimio in full were-jaguar mode, the possibilities of coming out of this conflict unharmed are growing thin.

I highly recommend diving right into the Hellboy Universe, it will not disappoint.

You can find a really complete timeline to navigate thru this ever-growing universe full of iconic characters and stories.

I forgot to mention that along with these two amazing volumes, I also read the Spanish version of the second volume of Hellboy, Wake the Devil, which consequently was the book that put me over the 20,000-page mark for this year, but more on that later.

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On the really neglected book front, I am still working on Charon’s Claw, currently on page 193, but I have promised myself to at least read for 30 minutes each, this with the idea to finish the Neverwinter Saga before my spring break vacation, which starts on April 15.

Now let us talk about my numbers.

As I mentioned before, the 20,000-page mark has been reached for this eleventh year of reading.

My current total is 20,475 pages, and my real progress is closing in my projected total, I can see how the gap is closing, and my rhythm is slowly getting in tune with what my heart desires to read this year.

This process has been slow but I gain ground each and every day, but still, I am 27 days behind my reading schedule.

With this in mind, the upcoming vacations are going to be crucial for me to keep closing this gap, and eventually finish the year with 53,000 pages.

Now concerning my next milestone, reaching 500,000 pages, this is the current situation.

The global total for my project is at 253,502 pages, this after 3,825 days.

And with 4,453 days until my 50th birthday, I have a lot of work ahead of me.

With these numbers in place, and keeping in mind my currents speed and average of pages per day, the next significant milestone, according to my projections, will be achieved on June 1, 2029.

Which is not an acceptable date, because this would mean that I will only have 2 more years to finish half a million pages.

But there is a light at the end of the tunnel because when I started projecting when I was going to reach this goal the original date was July 26, 2029.

That is almost two months gained.

So the plans for the weekend are quite simple, close off March on a high note and probably get pretty close to 22,000 pages and gaining some more ground on the end date of my next milestone.

The books on my cache are:

Infinity Book II

Charon’s Claw (Third book of the Neverwinter Saga)

Batman: Detective Comics Vol. 6

Now back to it, for the night is dark and full or reading.

azr.

P.S.

I really need to update my Goodreads page.

P.S. of the P.S.

Here are some of the passed infographic sheets generated with bookly.

 

(Y-11)And then, the pages came.

I have been away for quite a while, both from reading and from writing in this blog.

But not anymore.

So, what have I been up to?

Let me start with what have I been reading.

I finished a couple of fantastic graphic novels, the first one is Viva la Vida: Los Sueños en Ciudad Juarez, it is a harrowing retelling of one of the most violent and painful periods in the history of my fair city.

This is capture thru the eyes of two French illustrators, Baudoin & Troubs, I am not sure if an English version of the book exists, but it is worth the effort to translate and enjoy this beautiful piece of work in which, the citizens shared their hopes and dreams in exchange for a portrait.

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The second graphic novel I finished was a collection of fantastic artist reinterpreting the songs, this in comic book form, of one the most influential singers in history, Bob Dylan, illustrating 13 of his most iconic songs, it is a must in the collection of any comic book or music lover.

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Here the many facets of the legendary singer and Nobel Laureate.

After these two less traditional comic books, I went and read the newest installment of the now legendary Batman story The Dark Knight, for this particular story we get treated to an epic creative team.

Helmed by the original writer, Frank Miller, who needs no introduction, and joining him for the writing duties another legend of the world of comic books, Brian Azzarello.

And to put the cherry on top, Miller does a bit of the artwork with the collaboration of Andy Kubert, one of the most iconic illustrators to ever work with the Dark Knight, and as if this wasn’t enough, Klaus Janson, the legendary inker of the original series, now also contributing with some fantastic artwork .

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And here some of the covers.

Right now, I am working on a couple of things.

First off I keep on pounding away on the third book of the Neverwinter Saga, Charon’s Claw, as always it feels like home when I go out and run around with the legendary drow Drizzt Do’Urden.

I am currently on page 90 of 442, moving slowly and loving every minute of it.

The second thing is the fourth volume of Batman: Detective Comics, part of the DC Universe Rebirth, in which we get to indulge in the adventures of many sidekicks of the Dark Knight, including Clayface himself.

I particularly enjoy seeing the character Azrael back in action, crazy as ever.

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In between all of this reading, I took some time do a couple of things I love, eating and going to a live show, all in the same day.

I went to see an impressive group, Le Butcherettes, in a great venue in our sister city of El Paso, The Low Brow Palace, this small club always delivers some iconic performances.

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And to close out the night I went to my favorite hamburger joint, What-A-Burger, arguably the best burger chain restaurant and a true Texan icon.

I did not take a picture of the burger, it was devoured diligently.

Now I will like to talk about my currents number, both in this year of reading and my overall total and also a bit of a forecast of what I think the year has in store for me.

To start off, for the eleventh year of reading I have a total of 18,210 pages.

I have steading my pace but still behind my reading schedule by a whopping 28 days, but with the upcoming spring vacation, I think there will be plenty of opportunities to kick back and read an hour or four.

As for the forecast for this year, and if all things keep on the same course, I am looking for a total of 21,521 pages by the half-way point of the year, which is in exactly 30 days.

With these numbers, I am expecting to finish the year with little over 43,000 pages, but the real goal is to surpass my best year, 47,705 pages in the first year of reading, but always aiming of at least gracing that 53,000 page goal.

As for my overall total, it stands at 251,257 pages, and according to my calculations, and again if everything holds steady as now, I will be reaching the next significant milestone of 500,000 pages by the 10 of July of 2029, which to start of it is not acceptable and I am working on bringing down.

So far I have shaved approximately 15 days of this date and will keep on working to reduce the distance to such a significant achievement.

I have a long weekend ahead of me, here in Mexico we have the day off on Monday, this in celebration of the birthday of the famous president from which our fair city gets its name.

For me, this means extended periods of reading and trying not to get out of bed, and with the forecast of possible snow for Saturday, that only gives me more reasons not to venture outside the warm comforts of my blankets.

Well there you have it, a kind of long post, but given the circumstances, I had to bent some things that have been roaming around my head for the past week or so.

Tomorrow, I’ll visit one of my favorite coffee house, same great coffee but they updated their accommodations, and I have been itching to write a new caffeine pilgrimage entry for so long, what better way to get back on the saddle than with an old favorite.

As you can tell, I have a slight case of insomnia.

Better put it to good use and run alongside some dwarfs and elves, and hopefully, they will carry me off to dreamland.

azr.

 

 

 

 

 

(Y-11) On the verge

 

I am done with a few books since my last post and with that my road to reach 250,000 will be cut by half.

On the book front, I have finished the second book of the Neverwinter Saga, an old foe comes to haunt Drizzt’s step once again, as always it is a pure delight read the adventures of such an iconic fantasy character.

For me, Drizzt holds a place in the Olympus of fantasy characters, keeping good company with the likes of Aragorn.

Here is the infographic sheet from Bookly.
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So naturally, I jump right into the third book of the Saga, Charon’s Claw.

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After finishing this saga I am not sure what to read next, do I continue with The Malazan Book of the Fallen, the third book Memories of Ice, or do I tackle the monumental novel Jerusalem by Alan Moore.

I’ll appreciate your opinions by commenting on this post.

Now moving on to graphic novels.

I finished Batman: The Black Mirror, as always great fun to follow the Dark Knight, in this case, his understudy, thru the treacherous streets of Gotham, and the art by Jock, just breathtaking.

You can see for yourself below.

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Here is the infographic sheet.

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The other graphic novel that I finished was the fourth volume of Robert Venditti’s run on Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps, there is trouble in paradise and too much of my surprise and delight there is an appearance by the New Gods.

 

And here is the infographic sheet, this was a relatively quick read, I was hooked and could not put it down.

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Right now I will go back on the timeline of Green Lantern and read a series that I could not catch when it was first published, Brightest Day, the aftermath of the events unleashed on Blackest Night.

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So, things are progressing quite nicely, just a little push and I’ll be celebrating the quarter of my ultimate goal.

And on that note, let us talk about some of my numbers.

My total for this year sits on 16,265 pages, an excellent number, but still behind schedule, 27 days to be precise.

On the bigger goal, reaching 250,000 pages, I am on the verge of getting there, just 708 pages to go, and if everything holds, I will be opening the champagne on March 5.

Lastly, I was thinking of much days have gone by since I started and how many do I have left to achieve my goal, fortunately, there is time and date, this website helps you calculate dates and so much more.

And I come to found out that:

I have been reading for 3,794 days

And, that I still have 4,482 days left to achieve my 1,000,000 page goal.

I better get back to reading.

azr.

 

(Y-11) Strange week.

This has been an odd week.

I think it has to be with my current mood, going thru one of those gray periods I often have.

Over the year I have found the antidote for these type of periods, music and reading.

That is why I started this morning listening to My Morning Jacket and trying to write a new post because it has been almost a week since the last one and to be completely honest if I do not write and talk about how things are going with my monumental task  I get a bit edgy.

So here I go.

Let me start with the graphic novels I finished, the first was Avengers Vs. Thanos, it was mainly written and illustrated by comic book legend Jim Starlin, it compiles some of the early runnings of the Avengers and Thanos. It includes characters we did not see on the cinematic version, like Adam Warlock and Captain Mar-Vell.

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In all it is a thrilling collection, for me, it marks the 100th item that I read in this eleventh year of my project.

Here is the infographic sheet.

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The next graphic novel was a small collection of stories involving one of my favorite characters, Drizzt Do’urden, this particular collection was written by R.A. Salvatore, creator of the infamous drow, in collaboration with his son Geno Salvatore and beautifully illustrated by Agustin Padilla.

The story is related to the book I am currently reading, Neverwinter, but more on that later.

Here are the main cover and the infographic sheet.

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The cover artist is Gonzalo Flores.

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The last graphic novel I read was Batman: Earth One, written by the now legendary author Geoff Johns if you can read his run on Green Lantern, just amazing, and illustrated by the incredibly talented Gary Frank.

I really enjoy this alternative view of one of my favorite characters of all time.

The main cover

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And the infographic sheet.

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Right now I am working on two things.

The first is the second book of the Neverwinter Saga, following Drizzt in his perilous battle against the dark forces of the treacherous sorceress Sylora Salm, I am currently on page 246, and  I plan to finish it over the weekend.

The other thing is the graphic novel Batman: The Black Mirror, written by the incredibly talented Scott Snyder, some of the best stories from recent years about the Dark Knight have been written by this guy.

And to top it off it is illustrated by two of the best in the industry, Jock and Francesco Francavilla, I just started early this morning, but it is mind-blowing.

 

Now let us talk about numbers.

My current total for the eleventh year is 15,419 pages, which is fantastic, but I am still 28 days behind schedule, but worry not, I have a contingency plan in place to close that gap.

On the other gigantic milestone, I am currently chasing, which is reaching 250,000 pages of total reading for lost in a million pages, a goal that started way back in 2008.

I am glad to say that my current total is 248, 446 pages, that is only 1,554 pages to go.

And according to my calculations, if everything holds steady, I will reach this number on Friday, March 8.

It could be before that, and hopefully, it will not be later.

Now to focus on my book and get shit done.

Have a pleasant and cozy weekend.

azr.

(Y-11) Officially back from hiautus

Well, I am officially back from my break from writing on this blog, almost a week after what I have planned initially, but who is counting.

I have so many things to get into, and honestly, I do not know where to begin.

So I’ll try to start with what I have been reading and take it from there.

Currently, I am working on two things, the second book on the Neverwinter Saga, starting the now infamous Drow Drizzt Do’Urden, with the legendary city of Neverwinter, reduced to rubble, and the constant attack of a not so friendly Lich, Drizzt must learn to trust his new companions in order to get out of this one alive.

It is hard to read this fantastic saga and not have those familiar faces to tag along with the lone Drow in his eternal quest for redemption, I especially miss King Bruenor, dwarves are some of my favorite fantasy characters of all time, it does not matter which universe they inhabited, they are always so cool, I think it has to do with the beard.

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Right now I am at page 187 of 363, my reading has slowed down a bit, but I have all of the intentions of rearranging my schedule to fit in more reading time.

There are still two books left on the Neverwinter Saga, Charon’s Claw and The Last Threshold, after finishing these two I have a conundrum ahead of me, jump right back into reading The Malazan Book of the Fallen or read Jerusalem by Alan Moore.

For now, I’ll focus on what is in front of me.

The other thing I am currently reading is a compilation of the Avengers Vs. Thanos, with the glorious work by the legendary Jim Starlin.

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This is some old school comic books, just amazing.

I am well over the halfway point, and the plan is to finish it this lazy Sunday, well, that is my plan, to squeeze in some reading between episodes of The Umbrella Academy, which started streaming on Friday on Netflix, so, check it out, but not only the series also the fantastic comic book by Gerard Way and Gabriel Bá.

That is for what I am currently working on.

Also, I finished a couple of graphic novels.

The third volume of Robert Venditti run on Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps, part of the Rebirth series of DC Comics, I think I have said it before, Mr. Venditti was born to write Green Lantern.

Here is the infographic sheet generated with Bookly.

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The other graphic novel I finished was the second volume of B.P.R.D.: The Plague of Frogs, and it is not enough words to describe it.

What a complex and beautifully haunting piece of modern horror literature, I love that although the characters are immersed in a fantasy horror world, they do not lose complexity or depth to tell the story, in fact, the underlying conflict in each one of them make the story that much more vibrant.

If you haven’t read any of this work or Hellboy for that matter, you are missing out on a monumental series.

Here is the infographic sheet generated with Bookly.

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And a couple of Mike Mignola covers just for the beauty of it.

 

Once I finish Avengers Vs. Thanos, I’ll jump into the third volume of the Plague of Frogs, I am hooked.

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Now lets talk of some of my numbers for this eleventh year of reading.

First off, and since I have started using Bookly at the start of this year, the app has been keeping track of the time I actually spend reading, and so far I have rung in over 60 hours of active reading.

You can see in the stats below, things like reading speed and total pages, and my current streak of 48 straight days of reading.

screenshot_20190217-0714401644480396.jpgSo far it has been a handy tool to keep track of my reading, and if you are a bit obsessive like I am, you will definitely fall in love with this app.

Now for some total numbers of my reading so far.

My total for this year is closing into 15,000 pages.

14,667 to be precise, just 333 pages to go.

Still, I am a bit behind schedule, 27 days to be precise, all of my effort to close the gap these past few weeks have not been what I hope for, but I am confident this will turn around shortly.

But the other event that has been ringing in my head for the past few weeks is the impending goal of reaching the first quarter of my reading, that is 250,000 total pages.

Right now, I sit on 247,694 pages, that is 2,306 pages to go, and according to my calculations, and if all stays the same, I will reach my goal by March 5.

And then, all-out party.

Of course, I plan to reach before that date.

I have so many things to keep me motivated for the upcoming months, like the release of the new American Gods season, March 11 by the way, the reboot of Hellboy starting the delightful David Harbour,  April 12 by the way, and the new series based on the work of Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, Good Omens, premiering on May in Prime Video.

And to top it off, I will return to one of my favorites sections of my blog, Caffeine Pilgrimage, with two new places Casa Polanco and  Boston Tea Bar.

So many things to do, of course, all of this between my reading.

Now I’ll get back to enjoying my Sunday.

Being back to my plotting and my writing is lovely.

azr.

 

 

(Y-11) The Malazan situation.

I made the decision to focus on finishing Deadhouse Gates before the 24in28 readathon, which on the weekend of January 26, so I can start my reading session with a fresh book.

In this case that will be Gauntlgrym, the first book of the Neverwinter Saga, following the exploits of one of my favorite characters, Drizzt Do’Urden.

So I have about 15 days to finish, and my reading outlook looks like this.

I’ll probably squeeze some graphic novels between reading sessions, but the main focus is to finish with this amazing book and get ready for the readathon.

Now back to it.

azr.

(Y-11) The First 10,000 pages

I am so excited that I finally reach the first milestone of my eleventh year of this project.

It was the fastest of all of the years that I have been keeping track of, remember I started this personal quest back on 2008.

In took me 84 days to reach it, and 2 books, 36 comic books, and 40 graphic novels to sum-up that number of pages.

Now my entire focus is to reach the first 250,000 pages, which is currently under 6,000 pages to go.

Well, yesterday’s reading was another success, 191 total pages, and I finished the third volume of Archer & Armstrong form the Valiant Comics Universe.

It just keeps on getting better and better.

Here are the stats from Bookly.

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On the book front, I reached page 252, that is past 1/3 of the total length of the books, and with this goal achieved, I am now focusing on giving priority to finishing this amazing chapter of the Malazan Book of the Fallen.

With that in mind, I set a due date, it is next Saturday, January 12.

That is 56 pages a day, no excuses and no other reading before I reach that daily number, I know it sounds pretty strict, but I love to put that sort of pressure on myself.

After finishing this second book, I am contemplating getting into the next chapter of one of my favorite character in fantasy, Drizzt Do’Urden.

The next four books, Gauntlgrym, Neverwinter, Charon’s Claw, and The Last Threshold.

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And one graphic novel, Neverwinter Tales, comprise the storyline known as The Neverwinter Saga.

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This will be an interlude because after finishing this saga of the rogue Drow, I’ll jump right back into The Malazan Book of the Fallen, and the pound thru every book left.

Well, now I’ll get back to reading, celebrating my huge achievement and hopefully watching the Indianapolis Colts move on to the next round of the NFL playoffs.

Happy Readings!!!

azr.

(Y-10) feeling the good vibe

I couldn’t be happier for the recent resurgence of my page progress, for this, the tenth year of my crazy little project.

Two really spectacular things happened these last few days.

First of all, I finished both the graphic novel, Saga of the Swamp Thing Vol.1 and the book, The Lone Drow, over the course of the weekend.

Some genuinely mesmerizing and compelling stories in their own right.

The real value of an excellent author is that he or she can take what may appear a run of the mill idea and transform it into a profound and profoundly poetic study of our own fears, hopes and the strange monsters that we create to cope with an imperfect world.

So, I genuinely urge you to read more fantasy, horror and comic books, and especially to read between the lines to find the hidden messages.

The Second thing is that I have officially broken the 16,000-page mark, 16,180 to be precise, I feel that finally, this boat is catching a rhythm.

For this week I also have big plans, to finish a couple of Graphic Novels, the first on the list is Neil Gaiman’s Midnight Days, which I have already started and to make matters even more connected it kicks off with a Swamp Thing story.

The second graphic novel is the first volume of the critical acclaim run by author Ta-Nehisi Coates of Black Panther, with the quick glance I gave it seems really promising.

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On the book side of things, I expect to finish the eighteen book of The Legend of Drizzt Saga, and the closing chapter of the thrilling Hunter’s Blade Trilogy, The Two Swords, the last book left some pretty nail-biting cliffhangers.

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And just to top off the day, I received, only a few hours ago, my vinyl copy of Father John Misty latest album, God’s Favorite Customer, in all its red glory.

I’ll take it for a spin tomorrow.

Happy Readings!!!

azr.

(Y-10) let’s get things rolling.

Early this morning I finally finished The Thousand Orcs, it is great to once again follow the perilous adventures of Legendary Drow Drizzt.

This book just pushed me past the 15,000 page mark for this year, 15,362 to be precise.

So, to start today’s session I’ll sit outside for awhile and start reading the 18th book of The Legend of Drizzt Saga.

Happy Readings!!!

azr.

P.S.

The new Father John Misty album is available for streaming, just something more to round this beautiful morning.

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