Our second summer reading list come from Danny Zabbal, Cartoonist and Illustrator living in Toronto.
Sequential: What is your latest project?
My webcomic, Journey in the 6th Dimension. It’s the story of Phoebe Ashling and her wanderings through an endless void called The 6th Dimension, a hub of infinite universes and possibilities. Guided by her friend Drake, Phoebe peers through the cosmic veil and observes the lives and stories of people from different worlds. Every tale teaches her something new, bringing her closer and closer to understanding the very nature of the time and space itself.
What books you have recently read or are planning to read?
Lullabies for Little Criminals by Heather O’Neil. I had been meaning to read it for a while, the title alone teased my curiosity. So far, it’s been a joy. What stands out is the writing, Ms. O’Neil has a wonderful prose style. It reminds me of all the girls I used to have a crush on in the sixth grade. I find it’s really rare these days that I form an emotional connection with the stuff that I read. It’s nice to have a change.
Want to read:
Endgame by Darek Jensen. From what I understand, it’s an assessment of all the insane and horrible things we’re doing to the planet, and how we’re doomed to destroy ourselves. According to my girlfriend this is a life-rearranging, worldview changing book. Which is exciting. It’s been a while since I’ve had a revelation, I can’t wait to get into it. Then again, the foreboding thunder crackling clouds of apocalypse can keep me up at night. I guess cold sweats and paranoia are a small price to pay.
Ladies and Gentlemen, The Bible! by Jonathan Goldstein. I actually met Jonathan Goldstein a couple of weeks ago, I really did. He was promoting this very book with a live performance at the Rivoli, in Toronto. It wasn’t a reading or anything, it was some kind of deluxe book signing, with improv comedy intermissions. Anyway, afterward I saw him sitting by the window with his entourage. I approached him to say hi and tell him that I really admire his work. The whole exchange should have lasted five seconds. It didn’t though, I choked. Somehow I lost all reason and sputtered something like, “I really like the way you say mayonnaise. You’ve said it a few times, you know, on This American Life. It’s cool. I like how you talk. I like Wiretap too. The CBC is cool.” He replied with, “I’ve never said mayonnaise.” There was a horribly awkward pause, followed by, “Tell you what pal, why don’t you get a drink on Penguin books.” It was probably one of the most embarrassing moments of my life, but I still want to read his book.
Billy Liar by Keith Waterhouse. It’s an old book from 1959. I’ve been meaning to read it for a while. I read the summary somewhere and it sounded kind of fun and interesting… in an mid-twentieth century english literature kind of a way. I like stories about hapless daydreamers, they make me happy.
The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster. I’ve already read this book, it’s been favorite since I was eight or so years old. It is, I don’t mind saying, a perfect fable. It’s imaginative, funny and it has these really great illustrations. I still marvel at how creative Juster’s world is. World is a word bandied about fantasy and science-fiction pretty loosely these days. A lot of creators get called visionary without any real vision or originality. Juster is different, he’s the real thing. His world is truly unique. Whenever I read this book I feel as though everything exists beyond the pages. It could be the nostalgia talking, but that’s how I feel.
Any upcoming events/upcoming publications? What is your next project?
I’m in the process of condensing the past year of my webcomic into a spiffy printed edition. It’ll have all sorts of value-added content
Danny’s work also appears in the TCAF edition of Sequential.