Unfortunately, not as awesome as the previous volume for me but on par with the earlier volumes. I was a little bit thrown by the design of the Neutri...moreUnfortunately, not as awesome as the previous volume for me but on par with the earlier volumes. I was a little bit thrown by the design of the Neutrino's as they felt REAL 80s to me, but I overlooked it by the cool Fugitoid plotline as well as the setting up of the epic City Fall arc!
Some times you have to acknowledge the fact that you are reading a series about turtles fighting a big brain and accept the character designs you are given;-)(less)
Kevin Eastman is doing some interesting tricks with the narrative to kind of acknowledge the original TMNT s...moreThis was as enjoyable as the first volume!
Kevin Eastman is doing some interesting tricks with the narrative to kind of acknowledge the original TMNT series that came before this reboot.
Familiar characters are getting set up: Casey Jones, April O'Neil, Baxter Stockman and the Mousers.
I will also say that he is doing a good job at establishing the dynamics of the turtles themselves as well as sowing the seeds of conflicts to come. I never realized the emotional truth of each turtle, and to be fair they may not have been as evident, but I'm really enjoying what Kevin Eastman is doing especially with the inherent conflict between Leonardo's blind faith in Splinter and Donatello's pragmatism and reliance on science. Michelangelo is developing into the heart of the team while Raphael hasn't really gotten to explore his issues yet.
So I met Francesco Francavilla at my first and only Comic Con experience at Emerald Con. He was sitting at a table right when I walked in the door and...moreSo I met Francesco Francavilla at my first and only Comic Con experience at Emerald Con. He was sitting at a table right when I walked in the door and there was an employee trying to get people to get his work signed. It seemed...a little humiliating for him. Additionally, in the state of awe and wonder I was in I got him accidentally confused with Francis Manupal, who was the artist on the New 52 Flash.
So I got a signature from Francesco Francavilla...it must still be with my Comic-Con stuff...even though I didn't realize at the time who he was. In the year that followed, I realized who he is and how amazing his art was. For example, he worked on Scott Snyder's "Black Mirror" and is currently drawing "Afterlife with Archie".
Simply part, his artwork is lush, evocative, and deeply cinematic.
The Black Beetle is his creator owned comic featuring a character that is a pastiche and homage to pulpy noir classics of the 40s and 50s. While the writing is a little thin, the story is more than carried by Francavilla's artwork. On each the covers which are definitely frame-able prints, he writes "Written and Directed by Francesco Francavilla" which I think is entirely accurate. Artist/writers are such visual beasts that the story is truly told just as much with words as it is with art.
Jeff Lemire is another great example of this.
In the end, the overall plot of The Black Beetle which, as I said, was a tad bit thin is the reason this is not a five star review. That being said, the Dark Horse hardback of this work is gorgeous and I don't regret buying it for even one minute! (less)
For be...moreTiger & Bunny originally started as an anime.
Then a one-shot manga was written.
Then a series started.
This is the first book in that series.
For being an anime adapted into manga, it was better than I expected it to be. There were times were the story seemed a little choppy/hard to follow, but by the end I understood everything that was happening.
The premise of the story itself is interesting in that in the future, a small group of humans have developed super powers and they are called NEXT. These superheroes find corporate sponsors and their heroic acts are filmed for live television where they earn points based on their heroic deeds. All of this is in a competitive setting for one of the NEXT to be crowned King of Heroes! The story follows the exploits of the first team-up to occur, which are the titular characters. One is an old hero and one is a young one.
The first volume had more depth than I was expecting and I actually enjoyed it more than I thought I would. (less)
Prince Puggly of Spud and the Kingdom of Spiff is the second novel in verse from Mr. Robert Paul Weston. After reading Zorgamazoo and falling desperat...morePrince Puggly of Spud and the Kingdom of Spiff is the second novel in verse from Mr. Robert Paul Weston. After reading Zorgamazoo and falling desperately in love with that book, I of course needed to read this second book in verse, not at all related to the plot and characters of Zorgamazoo.
While Zorgamazoo was a pinch of Seuss mixed with a whole lot of Roald Dahl, Prince Puggly of Spud and the Kingdom of Spiff was a whole lot of Seuss mixed with a dallop of Dahl. Zorgamazoo was darker in tone and more complex in plot and nearly a hundred pages longer. Prince Puggly of Spud and the Kingdom of Spiff was far lighter in tone, somewhat superficial in plot (although not superficial in moral:-), and as I mentioned almost a hundred pages shorter than Zorgamazoo.
In my heart, I probably loved Zorgamazoo more because there is more to love and the characters go through a much more harrowing storyline that it is hard not to get invested in everything about Zorgamazoo with your total heart because Robert Paul Weston will break it slowly and put it back together again.
Prince Puggly of Spud and the Kingdom of Spiff is not a very complex story, in fact, you will likely have a clue as to the moral before finishing the first chapter. However, it is much more FUN to read out loud because the characters here are outlandish and dramatic and if you're game you can use A LOT of really funny voices. This book would make children laugh out loud if read well and hopefully teach them a lesson that definitely needs to be taught.
Some books will make you laugh. Some books will make you cry.
Robert Paul Weston has written one of each, in verse no less, and I love both of them in their own special way! (less)
The sad truth is that there are years of my life that did not have Zorgamazoo by Robert Paul Weston in them.
The silver lining is that Zorgamazoo by Ro...moreThe sad truth is that there are years of my life that did not have Zorgamazoo by Robert Paul Weston in them.
The silver lining is that Zorgamazoo by Robert Paul Weston is part of my life now!
This was a recommendation that came from a co-worker because she felt it seemed like my kind of book. I was intrigued by her description. Later I went on to Amazon because they had a preview of the book and I read it out loud to my wife, who was just as intrigued as I was!
From just reading the preview, I couldn't get Zorgamazoo out of my head. I was baffled as to why Robert Paul Weston and ANY of his books were not in my life. Upon closer inspection, in addition to Zorgamazoo, he wrote another fantasy book in rhyme (Prince Puggly of Spud and the Kingdom of Spiff), a hard-boiled fairy tale noir (Dust City), and a book that Buzzfeed described as “Stunning…a bit like if you took Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Monsters Inc. and shoved them in a TARDIS.” (The Creature Department).
After this little investigation it was clear to me that Robert Paul Weston had access to my brain and wrote all the books that I would dearly love to read! So I decided to buy all of his books for my birthday because even though I had read only the preview for Zorgamazoo, I had a hunch that this guy would become one of my favorite authors of all time!
So then...what did I think of Zorgamazoo???
Well, I actually started reading in the hospital of all places. My wife needed to get a RhoGAM shot to prevent her O- blood from attacking our baby like it was a virus. Her shot was scheduled for a Sunday which was weird because the department that usually takes care of RhoGAM shots was closed that day. Long story short-ish, we did a lot of waiting in the hospital room on Sunday...my birthday.
But I brought Zorgamazoo and so I asked my wife if I could start reading it out loud to her to pass the time and because we were anxious to see what this book was like and so I started reading out loud a story that was "stranger than strange". For those that don't know, Zorgamazoo is a nearly 300 page fantasy written entirely in verse. I don't feel the book truly comes alive until each and every word is spoken. Within minutes my wife and I are deeply in love with this book.
Also in love with this book is our tiny baby who was kicking and spinning around to show his love for this book as his mom and dad took turns reading each chapter out loud. It was a fantastic way to spend the morning! It was hilarious as well as from time to time, a nurse would come into the room to give us a status report and we would stop reading...mid-rhyme...only to continue again immediately upon the nurse exiting the room.
We continued to read chapters from Zorgamazoo out loud each night that week before going to bed. All of us excited to hear more. I don't want to spoil any of the plot points but I do want to say this about the book.
Katrina Katrell, one of the heroes of this book, is a wonderful and much needed character in children's literature. She is a strong, quirky, fiercely independent girl who instantly has your heart! Robert Paul Weston creates a great female character by simply telling a fantastic story that features an amazing character. There is nothing contrived about the story he is telling.
Mortimer Yorgle, the other hero of this book, will have your heart for a different set of reasons. Among them is that Robert Paul Weston again thwarts reader expectations by presenting a very different male hero in a fantasy story. And don't even get me started on Morty's relationship with his father! Do you know what a strange sensation it is to be speaking in verse AND crying at the same time!!!
But that is the magic of Zorgamazoo!
You would think that writing a nearly 300 page fantasy story completely in verse would produce, at least in parts, a story that felt contrived in some spots but that is not the case. The particular brand of genius that is Robert Paul Weston's mind has created an organic story with such heart that you will laugh, you will cry, and you will sit in awe that someone has produced this book which deserves to be a classic right alongside the books of Roald Dahl and Dr. Seuess.
So what are you waiting for???
Go read this book right now! Out loud! To strangers...or friends...or just to yourself, but do yourself a favor and bring Zorgamazoo by Robert Paul Weston into your life!!! (less)
I loved him as a kid when he appeared on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle cartoon and I love him now! Stan Saka...moreThis was fantastic!
I love Usagi Yojimbo!
I loved him as a kid when he appeared on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle cartoon and I love him now! Stan Sakai does an incredible job with his art in that one panel, it is adorable and cutesy and in the next panel, Usagi is looking like a bad-ass cutting off villainous heads!
I had attempted to read Grasscutter before which is actually pretty late in the series and I think I felt a bit lost or at the very least, I know that I missed a lot of things that Sakai does with his world-building.
This volume starts from the beginning and it was AMAZING!!!
Even thought I've finished reading this gorgeous thick volume reprint of Elephantmen, it is hard for me to articulate exactly how it made me feel.
On...moreEven thought I've finished reading this gorgeous thick volume reprint of Elephantmen, it is hard for me to articulate exactly how it made me feel.
On one hand, the concept and commitment to the concept is incredibly audacious! The images of these large anthropomorphic animals is hypnotizing and I can't seem to get them out of my head. The actual story itself is engaging enough although all the reviews I've read suggest this first volume is essentially a warm-up to what is to come.
The only turn-offs for me are that the sexual aspects of the series makes me a tad uncomfortable. It wasn't actually anything more than implied but it still makes me scratch my head a bit.
I'm willing to give the series a try still because when Elephantmen is good, it is fantastic!(less)