If there's one thing I've learned about Jonathan Hickman after the last few years of reading his work, it'...moreReview also posted at Girls Read Comics Too.
If there's one thing I've learned about Jonathan Hickman after the last few years of reading his work, it's that you will get frustrated and wonder if he even knows what the hell he's doing, but then the day comes, that wonderful, glorious day, when everything clicks. Story lines come together and create something so big, you have to wonder how he does it over and over again.
East of West is his most refined and elegant work so far.
Here, the wait to see plot threads come together isn't so long (or so frustrating). Though there is a much bigger story at play, volume one ends with a sort of closure, a sort of understanding. Death may walk away toward an ever growing plot, but the promise that this volume is named for is understood. One tiny thread has been tied off, and that is enough to satisfy me and keep me reading and wanting more, more, more.
I've only ever experienced Hickman within the Marvel universe, so to see him build a world so effortlessly in the first issue alone is incredible. A large part of that has to do with Dragotta's artwork. It marries western and sci-fi in a way that just plain makes sense. The color palette is muted but beautiful. I need to track down some of his other work, just to see his take on superheroes.
I thought about starting to add this to my pull list, but I think I'll be waiting for the trades. I enjoy Hickman much better when I don't have to wait for a year to see where his stories are going.
(Volume provided by NetGalley; this has had no effect on this review.)(less)
Here's the problem I found with Beggars in Spain: while the ideas and philosophy and ethics are deep, everything else, from the characters and plot to...moreHere's the problem I found with Beggars in Spain: while the ideas and philosophy and ethics are deep, everything else, from the characters and plot to the writing itself, is shallow. There is no meat to the characters at all, which is painfully evident in Leshia as we see the world through her eyes. There is nobody to really root for, and the narrative is so detached from the events that I didn't find myself caring for anything at all.
Which is a shame, because there is some really interesting philosophy in this.
Also, it's ridiculously obvious that the cover is an altered picture of Angelina Jolie.(less)
On the outside, Mal is your typical angry teen, the boy people think will snap one day and go on a school s...moreOriginally posted at The Wandering Fangirl.
On the outside, Mal is your typical angry teen, the boy people think will snap one day and go on a school shooting spree. On the inside, Mal is an angry, dejected, incredibly sad boy whose world is turned upside when his father leaves, and things are made even worse when he’s abducted by aliens.
Or is he? I chose to believe everything was true, but you could take it either way.
At 150 pages First Day on Earth is a short, quick read, but it packs a punch with what it does. Mal’s turmoil and angry view of the rest of humanity is easy to understand and sympathize with. It makes it easier to take the journey with him when he meets meets Hooper, a guy in his abduction support group, who may or may not be an alien stranded on Earth. Already feeling detached from his fellow human beings, Mal thinks the answer to all his problems will be to leave Earth with Hooper.
However, the short length of the book fails the narrative once you’re in the last fifty or so pages. Mal thinks and acts a certain way for the entire book, and his torn up emotions are an anchor as the book moves along. Then all of a sudden, without any visible change (except a girl actually talks to and befriends him), Mal changes his mind on something that drives the last half of the book and it all just ends. I enjoyed the book until the very end, but it’s definitely worth a read.(less)
What a hilarious, delightful little book. Gratuity Tucci has to write an essay discussing what the true mea...moreOriginally posted at The Wandering Fangirl.
What a hilarious, delightful little book. Gratuity Tucci has to write an essay discussing what the true meaning of Smekday, the day aliens conquered Earth, means to her. Thus begins the hilarious and often sweet story of Gratuity's journey to find her mother, accompanied by an alien who calls himself J.Lo and her mother's cat. The adventure is huge, the aliens hilarious, the action thrilling, and every picture and drawing littered about made this an incredibly charming read. I totally recommend it to everyone. (less)
Between glowing reviews on Goodreads and all the awards it’s received, I don’t know why I took so long gett...moreOriginally posted at The Wandering Fangirl.
Between glowing reviews on Goodreads and all the awards it’s received, I don’t know why I took so long getting around to reading The House of the Scorpion. The novel follows the tale of Matteo Alacran, a boy who was cloned from El Patron, drug lord and head of a country called Opium. The world building in this dystopian future is lovely; not too much exposition, but enough backstory that you know how they came to be where they were.
As we follow Matt’s life from his “birth” to his teens, we’re smacked with all the familiar question when it comes to clones: are they really human? Will nature or nurture decide who they become? All these questions are handled with care and wonderful writing by Nancy Farmer. I fell for Matt immediately; he was a completely filled in character, from his own questions about his mortality and morality to the way he interacts with other people and the world around him.
The only problem I had with The House of the Scorpion was about the last quarter of the book, where a whole host of new characters are introduced, and Matt is thrown into an even newer situation for no reason that I could see. I understood how he got there, but it felt like the novel could have ended on the same note it did without that interlude.
Overall, though, The House of the Scorpion was an interesting and engaging take on clones, dystopias, and what it means to be human.(less)