If you haven't read Scott Sigler's book version of Infected, you're missing out. No worries, you don't have to have read the book before picking up thIf you haven't read Scott Sigler's book version of Infected, you're missing out. No worries, you don't have to have read the book before picking up the graphic novel but like any book to comic adaptation, you can only translate so much between mediums.
Let me just say that so far, issue one was fantastic. No, it was more than that. It's fucking fantastic.
The artwork here is really terrific and overall Sigler's story translates very well to graphic novel format. There's a wonderfully slow buildup of dread here that fans of the full length novel will really appreciate. Now if you're the type who loves a little of the old "ultra-violence" from the start, you'll love the direction that this series will eventually go towards. You'll also appreciate the short scene of carnage in this issue.
Parents, if you don't want your kids to read about blood, violence, and things along those lines, you'll want to skip this series if you or they are overly sensitive. Perry's big finale at the end of the book will have you wincing. That said, I feel that as long as you read this along with them (and you will/should want to read it because it's Scott Freaking Sigler) there won't be too much here for you to quibble at. ...more
This was one of two Davis books that I read within a twenty four hour period this weekend, with the only reason I didn't finish the third one being thThis was one of two Davis books that I read within a twenty four hour period this weekend, with the only reason I didn't finish the third one being that at some point I did have to sleep. These books were that addicting.
This book picks up where the last left off, with Sophie trying to help her sister Leah while also attempting to win back the affections of Anatoly, the guy she mistook for a homicidal murderer in book one. (Hey, a girl can make a mistake, right?) I'm going to be somewhat spoilerish and say that this book has one of the the cutest sex scenes I've read in a while and that for Anatoly to have that type of equipment, I can see where Sophie gave in. (Once you read the book you'll understand what I'm talking about!)
Part of what I've liked about this series is that Sophie isn't your typical heroine. It's not easy to find a series with a character that's Jewish with a mixed heritage of white and black parents, but what makes this so good is that at no point does Davis really throw it in our faces in this series or put anyone on a platform. Sophie has nothing to prove about her heritage and her acceptance of herself is as simple as breathing. I've read books that try to pen a character with a varying degree of uniqueness, but so many of them make these things something that seems to be the most important thing to the character despite whatever else is going on. Davis doesn't do that, which is why I could see Sophie stepping out of the pages into real life.
The mystery here is fairly good and despite seeing her as annoying in the previous book, I adored Sophie's sister Leah in this entry. She goes through a lot of changes as a character and you can't help but cheer her on.
You could probably read this without having read the first book in the series, as I originally started with the fifth book (Vows, Vendettas and a Little Black Dress) without much difficulty. You'll miss out on some of the character details, but the mystery is self-contained enough to where you can still have fun reading it. This is absolutely worth putting on your TBR pile. ...more
I'd discovered Kyra Davis through the Amazon Vine program, which prompted me to purchase the first three books in the Sophie Katz series. This past weI'd discovered Kyra Davis through the Amazon Vine program, which prompted me to purchase the first three books in the Sophie Katz series. This past weekend I finally got the chance to catch up with my TBR pile, with this being one of the books on top. 24 hours later I've finished the first one and worked my way through the second one. This series kicks major butt.
What do I like about this series so much? How about it's fabulous main character, Sophie? She's smart, funny, and is snarky without seeming unnatural. (As much as I love the snarky gals in books, we all know that no one can have that much snark on tap 24/7 without being too much of a fictional character.) Sophie's the kind of gal that you'd not only expect to meet in real life, but you'd probably also get a kick out of having a few drinks with her. It also doesn't hurt that her love interest is a pretty smooth and drool worthy guy.
The mystery was nice and while I admit that it doesn't match the ones we get in the later books, it's engaging and it kept me reading because I just wanted to know what happened next. There's a good plot here and this is a nice setup to the rest of the series.
Overall, this is one of those books that's best when not taken too seriously. (The title includes coffee references, so if you're looking for And Then There Were None then you're barking up the wrong tree.) This is pretty much up the alley of readers looking for a good chick lit read along the lines of Sophie Kinsella, mixed with a heaping dose of mystery. It's earned a place on my permanent bookshelf, that's for sure. The used bookstore isn't getting this one....more
I got this at the same time as I did volume 2, so I dove into this immediately after finishing the previous one. (Now I just have to wait for my otherI got this at the same time as I did volume 2, so I dove into this immediately after finishing the previous one. (Now I just have to wait for my other volumes to get here!)
The artwork in this is just as good in the previous volumes, so if you've been a fan of the artwork then you're going to love this volume.
Where this volume really shines is in the further character development. If you've been waiting for lots of great action scenes, this is the volume you'll definitely want to read. Emp has a lot of kick butt scenes and the volume ends on a pretty awesome one. I can't elaborate without getting too spoilery, but it's probably her coolest one so far and it emphasizes the mystery of the suit and what it's capable of doing. We get a little explanation towards the suit's tendency to short out on Emp as well as more background on Thug and Ninjette. It's a really great volume and it really makes me impatient for the next volume.
This is one that you definitely have to get, although unlike the previous volume it's not one that you could easily and instantly get into without having read anything prior. You could if you really wanted to, but you'd be missing out on quite a bit of story. ...more
I have to admit that I'm a big fan of indie comics in general. Hopeless-Savages, Koko be Good, and Blue Monday... I love them all. Friends With Boys cI have to admit that I'm a big fan of indie comics in general. Hopeless-Savages, Koko be Good, and Blue Monday... I love them all. Friends With Boys can now be added to this list. I literally sat and devoured this in one night, flipping back to scenes and images that I particularly loved, especially Maggie's interactions with her family.
One of the best things about this comic was that the main character isn't some picture-perfect character with flawless skin and great hair. (You know the ones I'm talking about- the characters who are supposed to be outcasts but look like models instead.) Maggie does have good skin, but most importantly she isn't perfect. She has hair that sticks straight up and a huge nose, which I found refreshing. It makes her that much easier to instantly relate to as an average person. I also loved Maggie's expressions throughout the book. She's a very expressive character and it shows through her facial features. Another thing that I loved about the artwork is that it reminds me of so many different artists without actually copying their style. Hicks might have potentially been inspired by them, but her artwork style is all her own. (Especially reminds me of Koko be Good and Blue Monday.)
The story line here is pretty interesting, although I'd like to warn people that the ghost part of the story is never fully explored. I'm not sure if that means there will be another volume, but if you're hoping for a big ghost story then you'll be disappointed. She (the ghost) does factor into the story, but not as the main grab. No, the biggest and most basic focus of the story is Maggie growing up and adapting to life outside of her comfort zone. Hicks does a good job of showing this off, from Maggie's awkward first day to her attempts to deal with some of the more major issues of her life.
This is only a brief glimpse into Maggie's world and I hope that this won't be the last I see of her, but this does work as a stand alone book for the most part. People wanting a definitive ending will undoubtedly get frustrated at it and I won't entirely blame them. This doesn't have the clear cut ending that I normally want my stories to have, but it's satisfying enough that I won't begrudge it. I loved this manga and I would love to see more like it, if not more of Maggie herself....more
Honey badger might not care that it's become an internet sensation and now a must-read book, but you absolutely will! I had pretty high hopes for thisHoney badger might not care that it's become an internet sensation and now a must-read book, but you absolutely will! I had pretty high hopes for this book and I have to say, it didn't disappoint. If you aren't aware of the youtube video "Nastyass Honey Badger", then you absolutely should. (Be aware, there is adult language in this video.)
If you've seen the video, you know what to expect. If not, then I'll clue you into the awesomeness that this book contains. While you probably won't hear Randall narrating his own show on Animal Planet anytime soon (although we can hope), this book is full of wonderful humor and great insights on animal life. Frankly put, this is a book about animals that's written for those of us who aren't into the long Latin names or dry paragraphs about animal habits. Randall condenses all of these facts into a few pages per animal and it's incredibly fun. If I wasn't won over by the honey badger entry at the beginning of the book, I was won over by the hilarity in the following ones.
I do have to warn parents that they'll probably want to read through this to go over the language and some of the phrases in the book. (One entry suggests that Don Knotts had erm, illicit relations with a bat, but in a non-malicious way.) It's all in good fun and none of it is malicious, but this won't be appropriate for some younger readers.
This was just awesome to read and would make for an excellent late-late Christmas gift. (Or a late Boxing Day gift. Or a Valentine's gift.)
I'd been saving this book as something to look forward to after finals. It seemed like exactly the type of fluffy read that I crave after hours of pouI'd been saving this book as something to look forward to after finals. It seemed like exactly the type of fluffy read that I crave after hours of pouring over stiff and serious academic textbooks. I was very pleased to find that not only did it give me exactly what I was hoping for, it gave me more.
The book is written by Carol Goodman, author of several mysteries and thillers, but for some reason this was released under a pseudonym. The original title of this was [[ASIN:B005VQFQMU Incubus]], so if you're one of the people who got the UK release, this is the same book. (Just want to make sure that nobody picks up the same book by mistake!)
While this is shelved as a paranormal romance, I was pretty enthused to see that like others have said, it does tend to take on more of an urban fantasy feel at times. The sizzling hot sex scenes are what really reminds us of its PNR classification and I'm glad to say that the sex scenes are chock full of chemistry and sexy goodness. They're well written, which is good since a poorly written or even worse, boring sex scene can absolutely ruin a book and its tone. It's the smaller elements of this book that really make it come to life, such as the iron mice (Ralph!) and the magical creatures that abound in Fairwick, both known and unknown. I'm really hoping that some of my more favorite characters (such as a certain vampiric professor) will show up and be fleshed out more in the future volumes. He's just a good example of one of those characters that aren't really dwelled upon in the books but you can't help but get drawn to them nonetheless.
The only drawbacks is that at times I kind of felt like reaching into the book and giving our heroine a good hard shove for being a little overly oblivious to everything. Some of it I could rationalize or overlook, but some of the bigger plot elements were so obvious that they all but had a neon sign blinking "sinister" or "obvious plot point" over their heads. Normally I wouldn't really be so picky about this, but I really enjoyed this book and the details here are so rich that I can't help but hold it to a higher standard.
Overall this is an absolute treat to read and I really, REALLY can't wait to read the next book in the series. (I might even have to look into importing the next book if the UK ends up getting it before we do.) It's the first part in a trilogy, so I'm pretty enthused about all of this being self-contained and not going on for umpteen million volumes. (Although it seems like the type of thing that the author could go back and revisit once the trilogy is over, however.) This is just a really fun book that I know fans of Kim Harrison, Charlaine Harris, and Sherrilyn Kenyon will probably like....more
I'll admit that this is one of my favorite parts of the series for reasons I can't really divulge due to spoiler reasons. (There's got to be at leastI'll admit that this is one of my favorite parts of the series for reasons I can't really divulge due to spoiler reasons. (There's got to be at least 4-5 people who haven't seen the anime or read the Wikipedia synopsis.) I'm going to review this in two parts: the artwork and the story.
First the artwork: It's gorgeous. This is a pivotal time in the series, so the artwork gets both dreamy and serious accordingly. The splash pages at the beginning of the manga really are fun to look at. A great addition at the end of the manga was the inclusion of several character designs for both Usagi (one being a slightly different haircut!) as well as uniform designs. The sailor fuku uniform wasn't the first choice- there were several different ideas, ranging from skimpy armor to long sleeved sailor suits. I have to say, they made the right choice in the long run.
Story-wise, this was awesome. I loved it. There's still an element of playfulness to this volume but overall the tone here is serious. The romance in this volume is also excellent and I couldn't help but love the finding of the silver crystal. (My favorite part in this arc.)
Overall you can tell that this volume was very lovingly put together by Kodansha. It was clearly designed with the Sailor Moon fanbase in mind, which I whole heartedly appreciate. The translations are also a little easier to read this time around, something that tripped me up in the first volume. This is absolutely a must buy for manga collectors. ...more
I have to say, I've really enjoyed the Sailor V manga. It's such a great look into the thought processes of Takeuchi. In the first volume she played aI have to say, I've really enjoyed the Sailor V manga. It's such a great look into the thought processes of Takeuchi. In the first volume she played around with character designs that would later appear in Sailor Moon. In this volume we can see where she had fun fleshing out the world from the first Sailor Moon arc. (This series ended about the same time as the Sailor Moon manga did, so all of this was drawn way after the Dark Kingdom arc ended.)
It's really neat to see manga like this, where you not only get to see the creator play around with character designs but to also develop their art and storytelling styles as well. It's a pretty fun experience, to be honest. (And of course the artwork is spectacular.)
As far as storyline goes, I found that volume 2 had a tighter plot. You can tell that Takeuchi had a better idea of how the story was going to end, so as a result the characters were better defined and the stories were faster paced. I was a bit sorry to see it end, but it wouldn't have fared well if there were more volumes to the series.
This is an absolute must have for all Sailor Moon and shoujo fans. ...more
I wasn't all that thrilled with the last book in this series, so I took a long break from reading the light novels just so I could clear my head. I haI wasn't all that thrilled with the last book in this series, so I took a long break from reading the light novels just so I could clear my head. I have to admit that if I hadn't already had this book sitting on my shelf, I might not have started back in on the series but now I'm glad that I have. This book was far better than book three was.
What I liked most about this entry was that it addressed the idea of what would happen if Haruhi was never around. Would Kyon really be enjoying his life? Would he still be able to be around the well-endowed Asahina? What would Haruhi be like? I'm glad to say that this book showed a pretty entertaining view of another world and that it's much more engaging and fun than the previous book.
The only downfall is that due to the typical light novel length, the story didn't go into as much detail as I'd want. The alternate world does give us a great look into the main characters, but only a brief one. I kind of wouldn't mind seeing more of that world and how the characters would interact with one another. (Here's hoping that world gets a spin off much like the Evangelion series has spun off of its alternate universes.)
If you're like me and have been sitting on the fence about this book, it's worth reading and diving into the series again. If you're a fan then you've probably already got this book or have it on order. If not, then this is something you've got to have. ...more
I'm reupping the date of the review since I finally got the actual book itself!! :)
It took me a long time to get my hands on a copy of this due to theI'm reupping the date of the review since I finally got the actual book itself!! :)
It took me a long time to get my hands on a copy of this due to the first printing selling out, but it was worth it. This volume is awesome. There's so much going on in this volume that the pacing is actually a lot faster than in previous volumes. (And this is just what Zahler managed to get into it! There's more to the series...)
In this volume we're shown what it's like for Abby and Mark to be married as well as all the typical things of superhero and normal life. There's death, love, and taxes. Lots of taxes. Let me just say that Abby's never had to be around Mark during tax time, so while the idea of watching a fictional character do taxes might not sound entertaining, Zahler makes this a pretty funny bit to read about. The romance between Amazonia and Darkblade is actually the best part of the series, I have to admit. I initially wasn't as into her character as I was for the other characters, but the romance does bring out a lot more to her personality. She's a lot more insecure and naive than previous chapters have let on. (What her people are supposed to wear when meeting the parents is pretty funny.) The volume ends on a great tone that leaves the series open for more volumes to come out. (Oh, and as a bonus most of the chapters have alternate covers drawn by someone other than Zahler, which were pretty fun to look at.)
Overall this was just awesome to read and this is definitely worth tracking down if you're a fan of the series. ...more
I was pleasantly surprised to find that this volume really brought me back into KCDS in a way that I hadn't enjoyed since the first few volumes of theI was pleasantly surprised to find that this volume really brought me back into KCDS in a way that I hadn't enjoyed since the first few volumes of the series, mostly since this volume shows a little background about one of the characters that previously hadn't been as explored as some of the other cast members.
There's really only two stories in this book, with the "Class Cutter" tale being the longest and darkest. (They even changed the color of the volume from yellow to black sort of as a result of this.) CC has to be one of the better stories the series has had so far and also has some pretty amazing artwork. The plot manages to be intriguing without falling into overly predictable patterns and I liked that it gave us a bit of a deeper glimpse into the lives of some of our characters. The second story (involving the gang checking out a haunted hotel) wasn't as intense but was still pretty decent and I think that it was a fitting story to have after the CC episode.
What really intrigued me was that this book drew in many recent (and horrifying) real life acts, such as the Sasebo slashing (which I hadn't heard about until this volume but appears to be an inspiration for this volume) and other horrifying incidents. There was one part that I believe was based off of the Akihabara massacre, which I was familiar with. It really brought a new level of creepiness to the manga since many of the previous stories in KCDS were so over the top that they were pretty unrealistic.
One thing I do feel obligated to point out to fans of Sasaki and Makino is that there's lots of fanservice here as far as they're concerned, so you'll have that going for you as well....more
I have to admit that I held off on reading this book for a while because I wanted it to be the first horror book I read in October. Fiona Dodwell hasI have to admit that I held off on reading this book for a while because I wanted it to be the first horror book I read in October. Fiona Dodwell has a deliciously twisted writing style that is chock full of chills and thrills, so what could start off the Halloween season better than a book like this?
Obsessed is Dodwell's second book and it's awesome. While her first book (The Banishing) showed us that she definitely has the skills to deliver a spine chilling tale, this book shows us that she's definitely improving and gearing up to bring us even more than that. This is a wonderfully creepy story that kept me turning the pages and wondering what would happen next. What I really liked about this book was that the title so aptly described our main characters in the book. Jeff Jones (the seemingly dead guy) is obsessed with tormenting James. James is obsessed with Jeff's death and the reasons behind Jeff's actions.
I do have to say that I felt that the book was a little too short- I couldn't help but wonder what happened next and more about our characters. (I suppose that if you're going to get criticism, reading that the reader wanted more is one of the best ones to receive.) I love novellas, but if Dodwell wanted she could easily expand this world. (And I'd be right there standing in line to read it!)
I know this all sounds like a fangirl gush, but I have to say that I'm unashamedly claiming my fan status. Just like so many of her peers at Damnation Books, Fiona Dodwell is one of the undiscovered jewels of the indie lit crowd. This should definitely be on your "to read" lists this Halloween.
I have to admit that while I was pretty taken with this book and will absolutely buy the next one in the series, it isn't the "grab you from the beginI have to admit that while I was pretty taken with this book and will absolutely buy the next one in the series, it isn't the "grab you from the beginning and never let go" type of read that I was hoping it'd be. What it is though, is a fun read that is worth spending a few afternoons on.
There's been succubi in fiction before, but we don't often see them as the main character or at least as a sympathetic main character. As a result this book ended up being a little more fresh than it might have otherwise been since it does tend to use a lot of the typical tropes you see in fiction. I loved that Georgina had to have sex in order to live and I love that not only did she seem to love the sex she had to have, but that she also didn't love all of the sex she had to have. Being a succubus doesn't mean that you can always choose who you want to sleep with and Mead was perfectly willing to show us that aspect of Georgina's character. (Although mercifully she didn't show us as much as she could have, thankfully.) I also have to say that I was thankful to see that Mead didn't go full-Anita Blake and have Georgina sleeping with everything that swang in her direction. Georgina does have *some* standards.
Georgina's background was also pretty interesting as well and I hope that we get to see more of it as the series progresses. She's got a good origin story and that she's lived through countless years is good fodder for future plot points.
What kept this from being a 4 or 5 star read was that other than Georgina's succubi nature and her killer backstory, there just wasn't a lot here that was original or really stood out from the rest of the urban fantasy regime. It's better written than some of the other books out there and I definitely recommend it and plan on doing so for my customers, but it's not something that I see myself gasping excitedly over as they bring it to the registers. Being overly familiar doesn't make it a bad thing, just something that I might not get as excited over as I would some of the other books out there.
Even so, this is something that has still managed to make it onto my "have to read them all" list. Despite Mead giving us familiar tropes, she has a good style and manages to add enough fresh material to where I'd say that this is a must read for urban fantasy fans. ...more
I'd heard a lot about the Sailor V manga and let me tell you, it's all true. Not only can you see where Takeuchi started toying around with the characI'd heard a lot about the Sailor V manga and let me tell you, it's all true. Not only can you see where Takeuchi started toying around with the character designs for Sailor Moon, but you can also see where some view it as close, but not quite as good as Sailor Moon. (Still worth reading, though!)
First I just have to say that like Sailor Moon, the artwork is gorgeous. It's a little rough in places compared to her later work (especially since the new [[ASIN:1935429744 Sailor Moon]]), but it's still incredibly fun to look at. The story is also interesting since it's both a standalone manga as well as being linked to the SM universe. I have to warn readers that they should take this manga with a grain of salt as far as how it fits into the SM world since you'll see various things that don't match up with what we know about the Sailor Venus in Sailor Moon. This is because Sailor V was initially released before Sailor Moon was and eventually sparked the idea for what is now her best known series.
The most fun of this volume is to look to see where Takeuchi started playing around with character designs. Minako (Sailor V) was quite obviously a springing board for Usagi, as she shares many of Usagi's characteristics and surroundings, most notably Usagi's parents and a few of her classmates. It's interesting to also see how the story changed over time, as the Sailor Moon series started up not long after Sailor V started up and ran alongside the Sailor V manga. (Sailor V releases started coming out more sporadically.) You can see some of the Sailor Moon characters (most notably Usagi), which was pretty neat.
Translation-wise, this isn't bad. I did spot a grammatical error in the volume and at times it does suffer from awkward translating, it's pretty well done and actually flows a little better than the Sailor Moon translation did. (Possibly due to it being potentially less scrutinized by the fanbase as the SM manga would be.)
This isn't as strong as the Sailor Moon manga is, but it's still very fun and it's a must buy for fans of Sailor Moon. For those who aren't as die-hard? Well, personally my gut reaction is to collect everything and tell everyone else to (hey, I'm a completist), but some might find that this just doesn't grab them as much as the Sailor Moon series does (or vice-versa). For them it might be worth checking out in the bookstore before buying it....more
Ever since the ill fated Mixx/Tokyopop lost their license to the series I've been hoping that Sailor Moon would eventually hit these shores again andEver since the ill fated Mixx/Tokyopop lost their license to the series I've been hoping that Sailor Moon would eventually hit these shores again and they have. Happy day!
Fangirl gush aside, I really enjoyed this volume. The artwork is gorgeous, which is what you'd expect for a mangaka of Takeuchi's caliber. It's interesting to flip through the pages and let my eyes slide over the illustrations.
The translations are a little awkward at times, though. One of the things that Kodansha really hyped up was that they were going to be as faithful as possible, which included the honorifics. I was actually looking forward to this since I enjoy reading honorifics for the most part. I enjoyed much of the honorifics but I'd be lying if I said that some of them just felt really silly to tack on. Things that sound fantastic in Japanese with the untranslated word just sound clunky here, such as Hime-Sama being turned into Princess-Sama. (As one reviewer so aptly put it.) I think that Kodansha just tried a little too overly hard to stay faithful to the original translations, possibly due to all of the complaints over the Tokyopop translations. This just doesn't come across as organically as it should, which might bore a few readers.
I can't really hate the Sailor Moon manga for this and I waffled over giving it 4 stars and giving it 5 stars. I eventually had to concede that while the flaws didn't ruin my experience as a whole, they were definitely noticeable and kind of interrupted my reading at least slightly.
For the Sailor Moon fans, this is an absolute 100% must buy. For any new readers or those on the fence, I'd still recommend it. It's worth having in my opinion and the awkward translations should ease up over time as Kodansha gets used to what they do and don't have to add. ...more
Zombies always have been and always will be one of my guilty pleasure forms of entertainment. Nothing quite creeps me out quite like they do, so it maZombies always have been and always will be one of my guilty pleasure forms of entertainment. Nothing quite creeps me out quite like they do, so it made sense to pick this as my first horror read of October.
At times I couldn't help but compare Ashes to other books with zombies in them, which makes sense. All of them tend to revolve around similar themes (zombies and the end of the world), so at some point all of them will have something that's familiar. With all of the books that abound, you're going to get that at some point. This book managed to stand out in several ways. One is that Bick has an awesome writing style that creeps under your skin and another is that Bick actually manages to create her zombies with an idea that's never really been done before. The idea of a big "Zap" (EMP wave) taking out so many people and causing zombies is incredibly novel and intriguing to me.
I also loved the characters in this book, but I'll admit that I liked a few of the minor characters better than the main character. Alex is well written, but how can anyone resist the standoffish Ellie? (There's another character I also liked, but I won't name them for spoiler reasons.) If Alex represents one of the people who reacts relatively well to a zombie horde (you know there'd have to be at least a few of them), then Ellie represents someone who doesn't. Her character is incredibly natural and easy to relate to, which is why she was one of my personal favorites.
This book read like it was the first in a series or trilogy, so I'm looking forward to seeing Bick write another book in this world. It was a little frustrating to see an ending that was sort of cliffhanger-ish, but I've read some of Bick's work before and knew to potentially expect an ending like this. It still didn't keep me from loving the book, though. As far as parents go, rest easy. This book might be a little more realistic than some of the other YA zombie books out there, but it's still far less graphic than your average zombie movie.
If you want a nice creepy zombie read for the Halloween season (or any other time of year), this is a must read.
I just discovered that sure enough, this is the first book in a trilogy. So rest easy knowing that this will be followed up in a future book....more
I have to admit that this book wasn't entirely my normal type of read. There's no gritty heroines in leather going against the modern system or angstyI have to admit that this book wasn't entirely my normal type of read. There's no gritty heroines in leather going against the modern system or angsty love triangles/squares/geometry going on. I'm rather glad of that because otherwise this wouldn't have been such a good read.
I really enjoyed the way the book unfolded. We're introduced to our main characters in two ways: in present time and in the past. While this format takes a while to get used to, it's worth it because it helps build up a nice slow tension throughout the book. The main characters are well written and I was pretty glad to see that Lawhead didn't (yet) give into the temptation to throw tons of romantic tension into the book, giving us time to soak in the plot and get introduced to the massive world that he's creating.
What really impressed me was how well Lawhead wove the religious angle into the story. Many times the religious angle is either awkwardly inserted into a book or the author browbeats you with the "this book is religious oriented" aspect. You won't find any of that here. By the time you do realize that this is Christian fantasy, you're already well into the book and it all just feels natural to the story line.
The only thing that sort of hurts this book is that there's not much here that's particularly new. Almost all of this has been seen elsewhere and while this isn't automatically a bad thing (they're common tropes because they work well in stories), it does mean that Lawhead will have to step things up slightly in the next book in the trilogy.
Overall this was a fun read and I'm sure that this will catch on well with a pretty wide audience. As far as how he compares to his father, I have to admit that I've never read anything by either author so I had nothing to compare Ross to. Fans of his father might end up being harsher or more generous than me, but so far I have to admit that I'm pretty curious to see what happens next. It's not my normal read but there's enough here to entice me into Lawhead's next book.
(I received an ARC through Goodreads in exchange for an honest review.)...more
I'll admit that I wasn't sure what to expect from this book. Some have raved about it, others have shrugged their shoulders and said "meh". I'm glad tI'll admit that I wasn't sure what to expect from this book. Some have raved about it, others have shrugged their shoulders and said "meh". I'm glad to say that I enjoyed this more than I expected.
The idea of gorgons as main characters is an interesting idea. They're mythological creatures that aren't usually main characters in teen fiction or even fiction in general. (The only other fiction character I can think of in fiction other than THE gorgon is a Piers Anthony character.) This is one of the big things that really drew me into the story and I'm glad to say that this was well played out. There's just enough of the familiar mixed with new ideas to give this a good twist.
I also enjoyed the interactions with the three sisters, although at times the constant jumping between characters kept me from getting as good of a feel for them as I'd have liked. Hopefully the next two volumes will help even this out. The introduction of the various love interests was fairly well done, although I'll admit that I didn't entirely see Nick's appeal. (Still better than Greer's boyfriend, though.)
What I do have to warn readers about is that although this was a fun and easy read, there isn't much in this book that's new. Despite the cool gorgon twist, Childs uses a lot of familiar tropes in the UF and YA world. Don't take this as me saying this is bad. It's not. It's just familiar, which might irritate someone who is looking for something absolutely new with every book. (I have some fellow readers who are like this.)
This is still worth checking out and I heartily recommend it to fans of series such as Hush, Hush. ...more
I've really come to adore this series, having bought and re-read the first volume over and over again. (I'll never forgive myself for not buying the eI've really come to adore this series, having bought and re-read the first volume over and over again. (I'll never forgive myself for not buying the entire set from Borders when I had the chance!)
The artwork in this really is my favorite part of the volume and I really enjoyed that this was done in pencil and wasn't as slick and all inked up as the Marvel and DC issues tend to be. There's nothing wrong with that, mind you, but the pencil work in this volume really pushes home that this is done by one guy and it emphasizes the differences between the superheroine Empowered and the bigger super heroes. (One of which is that she's considered to be a D-lister, so the lack of glitzy color pages helps to emphasize this.)
The stories in this are decent and I admit that not all of them dragged me in like the first volume did, but they're still pretty good. There's hints of future plots as well as further development with the Willy Pete plot element, which will end up exploding into a huge scenario in a future volume.
This really is a fun volume overall and if you're a fan of the previous volume you'll want to check this one out. In good news, if you haven't read the first volume, you should be able to check this one out. You'll feel like you've missed out on a little story, but overall this is a pretty user-friendly series that is easy to catch up with. ...more
I've both avoided and been drawn to this comic for various reasons. I love Adam Warren's art style but the general idea of the comic just seemed reallI've both avoided and been drawn to this comic for various reasons. I love Adam Warren's art style but the general idea of the comic just seemed really stupid. After putting it off for a while I finally gave it a chance & while it's stupid, it's stupid in a good way.
If you want a series with depth, you'd be looking in the wrong place, at least in this volume. (I've been told that the series gets more depth as it goes along.) This is solidly cheesecake fare and it revels in this fact. I think that this is what made this such a fun read. I loved all of the little jokes here.
The artwork is what really won me over. As always you can expect lovely ladies drawn with loving care. There's a bit of a rough edge to the drawings, but it works here. It's not the uber-polished style that you might see in some of the comics out there but it works to help set this aside from some of Warren's other works. ...more
Before I go any further with this review I have to state that I've only read the first chapter of Gate 7, the oneshot that started everything with thiBefore I go any further with this review I have to state that I've only read the first chapter of Gate 7, the oneshot that started everything with this series. CLAMP works tend to have plots that reach far beyond one chapter, so I want to stress that all I can do is give my impressions of what I have.
You can't read any CLAMP manga without admiring the gorgeous style that is their trademark. It might change as members come and go, but it's always beautiful and worth looking at on its own merit. This doesn't really change in Gate 7. I absolutely loved looking at the art in this story. It might not be their strongest work (their earliest works will always be my favorite), but this is beautiful. I can't say enough about it.
Story-wise, I can see where this will draw in a lot of readers. It's not entirely my style, but there's a decent base here to expand upon. It's a little on the vague side, but since this was just the first chapter I don't feel right giving any final judgement on the storyline of this series. (Supposedly what I read was just a oneshot but it looks like it was definitely intended to be a promo for a series.) I've done a little snooping on the internet for information and it looks like this series will get pretty interesting as the volume progresses. It just doesn't seem to be my cup of tea, but that's OK. I'll just wait for Dark Horse to release the inevitable artbook. (Hopefully they'll re-release some of the out of print artbooks TokyoPop used to carry.)
I have to say, this will definitely find an easy audience here in the states. CLAMP can rarely go wrong in my opinion and they're giving us more of what they do best. Gate 7 will definitely appeal to those who loved X and xxxHolic.
The first thing I noticed about this comic was the artwork. Weldele chose to eschew the traditional comic artwork for a more dreamy, lush style. It woThe first thing I noticed about this comic was the artwork. Weldele chose to eschew the traditional comic artwork for a more dreamy, lush style. It works well to help the comic stand out, much as the main character of Brent does. It's gorgeous to look at and to me, was one of the best parts of the issue. It's more true to life than the traditional styles are, yet still reminds you that you're reading a comic.
The story of this is so far rather simple in design, which works for and against it. People looking for a ton of action will be slightly disappointed by the first issue since so much of it surrounds Brent trying to fit in at his school and appeal to a female friend. There's an ever present hostility due to the widespread public dislike of the Pariah, but that doesn't really come into play at first. By the end of the first issue I was hooked, but I have a feeling that this isn't going to be as well-loved as your average mainstream comic. Not that that's a bad thing, mind you. Some of the best comics have been ones that have taken the comics world by surprise.
Overall this is something that's going to appeal more to readers of comics like Sandman or Bone. As the series unwinds and shows more of its wares I'm sure that we'll see more action, but this looks to be a comic that will appeal more to our human sides than the Michael Bay part of our brain.
When I read the first book I was a little confused as to how to classify this book. It isn't what I'd classify as chick-lit but it isn't exactly an urWhen I read the first book I was a little confused as to how to classify this book. It isn't what I'd classify as chick-lit but it isn't exactly an urban fantasy or a paranormal romance. After I finished the second book I'm only slightly less clueless as to which genre I'd shelve this in, but the most important reaction is still the same: this is a very fun series to read.
This isn't exactly a dark and gritty read, but neither is it as light and fluffy as I was expecting it to be. We have the wonderfully luxurious wish fulfillment of being able to live vicariously through Jane but then we also have moments where Jane takes on her new persona with reckless abandon. I was a bit surprised to see the lengths she goes to (and the people she takes up with) in order to get back into the house of Doran. While Jane isn't exactly doing anything absolutely horrible, it is a little bit out of the norm for books in the chick-lit or general paranormal romance genre. It does make sense though- she's fighting for her life. Jane can't afford to be prudish.
Pierce has found a decent rhythm in her second book. She's beginning to shake off the "new author" awkwardness and is becoming more confident and familiar with her style. While parts of the book are disappointingly predictable (I was able to see the big surprises coming a mile away), there are a lot of good interactions between the characters and I absolutely loved how Pierce portrayed Jane's reaction to having a completely different form. The descriptions here are very well done, helping to set each scene nicely.
This book improved on the last one but those who weren't able to get overly into the last one will probably want to stick to getting this from the library. For those who loved the first book, this will be an absolute "must buy". It's fluffy fare, but darnit... it's good fluffy fare, the type you curl up with on the beach or on a rainy day.
After having read Moffett's previous book in the LC series, I was pretty excited to give the second entry a try. There was just something addicting abAfter having read Moffett's previous book in the LC series, I was pretty excited to give the second entry a try. There was just something addicting about Lexi's adventures that keept drawing me back in and I'm glad to say that entry #2 is no exception.
I don't know much about the hacking world, but I do know that I enjoyed this book greatly. I love Lexi and I love the situations she gets herself into. She's a feisty heroine and we finally get to see her hands get a little dirtier than they did in the previous novel, which I enjoyed. One of my gripes with the first novel was that Lexi did little of her own hacking work, which isn't the case in this book. Lexi does just as much as the next person in this mystery.
The love interests are pretty sexy as well and are developing pretty well at this stage. I have my own personal favorites as far as who Lexi should end up with (Team Zimmerman!), but Lexi's reasoning for who she likes and what she is or isn't going to do is pretty realistic. There's also a decent amount of competition and/or other barriers keeping her from each guy, giving good reason to draw out the tension for just a little bit longer. (As long as it doesn't get as ridiculously drawn out as the Stephanie Plum love triangle has, I'm good with this.)
I will say that the mystery does move quickly and at times the plot seemed to move a little too quickly, not giving me as much time as I'd have wanted on some issues. I can't elaborate without getting spoilerish, but let's just say that there were some issues I wanted to linger on a little longer as far as the missing researcher goes. You get a good sense of what is what and I didn't end the book feeling unsatisfied, but it all seemed to get wrapped up a little too quickly for me. This isn't really a gripe, just more of an observation since it didn't really get in the way of my reading experience that much.
Overall this book was awesome to read and I can't wait to get my hot little hands on the next book in the series. It's honestly a shame that these are only in ebook format at this point in time since I think they'd sell well in paperback format.
If you're like me, you probably never knew that there were different types of zombies other than "dead" & "really dead". Ignorance of the differen If you're like me, you probably never knew that there were different types of zombies other than "dead" & "really dead". Ignorance of the different species can not only be deadly but it can also lead to the extinction of several rare & intriguing zombie kinds. By shooting first & asking questions later, you might be missing out on the chance to watch the the well choreographed Dancing Zombie. Or you could anger a Revenant, which is insanely hard to kill & will most likely end with you being a greasy smear on the pavement.
Fortunately for you & I, this book covers at least 20 species of the undead. We're given not only a brief synopsis of the specific species's history but also images telling us where they can be located & how plentiful they are. (Joining a zombie sight seeing tour is discouraged without properly checking their credentials, year the company was formed, & their CorpseFax, which details all of the skirmishes, fatalities, & infections they've had. More than one person has lost their lives by signing up with a fly-by-night zombie tour!) The book also lists which humans (living ones, not dead ones) you should try to avoid if you're trapped in a zombie attack. If you're reading this book (or this review) then your chances of survival are already far better than that of the uninformed citizen.
We're also treated to a brief but highly informative history of the zombie race in general, starting from its ancient beginnings to the present day. Author Payton also treats us to a bright, hopeful vision of the future where zombie science will eradicate death, illness, & enable us to lead better and happier lives.
However if you're one of the skeptics who insist that zombies aren't real & that this book is nothing but a novelty item, you might still find this guide useful for role-playing games. It's a valuable resource that you can use to heighten your game playing experience. It might also save your life when the "fictional" zombies break in during your Friday gaming night.
(Note: This review was originally based on the first two issues, but I've since read the full volume and the ratings stand.)
Wow. Just wow. Richelle Me(Note: This review was originally based on the first two issues, but I've since read the full volume and the ratings stand.)
Wow. Just wow. Richelle Mead has been on my list of authors to check out so Sea Lion Book's offer to preview one of her comics was pretty exciting. After all, thousands of screaming fans must mean that she's doing something right, right? Well, those thousands of screaming fans have to check out the graphic novel adaptation of the first book in her Dark Swan series because then they'll have a little something to scream extra loud about. Storm Born is a perfect example of what you should do as far as book to comic goes. I haven't read the books (although that's going to change very, very quickly) so I'm not sure if there's any big alterations from the novel, but this was easy to get into and follow along with. I absolutely love-love-LOVE the artwork. It's so beautifully done. It doesn't hurt that I love artwork of redheads. Hamann does a very good job of bringing the characters here to life. Some of the artwork reminds me of the comic series Fables, which is a good thing considering the quality of work you see in it.
Sea Lion Books was gracious enough to allow me to post some of the covers as well as a few pages from the comics. Eugenie (aka Odile) has such wonderful expressions that it's easy to get wrapped up in the story. I do have to warn that there are some adult situations in this volume, although they are very tactfully done. You won't see any full nudity in these comics and any "extracurricular activities" aren't overly graphic. Parents might want to preview this before handing it over to their teens, but this is rather tame in comparison to some of the things seen in other graphic novels out in the market. (Although there is a risk to teens of getting their libraries raided so the parent in question can read the novel format of Storm Born and find out what happens next.)
Story-wise, my curiosity is piqued. There's been a lot of different things in the urban fantasy world, but shamans are rather under-represented. Necromancers or witches? Plenty. Shamans? Not so much. There's a lot of room for Mead to expand in & showcase Eugenie's talents in this series.
So far I've got my theories as to what's going on with certain characters, but I'll have to wait until I finish the graphic novel or book to find out. I'm also sort of predicting some future romantic entanglements, or perhaps it's just wishful thinking on my part. (Eugenie's roommate is pretty intriguing.)
My two issues ended on a very big cliffhanger so I'm really looking forward to reading the full volume when it comes out in October. I've been informed that volume 1 will cover the first half of Storm Born, with volume 2 completing the novel.
Fans of Mead will also be happy to know that her much loved Vampire Academy series has also gotten the graphic novel treatment, with the first book coming out this August.
5 out of 5 stars
(Reader copies provided by Sea Lion Books)
I've read the full volume now, and it is awesome. So awesome, that I ended up deciding to purchase the volume itself from Amazon only seconds after finishing my review. (So I guess my reviews do work to help sell books!) Still five stars, all the way....more
I've been eagerly awaiting this comic for a long time & now that I have it in my hands I have to say that the experience is both underwhelming &amI've been eagerly awaiting this comic for a long time & now that I have it in my hands I have to say that the experience is both underwhelming & better than I expected. I'll review this in two parts, one for the artwork and one for the story since I kind of reacted to the two a little differently.
I have to admit that not everyone came across the way I expected them to. The artist did an incredible job adapting this to comic format but at times I don't think he really *got* the characters. The drawings are beautiful but I really got the feeling that the artist hadn't read the source novels (instead reading a cliff notes version) & because of that, he didn't really bring that deeper level to the characters. It's possible to do since I've seen some good GN adaptations out there but it just wasn't done here. (I assume that he didn't read the source novels because the book did have the artist's initial character sketches & he was pretty off with quite a few of the characters. He initially wanted to give Piscary hair & make him into a skinny white guy, for pete's sake.) Where the artist did get it right was with Rachel's character. I loved the artwork for her. When it comes to others such as Ivy, well... let's just say that it doesn't come close to capturing her depth, grace, or beauty.
The story here is pretty light but it's still pretty darn good. It's nice to see how our dynamic duo met & I have to admit that my Ivy/Rachel shipping flared up again with this story. The story I have no problem with, although I wish it was just a little meatier at times. Maybe it's just the comic adaptation and/or that I enjoyed Pale Demon so much it set the bar very high, but I didn't get the glow that I normally do from reading a Hollows book.
It's still a good story & the artwork is captured better than the current state of the Anita Blake comics* (although that's not saying much). I'm still interested to see the next few volumes, although I'll probably wait for this to hit paperback rather than pre-ordering the hardback. As for everyone else, I suggest checking this out via the library or your local bookstore before plunking down the money for the hardcover.
*Although to be fair, the first volume or two of the Anita Blake series did do a good job at the artwork. It's just fallen into a steady decline since then. ...more
This has to be one of my favorite books as far as Hollywood history goes. It's incredibly easy to read, has great photos, & really shows me that tThis has to be one of my favorite books as far as Hollywood history goes. It's incredibly easy to read, has great photos, & really shows me that today's starlets don't have anything on the wild child actors & actresses of the past.
There's a lot of this book that's debatable as far as accuracy goes, but it's so much fun to read that you don't care that this is pretty much the book form of the National Enquirer. It's the literary form of a candy bar. You know it's probably not good for you, but it's so sinfully enticing that you keep going back.
My recommendation is to read this, embrace it, then go out and read the books that might be more accurate as far as Hollywood's past goes. This really isn't something you should miss. ...more
It's coming down to the wire now, folks. After this book there's only 2 more books left to the series, with the potential of a bonus book afterwards.It's coming down to the wire now, folks. After this book there's only 2 more books left to the series, with the potential of a bonus book afterwards. I ended up getting this through eBay and I have to say, it was money well spent. Harrison is worth spending money on.
Things are heating up in this book and I mean that in multiple ways. First off, the tensions between the Inderlanders and certain factions of humanity are heating up. There's always been a portion of humanity that hated the Inderlanders and wanted them wiped off the face of the earth, so it's no surprise that Harrison would eventually revisit this idea. What's being done in this book is actually pretty chilling, and HAPA (Humans Against Paranormals Association) is a pretty lethal force here. I've never wanted to reach through a book and slug someone as much as I did in this book.
Secondly, things are heating up between Trent and Rachel. I know that none of us forgot the kiss from Pale Demon, and neither has Rachel. Her hormones are kicking in big time, but I'll warn you: there's not a lot of progress on this front in either direction, but then any progress is good progress. I have a feeling that whatever might ultimately come out of this relationship, it'll probably happen in book 12 and not a page sooner. There is some friendship brewing here, which is good since Rach needs someone who can keep up with her and understand where she's coming from. But regardless of whether or not they end up in a relationship, the tension between the two is so palpable that I'm beginning to think that they'll have to end up in bed together just to relieve it and get it over with. However, there's also the introduction of another potential interest in this book, although I'm not sure what chances he'll have against the Rachel/Trent combo. (Then again, I'm a fangirl of Rachel and Trent, so I tend to think this way about any other guy that comes into her life.)
There's a definite feel of loose ends beginning to get tied up and it's a good feeling. Harrison might have had a bit of a slump mid-series, but this is the Hollows that I fell in love with early on in the series and couldn't get enough of. It's good enough to make me want to re-read the series and is a worthy successor to Pale Demon. Oh, and the minor characters in this book rock. Hard. We finally see Rachel get her pack tattoo (a mild spoiler, but one we all knew was coming) and her tattoo artist is interesting enough to get a spinoff book of her own. (A tattoo artist that works on Inderlanders and humans? There's some material for you right there!)
And before anyone asks, yes Al is in this book. And of course he's awesome. Al is always awesome, even when you want to punt kick him across the room. His interactions with Rachel- and especially his last actions of the book- make me wonder where Harrison is going to go with his character next. There's a lot of potential here for him to be bad in the future, all with incredibly interesting results. I honestly can't wait for the next book to come out so I can see what'll happen next.
If you loved the last book, you'll really love this one. It's a fun ride and I had a blast reading this book.