This is a tie-in to the video game of the same name. Having not actually played the game, I'll admit to being a bit lost. However, I am very familiarThis is a tie-in to the video game of the same name. Having not actually played the game, I'll admit to being a bit lost. However, I am very familiar with the various mythologies and so wasn't as lost as some. The art was enjoyable to look at, even if the plot felt a bit all over the place to me.
If you're already a fan of the series, you'll probably get more out of it than I did....more
While I'm familiar with the Marvel roster (thanks in large part to children's cartoons while growing up, a few obsessed friends, and the recent cinemaWhile I'm familiar with the Marvel roster (thanks in large part to children's cartoons while growing up, a few obsessed friends, and the recent cinematic universe), I never could get into the original graphic novels. Now I love graphic novels and have for some time, but Marvel... Marvel comics just didn't click with me. Until now.
I picked this issue up on a whim, and boy did I luck out. Not only did I love the art and this particular rendition of Iron Man, but I absolutely loved the humor and found myself cackling out loud in glee several times (Awesome Facial Hair Bros). The humor and banter didn't come across as forced, but really felt true to the characters.
There, of course, was the added bonus of this issue's antagonist sharing my name; something that I don't get to see too often.
I can't say how well this holds up to the canon, or how long time readers will receive this title. I found it to be a pleasant surprise from a brand that I'd previously viewed as lackluster....more
I had no idea what I was getting into with this one, but the cover was too intriguing to not pick up (as a kid of the 80s, I LOVE dinosaurs). Overall,I had no idea what I was getting into with this one, but the cover was too intriguing to not pick up (as a kid of the 80s, I LOVE dinosaurs). Overall, this story is completely bonkers. It's an alternate history with Native Americans, European explorers (see rapists, murderers, liars, and gold-hounds), and DINOSAURS. The title character - Turok - is tolerated by his "tribe" but is not actually part of them; they in fact try to murder him on several occasions. However, he feels a sense of obligation to them and when the Europeans arrive (with dinosaurs in tow) he can't just let them be slaughtered outright.
The artwork is quite stunning, the dinosaurs terrifying and colorful, and the brutality the Native Americans face at the hands of the Europeans is gruesome and upsetting - granted it's difficult to feel too bad since we see Turok's memories of them hunting his parents down.
This is a weird hybrid comic, that is both brutal and quite a bit of fun if you have the stomach for it!...more
Like the rating says, it was OK. The art was pretty good, even though I wasn't too fond of the Iron Man design. The characters felt a little to OOC foLike the rating says, it was OK. The art was pretty good, even though I wasn't too fond of the Iron Man design. The characters felt a little to OOC for me to really get into it. I found this good for some quick amusement but it's definitely not something I'm keeping on my shelf nor would I read it again....more
I don't have much to say on this, other than it just wasn't my thing. It didn't help that it felt like a rip off of many, much more interesting and alI don't have much to say on this, other than it just wasn't my thing. It didn't help that it felt like a rip off of many, much more interesting and already existing superhero characters, and that I really don't like the color pink. Clearly, many other people enjoyed this more than I did, so worth a shot I guess?...more
A good mystery and an interesting peek into asylum life in the late 1800s. I read this one on a plane and it was a great distraction from the child thA good mystery and an interesting peek into asylum life in the late 1800s. I read this one on a plane and it was a great distraction from the child throwing a temper tantrum. However, there are plenty of errors and slang usage that doesn't feel appropriate to the time period that can easily pull a less determined reader out of the story....more
A fast paced and engaging comic that was a surprisingly good addition to the Assassin's Creed lore. The story revolves around Black Cross, a Templar aA fast paced and engaging comic that was a surprisingly good addition to the Assassin's Creed lore. The story revolves around Black Cross, a Templar assassin that keeps his fellow Templars from abusing their power. Highly recommended for fans of the games, but can also be enjoyed by comic book readers who are new to the world....more
A Pilgrim for Freedom is one part biography, one part history, and one part Review written for and published by Portland Book Review on December 19th:
A Pilgrim for Freedom is one part biography, one part history, and one part political discussion. Michael Novakovic was just a boy when he and his family were forced to flee Yugoslavia due in part to rising violence as the Croatian militia began their fight for independence in earnest – including Serbian cleansing – and the Italian Fascists nearly executing his father. The year was 1942, and the Second World War had already begun. What follows is the story of Michael and his family’s exodus from Yugoslavia, their seven-year sojourn to the shores of the United States, Michael’s quest for citizenship and his US Army experience, as well as his later business entrepreneurship. This is a story detailing a life that lived the essence of the American Dream.
The book is an engaging memoir that begins by detailing Michael’s pre-war childhood, which provides a stark contrast to his experiences throughout the war. It’s clear how his experiences with different military service members from various countries and political systems greatly influenced his desire to give back to the country he eventually came to view as home. The fact that he spent time in many countries over the year (Italy, Buenos Aires, Vietnam to name a few) and that many of the places were places of conflict at the time, keeps the pages turning quickly.
The book is written in a style that is direct and to the point and the chapters are short. This allows for easy reading, even if you only have limited time. While it may lack some of the more polished vocabulary and sentence structures found in most popular books of our time, Michael’s decision to focus on the larger world events that framed his journey instead of trying to recount his emotional status at any given time (a pitfall of many memoirs) was a good choice. This worldview helps to ground the narrative in time, but also provides history lessons for many places and events that may have been glossed over (or never covered) by the American education system.
Michael Novakovic displays more patriotic American pride in this book than many natural born citizens ever have in their entire lifetime. In a political climate that has completely polarized, an election year that is one of the most aggressive and embarrassing on record, and a society that has become obsessively focused on instant gratification and greed, this book is a beautiful reminder of how people can do wonderful things in horrible times. It is a glimpse of overcoming terrible odds, helping others when they are down, and giving back to a country and a people that made wonderful things possible. The author perhaps says it best:
“My fear is that my fellow citizens are forgetting a historical era when the United States was truly a source of hope for most oppressed people in the world. I also worry that Americans are losing sight of the kind of society that values freedom, honor, responsibility, and industriousness. Perhaps, if others read about the life of an obscure boy from Split and his surprising journey to Villanova, Pennsylvania, they will marvel not at the boy or the man he became, but at the nation that made such a journey possible.” ...more
Daniel M. Harrison’s The Millennial Reincarnations follows a cast of characters caught up in keeping face (or maintaining their mianzi) after the Shanghai Sorority Dame was forced to flee China due to blackmail involving a sex tape. Her departure leaves a power vacuum in the sorority and the dramatic changes in the sorority cause some to gain standing, while others lose mianzi – a societal death sentence in communist China. Backdoor dealing, bribes, threats, and more blackmail follow as the various characters scramble for their place.
Unfortunately, this is about as much of the overarching plot of the actual narrative that can be easily gleaned from the story bits readers are given. The new age philosophizing of the book is force fed to the reader through contrived means rather than being allowed to organically develop within the story itself. The story is led into with a preface, a forward, a prologue, followed by an afterword to explain the author’s larger ideas of reincarnation, evolution of thought in the younger generations, and the rapid evolution of technology. There is also a self-insert chapter ¾ of the way through where the author (in the guise of the narrator) has a long sit down chat with one of the book’s characters about what was actually going on in the story.
For the most part the writing mechanics so far as sentence structure and grammar goes were very solid. There were only a few misspellings and typos, which weren’t enough to pull readers out of the book. There are quite a few characters in the book, many of which go by several different names, and sadly all are very two-dimensional. This makes it difficult to emotionally engage with the characters and it is easy to mix them up, which is problematic when you add the parallel timeline/reincarnation ideas. The segments that were the most down-to-earth and easy to follow were actually the scenes involving discussions about business and politics. Daniel M. Harrison is a business journalist, which explains why some of the more detailed segments revolved around business ventures.
Potential readers should be aware that much of the story, veiled in the guise of broad thinking and philosophical ideas, are large sections focused on underage girls masturbating and having sex. So much of the story involves these situations that readers are forced to wonder if this book wasn’t just an excuse for porn. Yes, it is technically true that the age of consent in China is 14. However, the age of consent in the US varies state to state from 16 (with a parent’s consent) to 18, making many of these scenes questionable considering this book is aimed at adults. It isn’t just the age of the characters that makes these sequences uncomfortable, it’s that several of them involve blackmail, implied rape (in that we don’t see it occurring, just acknowledged that rape did occur), and incest. It is also true that sex scenes can and do have a place in literature, but usually if it furthers the plot or, at the very least, adds some character growth to a character. However, when all of the characters are cardboard cutouts the sex scenes appear to be just for the sake of having them.
Harrison claims that our thinking and striving for more (in terms of intelligence or thought) is being held back by the way our education systems teach science and technology. While it’s true that people learn things in different ways and we shouldn’t be adverse to changing methods that don’t work, he seems to forget that the great leaps and bounds in science in the last few decades and the new ways we consume knowledge is due to the core scientific foundations set down and accomplished by past generations. Any legitimacy Harrison he may have in the argument against traditional science is thrown right back out the window when he states in the afterword that Stephen Hawking died in the 80s and the man we see nowadays is a fraud.
There are plenty of books that deal with the ideas of reincarnation or a human evolution beyond our current level of connectedness and other philosophical ideas in a much more interesting manner; one that doesn’t make readers feel like they are being led by the hand. You only have to look for classic examples such Ulysses, The Magic Mountain, Atlas Shrugged, and the more recent title, Cloud Atlas to name a few. The ideas presented in The Millennial Reincarnations are not new, and are done here in a murky, uninspired fashion that makes it difficult to follow the threads, let alone connect them....more
For a long time the Krampus was an unknown to most Americans who typically p Review written for and published by Portland Book Review on December 16th:
For a long time the Krampus was an unknown to most Americans who typically popularize the Christmas holiday with the safe and familiar jolly, fat, white-bearded man dressed in red who sneaks down chimneys in the middle of the night bearing gifts for good girls and boys. Though thinking back on things, it’s no wonder so many children are photographed screaming while sitting on Santa’s lap. After all, a stranger sneaking down your chimney in the middle of the night – even one with good intentions – is a terrifying prospect. In that sense, it was only a matter of time before we became more acquainted with the Krampus, or as many people see him, the anti-Santa.
The Krampus and the Old, Dark Christmas: Roots and Rebirth of the Folkloric Devil tackles the Krampus mythology, addressing many misconceptions pushed forward by recent books and films (Brom’s Krampus the Yule Lord and the holiday film Krampus of 2015 are cited as primary examples). The book discusses origins, etymology of the word itself, connection to St. Nicholas (not the red-clad, bearded man we typically think of but the Catholic saint), and festivals and traditions around the world to scratch the surface of material contained within. This is basically your one stop shop for diving into the culture and mythos of the Krampus. The book contains plenty of half-page and full-page images, from photographs of recent festivals to copies of ink illustrations from old books. The pictures are fascinating to look at, and compliment the subject matter completely. There is also a color map in the front of the book that contains various towns and landmarks that are discussed within the book and a remarkably involved index in the back, for those looking for specific informational tidbits.
The Krampus and the Old, Dark Christmas: Roots and Rebirth of the Folkloric Devil is a must-have for anyone interested in the Krampus mythology....more
This one is difficult to talk about without spoiling the whole thing. Basically something happened that caused the world to rip apart and everyone toThis one is difficult to talk about without spoiling the whole thing. Basically something happened that caused the world to rip apart and everyone to loose their memories. No one can read, but they know the words of things (cat, dog, street, girl, etc.), but they have no idea how to use anything mechanical or electronic. The world was clearly larger than it is now, and the sky is somehow wrong. Resources are limited, and humanity semi-devolves into clans... at least on Faller's world.
Basically, Faller is trapped on one part of Earth, where the rest of it is floating/falling in space above, to the side, and below his current world. He found clues on his person and knows he has to find the woman in the photograph. What follows is Faller's quest to find the woman, and follow the map he had drawn himself before everything went haywire.
This is a science fiction novel with the emphasis on science. Yes, actual existing or theoretical science that is currently being studied. The book flashes back and forth between Faller now and the time before the world broke. At first I was like, "I don't care what happened in the past," but pretty soon I was feeling agonized any time the time zone jumped because Faller (past and present) was nearly always in a critical moment and I wanted to know everything now already!
The book is bizarre in the best way, and was a beautifully refreshing take of the apocalyptic genre. It was still perfectly familiar, as each island was a separate social experiment of the "what if" game based on how people would react, adapt, and survive if they were trapped on various different parts of the world (city, farmland, small town, etc.), with various initial resources, and we've seen many different types of these scenarios before. Sometimes you want zombies in your story, sometimes you don't. This is definitely one that doesn't, and thank goodness for that; the people were awful enough.
Characters are engaging, even if the real focus is on the world and the overarching plot and not so much on feelings and being super cuddly with the characters. Luckily the balance was perfect and I never felt the quality of the book suffered because of this particular focus.
There were a few plot holes I thought of as I was reading, but I was able to shelve them long enough to enjoy the book (though I'm finding them a bit more persistent and annoying now that I've had time to think on them). In defense of some of the issues I found, the book isn't a "happily ever after" narrative at the end as the world is still a large mess. Things are definitely headed in the right direction, and the book has a hopeful vibe, but don't expect all the loose ends tied up in a lovely bow.
Definitely worth the read for the sci-fi reader who enjoys wonky worlds....more
The Arts of Legerdemain as Taught by Ghosts follows Steve shortly after being released from prison while he's trying to get his life back together. ReThe Arts of Legerdemain as Taught by Ghosts follows Steve shortly after being released from prison while he's trying to get his life back together. Recommended for readers of general fiction, for those who are interested the life of a stage magician, and people who enjoy ghost stories.
This is a solid book with strong writing mechanics. My reason for docking stars isn't in the quality of the writing, but instead on how dry the characters were. I found it difficult to emotionally connect to Steve, although I still did enjoy his journey....more
Personal Rating: 2.5 (lowish rating is not a reflection on the quality of the book so much as me acknowledging the fact that I'm not the intended audiPersonal Rating: 2.5 (lowish rating is not a reflection on the quality of the book so much as me acknowledging the fact that I'm not the intended audience. 8-12 year-olds are sure to enjoy the book more than I did.)
Young Ted meets with his eccentric great-uncle shortly before he dies and is surprised to learn that his great-uncle willed him his apartment. Filled with youthful enthusiasm, Ted, his best friend Caleb, and the new girl Isabel, goes to spend a day digging through old paraphernalia but Ted finds something eerily familiar about the room. Ted has a fondness for escape-the-room puzzles, and his great-uncle’s apartment looks exactly like one of the puzzles he worked on the night before! Could his great-uncle have hidden something for him to find? It all ties back to his great-uncle’s experience in World War II, and Ted and his friends may not be the only people looking for the hidden treasure.
Click Here to Start is a fast paced, fun adventure, specifically geared to the middle grade audience (10-14). It’s great to see more books dedicated to the gaming culture, and particularly those that don’t portray gaming as a complete waste of time. There’s some English Literature lectures thrown in (both Ted and Isabel’s fathers are English professors), as well as a bit of WWII history that keeps the book feeling fleshed out and grounded in reality.
The book does struggle a bit with the character dialogue. The characters never sound like 12-year-olds, but instead talk like an adult thinks 12-year-old kids sound like. Everything feels just a little bit too stilted, as if the dialogue is trying too hard. I can’t say how much of this the target audience will actually notice, but it’s obvious when compared to some other popular middle grade titles. While the book is clearly also aimed at young boys, Isabel’s character is smart, wonderfully snarky, and will draw in the female readers easily.
The book has plenty of adventure, scheming, puzzle solving, and snippets of literature and history making sure things never get boring and will likely keep kids turning the pages all the way through to the end....more
While not a fan of this series I decided to give it a try based on the fact that it's "based on Kevin Smith's unproduced Green Hornet Film." I very muWhile not a fan of this series I decided to give it a try based on the fact that it's "based on Kevin Smith's unproduced Green Hornet Film." I very much enjoyed the story, and am completely confused as to how this failed to be made a film rather than that monstrosity we have to watch instead.
Interested readers are going to want to pick up volume one and two in order to wrap up the story....more
Dorothy Lane, “Dolly for short,” has traded in her position as a maid-of-all-w Review written for and published by Portland Book Review on January 2nd:
Dorothy Lane, “Dolly for short,” has traded in her position as a maid-of-all-work out in the country to work as a maid at The Savoy. The glitter and glam of the hotel and its clients is exciting, and while she enjoys her new position, she secretly longs for more. The life of the stage calls to her, and she dreams of one day being seen, of being in the spotlight herself. Working at The Savoy may give her the break she needs as a chance encounter with her idol, Loretta May, opens the door.
“I think about the endless line of girls outside the Pavilion Theatre. Everyone who makes it needs a bit of luck along the way. Maybe this little piece of paper is mine.”
The Girl from The Savoy is an enchanting historical novel with memorable characters and a setting that is replete with its own life. Taking place in England after the Great War, all of the characters are suffering with varying degrees of personal loss, and this sorrow haunts the background of the book and the actions the characters take. The point of view switches between Dolly (the hopeful maid), Loretta (London’s queen of the theatre), and Teddy (Dolly’s one time beloved who was injured in the war). Each of the viewpoints offer a different and complimentary perspective and weave together to spin a wonderful story.
Along with the day-to-day life of a maid at The Savoy, the book touches on many daily tragedies including depression, rape, death, petty feuds, and the varying lengths that people are willing to go to protect the ones they love. Told around the backdrop of The Savoy, which becomes a character in its own right, The Girl from The Savoy will quickly draw you in and keep you up reading late into the night. This isn’t a happily-ever-after fairy tale, nor is it a story where all dreams come true. Instead readers are offered a glimpse into a world of everyday miracles, of the little joys and the tough decisions faced by everyone, no matter their background or upbringing....more
Briddey Flannigan undergoes a fairly new procedure designed to connect two p Review written for and published by Portland Book Review on November 30th:
Briddey Flannigan undergoes a fairly new procedure designed to connect two people who have an emotional connection with an even deeper one. The procedure is supposed to allow a couple to feel each others emotions, unfortunately Briddey finds herself gaining telepathy. To make matters even worse she didn’t connect to her boyfriend, but instead finds herself tethered to her coworker, C.B.; the seemingly crazy, if cute, basement dwelling technician. Briddey finds things going from bad to worse at an exponential rate and only C.B. can help her keep sane with the flood of information assaulting her senses. Can she keep her boyfriend and doctor from learning of the botched surgery or her meddling, overbearing Irish family from making an even greater mess?
Connie Willis’s Crosstalk is one of those rare books that will keep you up all night long because you can’t bear to put it down. This book is all about information and connectivity of both the emotional and cerebral variety. The tongue-in-cheek nature of the writing style pokes fun and draws attention to current trends of information consumption – how most Americans are glued to their digital devices for a growing percentage of the day and how even though we feel more connected than ever our ability to emotionally connect one-on-one seems to be decaying. The book is also incredibly fast paced almost to the point of rendering the reader as completely exhausted as the main character!
The characters in Crosstalk are a joy to read about and even briefly mentioned side characters are vibrantly rendered. Briddey is an easy character to emotionally connect with as most people will be able to identify with having crazy family, overly nosy coworkers, and/or clingy boyfriends/girlfriends while trying to juggle the stresses of a job on top of things. Throw in a bit of unexpected telepathy into the mix and you’re in for an exhilarating and laugh-inducing read. This is a great book for readers of general fiction, romance, and science fiction, although the science fiction in the book is only just a touch beyond the world we currently know. With plenty of factoids about psychology, history, and Lucky Charms, readers of Crosstalk will find themselves wrapping up this 500+ page roller coaster longing for another ride. ...more
Most young girls dream of being a princess, however, when Danica finds herself engaged to the King of Versailles thanks to her mother’s machinations, it’s the last thing she ever wanted. While the entirety of Glitter takes place in and around the famous French palace – a palace whose inhabitants are obsessed with replicating the lifestyle during the reign of the Sun King – the book actually takes place some time in the future, after the majority of the world’s crops were wiped out from a virus. The Sonoman company stepped up with a series of crops that were resistant to the strain, and in the following chaos, semi-cheated their way into ownership of one of France’s most recognizable historical sites. However, much of the historical background and world building in Glitter is too little too late, and many readers will have wandered off feeling lost by the time they figure out the framework for the actual story.
Danica is an outcast – a rags-to-riches background thanks to a father who unexpectedly inherited shares to the company. Her mother is hell-bent on seeing Danica climb the social ranks as much as possible, forcing poise and dance lessons on her, as well as plastic surgery. Despite Danica seeming to have hated all of this, she never appears to have fought back against her mother’s will, making her an incredibly passive and abused character. Unfortunately, her complete and total passive nature also makes her incredibly unlikable. While she seems fairly apt at navigating the social cues in the old-fashioned faux court, she lacks foresight and can’t see how her plans to escape Versailles before her fixed wedding date to a murderer could possibly end up badly, although it ends in a very expected and un-shocking fashion to anyone paying attention.
The book goes into the darker sides of society – found even in the glittering throng of rich and famous – and deals with elements of drugs, affairs, political marriages, and self-harm to various degrees. The largest and most prevalent themes are drug use, and Danica’s self-harm. Danica’s self-harm comes across in the form of over-tightening her corset to cause herself pain – pain that she can control when everything else in her life feels out of her control. This mentality is often found in teens who cut themselves, and suffer eating disorders, and is genuinely distressing to read about. Despite the uncomfortable nature of some of the topics of the book, it is good to see these being discussed for the age groups that are most vulnerable to them.
Glitter has many elements that were interesting – the politics involved in running the company, the reasons behind their obsession with ancient era fashion and court life, the social hierarchy, the available technology, and the glimpses of life outside the palace – but Danica’s passive and panicked bumbling pretty much hamstrings what could have been a great book, into one that is just OK. The book had much unrealized potential, although there is hope that the sequel may focus on some of this book’s weak points and flesh out the series....more
The Gathering (Shadow House, Book 1) is a wonderfully spooky title aimed at children aged 8-12. Five children received invitations to the Shadow House, but things immediately feel off when they discover they were all lured there for different reasons. Azumi believes she’s attending a fancy private school, Marcus thinks he’s attending a music school, Dash and Dylan are under the impression that they’ve been selected to play the heroes of a horror film, while Poppy received a letter from her aunt and will finally be able to escape the orphanage in which she grew up. Things quickly deteriorate and the children learn to their horror that they are trapped. The house holds dark secrets; secrets that the children must unravel if they are to have any hope of escape. The question remains, why did the house choose them and is escape even possible?
Nearly everything in The Gathering is designed to be a bit creepy, from the cover, the singed looking pages, to the artwork inside. It does a wonderful job building a sinister atmosphere, and though it plays with some tried and true tropes of the horror genre, it does so in a way that will lure readers in and leave them both fearing and anticipating the next page. There is also an app for smartphones or tablets that kids can download. The app contains a choose-your-own-adventure narrative, through which they can unlock backstories of various characters in the book.
One thing to keep in mind is that this is book one in a series, so readers who go in expecting to have things nicely wrapped up at the end will be severely disappointed. The book cuts off right in the middle of the children’s adventure, but book two is scheduled for late December, so readers won’t have too long to wait to continue the story.
This is not a book (or app) for the faint of heart, and may be too much for some children. However, for those who enjoy a good ghost story, The Gathering is a wonderful start to a promising, spooky series....more
As children, most of us enjoyed coloring. It was a break from schoolwork, a way to de-stress, and a way to give physical presence to understanding our feelings. As we grew up, many of us grew out of coloring. However, this was often due to less time and the various pressures of life rather than a complete lack of interest. Sometimes it was because we felt badly about our talents when compared to our more artistically inclined friends. It didn’t help that for a long time coloring books remained firmly the domain of childhood due to their childlike simplicity and subject matter. In the early 2010s this began to change, and a slew of adult oriented coloring books can now be purchased in bookstores across the country. Edgar Allan Poe: An Adult Coloring Book is one such book, but designed for those with a darker sense of humor, a love of classic horror literature, or with a soft spot for Halloween.
The book has 96 black and white pages for readers to fill in. The layout is that each pair of pages illustrates a scene from one of Poe’s stories, with one full page dedicated to the image and the facing page containing the quote in question. Some illustrations are very on point and match the quote or the theme of the particular story perfectly, while others require either a bit of lateral thinking or an intimate knowledge of the story in question. The illustrations are very busy and are bound to take some time to color. This is a perfect book for anyone who is interested in investing some time in a darker themed coloring book....more
Marie Antoinette, Phantom Queen is an engaging and beautifully illustrated ghost story. Maud, a wealthy widow and an accomplished painter, is invited to a social gathering in Normandy. The weather turns sour, and the group decides it has created the perfect ambiance for a séance. Maud unexpectedly conjures “a beautiful lady from days of old,” but the séance ends up not being the end of her ghostly encounter. Queen Marie Antoinette seeks out Maud in the hopes that she will be able to help her move on, but Maud’s preoccupation with the apparition that no one else can see has her slimy son-in-law, Remy, seeking to declare her unfit so he can steal the money his father left her. Will Maud be able to help Marie move on, or will Remy succeed in having her committed?
This is a wonderful work of historical fiction, and splits its time between Maud and illustrating various moments in Marie Antoinette’s life. Despite having a fairly decent sized cast of characters the book never feels too overcrowded. The book is a tall hardcover (also available as an eBook), and the illustrations are clear, crisp, and uncrowded for your enjoyment. The illustrations appear to be ink and watercolor, suit the narrative and time period perfectly, and are a complete joy to look at. While telling the story of a haunting, the story isn’t your typical horror fare and instead manages to carry a somewhat peaceful ambiance. Rodolphe writes a short preface to explain where the idea for the graphic novel originated, and is worth reading before diving into the book itself.
Marie Antoinette, Phantom Queen is highly recommended for readers of historical fiction, even those who typically do not read graphic novels. ...more