I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Okay, I will say I honestly picked this up because it had Minsc on the I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Okay, I will say I honestly picked this up because it had Minsc on the cover. I played both Baldur's Gate games when they first came out and adored Minsc. So the idea of a comic starring him was exciting. Unfortunately, this mostly seemed like a rehash of some of Minsc's best lines from the games. There was no character development for any of the main characters. I had trouble understanding why they even came together beyond mutual need to avoid the city guard and the Flaming Fist. The story moves along far too quickly - I remember the city of Baldur's Gate taking such a long time to explore, and you never get a good sense of the size or scope of it in this book. And for as serious as it takes itself, this book seems to miss some basic D&D aspects. I'll pick on Minsc, since I love him so. He is a ranger. He's referred to throughout the story as the Beloved Ranger. But he's treated as a fighter in this, and drawn as some sort of hulking giant. Okay, I remember him being a lousy ranger in the game. He was terrible at sneaking. I regularly threw him into the fighter role. But it wasn't what he was built for. And he certain,y isn't playing the ranger role in this book. And I guess that leads me to my last point... I don't know who this book is intended for. Is it for those of us who've played the game and want to see more of characters we loved? Or to introduce newbies to the characters and hope they pick up the re released game? Or just fans of D&D and Forgotten Realms? There were far too many in-jokes for me to think it will appeal to those who aren't familiar with the series. And the majority of it seems like we've heard it before if we have played the games. I will say the artwork is decent, with several funny panels, particularly when they feature Boo....more
The League is back, newly formed (sort of... if you've read the last three books, particularly The Black Dossier, you know about this version of the LThe League is back, newly formed (sort of... if you've read the last three books, particularly The Black Dossier, you know about this version of the League already) and it's ready to defend London. Expect to need to sit down with a wiki after you read this (at least I did) to get all the characters and references. If you're a LoEG fan already, that shouldn't be new! Nemo's daughter, Janni, really makes the story, with her departure from Lincoln Island and transformation working in the Cuttlefish Hotel. I had not expected to dislike Orlando so much, particularly after his/her feature in The Black Dossier made me so much more curious about this character.
The artwork, as always, is awesome. I felt like the story was somewhat lacking, though I felt the same way about The Black Dossier. The last book was a quick chase, with frequent and lengthy interruptions of the League's history. Moore seems to resist the urge in this volume, with a rather short entry at the end called "Minions of the Moon," which explores the League's future. I'm really curious to see more of this iteration of the League, but it sounds like I'll be disappointed, based on Moore's plans for the next two volumes. I suppose, in a way, I've always been more interested in the other members of the League and less so in Allan and Mina....more
I know that this was one of those epic comic storylines of the 90s. And on its face, it's a good story - war is about to break out between the generatI know that this was one of those epic comic storylines of the 90s. And on its face, it's a good story - war is about to break out between the generations of superhumans and everyone, super and regular, will suffer for it. Will the older generation of heroes like Superman and Wonder Woman abandon their morals to stop their children and grandchildren, who have little regard for human life? And on the other side, we have mortals like Batman (who is not aging well - but who ever expects Batman to age well?) and Lex Luthor and his most unfortunately named organization, the Mankind Liberation Front, or MLF. I swear, I could not read that abbreviation without thinking "MILF" and wondering if that had not crossed Mark Waid's mind. Anyways, these men seek to protect humanity, though for very different reasons. And then there's Captain Marvel/Billy Batson, caught in the middle of it all.
So yes, it's a good end-of-the-world story. But it just didn't appeal to me. The artwork is incredible. That's probably the biggest selling point for this story. But I felt like I was reading a "Who's Who" of DC heroes and villains, which became so dizzying that I couldn't keep characters straight and I really didn't care. In the back of the compilation, there's a chart of 105 of the heroes/villains, and many of their names end with the numbers 2 or 3. Despite the plethora of characters, the focus is mainly on Superman, with supporting roles from Wonder Woman and Batman. Several of the heroes I recognized (which didn't feel like many... go go Wesley Dodds) looked like they'd have interesting stories to tell and opinions to contribute... but they hardly utter a word. Which brings me to my biggest gripe - Captain Marvel/Billy is the character that this whole story hinges on. He is both mortal and superhuman. His mental state is less than whole, and he's the only person capable of matching Superman's powers. But he gets so little attention for such a pivotal character! Plus, I have a little trouble getting invested in a scene where the key word is Shazam. I guess it's just a sign of the times....more
I think I started this on the wrong foot... You Suck was recommended to me, but I've never read anything by Christopher Moore, so I didn't realize thaI think I started this on the wrong foot... You Suck was recommended to me, but I've never read anything by Christopher Moore, so I didn't realize that this was a sequel until about halfway through. It works just fine as a stand-alone story, but I'll definitely be picking up Bloodsucking Fiends.
This was one of the funniest books I've heard in a long time. It's vampires, it's romance, it's San Francisco. Abby Normal, the perky goth, makes this book worthwhile on her own. Moore clearly knows his setting and I got pretty nostalgic for the Bay Area. I've read some reviews complaining that there's a lack of plot for the book... and it really is more of a character piece. Of course, these are incredible characters with well-developed backgrounds, personalities, and voices.
I'd have to recommend the audio version of this - Susan Bennetts is the best narrator I've ever heard for an audiobook (that includes Tim Curry, which I feel guilty about). She can go from naive, midwestern Tommy to gangsta to goth to refined vampire, without you ever feeling that it's a stretch for her.
This book will make you want to steal a homeless guy's huge cat. And maybe shave it. And give it a sweater. Fair warning....more
Okay, I'm a Neil Gaiman nut, but it took me ages to read American Gods. And I think the book was overhyped to me. It really didn't have the same appeaOkay, I'm a Neil Gaiman nut, but it took me ages to read American Gods. And I think the book was overhyped to me. It really didn't have the same appeal that Sandman did. Maybe part of my problem was listening to the audio version, which did not have great sound quality and the narrator was really awkward. He sounded like he should be reading with a corncob pipe in his mouth, which is fine for characters like Wednesday, Czernobog, and Hinzelmann, but terrible for Laura and makes it sound like your grandfather is reading you a lot of strange sex scenes. Blerg! On top of that, I really didn't care for Shadow or for the in-between stories about how the gods came to inhabit America. The pace was just too slow and ponderous for me. Perhaps that's what comes from reading too many comic books? :P...more
I'm still not quite sure what to make of Black Dossier. I'm happy to see more LoEG, and pleased that where the comic is interrupted with diaries, bookI'm still not quite sure what to make of Black Dossier. I'm happy to see more LoEG, and pleased that where the comic is interrupted with diaries, books, and travel guides, these are not the same somewhat-dull walls of text that rounded out volume two. The majority of them are fascinating and entertaining, and bring much more life to the League's history than vol. 2 did. My favorite was the recounting of how Mina got Nemo to agree to joining the League.
However, I'm missing the old league members (Nemo and Hyde seemed so much more interesting than Allan and sometimes even Mina). It also feels like we've missed out on so many amazing adventures, which we get to hear about secondhand through the diaries, comics, and book-segments. Moreover, I was not in love with the plot. Allan and Mina basically steal the Black Dossier, a series of documents that outline the history of the League and the generations who have served in it (before and after Mina's League). What follows is a long chase story that involves James Bond, Bulldog Drummond, and the remnants of an Orwellian government. For a series that can be so smart, this plot seemed rather blah - I felt like this was mostly an excuse to give us League history and less about Mina and Allan's latest adventure.
If you've read all of vol. 1 and 2, there are lots of references and visuals that you will get, and be pleased that you get them... just expect to spend a lot of time poring over the book. While this volume has skads of references to other literature and films, it's become just as much a self-referential piece. The artwork is, as always, amazing. And that brings me to another thing... expect lots of sex and nudity. But shouldn't you expect that from any work that includes a Tijuana Bible? Particularly an Orwell-inspired one? The 3-D section worked surprisingly well. ...more