Joe Valdez's Reviews > Lady Killer, Volume 2

Lady Killer, Volume 2 by Joëlle Jones
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it was amazing
bookshelves: graphic-novel

I'm still in love with Lady Killer.

Volume 2 of this Dark Horse comic book--story and art by Joëlle Jones, colors by Michelle Madsen--launched in September 2016 and issues #1-5 are bound here, with a sketchbook of designs as a bonus. I still haven't succumbed to the vice of comic books and instead prefer one purchase to equal one story, but this smart volume does offer that, and sure is fun to flirt with. Cheeky without tipping into silliness, bloody without bordering on repellent, the story is wickedly devoted to women who maintain dual identities between home and office, with the natural complications that arise from work as a professional killer.

In 1962, plucky housewife Josie Schuller has relocated to the Space Coast, Cocoa Beach, Florida, with her sweet husband Gene, nosy German mother-in-law and blonde twins. Josie is an independent contractor in a line of work her family remains none to the wise on. She prefers using her hands or most any household item except for firearms. Cleanup still an area for improvement, she accepts a minority partner in Irving, an elderly hitman who refuses to settle into retirement. When Irving threatens Josie's precarious balance of work and home, she seeks to dissolve their partnership. Irving has forgotten more about contracts than Josie will ever know and does not go away quietly.



Lady Killer, Volume 2 hits every square that a sequel should. Joëlle Jones offers tantalizing glimpses into the pasts of both Josie and her German monster-in-law and does so in ways that are organic to the story. The men in Josie's orbit return from Volume 1 and by watching Gene and Irving at work, as an aerospace engineer and professional killer, their characters are developed too. As a result, I was invested in the story, which remains grounded (I kept waiting for a Cape Canaveral rocket launch to figure into the action, but if this were a 007 movie, the tone would favor From Russia With Love as opposed to Moonraker).

The addition to its narrative economy, Lady Killer has a terrific heroine in Josie Schuller, so adept at balancing dual identities that Jones saw no need to grant her superpowers or blast the reader off to another galaxy; most of the action takes place in kitchens or in cars. The artwork is cinematic and exciting (on a personal note, Josie reminds me of Joan Collins, one of my favorite starlets from that era). It's apparent from the retro, non-kitschy look and feel that Jones loves the early 1960s and that joy is transmitted to the reader. At the same time, there's sly commentary here about the grave mess bubbling right under the surface of the decade's glossy veneer.

I'd like to see Lady Killer #3 delve into romance and Josie struggling to keep the spark in her marriage alive in between contract killing jobs in and around another model American city.

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Reading Progress

November 25, 2017 – Shelved
November 25, 2017 – Shelved as: to-read
February 10, 2018 – Started Reading
February 10, 2018 –
page 16
11.76% "If you want to build a business on your own ... you have to use a little imagination.

"
February 10, 2018 –
page 27
19.85% "There are seven rules for going into business for yourself:

"
February 10, 2018 –
page 83
61.03% "Do you remember telling me that if I was ever unhappy with your work--that I could kill you at any time?

"
February 10, 2018 – Shelved as: graphic-novel
February 10, 2018 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-19 of 19 (19 new)

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Gabrielle yay!! so glad you enjoyed it! I'm already looking forward to volume 3!


message 2: by Joe (last edited Feb 10, 2018 07:13PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joe Valdez Gabrielle wrote: "yay!! so glad you enjoyed it! I'm already looking forward to volume 3!"

Thank you, Gabrielle. If I continue to associate with you, I will continue to purchase comic books. I just ordered a copy of My Favorite Thing Is Monsters. I'm beginning to see how some on Goodreads "meet" their reading challenges of 250 books a year.


Gabrielle Joe wrote: "Thank you, Gabrielle. If I continue to associate with you, I will continue to purchase comic books. I just..."

Comics do help with the reading challenges ;-) But to be fair, "My Favorite Thing is Monsters" is 400 pages!


message 4: by Julie (new)

Julie Cocoa Beach, FL is the perfect place for witches, genies and assassin housewives to reside.


Suvi Glad to hear you liked the second volume as well. And you like Joan Collins, too? Perfect! Dynasty is my childhood favorite.


message 6: by Joe (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joe Valdez Julie wrote: “Cocoa Beach, FL is the perfect place for witches, genies and assassin housewives to reside.”

Thank you for the travel advisory, Julie. Strange and powerful women are grown in Florida


message 7: by Joe (last edited Feb 11, 2018 08:36AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joe Valdez Suvi wrote: "Glad to hear you liked the second volume as well. And you like Joan Collins, too? Perfect! Dynasty is my childhood favorite."

Thank you, Suvi. I've never watched a frame of any nightime soap, but hope that Collins is receiving decent Dynasty residuals. In addition to her genetic gifts and longevity, she's come across as stoic and straight forward in every quote I've ever read. I'm sure any family dinner with her sister Jackie would've been an unprintable riot, especially after two or three cocktails.




message 8: by Carmen (new)

Carmen Great review! Sounds a bit too gory for me.


message 9: by Joe (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joe Valdez Carmen wrote: "Great review! Sounds a bit too gory for me."

Perhaps too ultraviolent for you, Carmen, but you might appreciate Josie Schuller appearing in these kissing books you endure. And it would be me who hired her to go there to explain some things to a few of those characters.


message 10: by Sandra (new)

Sandra Wonderful review Joe! :)


message 11: by Joe (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joe Valdez Sandra wrote: “Wonderful review Joe!”

Thank you so much, Sandra!


message 12: by Deanna (new)

Deanna Glad you enjoyed it, Joe!!


message 13: by Joe (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joe Valdez Deanna wrote: “Glad you enjoyed it, Joe!!”

I so did! Thank you, Deanna!


Bonnie I was really shocked how much I loved this installment. I can't wait for more. Glad you loved it too, Joe. :)


message 15: by Joe (last edited Mar 06, 2018 06:15PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joe Valdez Bonnie wrote: “I was really shocked how much I loved this installment. I can't wait for more. Glad you loved it too, Joe.”

Thank you, Bonnie. I’m not a comic book consumer, so I was surprised how much I enjoyed this too. I think comics grounded in worlds recognizable are a good place for someone like me to start, before blasting off to Planet Mongo. Swamp Thing has been highly recommended to me, though.


Bonnie Joe wrote: "Bonnie wrote: “I was really shocked how much I loved this installment. I can't wait for more. Glad you loved it too, Joe.”

Thank you, Bonnie. I’m not a comic book consumer, so I was surprised how ..."


I haven't read that one myself. Will have to add it to my list. :)


message 17: by Julie (new)

Julie Wow, the art looks different in this one. I'll need to get familiar with Josie's "new look" and new town! I don't understand how you have access to all of these photos or what in the hell you do to get them to be a part of your review. I wanted to include a photo in mine, but I had no idea how to do it or if I would have permission from the publisher to do such a thing.
Anyway, this was a re-read of your review, but I was more interested, now that I've read book #1. Nice job, as always.


message 18: by Joe (last edited Jul 14, 2018 07:14PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joe Valdez I'm excited that you enjoyed Lady Killer: Volume 1, Julie. I have to be careful I don't get too carried away with graphic novels, but they're a nice palette cleanser. I'm curious to read The Coldest City after seeing the movie Charlize Theron made based on it called Atomic Blonde which is more secret agent ass kicery, but I doubt that Josie Schuller the killer housewife can be beat in a street fight.

You can add images to your review by finding them on Google, copying the URL, pasting it into the html code provided by clicking on the (some html is ok) tab where you see it on Goodreads and then embedding that html code wherever you want the image to appear in your review. You can also post links by using the html code provided for that.


message 19: by Julie (new)

Julie Thanks, Joe.
How violent is The Coldest City?

You find all of these images just by going to Google? I mean, there are that many available of a graphic novel like this one?

I'm a work-in-progress when it comes to embedding html code. Stay tuned for breakthroughs in the next 5 years.


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