Goodreads Choice Awards Book Club discussion

Beautiful Creatures: The Manga
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Archive - Award Winners > Beautiful Creatures: The Manga - November 2014

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message 1: by Lynn, Moderator (new) - rated it 3 stars

Lynn | 4070 comments Mod
Graphic Novels & Comics Winner

Beautiful Creatures The Manga by Kami Garcia

Book Summary
In crisp black and white manga pictures, Ethan Wate narrates his dreams, haunted an unreachable raven-haired beauty. When she moves into the small Southern town Blackwood mansion of her protective Uncle Macon, Ethan is inexplicably drawn to her. As her 16th birthday nears, Lena must choose - or will the family curse choose for her?

There were no surprises in Gatlin County .. the middle of nowhere.
I couldn't have been more wrong.
There was a curse.
There was a girl.
And in the end, there was a grave.


message 2: by Lynn, Moderator (last edited Oct 31, 2014 12:04PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Lynn | 4070 comments Mod
So I was a newbie to this genre never having read anything like this before. What about the rest of you?

If you've read this genre before, was this a good example? Was it a worthy winner?

This is an adaptation of Beautiful Creatures. Had you read the book before this?

If so, do you think it added to the experience of the story?


message 3: by ally ¯\(ツ)/¯ (last edited Oct 31, 2014 01:19PM) (new)

ally  ¯\(ツ)/¯ (allykennedy) | 1002 comments I haven't read Beautiful Creatures. I'm going to give it a shot. I love Graphic Novels but I have to admit I doubt I'll concur that it should have won after reading Saga, Volume 2 by Brian K. Vaughan . I'm also not really a fan of Black & White in a world full of colour.
Time will tell...


message 4: by Lynn, Moderator (new) - rated it 3 stars

Lynn | 4070 comments Mod
☆αlly☆ (litєrαry єscαpist) wrote: "I haven't read Beautiful Creatures. I'm going to give it a shot. I love Graphic Novels but I have to admit I doubt I'll concur that it should have won after reading Saga, Volume 2 by Brian K. Vaughan"

Was Saga, Volume 2 in the running ally?


ally  ¯\(ツ)/¯ (allykennedy) | 1002 comments Yes it was. Came in 3rd (or 4th?) I think. It's such a brilliant series :)


Carly Svamvour (faganlady) | 13 comments I just finished - I liked it - the story moved along nicely. I particularly enjoyed the music/songs that went with the story. Unique way of storytelling and it worked for me.

I gave it a 4 - but were it not for an obvious repetitiveness of other novels - such as the dance scene in Carrie - I might have given it 5.


Valerie (darthval) | 411 comments I am TOTALLY into graphic novels and I originally planned to read this one. My issue, however, is that this is just an adaptation of the Beautiful Creatures novel, which I thought was way too teen angsty.

After much deliberation, I've decided not to spend the time on this that I COULD spend on graphic novels more suited to my taste. I DID just pick up the final issue of Superman Unchained #9, after all. Happy reading to me!

If I were choosing I'd have gone with Batman, Vol. 2: The City of Owls, followed closely by Wonder Woman, Vol. 2: Guts and Saga, Volume 2.

Ally, I am sad that I am behind on my graphic novel reading this year. I have not yet gotten Vol. 3. It is truly amazing.


ally  ¯\(ツ)/¯ (allykennedy) | 1002 comments Volume 4 is up on GR and set to come out in December!!!
*SQUEEEEEE*


Janina (sylarana) | 692 comments I've only read Volume 1 of Saga, but I absolutely love that one .. and I do have Volume 2 already .. just have to get through all those Dresden books first :)

I tried reading the novel first, but found it too bland and stereotypical to finish. My 9 year-old daughter however absolutely loves it which probably means I'm simple beyond the intended age group.
I enjoyed the graphic version more, because I do like the black-and-white art and style .. plus it was just a quick read. I don't read a lot of graphic novels, but compared to Saga, this one just pales completely .. not just the graphics, but also the storyline.


Valerie (darthval) | 411 comments Hmm, I just discovered that my library of last resort has this and it is available. I might give it a go, since I don't have to purchase it.

Janina, I agree about the Beautiful Creatures book. I am definitely NOT the intended audience.


message 11: by Lynn, Moderator (new) - rated it 3 stars

Lynn | 4070 comments Mod
Valerie - Might as well if you can get it from the library. As Janina said, it's a quick read.


Valerie (darthval) | 411 comments I plan to go by and pick it up tonight!


Valerie (darthval) | 411 comments So, I picked it up last night and started it, but I am still pretty meh about it.

I think the pacing is stilted and I'm not overly impressed with the artwork. Specifically what I love in manga are facial expressions, but so far the art feels pretty wooden to me.

I can't help but wonder if this didn't win the category based more on fans of the book series than vote from people who have actually read it and are fans of graphic novels.


Janina (sylarana) | 692 comments I'm fairly certain that's the reason for the win .. though I'm also baffled that the book series is popular (is it truly?). There are tons of better YA and middle school books out there ...


message 15: by Lynn, Moderator (new) - rated it 3 stars

Lynn | 4070 comments Mod
Valerie wrote: "I can't help but wonder if this didn't win the category based more on fans of the book series than vote from people who have actually read it and are fans of graphic novels. "

Oh yes, I think we can safely say that's the reason.


Valerie (darthval) | 411 comments I totally agree about Beautiful Creatures, Janina. I got sucked into it for a different book club and thought it was terrible. It must have some level of popularity, given that they made it into a movie.

I am pretty frustrated by the Good Reads voting system. It occurred to me when the voting was finalized last year and it is hitting me hard this year how many people skew the votes by voting for books that have not read.

I wish that Good Reads would only allow people to vote for books that they have marked as read prior to the voting period or at least have a disclaimer that one should only vote for books they've actually read.


message 17: by ally ¯\(ツ)/¯ (new)

ally  ¯\(ツ)/¯ (allykennedy) | 1002 comments My copy arrived at the library... after bringing it home and flipping through some pages I've decided I'm not going to read it.
Based on the copious 3 star reviews and the fact that the art is (boring) black and white. I'm just not into it.
It's times like this that I am thankful for the library.


message 18: by Janina (last edited Nov 13, 2014 11:06PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Janina (sylarana) | 692 comments Regarding the voting system: I am one of those people who vote for books they haven't read. But, it's usually books that interest me strongly and generally I know I will like the book based on that interest.
Or the other way round, e.g. in this year's mystery/thriller category, I've only read one book .. The Silkworm .. which I absolutely loved, so I voted for it. But, I've loved everything JKR created (apart from Ginny/Harry and that epilogue), so I don't even know if I'm objective in liking the book. Yet, it's brilliant. Without having read any of the other books though, I don't see how that qualifies me to vote in that category more than the ones where I haven't read a single book. I'm just choosing the book I know vs the ones I don't.
I feel like sometimes it makes more sense to vote for a book that I think is the best (without having read it) than to vote for a book just because I've read it and no other. Ykwim?

So, I'm sure votes get distorted .. especially in those categories where fandom plays a role. But, I don't see that being improved by restricting people to vote on books they've read. That would lead to a simple "most read/best marketed" choice which is not necessarily preferable, don't you think?

However, I do agree that it makes no sense for people to vote on categories that they have no interest in reading.


Valerie (darthval) | 411 comments Janina, you are right. People would then just vote for something because they've read it. There really is no good system, I guess for developing a Top Books of the Year list.

Most book sellers do their lists based on sales and/or from a publisher's perspective. And, of course, it is all subjective, based on opinion.


Valerie (darthval) | 411 comments Okay, I finished it. It was a really quick read, but not for me.

I thought that the story itself might tell better in this shorter format. Alas, I thought it was even worse than the book. It was really choppy and I the writing was pretty stilted.

The artwork was pretty flat. The lack of color did not bother me, since this is typical of the manga that I've read. What did bother me was the lack of facial expression, which is what I've come to love in the genre.

The cover art, on the other hand, was beautiful.


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