Monthly Archives: July 2014

Blue Morning Volume 5 by Shoko Hidaka

Volume 5 takes the political game deep as Akihito and Tomoyuki set plans in motion and maneuver through the imperial restoration landscape.  The romance is put on hold since most of the volume takes place at a gala thrown by … Continue reading

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Blightborn (Heartland Trilogy 2) by Chuck Wendig

Blightborn was a surprise; although I enjoyed the first Heartland book, I admittedly didn’t love it. I worried that the second book would be more of the same: brash Homer Hickman type young hero fighting oppression and making a lot … Continue reading

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Out of the Black by Evan Currie

Out Of The Black is an exuberant, action-packed, and wildly fun conclusion to the Odyssey One series.  Although not all our questions were answered and the door was left open to continue a new series in the same world, we … Continue reading

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Strange and Ever After by Susan Dennard

The worldbuilding continues to be the standout in this final volume of the Something Strange and Deadly Series. Although overall very uneven in tone and characters, the sheer imagination and inventiveness really made this a standout. I also greatly respect … Continue reading

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Prototype by M.D. Waters

This duology (Archetype and Prototype) tops my favorite read list of 2014.  A mixture of compelling storyline, very human characters, a complex plot, and plenty of action propel an intelligent, feisty, but very strong female protagonist. And at its heart … Continue reading

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World War One: 1914-1918 by Alan Cowsill and Lalit Kumar Sharma

World War One: 1915-1918 is a well researched historical graphic novel recounting the War To End All Wars from the perspective of two British soldiers. Their stories are chronologically interspersed with major events/battles as well as tales from other soldiers.  … Continue reading

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Boxers by Gene Luen Yang

I had wanted to read this as soon as I saw the publication release.  The Boxer Rebellion is a sad footnote of Chinese history and I had never seen it addressed in such a unique way.  Author Yang draws from … Continue reading

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Gingerbread Girl by Paul Tobina nd Colleen Coover

The whole time reading The Gingerbread Girl, I couldn’t help but be frustrated. It felt so much like a book written by a guy as a flippant, “girls are crayzee but we love ’em anyway” ode to women. As such, … Continue reading

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The Fire Wish by Amber Lough

The Fire Wish is a light and fluffy younger-skewing YA read – a “Parent Trap” for YA fantasy readers. Although there is nothing new in the plot, the interesting setting does add much appeal to the novel. But very simplistic … Continue reading

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The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

The Kiss of Deception is a fluffy read for those who like their heroines energetic, if a bit self obsessed. It feels like a concept book – one where the author decided to write a story based upon everyone lying … Continue reading

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Cardboard by Doug TenNapel

Cardboard honestly left me a bit ambivalent. On the one hand, the art is fantastic – lovingly drawn in hues of brown and beige to represent the cardboard theme. But on the other hand, the messages are either dropped with … Continue reading

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Meteor Men by Jeff Parker, Sandy Jarrell (Illustrations), Kevin Volo (Illustrations)

Meteor Men is a beautifully presented, engaging, and sophisticated graphic novel featuring a perfect marriage of story and art. I was greatly reminded of the movie “The Iron Giant” due to this title’s distinct style, sense of adventure and wonder, … Continue reading

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Can I Tell You about Anxiety? by Lucy Willetts, Polly Waite, Kaiyee Tay

Can I Tell you About Anxiety is a fairly short, pamphlet type mini book meant as an introduction to begin the process of dealing with anxiety issues for a child. It is not a self help book. An avatar character … Continue reading

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Dave Dorman’s Wasted Lands Omnibus

Dave Dorman’s Wasted Lands is definitely a treat for fans of this artist. But those new to his work (such as myself) may be a bit mystified by this odd collection, a group of disparate items (novella, color comic, BW … Continue reading

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One is Enough by Love

More reviews (and no fluff) on the blog https://surrealtalvi.wordpress.com/</p></i>For me, story, plot, translation, editing, cleaning, and artwork all felt off. While I understand it is doujinshi/indie work from an unpublished artist/author, I don’t necessarily feel it warranted a release from … Continue reading

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Manga Classics: Pride & Prejudice Softcover by Stacy King (Editor), Po Tse (Illustrations), Jane Austen

Manga Classics: Pride & Prejudice is definitely not intended for Austen fans or for adults. This is meant as an introduction for younger readers to a timeless classic. But even keeping that in mind, this graphic novel did miss the … Continue reading

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Alex + ADA Volume 1 by Jonathan Luna, Sarah Vaughn

This deceptively simple graphic novel will ultimately draw comparisons to motion pictures Her, Blade Runner, AI, I Robot, and many others. Not just because they feature artificial intelligence but because they explore what it means to be sentient. And despite … Continue reading

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Rocket Girl Volume 1: Times Squared by Brandon Montclare, Amy Reeder

Somewhere in this graphic novel (collecting issues 1-5) was a great concept that really became muddled and very unmanageable by the end. Time travel stories have a tendency to do that but this book was particularly unreadable by the half … Continue reading

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Noble Metals by L.A. Witt

Noble Metals is a steampunk romance set in the backdrop of the Klondike gold rush. The steampunk elements are downplayed in favor of the M/M romance aspects and the ending is a bit rushed. But problematic for me was a … Continue reading

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The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen

I enjoyed Queen of the Tearling despite several logic and plot flaws that admittedly detract from the reading. What we have is a medieval-type fantasy book more about human interactions and politics than swords, sorcery, or battles. Dark, often vulgar, … Continue reading

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