Book Reviews, Nonfiction, Quotes

The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher

26025989I finally was able to read Carrie Fisher’s Princess Diarist. The book had been on hold for a few months before I finally received the email that it was waiting for me at the library. This was such an enjoyable read for me. Carrie Fisher’s sense of humor is excellent. She’s able to see the humor in things to her life in a way that is really great. I cannot wait to read her other book. I’m thinking of actually picking it up when I think I’ll have time to read it since the library would take a while I’m sure. Also, I need to slow down on the library books. Here are some of my favorite quotes from the novel because I felt like this book is so quotable and special. I didn’t expect to gain nearly as much from this as I did. My favorite of my favorites is …

“The one I wore to kill Jabba (my favorite moment in my own personal film history), which I highly recommend your doing: find an equivalent of killing a giant space slug in your head and celebrate that.”
Carrie Fisher, The Princess Diarist

This first quote had me shook, to be honest with you. I was sitting there thinking about my life and thinking about what the equivalent to slaying Jabba the hut would be for me. It didn’t take long to figure that out and it put some things in perspective for me. I fell off from writing last month but jumped right back in after reading this book. It was something I really needed that has been difficult with life recently. This was a big moment for me in the book even if there were many other moments as well. I’m in such a transitional period in my life right now. I think that’s the 20’s for a lot of people. I’m just trying to figure out where I want to be and who I want to be. It just made me think a lot.

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“I need to write. It keeps me focused for long enough to complete thoughts. To let each train of thought run to its conclusion and let a new one begin. It keeps me thinking. I’m afraid that if I stop writing I’ll stop thinking and start feeling.”

“I call people sometimes hoping not only that they’ll verify the fact that I’m alive but that they’ll also, however indirectly, convince me that being alive is an appropriate state for me to be in. Because sometimes I don’t think it’s such a bright idea. Is it worth the trouble it takes trying to live life so that someday you get something worthwhile out of it, instead of it almost always taking worthwhile things out of you?”

“It’s not nice being inside my head. It’s a nice place to visit but I don’t want to live in here. It’s too crowded; too many traps and pitfalls.”

“I’m frightened of the power I have given him over me and of how he will almost certainly abuse it, merely by not being fully aware he has it.”

“I’ve got to learn something from my mistakes instead of establishing a new record to break.”

“Do not let what you think they think of you make you stop and question everything you are.”

“It was one movie. It wasn’t supposed to do what it did—nothing was supposed to do that. Nothing ever had. Movies were meant to stay on the screen, flat and large and colorful, gathering you up into their sweep of story, carrying you rollicking along to the end, then releasing you back into your unchanged life. But this movie misbehaved. It leaked out of the theater, poured off the screen, affected a lot of people so deeply that they required endless talismans and artifacts to stay connected to it.”

 

 

 

ARC's, Book Reviews, Gay romance

Danced Close by Annabeth Albert


Danced Close is the sixth book in Annabeth Albert’s Portland Heat series. All the books in this series are standalone’s or can be read as such.There are cameos from couples you see in the previous books. This one follows Kendall and Todd. Albert delivers with two really fantastic characters, a romance that really makes your heart happy, and dancing. I really enjoyed this story.

Kendall is a wedding planner. Todd works at a bakery that makes the cakes Kendall’s company uses in their weddings. The way the two fall into each other’s lives is really well done. Kendall needs a partner for dance classes as he’s getting ready for a charity event he has to go to. The charity is one that Todd cares about enough to put back on his dancing shoes.

Albert keeps taking stabs at big issues in her romances and I do think she does them well.I can tell she does her research. Kendall is genderqueer. Things are different for every genderqueer person. I think Albert really took her time in figuring out what that meant for Kendall. Characters had conversations about preferred gender pronouns with Kendall. It’s part of who Kendall is and I like that we see how it affects Kendall in different parts of his life. It made sense how much people’s reactions came up. It’s a thing that happens for genderqueer people in their daily life. I also liked that negative reactions affected Todd more than Kendall often because it’s something Kendall is used to happening. It also showed how much Todd was starting to care for Kendall.

Todd is a recovering addict. He’s also HIV Positive and I have to say I liked the poz rep here. Kendall doesn’t know a lot about what being HIV positive means. I’m always surprised when people haven’t done research into what that means for people now compared to years ago. This made me realize a lot of people don’t know, though. So I’m happy to see Kendall do that research and that it was present. Don’t think he talked about PrEP as an option for them. Would have been niced to see it mentioned but I am happy the book shows one way a relationship between someone HIV positive and HIV negative works.

There was a lot of insecurities on both of their parts. I feel like Todd didn’t think he’d ever have a successful relationship because of the things he struggled with his past. He doesn’t have a lot of confidence in himself. Plus he hadn’t had anything serious since finding out he was HIV positive.

Kendall is insecure as well when it comes to relationships. He’s freshly off a breakup that is still affecting him. Kendall doesn’t want something serious again. Kendall’s ex-boyfriend had difficulty with his the way Kendall expressed himself. It seems like Kendall just doesn’t want to fall into the same situation he was in before.

These stories always have a little angst. I felt like they hadn’t gotten far enough in their feelings for each other to react the way they did to certain things when the angst came in. Still, it made sense for their characters based on what we’d seen from them. I have to say when it came to the romance I could not help but smile. Todd and Kendall’s relationship is sugary sweet. It’s so cute and I really loved these two together. They work really well as a couple.

This story also had that epilog all these romances have. I love epilogs and also wish they were a little longer. A lot happens over the six months following the gala for Todd and Kendall. I wish we could have seen their relationship grow a bit more. Just a little more time with these really great characters. I enjoyed my time with Kendall and Todd here. As always I recommend you check out this or one of Annabeth Alberts other romances.

Book Reviews, diverse books, LGBTQIA+, YA

Not Your Sidekick by C.B. Lee Review

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I enjoyed the story for sure. I had a hard time not questioning the logistics of the world but questions aside it is really interesting. A solar flare gave a lot of people powers. Meta Humans galore. They are classed at different levels with the higher level becoming superheroes. It is really interesting but felt like I needed more detail still.

I love the representation in the story. I don’t read many books with bisexual main characters in this kind of genre. Jess is also an Asian protagonist. I’m all about superhero stories with QPOC characters. It was great to see how her family’s background affected their life in different ways.I also like the way the main relationship went overall. It was a cute pairing. Felt a bit too fluffy for the story at times but it was nice.

There was too hinting sometimes. I figured out a lot of things really easily. I think the first reveal that Jess has no clue about is something that yeah the reader is probably supposed to figure out. If not it was okay that I did. It was a type of dramatic irony knowing the thing that Jess didn’t.I feel like the other reveals may have had too much laid out too, though. I wanted less predictable in those later chapters.

So Jess has it pretty rough in this book after things really kick off. The twist and turns n her life are a lot to handle and she really handles it pretty well. I also felt like there was a definite hero journey for her that coincided with her deciding she wanted to be her own person. She wasn’t going to live in the shadow of her family or just do what they wanted her to do in order to get by.She is going to do things for herself.

There also is a trans character in this story named Bells. It looks like he will be the main character of the sequel. I’m excited to see the continuation of the group’s story in the following book for sure.

I really wish more had happened by the end of this one or that more have been accomplished. Even knowing that there will be another book I was a bit dissatisfied with the end. The sequel does come out this year so I hope I’m able to get it sooner rather than later. It looks like it will be focusing on Bells like I said. I am glad I read this. Jess is a great main character and I hope she and everyone else makes some major progress dealing with the situation they are all in next time.

Book Reviews, diverse books, LGBTQIA+, YA

History is All You Left Me Review

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History is All You Left Me by Adam Silver is the second book chosen for The Rainbow Library.A landslide in the voting. A lot of members were excited about the book release.I’m really glad it was chosen as well. I was a big fan of More Happy Than Not and had the History Is All You Left Me book pre-ordered. I was going to wait a bit longer to dive into but I’m glad this group gave me the push to do it now.Apologizing now if this review gets too scattered. I took lots of notes.

This story intrigued me right away with the setup. You jump into the story and realize that the chapters will alternate between the present and the past.History and Today. We have a main character that is flawed in some ways too. I’m  talking about the way he handles a lot of the relationships in his life. I could see that it wasn’t the best right away. Especially after seeing how great Griffin’s relationship with Wade and Theo is in the first few history chapters. It’s so interesting trying to connect the history Griff gives us to his present. I was always looking for the clues to see how things came to be this way. Trying to figure out who is at fault for things before history could catch up with the present more.

I have to say I was surprised by how much I loved the history chapters. They start the day that Theo and Griffin admit their feelings for each other,  goes through their relationship and ends on the day that Theo dies. There were so many beautiful moments in their relationship and it really was bittersweet to read knowing that they eventually break up and that Theo dies. The first few history chapters really drew me in and I was excited that I was going to really enjoy those flashbacks.

Early on I wondered how reliable Griffin was as a narrator for not only the history sections. It was a small moment during the funeral of Theo that made me think it. It was just a perspective thing. The way he saw Jackson and how I could tell he blamed Jackson for Theo’s death to some extent. It made him think that other people might see Jackson similarly when that wasn’t the case. It was the first point where I realized there would definitely be some bias with anything revolving Jackson in the history or today part.

One really interesting thing about Griffin as a narrator is that he’s talking to Theo. The whole story is Griffin going over his history with Theo and also telling Theo the things he didn’t know. The things he wanted to but didn’t get a chance to. The “you” he references in the today sections is Theo.He models his actions toward Jackson based on what Theo would want him to do. If Theo would be disappointed in him. I saw it as another way for him to process Theo’s death. Believing that somehow Theo might be out there listening to him. A little odd considering that it’s pointed out that Griffin isn’t religious like Jackson.

Griffin has OCD. I really can’t comment much on the way it’s written besides that it feels accurate. I have a family member that has OCD and I grew up watching them deal with their compulsions. Compulsions that are very different from what Griffin’s are, though.His compulsions dealt with counting and even numbers. He always had to walk on one side of people or he became anxious. I liked the way it was shown throughout the story.I liked the way the people in his life reacted differently to it as well.

This story had what I call the January problem now. It’s where you only see a character through flashback and don’t always get the info you want. January from Last Seen Leaving was a character I had this kind of issue with. Theo can’t tell his story. Griffin has to tell it for him. Jackson and others can share stories of him but they can’t tell us what Theo was thinking. I really just wished I could get in his head. I got to the point in the history chapters where I had some questions. Theo, what are you doing? Do you really think you can stay friends with Griffin and be with Jackson? Do you not see how messy this situation is? Why are you a mess? Plus so many more questions as I realize things that Theo did or said. It’s not a problem that takes anything away from the story for me. I just will have those questions forever.

The last sixty or eighty pages I would read a page. Then stop to process because I needed to before reading another page.It was a long process. Sometimes I would lean against a wall or pace. Adam Silvera takes you on these really emotional roller coasters in his work. The situation between this group of guys was so messy and that was before Theo died. It really just gets worse. There were definitely some cringe moments because I didn’t want to think about how I’d handle the situations they were going through.  Pg 225 I for sure wasn’t ready for. I could not. I still cannot.I didn’t even know how I kept going toward the end right after that.

I really can’t knock this story rating down for anything that happens. There are things that were frustrating but it wasn’t frustrations that would affect the rating I’d give the book.If the situation was different these things would. I’m never a fan of people doing things to emotionally hurt people. Griff definitely does that at points in this story and I feel like Jackson does as well.Griff makes some bad decisions in his History with Theo that might make him unlikeable for people. Theo might be unlikeable for you.However, this was a story about people grieving over the death of someone they loved. It’s completely true that there were moments where I definitely have a problem with things done. Especially by the main character Griffin but all his emotions and actions were valid.This form of grieving was valid. Not right necessarily but it was valid. He’s in a rough spot and you see that throughout the entire book. I went along on this journey with Griffin knowing that he was going to possibly make some bad decisions.

There were chapters early on where I wished we could see more of Wade. I think it’s because I loved Wade in the chapters in the past. He was a great friend and added something to those scenes before Theo and Griffin start pushing him out a little unintentionally.I also wondered why he became more distant. What did Theo do or say to push his best friend away? Another question I had. Later in the story, we do finally get to see what’s going on with Wade. I have to say that there are things about Wade that I related to in a this is hurting my soul kind of way. I really wish we could have seen more of his character. Jackson and Griffin get to m0urn together for a big portion of this story. Wade mourns his friend alone and that is really rough.

I have to applaud Silvera on somehow throwing in a subtle twist that was just as jarring as the twist in More Happy Than Not even if on a smaller scale. More Happy Than Not had a sci-fi element.The thing that shocked me there was a big deal. History is All You left Me is just all real and still had these emotionally jarring moments that are so brilliant and unexpected. Adam Silvera is really becoming one of my favorite authors really quickly.I’m excited for his next book They Both Die At The End.I know I will likely be a complete emotional wreck after that one but I don’t mind that when it’s an Adam Silvera book. This story comes out to a 5-star read for me.

Comics, LGBTQIA+

Avengers: The Children’s Crusade

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I enjoyed this story a lot. Breezed through it really quickly. The Young Avengers are all faves of mine. Especially Wiccan and Hulkling.Never can get enough of them. Wiccan and Speed search for The Scarlet Witch who they think might be their mother.They need to find her before lots of other angry people do.

It was really great to get more of the fill in for what happens with House of M. This rounds out that plotline. Wanda does something that affects the entire Marvel universe. She wiped out most of the Mutant race by accident.Reality warping powers are really too much for anyone. Learned that with Wiccan in Young Avengers and he got it from Wanda.

So the X-men are angry and coming for her. The Avengers are searching for her as well because she killed some Avengers.The Doctor Doom is involved. Wanda has lost some of her memories.Maybe got rid of them herself. Reasonable considering her grief and everything that caused House of M. She’s a mess with reality warping power and Doctor Doom has his clutches in her. It’s bad. No one wants Wiccan to look for her because the situation is bad. Also, I think the adults are a little afraid Wiccan’s powers might be too much like his moms.

This story revolves so much around Wiccan a.k.a. Billy Kaplan a.k.a. one of my favorite gay superheroes ever. I’m most happy that I read this because it has some great moments between Billy and his boyfriend Teddy a.k.a Hulkling.It’s great seeing how much they love each other and will do to protect each other. Billy left a note for Teddy at one point and I just read it over and over. I’m trash for this couple. I love following their relationship over time. They have big moments like the letter that went on for a few panels. Then just the small moments in fights or in passing. Moments where they check up on each other and protect each other. Just naturally gravitating toward each other in different situations. The little flirting they do here and there. I love this pairing. The end of the comic with them was really great.You constantly see how much they care about each other in this.

Plus I love all the family feels for Billy and his brother Tommy a.k.a. Speed. I’m going to stop putting in a.k.a. now. He’s searching for his mother with his brother but also meets his grandfather Magneto for the first time. We even get a mini comic of when Magneto learns about the existence of his grandchildren. Why do I feel like Magneto would actually be a decent grandparent? Like he might use you and your powers to his advantage but he’d take someone out if they came for you. He’d care in a Magneto way. Wiccan and Speed meet their uncle Quicksilver as well which isn’t the best first meeting but the family resemblance is so cool to see. Even if Speed and Quicksilver’s outfits are actually way too close. Like how does that even happen?

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This is a star-studded cast. Got the main X-men team. Mostly really annoying in this but it made sense.I needed them to think a little more but they were angry at all the mutants who died trying to get their abilities back. I understand.The Avengers appear as mentioned. The fight between the X-men and Avengers in this is lit. Then the Young Avengers. I love the Young Avengers. They are so great. I love the newer version of The Young Avengers and really need to talk about those comics but it’s really nice seeing the dynamics of this young Avengers team.You really see the fall of it here too, unfortunately.

There also was another gay superhero couple in this comic. I had not read them until now but I need to read more of them. Rictor and Shaterstar have such great moments in this. I know the pairing just from forums talking about the mutant couple in the X-men comics. Rictor talking about what it feels like to be connected to the earth with his power one day and to not have his power the next was intense. I really felt for the character. Then he and Shatterstar had this moment and I melted and I can’t. I need more of them. I feel like this is as far as their run has gone from what I know right now. So I’d be starting from before this and I hope I like seeing how it develops. I’ve also seen Shatterstar listed as a polyamorous character under a directory once so I wonder how that plays into his relationship with Rictor in the comics.I hope the comic handles it well.

The ending was sad even when I knew who was going to die already. I’ve read of Young Avengers comics set after this. It’s rough for a lot of reasons. Hoping the movie verse doesn’t take that turn with that character for a while. It would be rough to see on screen.No one really has a happy ending at the end here. most groups leave the situation extremely unhappy. Billy and Teddy still have each other and eventually will have a new Young Avengers team. Still, it’s a rough ending to the comic for Billy considering what has happened to the current team and ultimately what his search for his mother leads to.  I could do with less time travel in the plot, to be honest, but still enjoyed this a lot. Especially the gay.I’m a sucker for gay superheroes as you might know from so many other things I’ve reviewed. Plus my focus on them in this review. The queer characters in this particular comic had great arcs to follow. Can’t read to more on a lot of these characters in the future.

 

Adaptions, Comics

Runaways Cast Reaction

No secret that I love The Runaways comics by Brian K. Vaughn.It’s about a group of kids who find out their parents are supervillains. They deal with the shock that their parents are criminals and killers.They sacrifice someone every yea when they meet up.The kids reaction to finding this out is to Runaway. Of course, they also find out some of them have abilities as well. I love the characters in these comics. They are precious and deserve protecting.They also are one of the more diverse teams including a lesbian character in the original team and a love interest for her later in the series.

Marvel announced that there would be a tv series based on the comics coming to Hulu a while back. Recently they announced the casting and I have to say I’m really excited for it. I think it’s a great casting overall. I actually need to get Hulu when this comes out and I don’t want to do that. Brian K. Vaughn is acting as the executive consultant to the series so I really feel like this series will be amazing.

Rhenzy Feliz plays Alex Wilder. A child prodigy with no actual powers. His parents are mobsters.

Starting off with Alex because he’s really the leader of the team when it starts off. Alex is so dang smart to be honest.I’ve wanted to cosplay as this character for a while. There aren’t enough black characters in comics that I identify with. His plot doesn’t go exactly the way I wished in the comics. Still, I always admired his ambition and the way he leads the team to take down their evil parents. This actor is not very well known. He hasn’t been in too many things. I’m hoping he brings something great to this role. Alex has a lot of depth and changes throughout the comics. His character does some things that are questionable but the team would not be what they become without Alex doing all that he does. He definitely has an edge to him like his parents. I’m really wondering who they will cast as his parents. I feel like they are two of the better villains. Maybe because they have no special ability. They are just badass mobsters.

Ariela Barer as Gert Yorkes, The coolest girl in the world. She has purple hair.Her parents are time travelers from the future. She gains a telepathic link to a dinosaur.

Gert is probably my favorite characters. I’ve never watched anything with this actress in a main role. I’ve seen her play side characters in some Disney shows. I hope they keep her hair purple in the show and that she really brings all the qualities I love about Gert out in the show. I think she will. The actress is Latinx which really feels like we are getting two Latinx superheroes on the team.  That’s awesome! Gert doesn’t have powers herself. She has a dinosaur named Old Lace. I feel like that is a big deal for her aat points in the comic. At one point in the comic, she talks about being a person that keeps people with powers in check.It felt like something a batman like character might say.She’s smart and loyal.She’s strong on her own. She can be confident on her own.She’s more distant from the parents prior to finding out they are villains than some of the others. She always had the intuition to know something was off with them. I’m really hoping good things for this character in the show. Plus this is such a great opportunity to show some body positivity. I really hope they don’t pass that up entirely.

 

Gregg Sulkin plays Chase Stein, whose parents are mad scientists. He steals one of his dad’s inventions (Fistogons) when he leaves with the other Runaways.

I have seen Greg Sulkin act in so many things from Disney shows and movies to his role on Faking it. I’m wondering what he will bring to playing Chase. Chase isn’t one of my favorite characters but I do think there are layers to his character that could be really fleshed out through good acting choices.I definitely think Sulkin’s a good actor. Chase deals with a lot because of the pressures his family put on him but once he runs away you don’t really see references to that again in the comics very often.  I’m hoping Gregg sulkin gets me to really like the character in the show.

Virginia Gardner plays Karolina Dean. She discovers that she is an alien and her parents were actually evil alien invaders.

I love this character and am pretty happy with this casting. I think Gardner will do a great job. I’m really wondering how they are going to pull off her alien powers.I hope they don’t scale it back too much if they have to do that. She also better be a lesbian like she is in the comics.They can’t take my favorite lesbian alien away. I will abandon this show if they change that. She doesn’t really have a romance until later in the comics but I hope the show gets another season to enact that romance. I’ve always loved Karolina’s relationship with Xavin who I talk about quite a bit in my last Runaways review here.

Lyrica Okano is Nico Minoru. She casts spells with a staff she gets while fighting her mother.She’s a witch.

I love Nico Minoru in the A-Force comics. I don’t like her much in the Runaways comics. I love what she can do. Magic is always fun for me. Her particular magic has always been interesting. She can only use a spell once and never again. That means she needs to really stay on her toes and think of new ways to get things done. her character just has the messiest romantic situations, though. over and over again.She has a hard time dealing with her parents being villains. Especially after her mother sort of tries to kill her in the comics. It will be interesting to see how the show handles that. Really happy with this casting, though. She definitely has the look for Nico.I honestly think they got this perfect. Been trying to find Lyrican on social media and struggling so if anyone finds her send the link my way. Following most of the cast on twitter now.

Allegra Acosta is Molly Hernandez (Molly Hayes in the comics). She is a mutant with super strength and glowing eyes occasionally.

Such a good casting. I absolutely love that she is Latinx in the show. I was surprised when I saw the name change but very happy about it. I feel like the comics are pretty diverse as it stands but I always welcome more diversity. Great decision in my opinion. I don’t think they can make her a mutant because of issues with X-men and Fox.So I’m wondering how they will explain her powers. Especially since her parents should have the same powers. Will they make her an alien like Karolina? Maybe they will link it to Inhumans or Hydra? They can really do something interesting with it. Molly is the youngest member of the team in the comics. I’m wondering how old the Molly that Allegra Acosta will be playing is.

Alright, that’s it for the casting and my gushing over my love of the characters. Really hope we get more than one season. I’d love to see Victor Mancha and Xavin come into the show. More diverse characters and great story lines. Especially with Xavin often changing genders. Also, hope we get a Cloak and Dagger crossover even though the upcoming Cloak and Dagger show will be on Freeform. Tell me what you think of the casting. Are you as excited for the show as me?

 

Comics, LGBTQIA+, YA

Runaways Complete Collection Vol 2.

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I enjoyed this volume of the comic but not nearly as much as the first one. It’s a brand new direction since the parents are dealt with in the first volume. There are arcs here that I really loved. I think the general direction and who the big villain is for this volume wasn’t the greatest for me. I feel like this needed more focus to really work like the first Volume does.

I liked the new additions to the team.Victor Mancha who is Ultron’s son apparently. Not sure how that happened still. Pretty sure that makes him related to Vision, though which is really cool. I’m pretty sure they will meet in a crossover between The Runaways and The Young Avengers. I’m excited to read that.

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Then we meet a shape-shifting Skrull named Xavin. Xavin is there to find Karolina who they are supposed to marry. Karolina is a lesbian and I thought it was so interesting that Xavin decided to just turn into a girl for her. I felt like Karolina and Xavin had a big arc in this. it may have happened a bit too fast but I’m interested to see where it goes.Also love that Xavin is black when in human form. This is a pretty diverse cast. Xavin changes gender often throughout the story.The pronouns used in reference to Xavin changed because of that. I’d love to see how they handle it.I hope the upcoming show based on the comic gets to the point where Xavin will be introduced.

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I love Nico Minoru in A-Force. In the Runaways, she just keeps getting worse right now. I really can’t warm up to her character at all. I’ve read further than this volume by the time that I’m writing this and her actions after what happens at the end continue that. I really don’t get why she acts the way she does. They also really need to figure out something for her magic to be useful again. Her method in A-Force is really fantastic.

I wish Gert/Arsenic was more confident in her body. The bad guys seem to consistently call her fat and I just want her to kill them with her Dinosaur. She goes through a lot in this volume. I think she’s such a strong character and puts up with so much.She deserves more. Her relationship with Chase comes out of nowhere in the first volume for me. I think there were some great moments between them in this. I still can’t find myself to really like Chase, though. He makes a lot of mistakes here.

The end of this volume was so sad. I’m jumping into the next volume. Don’t want to linger with what happened here too long. I want to see how the team handles it going forward. I feel like they won’t fare well.

Quote1 Most people in life don’t have great power, and the few that do are almost never responsible with it. The people who have the greatest responsibility are the kids with no power because we’re the ones who have to keep everybody in check. Quote2 – Gertrude Yorkes to Spider-Man

 

 

 

Comics, diverse books

The Shadow Hero by Gene Luen Yang

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This comic was pretty amazing.It was intended to be one of my short reads for #Diverseathon but was pushed to this month. I’m so glad my library had it. I never heard of the comic before. it was just a great comic I found on my shelf. Gene Luen Yang recreates the story of the first Asian American superhero The Green Turtle.loved getting a little history on the character int he back of this collection.I’m really happy to see that mantle being taken and shown in a much bigger way here.The origin of the hero of this collection is really rooted in Asian culture.

You first see how our hero Hank’s family got to America.You see the struggles his mom has in the country since hr family first immigrates there when she is a child. You see how she met her husband and the rut she falls into after that. I thought it was a great decision to focus so much on the mother. She really pushes her son to be a hero even when he has no reason to want to be a hero at first. No powers or any desire to do more than he’s already set up for his life. She’s misguided in a lot of ways. She puts him in danger but shows that she loves her family by the end.

As for Hank. He’s out trying to be a superhero before he even gets any powers. Just for his mom really and I love that.he cares about his family. The origin of his father bonding with the turtle spirit was awesome.We get that story in the first few pages. The turtle spirit has to live in a human shadow to survive in our world. The turtle is really wise in a different way than you’d expect and he nags a lot too. So that was pretty funny.

Hank makes some really dumb moves in this story, though. Like one, in particular, I won’t spoil.I just knew immediately it was a bad idea. Still, he is able to make some important decisions for himself. The decision to be a hero, by the end is ultimately something he feels he needs to do. He has become the Green Turtle.He also makes the decision on what kind of hero he should be. I do wish we’d seen a bit more of what he went through internally. He’s almost too good really. I wanted to know if he had any doubts about one decision he makes but I also like to think that maybe he didn’t. He’s just that good.

I don’t know how many of the comics are collected in this edition. I hope there are more out there. I was really entertained. I definitely recommend you pick up the collection. If you started off with the first section I’m not sure it would be enough to pull you in. It takes a while for Hank to really get started as The Green Turtle but I found all the set up really interesting and loved following his family. Definitely, check it out if you are interested.

 

 

 

 

Comics, LGBTQIA+

Shades of A Webcomic Review

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This is a story about a guy named Anwar who is asexual. His friend drags him to a kink party. He’s uncomfortable and doesn’t want to be there but meets a crossdresser (Vixen/Chris) there who he befriends. Anwar keeps running into Chris after that night and it slowly builds a relationship between the two guys.

The story does a pretty good job of accurately showing the certain aspects of the BDSM/kink community unlike some things out there. The members of the community are shown in such a wonderful way. There is a variety with the members shown apart of that community.They aren’t all the same at all. It’s so well done. Plus the story overall shows a large variety of characters from all different backgrounds in this story.

Wish we could see more moments between Anwar and his mother in this story. Anwar’s mom loves quoting star wars. She’s so supportive. We see her for a few panels and loved her immediately. Anwar’s father is dead but you can see that he still thinks of his father a lot when making certain decisions. Especially decisions about school and what he wants to do with his life.

I loved the conversations Anwar has with Chris in this story. Communication is such an important part of a relationship. They understand they care about each other and have a big romantic attraction but need completely different things sexually. I love that they talk about it and come up with a plan that works for them. The trust that is there by the end of this story is good.

Best side comments ever. I haven’t read 50 Shades of Gray and don’t plan on it.In some of the comments under the comic pages, the author would point out if a scene was a direct parody of something in that novel. Sometimes they would call out the inaccuracies 50 Shades of Gray presented about BDSM at the bottom as well.I also read over some people’s opinions in the comments for each page. It’s cool to see what people thought who were waiting for the comic to come out page by page. I love that stuff with webcomics.

At the point that this ends I had a very ‘that’s it’ feeling. I felt like more needed to happen. Anwar is kind of irritating for a lot of this story. He’s hung up an ex. I’ve been there. I feel that. The problem was he is pretty focused on his self and his problems throughout this. I felt like I wanted to see him caring for Chris and see him thinking about that relationship more. I don’t know how far apart the end of this first comic and the release of Shades After, the sequel. I’ve gotta be honest and say that if it just ended with this first one I’d be disappointed because I don’t feel like Anwar has made enough progress in this one. Excited to read Shades After and I’ll definitely be talking about it right here. Go check out this comic at the link below if you’re interested.

http://www.discordcomics.com/comic/shades-cover/

Comics, LGBTQIA+, YA

Lumberjanes Comic Review | Volume 1

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I liked Lumberjanes more than I thought I would.I’d heard bits and pieces about the series but never decided to pick it up. After reading Nimona which is also by Noelle Stevenson I thought it might be time to pick this up from my local library. I love Nimona. It was one of my favorite reads of last year so I hoped this would be something I enjoy.

It’s a group of girls off at summer camp trying to earn their badges and solve the mystery of this crazy place.There are three eyed things lurking in the woods, water monsters, yetis, and a lot more. It’s pretty wild from start to finish. Lumberjanes starts with some of the troop lost in the woods a page before encountering three-eyed foxes.

If I wasn’t looking at a picture with the characters names on it right now I would not be able to refer to any of the characters by name in this review.I still won’t probably. About midway through I tried to go back and see if I could figure out who was who but still was confused honestly. The only ones I was sure on was Rosie the Camp Counselor we only see once in this volume.I think she knows things. Then Jen the Roanoke cabin’s scout leader. Jen yells at the girls a lot for disappearing and breaking rules.She probably should have taken an internship at space camp instead of being stuck in the woods as a scout leader.Too late Jen. Too late.

I did like a lot of the main cast of girls. I loved their friendship. They build each other up. They each have different skills they bring to the table and work well together to get out of the situations they get stuck in. They are great friends and a great team. I love girls supporting each other in books.

Lumberjanes is tagged as LGBT  but no one was completely pointed out as queer in the story. There are hints of a possible relationship between some characters or at least feelings, though.Mal and Molly are the characters names I’m pretty sure. There is also sort of a kiss in the story but extenuating circumstances so I don’t know.The queer subtext is there and I hope it is explored more in the following volumes. Especially if that is with Mal and Molly. I ship it.

The sign for the camp has “Hardcore lady types” stapled onto it. It was pretty cool to see that for sure. I also liked the way they did the oath and the girls would say things like “What the Joan Jett?” It was cute.Really enhanced that girl power message but let you know if was for all girls too. I appreciate this comic a lot.

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I liked the artwork. The creatures they encountered look really cool and there is a lot going on in each page. I love the pace of the story. It’s a quick paced comic and was great for when I was stranded waiting for my boyfriend’s car to get fixed. I just wish there was more going on with the character development to keep me invested. I still want to get the next volume, though and have already put a hold on it at my library.