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

 

 

 

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Gay romance

Wrapped Together by Annabeth Albert

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For a stationery store owner, the holidays are great for business. But for Hollis Alcott, Christmas reminds him of the tragic events of three years past, and the last thing he wants to do is take part in Portland’s over-abundance of festive cheer. But Sawyer Murphy, a hunky gift shop owner whose brother is married to Hollis’s sister, has made it his mission to pluck Hollis out of his holiday blues. And his plan is beginning to work. Wrapped in the warm glow of newfound passion, the former business rivals hit up Portland’s finest holiday traditions—and Hollis’s icy attitude begins to melt like snowflakes on his tongue. But he isn’t sure he can trust anyone with the only gift he has—his heart—without breaking it like an antique ornament. Unless he can find the courage to take a leap with the one lover he never expected.

I read Wrapped Together during the A Very Merry Readathon and really enjoyed it like I have with many other Annabeth Albert books this year. This was a part of the Portland Heat series. Each book is a standalone following different characters. This really got me interested in reading the rest of the books in the series.

The couple of characters we follow have a history together that is a little messy. There are misconceptions they have to dance around. Hollis is the character whose perspective we follow throughout and a lot of the time he annoyed me because I couldn’t figure out why he couldn’t let Sawyer in more.

Eventually, I could see that Hollis is stuck in a lot of ways. he hasn’t moved on from a tragedy in his family and hasn’t shifted in personality either. Because of this, he doesn’t see how much Sawyer has changed or even entertain the idea that Sawyer has changed.

This story had a good infusion of flashbacks. I’m usually not a flashback fan in stories.I liked the pace of the relationship developing. Hollis and Sawyer get into BDSM lightly and that was cool to see them explore that together. I do think the slow burn is worth it once they can figure things out together. Also loved the parts involving any of their family.

This is a nice story where someone needs to find their holiday spirit again. I really enjoyed it. The epilogue was cute even if it was a bit much.  Definitely, recommend you check out this book and more stories from Annabeth Albert.

 

Comics, LGBTQIA+

Jughead Vol. 1 Review

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In the grand tradition of comic book reboots like ARCHIE VOL. 1, Archie Comics proudly presents… JUGHEAD VOL. 1–from the comics dream team of Chip Zdarsky (HOWARD THE DUCK) and Erica Henderson (THE UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL)!

Riverdale High provides a quality education and quality hot lunches, but when one of those is tampered with, JUGHEAD JONES swears vengeance! Well, I mean, he doesn’t “swear.” This is still Archie Comics after all.

This was just a really fun read. I think Jughead is just a great character. Personality and look. I want to know where he got his hat. I really want to know where he got his hat.

I really hope the Riverdale show does not brush Jughead’s sexuality under the rug. I want an asexual character on my tv screen.I hope it’s portrayed well.

Jughead’s fantasy sequences were something I think won’t work for everyone but worked for me. I loved the super teens sequence the most. The Game of Thrones like one wasn’t really my thing but I still liked it enough.

I love the art. Erica Henderson is becoming one of my favorite comic artists between this and Unbeatable Squirrel Girl. I will end by saying that I really really want to know where he got his hat.

 

Comics, LGBTQIA+

Midnighter, Vol. 1 : Out

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Overall I felt the story was a little chaotic but still loved it. Midnighter is a really great character to follow. He has a different moral compass than some other heroes you might read but the compass is still ticking. There was a situation in the book that I felt would go really badly but Midnighter handled it really well. Like a superhero should handle it I think. He also just likes to fight and help people who deserve it. He’s a good guy. Violent but good. I appreciate that.

I think everything happening in his personal life was really interesting. Midnighter is gay. He’s trying to get over his ex-boyfriend Apollo. I never read the two of them together but even from this comic, I could see how great their relationship was.

Loved how realistic his dating life seemed to me. He’s going on dates kind of casually. He’s hooking up with guys. Sometimes the relationships don’t go anywhere even if he definitely wants more. Sometimes those dates are interrupted by gunfire. It’s the life of a protagonist in a comic book. What ya gonna do? Midnighter is a relationship kind of guy who has a hard time in relationships. I felt that was something people could relate to.

I’m really excited to get the next volume of this when I can. I need to read more about this Midnighter and see how he progresses after everything he goes through in this volume.

 

Book Reviews, LGBTQIA+

Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Cordova

 

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Alex is a bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation…and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo boy she can’t trust. A boy whose intentions are as dark as the strange markings on his skin.

The only way to get her family back is to travel with Nova to Los Lagos, a land in-between, as dark as Limbo and as strange as Wonderland…

I love books with magic. I love books with queer characters. So I knew I’d probably at least like this book which had both. This book also has really interesting family dynamics. A magic system and culture that is much more diverse than I’ve seen in other books. They are brujas, not witches. Plus, a really awesome protagonist that I rooted for throughout the whole book.

Even when Alex was making bad decisions like one that would probably get her entire family sent to another dimension I understood what she was going through and wished the best for her.I love the journey that Alex goes on in this book. From not wanting her powers to doing whatever she needs to do to get her family back.

I never really liked Nova or Rishi much throughout the book. I was following the journey for Alex. Rishi defaults to comedy intense situations sometimes and it didn’t really work for me. It just annoyed me sometimes. Nova’s attitude just really ticked me off. Especially his attitudes toward the fauns and other creatures of Los Lagos. That may be because the creatures stories affected me. I was really feeling what they had to go through under the rule of The Devourer. Especially Madra and Agosto doing what they could for their people.

The conflict is mostly external conflict on the surface even with all the changes Alex goes through and I didn’t have a problem with that. I liked that they focused on the task they set out to accomplish on their journey. However, I felt like there wasn’t enough in some ways. Seeing Alex’s development more or her relationships. It may just be because of not really liking what we see of Nova and Rishi but I don’t think it was that necessarily. The story didn’t feel like I thought it should by the end.

Still, there was a lot of striking language and images.The way Los Lagos and the magic is described really grabbed me. Plus so many other wonderful things about the book. I heard there will be two more books. one from each of Alex’s sisters and I’m excited for that. Especially if we get more magic.

Uncategorized

M/M Romance Shuffle #1

I came up with a new thing for my YouTube channel where I talk about M/M Romance and Erotica stories at random. Why am I doing this you might ask.I don’t see anyone talking about stories like this on booktube and it just happens to be something that I read a lot of in my spare time.So here I am telling you how I feel about some of the stories I’ve read.

A lot of the stories are things ones I found for free . Often thanks to things like the Goodreads M/M Romance Group‘s yearly M/M Romance anthology release, which I will be published in this year. I plan on continuing to talk M/M romance in sets of five per video.The next one will actually be up tomorrow and I get to talk about my favorite M/M romance in it while wearing a rainbow cape.

In this video I talk about the following stories:

Taken By The Minotaur : https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18458480-taken-by-the-minotaur?from_search=true&search_exp_group=group_a&search_version=service

The Man Who Came Too Much : https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13517026-the-man-who-came-too-much?ac=1

The Circle ( Heirs of Ghorus) : https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18284415-the-circle?ac=1

Good Boy (Unrepentant): https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22701102-good-boy?from_search=true&search_exp_group=group_b&search_version=service

Cumming Out With His Step: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23785693-cumming-out-with-his-step?from_search=true&search_exp_group=group_a&search_version=service