Review: Black Panther

Title: Black Panther #1-3

Author:   Ta-Nehisi Coates, Brian Stelfreeze

Themes: government, rulership, duty, race, technology

Setting: the fictional country of Wakanda

Format: ebook

Plot: The small country of Wakanda is the most technologically advanced in the world, which is both a blessing and a curse. All that vibranium has made it a target for the villains of the world, and the citizens are sick and tired of it. The country’s ruler Black Panther comes home to civil unrest and intense pressure to fix the damage said villains left behind.

Review: Oh, I really wanted to love this book. It’s by a famous author. It’s entirely cast with POC. The art is a-maze-ing. But the story — well, it’s a mess. There’s a group of women, the Dora Milaje, who are taking power into their own hands. I want to root for them, but I don’t see how that’s going to work with T’Challa’s leadership. Then there’s some subplot with a mystical woman and some sinister dude and maybe a ghost and – well, I just don’t know what’s going on at all!

I got this comic for free, and if the second volume is available for free also, I would read it, just because I hope maybe it would finally make some sense! But if I had to pay for it, I wouldn’t bother with the next book. So disappointed.

Book Review: Immortal Iron Fist Omnibus

Title: Immortal Iron Fist Omnibus

Author: Ed Brubraker

Artists: Russ Heath, Travel Foreman, Sal Buscema, et al.

Setting: K’un-Lun, Tibet, New York City, various times

With the release of the Dr. Strange movie, a new audience has been introduced to the mystical side of the Marvel universe. And Danny Rand, aka Iron Fist, belongs very firmly to that side of Marvel. He’s a martial arts master, and you know, a bazillionaire. He’s also friends with Luke Cage and the Heroes for Hire.

This was a huge graphic novel I got from the library that had lots of Iron Fist comics put together. It all revolves around a  hidden enemy who’s trying to take over Danny’s company and attack the city of K’un Lun itself. But what made it kind of different is the amount of time it spent telling about the previous mortals who have held the position of Iron Fist, going back to Marvel’s original guy. It also tells about Danny’s origin and the other mystical fighters who protect the universe? multiverse? just Earth? Not really sure about that one, but it’s weird, and it’s cool.

I really liked most of this book. But then I’d be suddenly confronted by some outrageously portrayed female bit characters that were just beyond belief. It didn’t happen in every “issue,” but it was more than I was comfortable with. So I’m only giving it 3.7 stars, but that still is high enough that I’m recommending it. Not for kids though.

Book Review: Captain America

Title: Captain America, The First Avenger

Author: Alex Irvine

Genre: Movie novelization, superhero, WWII, YA,

Format: Audiobook

Found it: Browsing library’s audio titles

I haven’t been reading as much this year as last year. Partly it’s because I’m busy with sewing, but partly it’s because I’ve been kind of (really) depressed lately and books take too much concentration. But audiobooks are still a good way to read without actually reading. I found this one browsing my library’s digital audio books.

Have you seen the movie? If you’ve seen the movie, you’ve read the book. It doesn’t add anything new to the story. In fact, it takes some things away. The book is strictly written from Cap’s POV, so anything about the Red Skull or Peggy is not in the book. Even then, it leaves a few scenes out.

I didn’t love it, but it was perfectly fine to listen to while I was sewing. Also recommended for reluctant or beginning readers, including adults with emerging literacy, who are fans of Marvel. Most other readers are going to find the book as flat as Steve Rogers’ shield. 2.4 stars

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In other news, I’m working on my book again. I didn’t hit 50k words during NaNoWriMo 2016, but I was really close. I’m writing a thriller and I was almost at the conclusion. But by then, all the problems I ignored earlier were making it hard to push through and just finish the damn thing. But after letting it sit and thinking things over and over and over in my head, I think I’m ready to finish the rough – and I mean rough – draft.

I hate leaving things messy, so I am always tempted to rewrite before I start something new. I resisted doing that this time, and when I found a big error that was making problems, I would put a note in brackets and just keep going. So even if this is close to being done, it’s nowhere near ready for someone else to read. My goal, then, is to have a readable first draft by the end of the year. At that time, I’ll be asking for beta readers.

If you’d like to be on that list, be sure to follow my blog so you are notified when I’m asking for readers. It’s a thriller about a woman who gets kidnapped on her way home from work, but survives when someone murders her kidnapper before he has a chance to kill her. Now she has to find the killer in case she’s the next name on his list. My MC is a POC, so I’m especially looking for POC, but anyone who likes this genre would be eligible to win a chance to read.

Thanks everyone, and happy reading!

She-Hulk: Law and Disorder

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Reading Decathlon, book 5

She-Hulk: Law and Disorder, story by Charles Soule, Javier Pullido and Ron Wimberly, illustrators, Kevin Wada, cover.

I love Jennifer Walters! She’s a superhero, she’s smart, she’s funny, she’s capable, and she’s a lawyer! Awesome all around. My hope were high for this comic.

Too high. The story was great, and I’m anxious to see where it goes next. But the art was really not good. Issues 1-4 had this anime style, with big green eyes, long necks. Kind of bug like. But the last issue was just horrible. It was like the artist had only a vague idea of what the human figure looked like. All the faces were misshapen and angular. It was a mess. Only for diehard She-Hulk fans. Oh, and Hell-Cat makes an appearance too.