Showing posts from September, 2015

Free Country: A Tale of The Children's Crusade

Free Country: A Tale of The Children's Crusade Neil Gaiman, Toby Litt, Rachel Pollack, Alisa Kwitney, Jamie Delano, Chris Bachalo, Peter Gross, Peter Snejbjerg. et. al., 2015 New release! I received a copy of this book from NetGalley for the purpose of review. Premise: Once upon a time there was an idea for a Vertigo Comics crossover story, which took characters from a handful of titles (Sandman, Swamp Thing, Books of Magic, Animal Man, Doom Patrol, Black Orchid) and gave young characters from these worlds a story together. Unfortunately, given budgets and timelines, the plot ended up a bit rushed. This edition features an all-new middle chapter, giving more characters on-panel time and clarifying the story. Acts One and Three originally released 1993-1994 as The Children’s Crusade 1 and 2. Premise the Second: Children disappear. It happens. It has always happened. But what if they are all going to the same place? Who could possibly be able to find out? This story i

Demon Drums

Demon Drums Carol Severance, originally published 1992, Kindle edition 2015 New eBook release! I received a copy of this book from NetGalley for the purpose of review. Premise: Iuti had seen enough blood. She retreated from battle and gave up everything for a chance at peace. But sometimes peace is too good to be true, and chance encounters can change the course of war. I really liked this book. It has an uncommon setting, an uncommon protagonist and an uncommon story, and all of those things work extremely well. The story starts after the main character has tried to leave behind a major war. The world is evocative of Micronesia, with multiple island nations and a closeness with the sea. Iuti’s tie with a powerful shark-spirit gave her power in battle, but exhausted her soul and finally drove her from her people. I know that dealing with issues of PTSD is not as infrequent in fantasy as sometimes it seems, but this book also features a fully adult female protagonist in

Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass 1)

Throne of Glass Sarah J. Maas, 2012 Premise: Celaena is an assassin, sentenced to die in a labor camp for her crimes. She has one chance to earn her freedom: Win a competition to work for the king she despises. Hmmm. I’m quite torn on this book, honestly. I tore through it, read it extremely quickly, but after I was done, all that stayed with me were the bits I didn’t like. The cover of the book says that fans of The Hunger Games will love this book, and I agree in that it’s very readable. The pace is breakneck from almost start to end. And yet, I found that to be a critique as well, as when I described the competition premise to a friend who immediately said: “So this got published because Hunger Games made lots of money, right?” The setting and backstory had lots of intriguing hints which might be developed in later books, but the ending of this book I found unsatisfying. There seems to be an undercurrent of untapped magic in the society and the palace, mysteries aboun

Hawkeye: Rio Bravo (Volume 4)

Hawkeye: Rio Bravo (Volume 4) Matt Fraction, David Aja, Chris Eliopoulos, Francesco Francavilla, 2015 Premise: Follows L.A. Woman . Clint digs down to an ever-deeper rock bottom but finds a place to stand there. Collects Hawkeye issues #12, 13, 15, 17, 19 and 21-22 This is the climax of Fraction’s run on Hawkeye, and I enjoyed it, although I didn’t find this volume as a whole as satisfying as I hoped I would. I might go back and read the issues in the order in which they were released, (which requires flipping back and forth between books 3 and 4) to see if that changes the overall pacing for the better. There are really fantastic moments in this book. Gorgeous, perfect moments where a character makes a choice or makes a stand, or a bunch of plot pieces come together, or friendship and affection is more important than anger and resentment. The story as a whole just didn’t 100% gel for me. I kept having to go back and re-read sections to catch some foreshadowing I missed o