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review 2017-10-27 19:02
So Romantic Vampires May Not Be My Thing Anymore
Princesses of the Night: Royal Blood - Teresa Fuentez,Tich Brewster

I feel like I'm really in the minority here but overall, I didn't enjoy "Princesses of the Night." Tanya is a college student who lives with 3 other roommates and they all happen to be best friends. These four individuals own and operate a book store (I'd like to know how that came to be because yea, all college students can own their own business at such a young age). On the way back from a Halloween party, Tanya and her friends are walking home when they are beckoned into a dark alley but a mysterious stranger. For a brief second (and I mean brief), they think something is off but then they enter the alley and soon follow this stranger home. Once there, they are all bitten and turned into 4 vampires, who are destined to save the vampire world as we know it.

First of all I felt this book was super choppy. It was under 250 pages yet had something close to 50 chapters. The format just wasn't working for me. Secondly, the characters made stupid decision after stupid decision. But that's not to say there weren't a few things I enjoyed because I did. I liked how the author portrayed the whole "vampire family" thing. Tanya and her friends were able to meet up with another vampire couple sired by the same "father" and once they did, I enjoyed the book a tad bit more. Also, I liked the "bad" vampires who are trying to kill Tanya and her crew and truth be told, I'd have probably enjoyed a book from their point of view more.

Overall I'm kind of done with the romantic vampire thing which isn't really the author's fault. I like my vampires dark, gritty and vicious and not love struck and silly. I'm sure plenty of people will enjoy this book and if you love vampire romance, it might be a book for you. Me though, I won't be finishing with the series even though this one ended on a huge cliffhanger. In my head, they all die, end of series.

I received this book from Xpresso Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.

 

I'm using this for the Vampire square of my 2017 Halloween Bingo

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review 2017-06-15 04:42
Princess Princess Ever After (graphic novel) by Katie O'Neill
Princess Princess Ever After - Katie O'Neill

When Princess Amira stops to save Princess Sadie from the tall tower she’s been imprisoned in, Sadie almost turns her away. So many others have tried to save her, but all have failed. However, Amira is enthusiastic, determined, and in possession of both a grappling hook and an incredibly strong cookie-loving unicorn.

That’s just the beginning of Amira and Sadie’s adventures. Along the way, they make some new friends, Amira learns more about being a hero, and Sadie finds the courage to face her sister and rule her kingdom.

I bought this because I heard it was a sweet f/f graphic novel. It was super cute, although a bit too short for my tastes. I wanted more pages devoted to Amira and Sadie getting to know each other - Sadie’s “I trust you” happened very early on and was a bit jarring. When the villain appeared and disappeared in the space of about a page, I started worrying that the pacing of this graphic novel just wasn’t going to work for me.

Thankfully, the story smoothed out after that. I really enjoyed Amira and Sadie’s encounters with the prince and the ogre, as well as the flashbacks to Amira and Sadie’s pasts. Amira and Sadie were cute together (complete with blushing, rose petals, and background roses!).

One thing I hadn’t realized until I started working on this review was that Princess Princess Ever After was originally published as a webcomic called Princess Princess, which is still available on Katie O’Neill’s website. I’ve clicked through it and there are some artwork changes between it and Princess Princess Ever After, some of which I liked and some of which I didn’t.

One thing I liked was that Sadie’s sister’s magic was changed from purple to black - it looks creepier in the print version. One thing I didn’t like was that the print version’s colors were slightly less bright than in the original web comic. Not only is this the sort of story that’s practically made for bright colors, some of the panels just weren’t as clear in the print version. Considering that this graphic novel had several black characters, a bit more attention should have been paid to whether they’d still show up okay in panels with darker backgrounds. The panels featuring Prince Taji were really dark - his skin color seemed to almost be the same shade as the wall behind him, resulting in him blending into the background too much. In the webcomic he was perfectly visible, and I could see that he actually had some shading.

The print version includes a 3-page epilogue that isn’t present in the original webcomic. I’m really glad that O’Neill added it. It doesn’t just serve as extra content for folks who’ve read the webcomic, it also makes it clear that, yes, Amira and Sadie are not only a couple, they also get a nice little happily ever after just like any other fairy tale couple.

This was a fluffy and sweet graphic novel about two different princesses becoming more capable in their own ways and falling in love in the process. I wish it were maybe twice as long and that the print version’s colors were a little brighter, but overall this was a good read.

 

(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)

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review 2017-01-23 16:55
Princesses on the Run - Smiljana Coh
Princesses on the Run - Smiljana Coh

I don't have a strong feeling on the whole Princess thing. Probably because my own daughters went through it and out so quickly: it was a preschool-only phenomenon as I recall, and Natasha's Halloween take on it was a zombie princess (one of those things she still enjoys) so, taking it Goth pretty quick. There are of course many mediocre books in every genre and niche, so that doesn't bother me. And Belle married into that library, so girl-after-my-own-heart.

Now that both are in high school they have no interest except in a few nostalgic favorites. And if I bring home a princess picture-book they can't be bothered to flip through it, unlike the ones with adorable animals. Never too old to love sloths and red pandas and extremely fluffy cats, I guess.

So they wouldn't look at it but that is okay. I like stories about girls who are told what they should like when they rebel, and I'm always happy to see books about girls doing things. I don't enjoy running, but I love to walk, so close enough. Fun art and a light tone. It's a cute book.

Library copy

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text 2016-11-21 17:32
Rejected Princesses: Tales of History's Boldest Heroines, Hellions, and Heretics - Jason Porath
Rejected Princesses: Tales of History's Boldest Heroines, Hellions, and Heretics - Jason Porath

Short form: this book is awesome and every home and classroom should have a copy.    

Long form: This was a whim. I just picked it up because it had a fun cover and title, but once I started reading it I couldn’t bear to put it down. The introduction is amusing, the art is spot on, and the stories are delightful. Well, many of them have violence and heinous cruelty, or just plain gore, but Porath forewarns the reader with some very specific codes. And when he’s writing about the evil that is lynching he doesn’t shrink from sharing the horror. But also, whenever there is a specific named villain in the piece, he comes up with some amusing expletives. Somehow he manages to hit a sweet spot between maintaining a light tone and historical accuracy, and he manages to do it in both the text and the art. Even when he gives these women enormous Disney eyes he makes sure to get the period details right: you know he isn’t mocking these women, he’s taking them seriously but not striving for an imagined objectivity. And then there are art notes on many of the illustrations, which explain details one might miss and their significance. Dude has found his calling and I hope he sells beaucoup books and can continue to devote his time and energy to the project. I love this like I haven’t loved any history since <i>Lies My Teacher Told Me</i>.

It only just hit me that the reason I loved this book so much was that I really needed to read about kick-ass women who got shit done and had fun and/or really improved their world.

Library copy

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review 2016-11-01 00:00
The Twelve Dancing Princesses
The Twelve Dancing Princesses - Anna Wal... The Twelve Dancing Princesses - Anna Walker,Jacob Grimm,Margrete Lamond,Wilhelm Grimm Review to come.

Actual rating 3.5.
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