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review 2018-09-10 19:20
Legion of Super Heroes, Vol. 1
Legion of Super-Heroes Archives, Vol. 1 - Jerry Siegel,Michael C. Hill

My neighbor growing up, his dad collected the DC Archives, hardbound editions collecting gold and silver age comic books. They were of phenomenal quality, and introduced me to the deeper history of Superman, Batman and The Flash, among others. A blast from the past!

 

I loved those books, I was allowed to borrow one at a time and devoured everything he had. My favorites though, were 'The Legion of Super Heroes', teens from the distant future (there was some confusion about their being 100 or 1000 years ahead) who had formed a super-hero club in honor of Superboy.

 

Since they were a 'Superboy' spin-off, they were rather silly at first, but these proto-typical X-Men struck a cord with me. By the end of this volume, the Legion is only beginning to gel into the story-telling dynamo it became, but it was a pleasure to be re-introduced to Lightning Lad, Saturn Girl, Cosmic Boy, and the rest (even Bouncing Boy).

 

These books can get crazy-expensive, so I don't know when I'll get to the next volumes, but I'll keep my eyes open.

 

Legion of Super Heroes

 

Next: 'Volume 2'

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review 2018-07-10 02:27
The Refrigerator Monologues by Catherynne M. Valente
The Refrigerator Monologues - Annie Wu,Catherynne M. Valente

An utter surprise, and so utterly necessary. It's no secret that there's a bit of problem with how women have been treated in comic books, but I haven't seen anywhere else the objections, and their solutions, laid out as effectively as they are here.

Valente takes some inspiration from the Big Boy comic universes, but her creation takes on a life of its own. In interlocking stories, each member of the Hell Hath club, all wives and girlfriends of so-called superheroes and villains, tells her story and points out the expectations of their world towards them as women, and the failings of their male partners, led to their untimely deaths.

This book is a condemnation of the trope of the woman in the refrigerator, and a parody of the superhero genre. I don't have too many levels in comic nerd, but as a lover of the classics I was able to pick up on the source material for most of the characters here. This is an angry book, but its also bitterly funny and worth a read for any comic fan.

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review 2018-06-02 17:17
Please Don't Tell My Parents You Believe Her
Please Don't Tell My Parents You Believe Her - Richard Roberts

[I received a copy of this book from the publisher.]

The final instalment in this series, or at least for Penny’s arc. The story picks up right after the previous volume’s cliffhanger, with Penny having to contend with her family and friends not believing ‘the evil robot’. One can only imagine the pain and sadness this is for a kid. She didn’t spend time moping, which I definitely liked, and she kept acting and taking the matter into hands, finding people to help her, getting to know her other friends better (like Marcia and Cassie), and revealing both to the readers and to herself that she’s made of tough stuff… But when she started writing letters to her parents, pretending she was at ‘supervillain camp’, that’s when I knew where the hurt had gone.

Also, Gerty. That character was pretty fun.

While I enjoyed it as a light read, though, I must admit I was disappointed about several things, such as:

- The way Penny comes clear to her parents. That was so anticlimactic and infuriating, since this was, after all, quite a stake for Penny.

- Ray and Claire are even more out of the way than in the previous volume. Sure, Penny gets other sidekicks, and doesn’t have to do everything alone, but… That was really a let-down. I like the original Inscrutable Machine trio, and seeing it in that state was heart-breaking.

- Half of the book felt like a filler, which disappointed me even more that if not for that, there would’ve been room and time for meaningful character development.

- No one seemed to stop and consider the Machine’s role for more than a second. When it was obvious that it held the key to who the original Penny was.

- The ending was… predictable. It wraps things up nicely, however I can’t tell it held any surprise for me.

Overall, this is a series I’d still recommend, but I wish it had ended on the same quality as the first book.

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review 2018-03-12 10:00
New Release Review! Absolved (Altered #3) Marnee Blake
Absolved (The Altered Series) - Marnee Blake

 

 

Since a brain-altering drug killed most of Luke Kincaid’s town—including his father—and left him telekinetic, he’s determined to stop the fanatic who stole the drug to create his own super-powered army. That means working with scientist Dr. Beth Jenkins, whose graphic tees and beautiful smile are some of Luke’s biggest distractions.

A science prodigy, Beth works with the FBI and solves the toughest crimes, but she can’t figure out what caused her mother’s early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. The drug that ravaged Luke’s town is volatile, and the mortality rate is still high, yet Beth is convinced it holds the key to saving her mother, even if sexy and tortured Luke doesn’t believe it should be adapted for commercial use. 

When bodies start to pile up, though, the two loners must decide if the goals that tie them together are greater the fears that would tear them apart.

 

 

 

Thrills, superheroes and supervillains keep readers on the edge of their seat throughout this exciting Altered book.

 

Beth and Luke are strong, dynamic characters that draw readers in and refuse to let go as they chase bad guys and work through their issues in order to embrace the attraction that pulls them together despite their differences which has sparks flying and the readers easily becoming enamored with the couple. The romance is sweet, full of angst and steamy heat while the fast paced plot keeps readers on edge with lots of twists, turns and thrilling suspense as well as exciting action as they try to get ahead of the bad guys and stop the carnage that they are causing in a diabolical grab for power.

 

I haven’t read the first two books in this series but I will definitely be remedying that as I was completely captivated by the characters and fascinated with the world. Marnee Blake created an exciting world that is the stuff of comic book heroes, with wonderful characters and some unique elements that add spice to her story and she brought it all to picture perfect life with well written words that make it easy for readers to imagine every last detail. So, I will be reading the ones I missed and looking forward to reading more from Marnee Blake.

 

 

 

Absolved is the 3rd book in the Altered series.

 

Absolved is available in print or ebook at:

Amazon    B&N   Kobo   GPlay   iBooks   eBooks

 

Marnee Blake can be found at:

Website   Goodreads   BookBub   Facebook   Twitter   Pintrest   Instagram

 

 

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review 2018-02-09 22:36
Dangerous - Shannon Hale

This was great. The setup is diverse science-geek kids become a Power-Rangers-style team of superheroes with mysterious alien-derived powers. Then it goes somewhere different.

 

Some cool things it included:


-caring parents that remain present and supportive
-kids with goals/girls w/ STEM goals they're pursuing
-decent representation across genders, races, abilities, nationalities & economic statuses
-everyone has a nuanced backstory
-it's not just another 'yay team' clone

-MC is homeschooled (but not a genius), multi-lingual & multi-racial, lost her hand at birth, designs her own prosthetics

 

There was a dizzying whirlwind of plot, and I think this could have been split into a duology given the amount of twists and developments. I inhaled it almost in a single sitting. Really entertaining and a lot of fresh takes on tropes while still checking all the boxes for thriller/SF/superhero story. So different than Hale's fairytale retellings, but just as excellent.

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