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review 2019-08-25 15:03
Generation Zero: We Are the Future (graphic novel, vol. 1) written by Fred Van Lente, art by Francis Portela, Derek Charm, and Diego Bernard
Generation Zero Volume 1: We Are the Future - Fred Van Lente

Keisha Sherman desperately wants to find out the truth about what happened to her boyfriend, Stephen. He supposedly got drunk and died in a car crash, but she knows he wasn't the kind of guy to do that - he didn't drink, do drugs, or smoke. Since her dad, the local Sheriff, won't listen and thinks she's just in denial, Keisha turns to the only people she can think of: Generation Zero. She makes a desperate plea for their help...and they answer.

This was another graphic novel I requested via ILL after finding out about it while doing some research for a grant proposal. It was a 2017 Virginia Library Association Diversity Award Honor Book.

I can't recall the last time I read a Valiant series. Honestly, looking through their list of titles, it's possible I've never read a Valiant series. I certainly haven't read any of the Harbringer comics, which are apparently related to the Generation Zero comics somehow.

Although I could definitely tell that there was some backstory I was unaware of (I didn't realize until after I'd read the whole graphic novel that the description on the back cover included some useful info for complete newbies to this world, like me), I think I was able to follow along pretty well. The members of Generation Zero had originally been taken from their families and trained as weapons. Each of them had of them had special powers of some sort, and each of them dealt with their trauma and having their childhoods stolen from them in different ways.

Cronus (I'm not sure about his powers), who appeared to be the team's leader, wanted to do good. Telic (could see a little into the future), meanwhile, wanted Cronus to embrace the fact that they'd been trained to be weapons. Animalia (could give herself other forms, although I think it wasn't so much shapeshifting as crafting an illusion over herself), one of the group's youngest members, just wanted a life that was nice and good. Cloud (telepath) was the group's gentlest and most positive member, despite constantly being exposed to humanity's collective consciousness. The Zygos twins (super smart?) didn't seem to particularly like humans in general. I didn't really get much of a feel for Gamete, a super fetus who got around by controlling the body of her comatose mother like some sort of creepy puppet.

I wasn't really a fan of the artwork. Facial expressions were a bit stiff, and the artist(s) sometimes had trouble drawing the characters consistently. The female Zygos twin, for example, usually looked almost exactly like her brother, only with longer hair and very slightly more defined lips. In some panels, however, she was inexplicably drawn with more stereotypically feminine features: much more prominent lips and thicker eyelashes. It was weird. I did think the switch to Archie comics-style artwork during the "questioning Adele" portion was really effective, though.

This volume just scratched the surface of whatever was going on in Keisha's hometown, which involved weird faceless Cornermen, technology that shouldn't exist yet, and Momoo energy shakes. The characters were relatively interesting, but I don't know whether I'll be continuing on with this. If I do continue on: Keisha's autistic (?) brother just flat-out disappeared near the end of the volume, so here's hoping the writer doesn't forget about him and actually answers the question of where he went in the next volume.


Variant covers and a few examples of the artwork in progress (line art, and line art with some color applied but no shading).


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

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review 2019-06-21 20:12
Valiant - Laurann Dohner

My eyes rolled so hard I think I got motion sickness.


The dialong wasn't quite as weird but still not exactly natural. it was the H. I get that he was more "other" than most but sheesh; he was like, half a dozen cartoon characters rolled into one. First there was the "mine, mine, mine" bit in the first chapter when, after he scared the crap out of the h, he grabbed her and took her to his bedroom. Then there was the inability to understand the word "no", the h's "oh alright then" when she figured out it was going to happen whether she was on board or not. (as an aside, forced seduction works better in historicals for me as there isn't any law against the alternative, which it beats by a landslide. This isn't, so I'm...not entirely comfortable with this scene.)


And after she cold-cocks him, everyone assuming he forced her (well.... that was a dubious "consent" there, but whatever), goes back to her old life (uhh...), gets kidnapped..


And he's either filled with mindless rage (nearly), or "mine!" during the entirety of the rescue.


And he presses her sore, abused person for sex after they get back to the base they live on.


Then she gets kidnapped *again* because the NS lawyer really is a dirtbag and has been passing on info about them. This of course leads to the discovery that at least one lab wasn't discovered...yet.


Slightly annoyed here that of the 3 books I actually have left of the series, only one is a H I've heard of, and of the other 2 that I don't have, only one is. Hundreds of these people, only a few named, and instead of using those for Hs, she conjured up new ones.

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review 2018-08-08 23:48
Women Gladiators
The Valiant - Lesley Livingston

Audiobook- narration 5 stars, Story a strong 3 stars
I really didn't think I'd like this. I'm not a fan of Gladiators/battle/fight stories. This one offered something more an interesting world with characters I couldn't help but want more of. I enjoyed it but not enough to continue the series.

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text 2018-07-30 00:41
Reading progress update: I've read 15%.
The Valiant - Lesley Livingston

I didn't expect to like this at first  it was all warrior training and battle talk but it is getting better and better. The characters are developing into interesting ways- fingers crossed

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review 2018-07-26 19:22
Last pre-order issue and last review to catch up on
Shadowman (2018) #4 - Andy Diggle,Shawn Martinbrough,Tonci Zonjic

I wasn't sure if I'd have the energy to catch up on my reviews: the last couple of times it's been like wave, and I've pooped out in the middle.   This time, I got through everything.   Yaaaay!


Jack, or his consciousness, goes back in time, to Maurice Boniface, the first Shadowman. What will he learn?   Can this provide answers to the true nature of the Shadowman?   Can Jack make it back to Alyssa after this side-trip? 


I guess I'll have to find out in issue five.   Please be a line wide Valiant sale soon...

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