logo
Wrong email address or username
Wrong email address or username
Incorrect verification code
back to top
Search tags: favorite-character
Load new posts () and activity
Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2017-04-25 14:02
Beautiful, hopeful, with a good dose of heartbreak
The Prey of Gods - Nicky Drayden

First of all: thank you to the publisher for the ARC.   This hasn't changed how I feel about this book.   

 

I don't even know where to start reviewing this.   The bizarre sex?   The mythological pantheon that seems to have a basis in real mythology, but is cobbled together into something new and fascinating?   The theme of tradition versus modernity?   The LGBT themes running throughout this?   I mean, this thing is jam-packed.   What's truly impressive is that you add a plot and fleshed out characters on top of all this, and it doesn't feel too busy.   No, it's just busy enough, just as busy as the characters and world call for it to be and no more. 

 

Drayden doesn't limit herself to a page count, either.   At a sprawling 400 pages - although keep in mind this covers the afterward, she gives herself plenty of space to add in all these elements.   This is also her debut novel, although she has collections of short stories out.   I've seen first time authors pack close this much into shorter novels, but it's tricky to pull off.   I've seen a lot of first time authors go at a more leisurely pace, too.   Could Drayden have pulled this off without spending as much time she does on this novel?   Perhaps, but I think she'd have to lose the multiple point of view chapters.

 

And disclaimer, I hate this technique most times.   It doesn't give you enough time to get to really settle with the characters most times, and I found myself questioning if I remembered Sydney correctly in her second chapter.   (I'd had to put the book down and came back and scratched my head.   It was only once, however, but shows at least one potential flaw of this device.)   This book tells you who the chapter will be sticking with, and does do third person but sticks with that character for the chapter.   The writing, characters and world building were strong enough for me to stop caring at all and just enjoy this book, too, which is why I didn't knock stars off at all.   

 

This is a look at a possible future for South Africa.   Drayden acknowledges it can't be the story of South Africa in her afterward, but rather is the story of her relationship with South Africa.   (I'm not sure how to pare that, as I didn't get that personal feel from this book: it seems to me that Drayden had a story to tell, did a lot of research into South Africa, and decided to set it there.   While some of the aspects - the dik-dik, the mythology, and the traditions versus modernity - are specific to the country, or even continent, a good deal feels like it could have taken place anywhere.   Then again, this author is compared to Lauren Beukes and Nnedi Okorafor on the back of the book, which sets up unrealistic expectations.   Those two authors steep their books - or the ones I've read - in African culture, and in Beukes case South African Culture.   Beukes is a white woman who is South African, though, so she's lived in that culture.)

 

So to me it was a look at the possibilities of the world in the future.   Or at least some of it is; the mythological aspects are there, and seem more unlikely than the cloning, the robots, or the hybridization of species that are rooted in scientific advances that we're making today.    And no, the mythological is never truly explained; it simply lives beside the science.   And I was okay with that.   It was far better than an explanation that didn't make sense, or was too complex to be coherent, which I've also seen done.   Drayden also writes with a sharp confidence, not needing to explain and simply writing as if we'll accept these two elements side by side.   She assumes we do, and I found it worked for me: I didn't question why there were gods among labs that were built upon genetic modifications. 

 

It's a bit of a slow start as Drayden sets up her characters, but not a page is wasted: she does immediately start setting up plot points, particularly with Sydney, and Muzi.  I feel like Nomvula's setup was a little slower than the rest, but it all makes sense at the end: Nomvula's insecurities, her abilities, all had to be revealed slowly for the best effect.   Even the ways that some stories seem to take an odd, or even unnecessary turn, end up feeling necessary at the end.   They're there to show why the characters could act in no other way than how they do. 

 

And, yes, I loved the robots.   Loved them so much!   

 

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2017-04-11 14:26
Still loving this
Jughead (2015-) Vol. 2 - Chip Zdarsky,Ryan North,Jack Morelli,Derek Charm

When Jughead mistakenly ends up on a date with Sabrina - yeah, the teenage witch, it would be an easy way out of writing him as asexual - and I half-suspected that the comics would go this way.    But the thing is that Sabrina was originally hired as a talking burger - she dressed up as a huge burger - which sent Jughead into fits: he loves burgers in an almost sexual way, but ladies, meh.   At first he just wants to talk to a giant burger, so when he asks Sabrina to do something, it's completely innocent.   When she assumes it's a date, everyone gets excited: Jughead on a date!   I think, on some level, they believe the magical properties of a vagina - any vag that gets all up into a burger costume - will 'fix' Jughead.   Although I suspect this is shaded by me basically being told to just have sex, because I'll like it, and people assuming there's something wrong with me.   

 

To be fair to the comic itself, it never comes out and says this with most of the characters.  And it could be that they're simply excited that Jughead is showing interest of some kind of romantic sort towards anyone - or anything.   (Again, he likes her best in her burger costume.  In an elaborate fantasy in which they get married and have a child, she never takes off her costume and their baby is a baby burger.)

 

Jughead, afraid of insulting Sabrina, doesn't correct her - which means she assumes he has romantic, or at least sexual, interest in her and when he's nervous and has his friends crash his date to help him out, Sabrina gets angrier and angrier.   And you really don't want to anger a witch.   Archie, oblivious to the fact that Jughead is still asexual, but trying to help the only way he knows how tries to get them to kiss.

 

Still, Jughead works through his confusion and eventually apologies to Sabrina.   Basically, he figures out he's not so much into ladies as talking burgers.   It's pretty awesome that they stuck to this, and somehow found a way to explore alternatives to the asexual aspect without undermining him as a character, or saying there was something wrong with him.  I personally really appreciated this because I know I've done the same thing: explored, hell, even denied, and it didn't make me any less wrong or different.   It just meant I needed to try.   (And I have a friend who saw Paula Poundstone, who is openly asexual and a comedian.   Apparently she made a joke about trying sex every ten years to see if she changed and likes sex, and nope.   My point just because you are something, there can be confusing times, times that you question, but only you can decide what you are.   And because of that, I found this storyline realistic, honest, and I love that it didn't retract Jughead asexuality or change him to try and make him more palatable to the mainstream.)

 

I'm loving this so, so much.

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2017-04-08 20:41
I kinda need issue five now...
Motor Crush #4 - Brenden Fletcher,Cameron Stewart,Babs Tarr,Cameron Stewart,Babs Tarr

Dom's mysterious benefactor shows her what happens when her kind drinks wild crush, she knows she has to do the same - and impress him enough that he'll tell her what she really is and what she was really made to do.   

 

Meanwhile, her digging into her past has angered her father, who's hiding the truth, supposedly for her own safety.   I'm not sure I don't believe him; he's very protective of her, but he also knows how talented she is.   That is, I don't feel he's normally overprotective of her, or else he wouldn't allow her  race.  

 

Still, she's his daughter, and he basically stole her.   If he's paranoid, if he's covering up for her own safety, I understand.  I especially understand because it seems like she was created, made to be owned, and I'm not sure the people who created her have good intentions.   In fact, I'm pretty sure they have bad things in store for her, so I'm kind of with her father on this. 

 

Still, she wants to know where she came from, why she needs crush, and how to deal with that whole issue.   So I also understand why she's so mad that he's hiding who she really is.   Basically, I love this whole series.  I really wish issue five was out, but it won't be until next Wednesday.   

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2017-04-08 19:52
Still in love!
Motor Crush #3 - Brenden Fletcher,Cameron Stewart,Babs Tarr,Cameron Stewart,Babs Tarr

The ISOLA prologue at the end is neat, especially since I have a signed, limited variant coming soon.   (I contacted Image and they're coming soon if you got the Humble Bundle. I thought they were coming out in March, but apparently I was wrong.)

 

But the main attraction for me is Domino, and her addiction to Crush, an illegal liquid that goes into machines - and kills humans when they drink it.   Which Dom does.   She promises Lola not to lie if she comes back as Dom's mechanic, but Dom isn't even sure how to explain why she needs to chug Crush.  

 

Meanwhile, she's running low on Crush - which means she's in pain while she has to ration Crush.   She can only get Crush by winning illegal races which she does on the side.  

 

And then there's the fact that if she doesn't win her next legal race, she's bet herself into a form of slavery, and her dad's shop will be handed over, as well.   But if she wins, Lola's debts are cleared.   

 

All of this is stressful enough, except that during an illegal race, she's pushed off her bike and the person whom she thinks is stalking over to kill her actually tells her she knows what she is.   

 

I'm overly eager to check out the next issue, and I may pay full price for five if I can get that on Comixology, too.   This is sexy in all the right ways: the art is slick, the writing is thrilling, and the bikes are just hot.   Onto issue four!

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2017-04-08 01:36
Last Bombshells I own
DC Comics: Bombshells (2015-) #18 - Marguerite Bennett,M.L. Sanapo

I like the later issues more than the earlier ones, to be honest .  More characters from the regular DC universe, and it really gets into resistance against the Nazi's.   Those from the ghetto in Berlin are almost killed, but find a haven in this issue.  

 

And I kinda cried a little at some of the speeches that Mera made in this issue, as her storyline and those of the Ghetto survivors intertwine.   The last page introduces a new character in this world, although she'll be familiar to those who read Justice League.   And I'm excited to see what happens with her.   Thinking of splurging on Comixology soon and getting more of this series.

More posts
Your Dashboard view:
Need help?