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review 2018-01-04 04:56
new perspectives on Women's rights
Gilded Suffragists: The New York Socialites who Fought for Women's Right to Vote - Johanna Neuman

n her 240 pages long book the Gilded suffragist, Johanna Neumann tries to bring light to the American upper-crust women who fought for women's right the foremost of course the right to vote. To distinguish themselves from the British suffragettes they chose to be called suffragists as they were determined to choose other methods. These women used their own means to move the cause forward like easy access to important people, use their own publicity to introduce the topic to a wider audience and use their money in many ways to support women's rights. The time spans from 1907 till 1947 and the book describes many of these upper class women contributed to the cause. It brings a wealth of details not sparing the infighting or rivalry among various branches of women rights clubs or parties and how often the women lacked solidarity. the book is an interesting read for all who want to get an insight into the women rights movement and at the same time how society functioned at that time and at that higher class level. What is not so perfect is that the chapters at times lack cohesiveness and the book seems not well organized. It is also distracting that the author finds it necessary to describe in details the costs of table settings, room decoration and of clothes of these upper-class women. Nevertheless, it is a good read for the wealth of information and brings the other side of suffragists who are rarely if ever mentioned.

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review 2018-01-02 04:55
Fence (Issue #2) by C.S. Pacat; Illustrated by Johanna the Mad
Fence #2 - C.S. Pacat,Johanna Lindsey,Jo... Fence #2 - C.S. Pacat,Johanna Lindsey,Joana Lafuente

It has arrived! The next installment to Fence and let me just say it's an amazing continuation to this wonderful story! I am enjoying this comic series so much! It's fun, light-hearted, quirky, and filled with many diverse characters!

 

I love the classic sports anime vibe you get from reading this series. This one continues with the introduction to the rest of the fencing team and how they must work together to win the championship. All the characters are drawn beautifully and have their own distinct personalities. Johanna the Mad did a fantastic job in making each character look different and her style is absolutely beautiful. I want to buy a print of this series so bad! I should look into that.

 

I've always loved C.S. Pacat's storytelling, and I see here that with each new issue, I am going to fall in love with this story more and more. I love that she is putting all her love into a story about a sport she herself is passionate about. She is introducing a whole new generation to fencing and that it's okay to be yourself and I think that's such a charming mission she set upon herself. I wish her all the best with future issues!

 

If you want to be introduced to what fencing is, if you want to read about young boys trying their hardest at something they love, if you want to read a comic with many characters from diverse background, then I highly recommend you give this a read! I am really excited to read the next installment when it comes out! 

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review 2017-12-26 18:15
16 Tasks of the Festive Season: Square 6 - Sinterklaas / St. Nicholas’s Day / Krampusnacht: Can you say angelic?
Little Lord Fauntleroy - Frances Hodgson Burnett,Johanna Ward
Little Lord Fauntleroy - Frances Hodgson Burnett

Youtube: 1980 TV adaptation trailer

 

Book themes for Sinterklaas / St. Nicholas’s Day / Krampusnacht: A story involving children or a young adult book.

 

I was introduced to this story by its 1980s TV adaptation starring Alec Guinness and Ricky Schroder, which was a runaway success in Germany when first broadcast on TV and has long since become a holiday tradition -- it just isn't Christmas without it.  I've long since read (and reread) the actual book, which I love almost as much as the movie adaptation ... I admit this is one where I actually prefer the movie, thanks in no small part to Sir Alec, though possibly also to some extent simply because it was the first version I experienced. -- That said, this year for a change I decided to listen to the audio version read by Johanna Ward, which I also enjoyed tremendously.

 

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review 2017-11-22 08:21
Fence (Issue #1) by C.S. Pacat; Illustrated by Johanna the Mad
Fence #1 - C.S. Pacat,Johanna Lindsey Fence #1 - C.S. Pacat,Johanna Lindsey

As you know (if you've been following my reviews for a while now), I am a huge fan of C.S. Pacat. I love her Captive Prince trilogy. Those are some of my favorite books of all time and since I've read them, I've decided that I will read everything else she has ever written in whatever form of media she chooses. So when I heard she was creating a comic about queer fencers, I pre-ordered my copy right there and then. When I discovered Johanna the Mad was the artist for this comic, I jumped for joy! Johanna is known in the fandom world for her many contributions to various different anime and manga. Basically, these two are a force to be reckon with and I was so excited to read their work.

 

Well, FENCE does not disappoint. I can't talk about it too much since it is the very first issue of the comic, but I will say this comic is everything I've hoped for. It's everything I love about sports anime, from the love of the sport to the rivalries to the ambition of always striving to do better! It's incredible! Plus, it's about a sport I know very little about: fencing. I love that the reader will not only be invested in the characters and their struggles, but they will also learn about fencing as a sport. I'm curious to learn more about fencing and seeing how the characters develop their skills. 

 

Speaking of characters, we are introduced to the main two. Nicholas Cox and Seiji Katayama. Nicholas is a character who grew up in poverty, is a bit of a loner, and has an attitude but loves fencing. Seiji seems to be someone who has it all and is a bit full of it because of his talent. These two, naturally, butt heads and a rivalry ensues. I can tell these two are going to have quite the relationship. >:3 

 

The artwork adds to the enjoyment of the story. It's so gorgeous and stunning! Johanna has done an amazing job at bringing these characters to life. Both C.S. Pacat and Johanna the Mad have worked really hard to bring this comic to life and it shows.

 

If you are a fan of any of these ladies, if you love their work, if you love sports anime, if you love queer content, then I highly recommend you check this comic out. It's such an amazing first issue and I am so looking forward to reading the other issues as they are released!

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review 2017-10-15 13:32
#Audiobook Review: The Ghoul Vendetta by Lisa Shearin
The Ghoul Vendetta: An SPI Files Novel - Audible Studios,Lisa Shearin,Johanna Parker

SPI agent Makenna Fraser points out that bad stuff always seems to happen around her, and she’s not kidding. The Ghoul Vendetta opens with Mak and Goblin Lord Rake Danescu on a yacht in the Hudson, along side several of the supernatural world’s bigwigs, when it is attacked by a kraken and other sea creatures. What is even more strange is that no one is hurt and everyone is left alone as soon as their target, a vampire mob boss, is kidnapped. Soon after, a familiar foe turns up, robbing banks and threatening Mak’s partner, Ian. Now it’s up to SPI to find the connection and stop a terrible enemy.

 

As a fan of the SPI Files from the beginning, I am sad to say that The Ghoul Vendetta held several issues for me. First, I was disappointed that the first five to six chapters are almost entirely review of the previous three books; explaining the world and highlighting major events. I appreciate that the author takes care to do this, but by the fourth chapter, I was ready for things to move forward. And once again, throughout the book, there is so much repetition. Mak will remark on who a character is or what they like or do a more than once in the book.

 

Another issue I’m struggling with is the relationship between partners Mak and Ian. Yes, I was disappointed when the author chose to keep Mak and Ian platonic friends, but I was glad to see she gave them each a love interest. After the conclusion of the previous book, I was looking forward to seeing Mak and Rake together. However, for much of the book, the story once again focuses on how close Mak and Ian are - but how they are only friends. I’m not buying it. Mak shows way more affection for Ian than her supposed boyfriend, Rake. If the author wants me to buy into the “just partners,” and view Rake as a love interest, then she needs to invest time in the romance. There was some of this in the last parts of the The Ghoul Vendetta, but honestly, it felt awkward and out of place since we really haven’t seen Rake and Mak together other than a few casual dates, or working in life and death situations. We know more about Ian and Kylie’s romance than Mak and Rake.

 

Sadly, I never really got past these two issues, so it was difficult for me to get into the overall story, which has some extremely interesting aspects. I appreciate that the author works to tie together several threads from the previous books. I liked the tie-in with Ian, and was left wondering what will happen next (in a good way). I just felt like there wasn’t enough emphasis on this part of the story after the continuous mention of so many previous events.

 

One bright spot in listening to The Ghoul Vendetta is the narration by Ms. Parker, even when I bumped up the listening speed 1.5x. I love listening to Ms. Parker’s Mak, repetitions and all. She has a lovely southern accent that is fitting for the tough yet “weaker” character of Mak. Ms. Parker’s male voices are good, but tended to blend a bit (Ian and Rake), and I felt that her performance of Alain Moreau has changed slightly-a bit more dramatic of an accent, yet I still enjoyed it. 

 

In the end, I had real difficulty getting beyond the constant rehashing of past events and the constant repetition within the story. It diminished what should have been an engrossing storyline and frustrated me to the point where I had to speed up the playback to get though it more quickly. With that, I still recommend The Ghoul Vendetta to fans of the SPI Files, and I hope that the next title will be tighter, stronger, or I fear I may drop the series.

 

My Rating: C
Narration: B+

 

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