In Real Life by Cory Doctorow and Jen Wang

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“A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

Anda loves Coarsegold Online, the massively-multiplayer role playing game that she spends most of her free time on. It’s a place where she can be a leader, a fighter, a hero. It’s a place where she can meet people from all over the world, and make friends. Gaming is, for Anda, entirely a good thing.

But things become a lot more complicated when Anda befriends a gold farmer — a poor Chinese kid whose avatar in the game illegally collects valuable objects and then sells them to players from developed countries with money to burn. This behavior is strictly against the rules in Coarsegold, but Anda soon comes to realize that questions of right and wrong are a lot less straightforward when a real person’s real livelihood is at stake.

From acclaimed teen author Cory Doctorow and rising star cartoonist Jen Wang, In Real Life is a sensitive, thoughtful look at adolescence, gaming, poverty, and culture-clash.”

My Thoughts:

In a way, I kind of relate to this book. I was a high school kid a few years ago but was not much like Anda. I was not really that popular but I wasn’t much of a gamer. I guess you could say I was kind of geekyish. The way this book relates to me is that it reminds me so much of one of my friends. She was a lot, to me, like Anda. She was a huge gamer and would spend countless hours gaming where she would meet friends online from across the world.

I think that this book is a great read. It shows us that what we may be doing for fun can be a way someone across the world makes money for a living and even though they are making this money it could be in the worst conditions. It also shows us that sometimes you have to be the one to step in and do the right thing. Stepping in to a situation could end up saving someone’s life. I know that there is that mentality of minding your own business (aka bystander effect) but sometimes people need help even if they don’t realize that they need it.

I definitely recommend to read this graphic novel. It did take me about two days to read it since I put it down a few times. This was only because it did not really grip me as much, but it was still a good read.

Until next time yall!

 

Becoming Jinn by Lori Goldstein

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“Wishing doesn’t make it so, Azra does.

Azra has just turned sixteen, and overnight her body lengthens, her olive skin deepens, and her eyes glisten gold thanks to the brand-new silver bangle that locks around her wrist. As she always knew it would, her Jinn ancestry brings not just magical powers but the reality of a life of servitude, as her wish granting is controlled by a remote ruling class of Jinn known as the Afrit. To the humans she lives among, she’s just the girl working at the snack bar at the beach, navigating the fryer and her first crush. But behind closed doors, she’s learning how to harness her powers and fulfill the obligations of her destiny. Mentored by her mother and her Zar “sisters,” Azra discovers she may not be quite like the rest of her circle of female Jinn…and that her powers could endanger them all.”
My Thoughts:
Man. Just man. I was so hyped about this book when I bought it. Genies? oh hell yeah that sounded so cool. I was so ready to get propelled into a wonderful world full of Jinn, but man was I disappointed. The book did not meet my expectations.
I was expecting a great adventure or just something great. This book just did not deliver what I had expected. The concept of the book sounds great and the potential for it to be an amazing book is there, but it just did not make it.
This book took me a few months to read. I picked it up was not too entertained when I started it. I feel like a hefty part of the book was mainly set on the day she became a Jinn in their home. That part kind of dragged so I kept putting the book down.
After she goes to work at the concession shack on the beach, I feel like it picks up a bit more. Even though it picked up, it was still not that amazing.
I think what bothers me the most about this book is that there was sooooooo much potential. I can feel it in my bones that this book would have been so fucking good if it was turned up just a notch. The concept is great and I feel like Lori Goldstein has something going for her, but she just hasn’t found the right tune.
Hopefully the next book will be better. Yes, I’m still picking it up. There is so much potential for this series to be great that I am hoping that Lori Goldstein will kick it up a notch. I don’t hate the book and I don’t dislike it that much. I enjoyed it, but it just wasn’t what I thought I was hoping for. It felt more coming of age rather than a fantasy novel.
Until next time yall!

Alice In Murderland, Vol. 1

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“Now! Let the “Mad Tea Party” begin!

The Kuonji clan, owner of one of the world’s top conglomerates, has a tradition: Once a month, family members attend a “Mad Tea Party.” But at the latest gathering, the nine Kuonji siblings in attendance are shocked to hear a pronouncement issue from the lips of their mother, Olga-

“I’d like you children to now fight one another to the death!”

As chaos erupts, Stella, the fourth daughter, loses all reason, and suddenly a whole new Stella, complete with blonde hair and blue dress, comes out to play-!!”

My Thoughts:

The number one reason as to why I bought this manga was because it was hardcover. I was browsing through Barnes and Noble and decided to check out the manga section to see what it was like nowadays. Typically, I don’t purchase any mangas anymore since I can easily find them for free to read online. However, I immediately saw this manga and was like “holy shit, this shit is hardcover.” I’ve never seen a hardcover manga before do I had to have it, of course.

The second reason as to why I purchased this was because I have this thing for mangas that are based off of Alice in Wonderland. A few years ago, I read a manga called Alice In the Country of Hearts by Soumei Hoshino. I was pretty obsessed with it and was pretty heartbroken when I finished it (I always end up heartbroken once I finish a manga series). You could imagine how excited I was to pick this up.

This manga was sooo cool! I can’t wait to purchase the next volume. The twist that Kaori Yuki puts on the story of Alice is super intriguing. Stella aka Alice is a complete badass. The whole family is complete of badasses and pretty much all of them are mad (both in the angry way and the crazy in the head way).

There is some gore, but what would a manga be with out some blood? I wouldn’t say it’s gorey, though. More like a few sprinkles from time to time. There’s a good amount of violence that keeps you on your toes. This manga had me turning page after page. I’m pretty sure I finished this manga in under and hour (they’re usually very quick to finish).

This manga will not disappoint. You’ll be hit with some twists and turns where you’ll pretty much be saying “holy shit, holy shit, HOLY FUCKING SHIT” and you’ll have a great time all the way.

Until next time yall!

Fables: Animal Farm, Vol. 2

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“Collecting FABLES #6-10, the second story arc of the fan-favorite, critically acclaimed VERTIGO series. Travel to upstate New York, where the non-human Fable characters have found refuge on a farm, miles from mankind. But all is not well on the farm — and a conspiracy to free them from the shackles of their perceived imprisonment may lead to a war that could wrest control of the Fables community away from Snow White. Starring Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Plus, a sketchbook section featuring art by Willingham, Buckingham and Jean.”

My Thoughts:

I love how this volume went by much faster than the first. It’s a bit shorter and there isn’t as much world building so we go straight into the good stuff.

I can’t say much about this volume since it may give you a hint of what happened in the last volume.

In this volume Snow is off to check up the community in the north where the non human looking fables are living. She thinks that she is going up for a normal check up, but comes to face something that she does not expect (even though the signs were right in front of her).

I would say that this volume was okay. My favorite part had to be when one of the characters got out of their imprisonment and set off to settle things down. It was cool how they stormed in all bad ass like. I wish I could give more details but that would definitely spoil it for you.

This volume did not seem spectacular to me, but there is a shocking part in it where you’re just like “Oh Shit” and you just need a second to contemplate how crazy a bitch could be. Bitches be crazy, but of course there is a happily ever after (sort of).

I already have the third volume, so we’ll see how that one plays through.

Until next time yall!

The Infinite Sea By Rick Yancey

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“How do you rid the Earth of seven billion humans? Rid the humans of their humanity.

Surviving the first four waves was nearly impossible. Now Cassie Sullivan finds herself in a new world, a world in which the fundamental trust that binds us together is gone. As the 5th Wave rolls across the landscape, Cassie, Ben, and Ringer are forced to confront the Others’ ultimate goal: the extermination of the human race.

Cassie and her friends haven’t seen the depths to which the Others will sink, nor have the Others seen the heights to which humanity will rise, in the ultimate battle between life and death, hope and despair, love and hate.”

My Thoughts:

I read this book in one day. ONE DAY! My gawdd I could not put it down. Rick Yancey likes to do this thing where the part is getting good and then he switches to another point of view, so you have to keep reading to finish everything up.

I’m pretty sure my heart rate while reading this book was highly elevated. This book did not disappoint whatsoever. It was set at a good pace and the action scenes were high speed and suspenseful.

I honestly don’t know why I waited so long to read the sequel because I had such a good time reading it. I’m going crazy now that I have to wait for the The Last Star to come out in May. I need my fix dammit! *Proceeds to scratch at arms and face*

Just like after I read The Fifth Wave, I felt like I should go out and run a mile. I didn’t. I spent the whole day reading and wouldn’t eat until I was done (not healthy, don’t do that) so that wouldn’t have been a good mix. I decided not to right a review right after reading this because I was full of the feels and when I write when I’m on the feels I tend to go crazy…also I was hella hungry.

Getting back to the book, I can’t say much since it’s the second book in the trilogy and I don’t want to give anything away, but please read it. Read The Fifth Wave. Take a short break. Then get your ass together and read The Infinite Sea because LAWDD it was good.

Until next time yall!

 

Fables: Legends In Exile, Vol. 1

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“When a savage creature known only as the Adversary conquered the fabled lands of legends and fairy tales, all of the infamous inhabitants of folklore were forced into exile. Disguised among the “mundys,” their name for normal citizens of modern-day New York, these magical characters created their own secret society that they call Fabletown. From their exclusive luxury apartment buildings on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, these creatures of legend must fight for their survival in the new world.

Fables is the winner of 14 Eisner Awards and is one of the most enduring Vertigo titles ever. Here, in this new, 10th anniversary edition, is a newly colored 8-page story from the Fablesprose work Peter & Max: A Fables Novel, as well as a beautiful new cover from series artist Mark Buckingham. “

My Thoughts:

Back in September (maybe early November) I decided to buy some graphic novels from Barnes and Noble. I’ve been seeing that JesseTheReader from Booktube was kind of going through a graphic novel phase in some in his videos. At this time I was in a huge reading dry spell, so I thought it would be a perfect way to get me back in the reading world.

I told myself that I should maybe try a comic too, but I wasn’t ready to get invested in all the super heroes. After an hour or so of browsing, I found Fables. It’s a comic based on pretty much all of the fairy tales and fables I grew up with. Pretty much its an adult version of Mother Goose but on crack because everyone is interacting with each other.

If you love fairy tale retellings, you’ll probably enjoy this comic. The main character in this volume is Snow White who is trying to solve a murder mystery of her sister. I never knew that Snow White had a sister, so I did some sleuthing and found that she is actually in Tale 161 from the Brother’s Grimm collection (mind you this is from Wikipedia). Pretty cool!

I definitely recommend reading this if you’re into fairy tales and old stories coming back to life. It’s always refreshing to see them in a new light. The whole fable series is about 22 volumes with a few other books in between. There is also a spin-off series called Fairest which I plan on getting into too.

Until next time yall!

Persepolis By Marjane Satrapi

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“A New York Times Notable Book
A Time Magazine “Best Comix of the Year”
A San Francisco Chronicle and Los Angeles Times Best-seller

Wise, funny, and heartbreaking, Persepolis is Marjane Satrapi’s memoir of growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution. In powerful black-and-white comic strip images, Satrapi tells the story of her life in Tehran from ages six to fourteen, years that saw the overthrow of the Shah’s regime, the triumph of the Islamic Revolution, and the devastating effects of war with Iraq. The intelligent and outspoken only child of committed Marxists and the great-granddaughter of one of Iran’s last emperors, Marjane bears witness to a childhood uniquely entwined with the history of her country.

Persepolis paints an unforgettable portrait of daily life in Iran and of the bewildering contradictions between home life and public life. Marjane’s child’s-eye view of dethroned emperors, state-sanctioned whippings, and heroes of the revolution allows us to learn as she does the history of this fascinating country and of her own extraordinary family. Intensely personal, profoundly political, and wholly original, Persepolis is at once a story of growing up and a reminder of the human cost of war and political repression. It shows how we carry on, with laughter and tears, in the face of absurdity. And, finally, it introduces us to an irresistible little girl with whom we cannot help but fall in love.”

My Thoughts:

Go read this graphic novel. Please. Just go. It will open your eyes to so many things. I never really understood what happened in Iran and this gives you an insight to it. Kind of like a brief history, except you are viewing it through a child’s eyes.

Marjane Satrapi has made it easy for people to understand by giving us the point of view of a war through a child’s eyes. She practically simplifies the whole thing for us. I honestly don’t know why it took me so long to read this graphic novel.

This novel could be used in both history and literary classes. They can learn about the Islamic Revolution in Iran along side learning literary themes such as coming of age, facing reality, change and tradition, and many other themes. Now, I don’t know if they could actually learn literary themes from this novel since these were events that actually happened and I’m no literary expert.

I had a great time reading this novel. It was pretty enjoyable and I found it very interesting. She does throw in a good amount of humor here and there which was nice since there seemed to be a lot of death and oppression.

I highly highly HIGHLY recommend yall read this book. Just allow it to happen and you won’t be disappointed.

Until next time yall!