Showing posts with label manga. Show all posts
Showing posts with label manga. Show all posts

Thursday, 7 July 2016

Comics Wrap Up - What's That Coming Over The Hill?

Graphic Novels




This week I've reviewed two pretty cool (and fairly different to each other,) graphic novels.




Disney's Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland, Vol 1 (
US) (also available in a 2 volume collected edition: US - UK) by Jun Abe is a manga graphic novel from Tokyopop. Alice fans will love it.

Check out my review here.





Luna the Vampire: Grumpy Space (UK - USA ) by Yasmin Sheikh is full of a quirky and off-beat sense of humour that suited me down to the ground (or should that be 'up to space'...?)


luna the vampire grumpy space


You check out my review of Luna's wacky adventures here.






I also read Monstress, Vol 1: The Awakening (UK - US) and IT'S SOOOOO GOOD!






I'll be fangirling over it writing a review of it soon. But... WOW! Really. Wow.





Other Stuff




Michelle @ Tea & Titles wrote a fab post about 'The Cutest Comics of Ever: Part 1' which included comics that I'll definitely be keeping an eye out for from now on :)




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Patrick Lenton wrote a fab article on why we should #GiveCaptainAmericaABoyfriend - and I totally agree!



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Tom Felton - Draco Malfoy to a generation of people  - is joining the cast of The Flash (*does a li'l embarrassing fangirl dance*)

I'm so chuffed! TOM'S GONNA BE IN THE FLASH!!!!  fjngoeirnyheouh!!!!














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Monday, 4 July 2016

Review! (Graphic Novel Edition!) - Disney's Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland, Vol 1


Title: Disney's Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland, Volume 1

Author: Jun Abe

Genre: Graphic Novels, Manga, Fantasy, Media Tie-In

Series: Disney's Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland

Amazon:
2-volume edition - US - UK
Vol 1 - US
Vol 2 - US





A few starting notes:

I received a free digital review copy of this book via NetGalley. NetGalley provides review copies from publishers in exchange for fair and honest reviews.

OK, we have some stuff to get clear straight-off:

This manga is made up of two volumes (oddly enough, Vol 1 (US,) and Vol 2 (US,)) and is also available in a collected edition of both volumes (US - UK.)

From what I can make out, here in the UK (and probably a lot of other countries,) it's currently only available in the collected 2-volume edition (in English, anyway.)

I received a review copy of the first volume, so that's what I'm reviewing here.

This is a manga adaptation of the movie adaptation (UK - US) of the classic book (UK - US).

It reads right-to-left in traditional manga-style.

Right, we all got that? Great.






Premise:

Alice Kingsley is a girl trapped in society's expectations. Then... then she sees the rabbit.

What follows is a trip to Underland, an adventure, a prophecy, and the chance to be 'the Right Alice;' prepare for impossible things.





Best bits:

The combination of Alice in Wonderland, Tim Burton, and a manga-style just works. Ok?

There's something about this which is just... right.











The character design is spot-on - not least in terms of The Hatter and the Red Queen.

The right level of detail is carried throughout - highly intricate in the places where it needs it, and less dense in the places that need a lighter touch.

The whole thing is deftly carried out with skill and a real love of the vivacity of the source material.

Basically, I loved it.





Not so great bits:

In places, I felt like this was so true to the film, that I could quote some lines before I read them, and that did take a little of the sparkle out of things.












But this is a tie-in with the film, and you're going to expect an element of this at the least.

There's the odd drop of violence here and there, but nothing beyond what's in the film - if you know the film, you know what to expect, and it's fans of the film that're going to be the main audience here.





Verdict:

Alice fans rejoice!

The artwork is beautiful, and the combination of elements astounding.

Any Wonderland fan will love it.









Thursday, 23 June 2016

Comics Wrap Up - A Town Called Alice

Graphic Novels


This week, I've gone ever-so-slightly head-over-heels for Alice in Wonderland in all its shapes and forms.

I saw Alice Through The Looking Glass (highly recommend!) early in the week, and also read Jun Abe's manga edition of the first film.

This is a release from our beloved Tokyopop, recently resurrected by the grace of a major contract from Disney.







Just to make it clear this manga is made up of two volumes (oddly enough, Vol 1 (US,) and Vol 2 (US,)) and is also available in a collected edition of both volumes (US - UK.)

From what I can make out, here in the UK (and probably a lot of other countries,) it's currently only available in the collected 2-volume edition (in English, anyway.)

Apologies if any of that explanation was a load of cr*p - this is just how I understand things to be.

I read a review-copy of the first volume - and will be reviewing it very soon :)

What I can tell you right now though is that I loved it! XD




Single Issues


Comics marked * are free in Kindle format at the time of writing

I haven't read many single issues in a while, but decided to read a few short ones this week - including yet more Alice in Wonderland-style goings-on (Alice seems to be a favourite of retellings in comics.)





Beyond Wonderland #0 (of 6)* (UK - US) is the prologue to a very interesting looking series about Alice - aka Calie - a young woman who escaped Wonderland once, and is in danger from what she left behind there...













Escape From Wonderland #0 (of 6)* (UK - US) is another prologue - this one to the series that follows Beyond Wonderland.

By the time Escape From Wonderland comes along, our Alice has a very definite no-sh** attitude, and a taste for uncomfortable corsetry.













The Stuff of Legend: The Dark #1 is the first part of Volume One (UK - US) of the series.

Just from this first issue, I'd say that it's kind of like a sepia Toy Story... only with a scary freaking monster who steals children. Intriguing, no?







Other Stuff



twenty one pilots released the official video of their Suicide Squad song, Heathens. I'm actually fairly loving this song.







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Caitlin at Words and Other Beasts wrote a fab review for X-Men: Apocalypse. 

And she agrees that Quicksilver was awesome. Because he was.



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I watched this awesome 'Toon Sandwich' X-Men: Apocalypse trailer parody (and laughed a lot!)

NSFW due to swearing and adult humour, mm'k?






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The awesome comics publishers Dark Horse have launched an adult colouring book line.






The line starts with Avatar: The Last Airbender (Available for Pre-order: US,) and Serenity (Available for Pre-order: US.)






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Thursday, 7 April 2016

Comics Wrap Up - And It's Better Off This Way

Film Trailers

A teaser for the upcoming Captain America: Civil War -



Not sure that I can't take much more of this - release the film damn you!



Graphic Novels

golem graphic novel

On Tuesday, I reviewed Golem (US - UK) by Lorenzo Ceccotti (LRNZ.)

This is a dystopian graphic novel which I kind of had mixed feelings about. You can check out my review here.

What I will say is that Golem has some truly stunning full-page artwork which, to me, made the whole thing worth the read.



This week, I read Paper Girls Vol 1 (US - UK) - a Brian K Vaughan title that I stupidly thought I wouldn't like.

I did like it. I liked it a whole damned lot.

Paper Girls vol 1 cover
My review for Paper Girls will be up sometime next week... when I've finished writing it!


Other Stuff

The lovely Olivia from Olivia's Catastrophe told me about DC commissioning YA novels based on a lot of their characters. So, I had to look it up, didn't I?

Over on Comics Alliance, I found the full story - including that the authors involved are Marie Lu, Leigh Bardugo, Matt de la Peña, and Sarah J Maas. Which should make a lot of you guys very happy.

So my TBR isn't thanking them, but still looking forward to it.

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I also read this post by B C Kowalski about how geek/nerd culture is all-inclusive and THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A FAKE GEEK GIRL.
Oddly enough, I couldn't agree more.
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Tuesday, 5 April 2016

Review! (Graphic Novel Edition!) - Golem by Lorenzo Ceccotti

Title: Golem

Golem graphic novelAuthor: Lorenzo Ceccotti (LRNZ)

Genre: Graphic Novel, Manga, Dystopian, Sci-Fi
Release Date: 5th-7th April

Amazon: UK - USA


A few starting notes:

I received a free digital review copy of this book via NetGalley. NetGalley provides review copies from publishers in exchange for fair and honest reviews.

This is a translation, from an Italian author, which blends manga-style art with Western-style art.

So, of course, I was interested enough to give it a try. ;)



Premise:

In a post-apocalyptic Italy, with a corrupt government, a young boy is kidnapped.
But what's so special about him? Why does the government think they can use him? - That whoever has him, has power?


Best bits:

The first few pages of every chapter were stunning, hand-on-your-heart, page-length pieces of art worthy of any museum or gallery.
These were the pieces that the striking cover-art promised. And they are truly breath-taking: like, tears-to-the-eyes style of beautiful.
The rest of the artwork was interesting in places... but more serviceable than anything.

I really liked the character of Steno, just because he was so damned sweet and innocent.

He was like a mini, Italian, dystopian, version of Captain America. I wanted to pet him on the head and give him a medal, simultaneously.
There were moments of emotion in this book, and even of plot, that were really great - but... yeah, I have mixed feelings about this book.


Not so great bits:

I had trouble actually following what was going on - I'm not going to lie.
I got the rebel-group characters confused a bit, because a lot of them were introduced in battle scenes and dark panels, or in a quick and running multi-person intro.
And then I'm just there like: who the hell was he? Where did she come from? Wait, which one is that?!
Maybe something was lost in translation... maybe.
The fact remains, I'm still not entirely sure wtf was going on. Maybe it's just me - maybe this book and me just didn't gel together; who knows?

Oh, and I say this so much that it's almost lost all meaning, but there's gore, violence, and some swearing in this book.


Verdict:

Don't think I'm dismissing this book entirely.

Let's get one thing straight, for all my confusion - I enjoyed this book.
There were narrative issues, ok? But those full-length pages? It was worth the read just for that.





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Thursday, 31 March 2016

Comics Wrap Up - Better the Devil You Know

Graphic Novels

Golem graphic novel


This week I read Golem (UK here - US here) by Lorenzo Ceccotti (also known as LRNZ) in its recent English translation - this is a dystopian manga with a blending of Eastern and Western styles.

I had mixed feelings about it - but can't deny the beauty of some of the artwork. Review to follow within the next few weeks. :)

(Is it me, or is there a lot of dystopia in graphic novels lately? ...Maybe it's just the ones that I read.)


Single Issues

Daredevil Yellow #1 Daredevil: Yellow #1 (UK here - US here) is the beginning of a retelling of Daredevil's origins (not the being blind bit, the deciding to fight crime as a vigilante in a yellow and red suit with lil horns bit - after all, it takes more than a blinding to incite you to beat up gangsters in the middle of New York. Takes a bit more motivation, and all that.)

The Daredevil costume only really comes in at the very end here, and is in its original jaunty yellow and red form, instead of totally red.

Still, it's better than a lot of early superhero costumes (the Green Arrow originally looked like he was a reject from Robin Hood: Men in Tights.)

It was an entertaining comic, adequately illustrated, and to-the-point, though it didn't really wow me. But then, it was a first issue, plenty of warming-up to do.


Other Stuff

Smirking Revenge over at Confessions of a Book Whore gave us her take on the Civil War trailer. (And if you're interested, you can read my take on the same here.)

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I read Episode 1: A Young Maiden's Curse of the uber-talented Jessi Sheron's webcomic The Evil Queen.
I highly recommend that you check it out - Sheron is definitely one to watch.



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Thursday, 24 March 2016

Comics Wrap Up - I'll be Your Detonator

Film Trailers

Ohmygosh!!!! The X-men Apocalypse trailer!!!!

This looks like it's going to be super-cool guys - I mean just look.

Apocalypse is a major storyline in the X-men comics, and I'd be worried - if we hadn't just come off the successfully handled 'Days of Future Past.' I think Bryan Singer can handle it. I think it's alllll gonna be great! :)

And there is Nightcrawler. Therefore awesomeness.

Other Stuff

I came across the exceptionally talented Jessi Sheron on Twitter - you can check out her amazing artwork here.

She writes a mermaid web-comic called The Sea in You.

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Johanna over on Comics Worth Reading talked about the Sherlock manga being released in English. I can't wait!



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Thursday, 5 November 2015

Comics Wrap Up - Death and Side-kicks

Beautiful Creatures: The Manga is, oddly enough, a Manga adaptation of the novel Beautiful Creatures by Margaret Stohl and Kami Garcia. I really loved it - but then, a combination of my enjoyment of the source novel (US readers, click here,) and my enthusiasm for things being adapted into graphic novel format, might be colouring my view of this. But the cover's awesome and everything (US Link) - it's purple! (I know... shut up.)

On a more serious note (and one which hopefully sounds less like the opinion of a 6 year old child,) Cassandra Jean's artwork is beautiful, and keeps to the traditional black-and-white of manga volumes (though with glossier paper.) If I have any criticisms, it's that sometimes it wasn't that clear whether the characters were speaking aloud or just thinking the words.


Death Vigil, Vol 1 by Stjepan Šejić is stunning. I loved this book, and graphic novel fans would be foolish to give this one a miss. You can see my full review for more shameless gushing.

Side-kicked is a clever graphic novel exploring the possibilities of a side-kick strike - very skilfully I might add. Again, you can see my full review for more detail.

In terms of single issues, this week I enjoyed Marvel's Weapon X #14 - Sinister's List, based on the infamous Weapon X project from the X-men side of things. The artwork, the story, the characters... everything here is simply excellent, and woven around world history in a way that makes it all the more poignant.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Reviewing the evidence time (Manga Edition!) - Genju No Seiza vol.1

Title: Genju No Seiza vol. 1
Author: Matsuri Akino
Genre: Graphic Novel, Manga, YA (older teens,) Fantasy, Paranormal

A few starting notes:

Genju No Seiza translates to 'Constellation of the Imaginary Beast' (thanks Wikipedia,) and is presented in the format favoured by the publisher (the now sadly diminished, but hopefully will soon rise from the flames, Tokyopop,) of reading right to left to keep the orientation of the artwork. It sounds more complicated than it is, honestly, though sometimes you do read things in the wrong order and have to check yourself.

I picked this up randomly in my last library haul, so didn't really have any preconceptions about what it would be like.

Premise:

Fuuto Kamishina hasn't had the easiest of lives, and it turns out the past few lives have been a bit complicated too. It's not everyday that a birdman attaches himself to you and tells you that you are the reincarnated rightful ruler of a tiny Asian country called Dhalashar. What's a Japanese schoolboy to do when there are paranormal assassins, restless spirits, and premonitions of doom to deal with?

Best bits:

The artwork is competent and engaging. Sometimes it crosses the line into truly beautiful - which is always a good sign going forward in a series. Some of it is brutal and striking - manga rarely shies away from dramatic wounds and blood.

The characters - Fuuto in particular - are believable and interesting. You care what's going to happen to him, what he's going to decide to do with this insane situation that's suddenly landed on him. And he's different, which is a huge thumbs up as far as I'm concerned!

The plot and tone have a gothic and slightly surreal feel that I think actually fits quite well. The castle which Mayu lives in gives the whole thing this sort of other-world anything-is-possible feel that's really entrancing.

There's humour here too - not over-used, but excellent at tempering the seriousness of much of the plot. I particularly enjoy 'Professor Vision' which shows what it looks like to outsiders (this outsider happening to be the Professor, there are always professors in manga,) when Fuuto is arguing with a random bunch of animals.

Not so great bits:

The first chapter (this volume takes in Chapters 1-5) is a little rushed as far as plot is concerned, but it soon settles into it's groove.

Some readers may find some of the themes and artwork difficult to deal with - there's discussion of suicide and abuse here, for example - but I think it's handled with grace. Obviously, if you find this sort of thing distressing, this may not be the book for you.

Verdict:

A promising start to the series that tempers gothic seriousness with the gentle touch of humour. Engaging characters, artwork, premise, what more could you want in a good slab of manga?