Comic Book Review: Damage #1 by Robert Venditti

Damage (2017-) #1Goodreads Synopsis

Ethan “Elvis” Avery just wanted to serve his country. Instead, he’s been changed into a monster!

Tasked as the government’s own living, breathing, ticking time bomb, Ethan retains no control when the monster takes over. Cheaper than a nuclear warhead and twice as effective, Ethan fights to rein in the damage he unleashes when the beast inside him springs free for one hour a day. With everyone around him in danger, Ethan struggles to contain the DAMAGE he inflicts on the DC Universe.


I’m trying to get more into the DC scheme of things and I’m glad I haven’t been steered wrong as yet.

For a first issue, this was very good. There wasn’t too much dialogue but just enough forScreen Shot 2018-01-25 at 6.12.44 PMit to explain a bit of what we could expect from this series. The artwork is exceptional. I could stare at it all day. The illustrators really did a wonderful job.

Ethan as a human is certain of who and what he is, but when Damage comes out, it’s then that he has difficulty with keeping the monster in check. The thing is that Ethan remains the choice of reason even when Damage away from area where people could get hurt.

 

I think that it’s interesting that Damage comes out once every 24 hours and for one hour only so honestly, depending on what he does and where he goes, this series as whole too, could go almost anywhere. The concept is really great andScreen Shot 2018-01-26 at 12.27.29 PM I think the writing, artwork and plot made up for a brilliant read. I can’t wait for the next issue.

At the end of this issue we’re given a sneak peak of a new comic called Sideways and from the looks of it, I think it’s going to be amazing. I won’t lie, he does remind me a little bit of Spider-Man with some Deadpool vibes thrown in but the excitement is still out there. I’m hoping to read that issue when it comes out and possibly review it as well, so keep a look out for this.

This is where I pray to the DC gods and hope that my continuation in this universe remains well and good because I don’t think I can take any more disappointment where comics are concerned.

Read: 25 January 2018
Rating: ★★★★

Publication Date: 17 January 2018
Publisher: DC Comics
Writer: Robert Venditti
Illustrators: Danny Miki | Tony S. Daniel

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Comic Book Review: Lumberjanes Vol.1: Beware the Kitten Holy by Noelle Stevenson

Lumberjanes, Vol. 1: Beware the Kitten HolyGoodreads Synopsis

FRIENDSHIP TO THE MAX!

At Miss Qiunzilla Thiskwin Penniquiqul Thistle Crumpet’s camp for hard-core lady-types, things are not what they seem. Three-eyed foxes. Secret caves. Anagrams. Luckily, Jo, April, Mal, Molly, and Ripley are five rad, butt-kicking best pals determined to have an awesome summer together… And they’re not gonna let a magical quest or an array of supernatural critters get in their way! The mystery keeps getting bigger, and it all begins here.

Collects Lumberjanes No. 1-4.


I was procrastinating studying for my finals so I decided to read the first issue of this comic and I actually had to force myself not to read the next. This comic drew me in from the first page and there’s enough adventure and mystery in the first issue that makes youIMG_1979.PNG eager to come back for more.

I was quite intrigued by the all-female comic characters as I’ve never read something like it before. The second and third issues of Lumberjanes were amazing. Although we aren’t told directly what each character’s personality is, we’re given insight by the way they react to different things and situations. I personally adore Mal and Ripley.

I’m all for the adventures of this weird summer and I think I’m already in love with this comic series.

The artwork is unique and amazing and I find myself takingIMG_1980.PNG in the details as well instead of just reading the dialogue and moving on. The writing style is fresh as well as entertaining and it’s the combination of all these things: amazing  artwork, awesome writing style and fun characters that make for an addicting read.

After finishing this volume I’m convinced that this is one of the best I’ve ever read. It’s easily high up in my Top 5. I can’t wait to start and finish volume 2.

 

 

Read: 10 December 2017
Rating: ★★★★

Publication Date: 7 April 2015
Publisher: BOOM! Box
Writer: Noelle Stevenson | Grace Ellis | Faith Hicks
Illustrator: Brooke A. Allen | Shannon Watters | Kat Leyh | Brooke Allen | Carolyn Nowak | Various | Carey Pietsch

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Book Review: Percy Jackson and the Greek Heroes by Rick Riordan

Percy Jackson and the Greek HeroesGoodreads Synopsis\

Who cut off Medusa’s head? Who was raised by a she-bear? Who tamed Pegasus? It takes a demigod to know, and Percy Jackson can fill you in on the all the daring deeds of Perseus, Atalanta, Bellerophon, and the rest of the major Greek heroes. Told in the funny, irreverent style readers have come to expect from Percy, ( I’ve had some bad experiences in my time, but the heroes I’m going to tell you about were the original old school hard luck cases. They boldly screwed up where no one had screwed up before. . .) and enhanced with vibrant artwork by Caldecott Honoree John Rocco, this story collection will become the new must-have classic for Rick Riordan’s legions of devoted fans–and for anyone who needs a hero. So get your flaming spear. Put on your lion skin cape. Polish your shield and make sure you’ve got arrows in your quiver. We’re going back about four thousand years to decapitate monsters, save some kingdoms, shoot a few gods in the butt, raid the Underworld, and steal loot from evil people. Then, for dessert, we’ll die painful tragic deaths. Ready? Sweet. Let’s do this.


I felt like I was entering a reading slump so I turn to one of my favourite authors because he’s helped me before. I’d started having flashbacks of The Sword of Summer from the beginning of the book already and of that I wasn’t a fan. At all.

I love Percy Jackson’s narrating style. It will always be one of my favourites. I definitely got that familiar feel, like this is a legit Rick Riordan book that I can get behind. Percy has a way of making the story a lot more interesting and that’s always a plus.

I really enjoyed the second story, especially because I read a Destiel fanfic a while ago that I was based on it. The third story was shorter and thank goodness for that because it wasn’t all that. Otrera’s story was great because yes to women empowerment and taking a stand. I did wonder why she was included since she isn’t a goddess or anything like that but her feats alone were worthy.

Daedalus’ story did contradict Percy’s adventures with the inventor but as he said, he was going with the original myth. Theseus’ story was definitely my favourite out of them all. I laughed the most during this one and it was as if each word was soaked in humour. This was where I felt Percy’s presence the most.

I absolutely loved this book. I took a mere 3 days to finish it and that makes me so happy. I’m glad I read this book now because it certainly helped where the reading slump was concerned. Percy’s POV of it all really added a lot more to the book. It made what could’ve been boring stories a lot more interesting.

I now feel like I can conquer 10 more books.

Read: 31 January 2018
Rating: ★★★★

Publication Date: 7 August 2015
Publisher: Puffin Books
Link to Author’s Goodreads Page: Rick Riordan

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Book Review: Give Me Five by Meg Cabot

Give Me Five (The Princess Diaries, #5)Goodreads Synopsis

Princess Mia is dreaming about the prom – and contending with a hotel workers’ strike – in the fifth, supremely hilarious episode of Meg Cabot’s Princess Diaries. This time, Mia’s in the pink about the upcoming Albert Einstein H.S. prom, and she’s crossing her fingers that Michael will ask her to go. (They’re in love, so why wouldn’t he ask her, right?) But during Seven Minutes in Heaven at her b-day party, Mia learns that Michael is not the prom-going type. Good grief, what’s a princess to do? 

To make matters worse, Grandmere has gotten a busboy fired due to a mishap with her pooch, Rommel, at a swanky restaurant, so when all of the city’s busboys go on strike, it causes a chain of events that result in Grandmere crashing at Mia’s mom’s place, her pal Lilly Moscovitz picking up a picket sign, and the prom being brought to a screeching halt. 

Thankfully, staunch yet boy-wise Grandmere has a plan to change Michael’s mind and put everything back on track, making Mia the happiest “prom princess” on this side of the Atlantic – and readers more starry-eyed than Molly Ringwald in her prettiest pink frock. 


It’s been ages since I’ve read the fourth book and I was so excited to continue this series. From the beginning already I was enjoying this book. There were times when the book lagged but then it picked up and I don’t know where the time went.

Once again it seems that Mia is overthinking a situation that could be easily sorted out if she ignored everyone (except Lily’s) advice. Really, hasn’t she heard that being direct is the best route to take?

It took me six days to finish this book and that was a bit of a disappointment since I usually speed through these. I really enjoyed this book and while we can’t say much about character development, this was quite funny. It felt like more of a humorous filler novel which was a bit of a difference from Mia’s constant fretting about the most mundane thing. She still fretted but only every two pages or so.

I am a lot more eager to read Sixsational now though. I’ll try not to take nearly a year long break again.

The Writing as always was amazing and I’m seriously thinking of looking into other works by Meg Cabot.

As I said, no character development took place but that’s asking for a lot since this book took place over a two-week period. One thing is for certain, there’s never a dull moment with Mia Thermopolis.

Read: 28 January 2018
Rating: ★★★★

Publication Date: 2004 (First published 1 September 2003)
Publisher: Macmillan
Link to Author’s Goodreads Page: Meg Cabot

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Comic Book Review: The Punisher: Born by Garth Ennis

The Punisher MAX: BornGoodreads Synopsis

The year is 1971. With mounting casualties and a rising anti-war sentiment, America’s time in Vietnam is coming to a close. Yet in the isolated Valley Forge Firebase on the Cambodian border, Captain Frank Castle is one of the few soldiers still committed to the fight against the enemy. With dwindling reserves, Castle must stand against an impending Viet Cong attack that threatens to wipe out the entire American platoon. To survive the battle, what grim decision must he make that will forever alter the course of his life? In this acclaimed tale, superstar Garth Ennis reveals the never-before-told story of the horrors Castle was forced to face to come home from Vietnam alive, ending in a shocking twist that will forever change how readers see Marvel Comics’ most famous urban vigilante. Collecting BORN #1-4.


I have never gone so far back into The Punisher’s origin story and I guess I got a bit curious. This was before everything. Before Frank Castle lost his family, before he started doling out punishments to the undesirables, This was when The Punisher was nothing more than a voice in a man’s head…offering him a way out.

The story is told from another officer’s point of view. We are thrown right into the thick of it near the Cambodian border and these soldiers have to face the harsh truth…nobody out there gives a d*mn about them, yet they keep on fighting.

This soldier tells us Frank’s story so we’re looking at the man we know as The Punisher from a different angle. What I got from it all is that he’s a cruel and cold bastard and he’ll bring justice to the innocent even if it means that those who are innocent have to die as well.

I did like this comic quite a bit and I loved that a huge portion of it was told from someone else’s POV. The art I thought, gave the story as a whole a bit of a dated feel and that further added to the story because it foes take place in the early 70s.

I am a lot more interest in The Punisher these days especially since he’s been featured in the Daredevil TV series and of course has his own series now, though I’m no stranger to the 2004 movie starring Thomas Jane.

I look forward to my journey on Frank Castle/The Punisher’s path I already know that it’ll be a bloody and action-packed one.

 

Read: 2 October 2017
Rating: ★★★.5

Publication Date: 21 February 2007
Publisher: MAX (Marvel Comics)
Writer: Garth Ennis
Illustrator: Darick Robertson

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Book Review: Not A Fairytale by Shaida Kazie Ali

Not a FairytaleGoodreads Synopsis

Salena, the elder of two Cape sisters, is light-skinned and demure, an easy one to marry off to a husband of her parents’ choosing. Zuhra is dark and willful, refusing tradition and leaving the country in pursuit of her own destiny. The shoots of their lives grow apart and interlace again. Salena finds herself in a repressed marriage much like her mother’s. Zuhra comes to suspect grim undercurrents to both their lives, which she expresses by retelling familiar fairytales, often hilariously, in a Muslim framework. But this is not a fairytale. The dark forest is real, and so are its secrets.


This is the first book I’m reading by a South African author and the hype is way too real. From the beginning of the book already you get a sense of the culture and what it’s like to be a part of it. I must admit that a few things did come as a bit of a shock to me; like the father doling out slaps as if they’re Christmas gifts. I know this was how [our] parents were raised but these days thing like that don’t fly.

I finished Zuhra’s tale pretty quickly and I enjoyed it a lot. From a young age it was easy to see that she was quite the free spirit and wouldn’t allow anything or anyone else to choose her path for her. Her narrative style was very entertaining and I found myself getting lost in her words.

I definitely liked Salena’s part more than I did Zuhra’s. It also didn’t escape my notice that while Zuhra’s POV was told from the first person while Salena’s was in third person. I enjoyed that for the uniqueness it was.

The differences between the two sisters and how they were treated was made obvious from the very start and it’s only when we delve deeper into their respective POV’s that we realise just how different they actually were.

After finishing this book I can easily say that this was one of the best books I read in 2017. The way that Shaida drew me in, I’m in a state of shock over how amazed I am. There were little recipes spread throughout the book that I really enjoyed and I think that was a genius idea.

Here’s one of them: (just the ingredients) 

Potato Curry

2 tbsp oil
1 tsp cumin seeds
½ tsp mustard seeds
1 onion, finely chopped
1 tomato, finely chopped
½ tsp tumeric
1 tsp powdered dhania
½ tsp crushed garlic
½ tsp crushed ginger
1 green chilli, chopped
4 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
salt to taste
1 cup water
finely chopped dhania leaves for garnish

As my first book by a South African author, I’m really glad this was it. It far exceeded my expectations. This has really motivated me to seek out more books by South African authors and also to further expand my knowledge on other cultures.

Read: 25 January 2018
Rating: ★★★★

Publication Date: 17 January 2018
Publisher: DC Comics
Writer: Robert Venditti
Illustrators: Danny Miki | Tony S. Daniel

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Book Review: Othello by William Shakespeare

OthelloGoodreads Synopsis

In Othello, Shakespeare creates a powerful drama of a marriage that begins with fascination (between the exotic Moor Othello and the Venetian lady Desdemona), with elopement, and with intense mutual devotion and that ends precipitately with jealous rage and violent deaths. He sets this story in the romantic world of the Mediterranean, moving the action from Venice to the island of Cyprus and giving it an even more exotic coloring with stories of Othello’s African past.

Shakespeare builds so many differences into his hero and heroine—differences of race, of age, of cultural background—that one should not, perhaps, be surprised that the marriage ends disastrously. But most people who see or read the play feel that the love that the play presents between Othello and Desdemona is so strong that it would have overcome all these differences were it not for the words and actions of Othello’s standard-bearer, Iago, who hates Othello and sets out to destroy him by destroying his love for Desdemona.

As Othello succumbs to Iago’s insinuations that Desdemona is unfaithful, fascination—which dominates the early acts of the play—turns to horror, especially for the audience. We are confronted by spectacles of a generous and trusting Othello in the grip of Iago’s schemes; of an innocent Desdemona, who has given herself up entirely to her love for Othello only to be subjected to his horrifying verbal and physical assaults, the outcome of Othello’s mistaken convictions about her faithlessness.


The amount of times I had to write an essay for Othello last year is ridiculous but it did help with a deeper understanding of the play. Jealousy of course is a huge part of this tragedy but there are so many other things that are right there out in the open but not necessarily highlighted. Things such as: manipulation of weaknesses, egotism and misplaced trust are mainly featured. It’s no secret that classics and plays in general are not my favourite but I’m really starting to like the overall genre.

The play starts out with Iago getting jealous that he was passed up for a promotion and it went to Michael Cassio instead. Then of course there is the issue of Desdemona who fell in love and married Othello, who regardless of his status as a General, remains a very much older black guy. Apparently that was a big no no in society back then (unfortunately some things don’t change).   

Obviously it’s the jealousy that really adds the fuel to the fire in this play and that’s what drives everyone’s reactions. There was a great deal of misunderstanding that went on that I think stemmed from the fact that communication between the characters was nonexistent. This was evident especially in those scenes where instead of just coming out and saying something for what it was, the characters would tend to beat around the bush. One would think that you’d get annoyed by this but I found it ironic because the constant beating around the bush is what actually lead to their ends.

I’ve read Macbeth and while I enjoyed that play quite a bit, I definitely liked Othello more. More so because I delved deeper into what this play was actually trying to convey and there are so many avenues it can go down; of what it actually means. Trust that I had my summaries on hand because Modern English and I are not friends but it came in handy and it helped me really get into these classic plays.

I don’t think I’ve seen a villain quite like Iago. He’s not the sharpest tool in the shed but he’s manipulative and he uses this to his advantage. He knows that Desdemona won’t go to Othello and be honest about the handkerchief, and he’s well aware of the fact that Othello is likely to blow things out of proportion. In Iago’s mind, things only work one way: assume the wildest things, convince yourself it’s the absolute truth and go about ruining peoples’ lives. Instead of going after the source directly (his wife), he goes after everybody and anybody else. Not because he believes his wife is not to blame, but because he sees her as property so that’s what actually starts this whole thing. There is no description I have for Iago except that he’s a completely vile and despicable man.

Many other things were featured in this play as well. Othello, not only being much older than Desdemona, but also being of a different race played a big part in their relationship. I felt that Desdemona was very carefree in her feelings in the sense that she didn’t care who saw her love because she was certain of it and as long as Othello loved her back (which he did), she was right as rain. Even with Othello’s insecurities, what with all their differences, he was willing to overlook them because Desdemona was all that mattered, except that it was these very insecurities that caused him to be so easily swayed by Iago’s machinations.

Overall, there were strings that were being pulled. Everyone was a puppet in this play, and that includes Iago. He’s not exempt from this fact. They all fell victim to the jealousy and the manipulation, as well as the lies and the deceit.

I’ve heard that Hamlet is Shakespeare’s best play so I’m refusing to read that until I’ve read a few more of his works. I think I’m going with King Lear next.

Read: 9 October 2017
Rating: ★★★★

Publication Date: May 1992 (First published 1603)
Publisher: Wordsworth Editions
Link to Author’s Goodreads Page: William Shakespeare

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