Posted in 2016

Teen Titans Vol. 1: Damian Knows Best.


33232669

Benjamin Percy & Jonboy Meyers

Paperback, Trade, 144 pages
Published June 13th 2017 by DC Comics

My Rating: 4 of 5 stars

Received from publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Synopsis:

As a part of DC Universe: Rebirth, the son of Batman, Damian Wayne, joins the Teen Titans!

The Teen Titans are further apart than ever before…until Damian Wayne recruits Starfire, Raven, Beast Boy and the new Kid Flash to join him in a fight against his own grandfather, Ra’s al Ghul! But true leadership is more than just calling the shots–is Robin really up to the task? Or will the Teen Titans dismiss this diminutive dictator?

The team will have to figure this out fast, as a great evil from Damian’s past is lurking around the corner, ready to strike at the team’s newest leader and destroy the new Teen Titans before they even begin!

The newest era of one of DC’s greatest super-teams begins here in Teen Titans, Volume 1: Damian Knows Best! Written by Benjamin Percy (Green Arrow) with spectacular art by newcomer Jonboy Meyers.

CollectingTeen Titans 1-5, Rebirth

My Thoughts:

My little demon baby went out and made some friends! *dies*

I really enjoyed this volume. It was filled with action and heart, and those two factors put together are always a win in my book. I really was looking forward to this one, just because it has Damian. He’s my demon baby and I love him. He’s also my second favorite Robin, Jason being my first. But also, who doesn’t have a soft spot for the teen titans?

What I liked:

I loved the beginning! Watching as Damian assembled his team was the simultaneously worrying and hilarious. Being the little demon he is, he didn’t just ask them to join the Teen Titans. That would’ve been too easy.

The relationship between Alfred and Damian. This relationship really made me realize how young and lonely Damian really is, and it was a tad heartbreaking. HE’S JUST A LITTLE BABY!

Damian making friends. It was a miserable experience for him. I loved it!

Starfire lowkey being the team mom.

Wally (my other baby) being the glue, and making connections with everybody on the team.

TEAMWORK MAKES THE DREAM WORK

Damian being vulnerable, saying PLEASE, and accepting help.

And finally, Damian putting Bruce in his place.

What I didn’t like:

Why does every Damian storyline have to be about Ra’s al Ghul, his mother, or showing everybody he’s the best. It was fine the first time around, but I want a storyline that doesn’t involve his past. We already know what he wants for his future, what he wants to be, and I need a storyline that’s going to bring us closer to that. That shows him growing without being hampered and constantly plagued by his past. We already have that with just about every member of the Bat-Family.

That is really the only thing I didn’t like. It’s annoying to be getting the same storyline in different variations. Damian’s overall character feels stagnant. He can’t grow beyond being the Demon. In this volume, there was quite a bit of growth and I loved it. I want it to continue, but with these same played out storylines, it ain’t gonna happen.

Now, in saying that I’m by no means discounting Percy’s storyline or writing because it was good. I like his depiction of Damian’s character and the rest of the team. His writing was intriguing and fast-paced, and as previously stated filled with action and heart. My critique comes from wanting to see more of Damian’s character in a way that doesn’t involve his past. I also blame Son of Superman, because it gave me all I wanted in two issues.

As this run continues I hope to see more growth from all characters and some interesting storylines.

sam-signature

Posted in January

Book Review: Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson


Book Cover
Book Cover

Speak

Laurie Halse Anderson

Published October 1999 by Square Fish

YA Fiction

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Goodreads

Summary

Melinda is a friendless outcast at Merryweather High. She busted an end-of-summer party by calling the cops, and now nobody will talk to her, let alone listen to her. As time passes, she becomes increasingly isolated and practically stops talking altogether. It is through her work on an art project that she is finally able to face what really happened at that terrible party: she was raped by an upperclassman, a guy who still attends Merryweather and who is still a threat to her. It will take another violent encounter with him to make Melinda fight back. This time she refuses to be silent.

My Thoughts

Speak was not an easy novel for me to get through. Laurie Halse Anderson’s language was viscerally powerful and her metaphors gave me pause countless times. The main character, Melinda Sordino, is a tragically sympathetic character. My heart almost-literally bled for her throughout the whole book. Anderson did a great job of tackling such a triggering subject matter as rape in a piercingly artistic fashion. I was literally seeing the world through Melinda’s eyes, and her story was emotionally tasking to read. I became emotionally invested in her character, and by the time I got to the end, I wept. I wept because Anderson had taken me on an emotional roller coaster ride with Melinda and I didn’t know how to feel when it ended.’

The ostracized Melinda let me in to her inner thoughts with an unceasingly witty internal commentary. She grappled with not speaking, something I could definitely relate with. She closed herself off from the world. Yet, she also grappled with her art project throughout the novel, and by the end, the reader could definitely feel fulfilled that Melinda had found her voice: both literally and artistically.

If there was one thing I took away from this book, it was this: If we don’t express ourselves, we kill ourselves little by little, slowly by slowly, everyday.

Favorite Quotes:

If people don’t express themselves, they die one piece at a time. – Melinda

I just want to sleep. A coma would be nice. Or amnesia. Anything, just to get rid of this, these thoughts, whispers in my mind. Did he rape my head, too? – Melinda

He says a million things without saying a word. I have never heard a more eloquent silence. – Melinda

It wasn’t my fault. He hurt me. It wasn’t my fault. And I’m not going to let it kill me. I can grow. – Melinda

download5 starsimagesKele

Posted in 2013, July

Review: Monument 14 by Emmy Laybourne


monument 14Published June 5, 2012 by Feiwel & Friends

Source: Purchased

Your mother hollers that you’re going to miss the bus. She can see it coming down the street. You don’t stop and hug her and tell her you love her. You don’t thank her for being a good, kind, patient mother. Of course not—you launch yourself down the stairs and make a run for the corner.

Only, if it’s the last time you’ll ever see your mother, you sort of start to wish you’d stopped and did those things. Maybe even missed the bus.

But the bus was barreling down our street, so I ran.

Fourteen kids. One superstore. A million things that go wrong.

In Emmy Laybourne’s action-packed debut novel, six high school kids (some popular, some not), two eighth graders (one a tech genius), and six little kids trapped together in a chain superstore build a refuge for themselves inside. While outside, a series of escalating disasters, beginning with a monster hailstorm and ending with a chemical weapons spill, seems to be tearing the world—as they know it—apart.

My Thoughts

I had been wanting to read this book for a while now and never really made the time to do it. It had fallen off my radar and I recently spotted it and made the purchase:) I am glad that I did and now am in need of the second book in the series, Sky On Fire!

My first thought after reading this book was WOW! This could totally happen?

I found the strength portrayed in all of the kids amazing! They ranged from Kindergarten through to eighth grade. Obviously, the eighth graders were “in charge” so to speak. The way that they made the store fun for the little kids was very courageous and I am not so sure that I, if in the same situation, would be able to think that fast under such duress.

I loved all of the characters, even the not so nice ones. But my favorite would have to be Dean. All of the kids had changed during the course of the book, but, in my opinion he changed the most. From the scene on the bus where he is in shock and unable to move to the cliffhanger ending. He had been able to become a stronger person and challenge himself.

The ending was a little sad. *not telling, my lips are sealed* But I did enjoy it. I usually tend to NEED a lot of romance in my books and although there was a smidge, I still felt compelled to read. I can’t wait to get the next book and find out what will become of these characters and am curious how Ms. Laybourne continues her story. Still from Dean’s POV or will it be split between 2 different characters?

wpid-41.pngH. Lee1

Posted in 2013, July

Audio Book Review: My Sister Lives On The Mantlepiece by Annabel Pitcher


my sister lives on the mantlepiecsPublished August 14, 2012 by Hatchette Audio

Narrated by David Tennant

Source: Publisher in exchange for an honest review

My sister Rose lives on the mantelpiece. Well, some of her does. A collarbone, two ribs, a bit of skull, and a little toe. 

To ten-year-old Jamie, his family has fallen apart because of the loss of someone he barely remembers: his sister Rose, who died five years ago in a terrorist bombing. To his father, life is impossible to make sense of when he lives in a world that could so cruelly take away a ten-year-old girl. To Rose’s surviving fifteen year old twin, Jas, everyday she lives in Rose’s ever present shadow, forever feeling the loss like a limb, but unable to be seen for herself alone.

Told with warmth and humor, this powerful novel is a sophisticated take on one family’s struggle to make sense of the loss that’s torn them apart… and their discovery of what it means to stay together.

My Thoughts on David Tennant as a narrator

Wow!!! I tend to only enjoy female narrators. I have no idea of why? BUT, I loved David’s voice! The way that he portrayed Jamie in this story was remarkable:) He was able to high pitch his voice, ramble quickly and show much enthusiasm just like a child! It really sounded like the listener was inside Jamie’s head and we were able to hear all the ramblings going on in there. I honestly was amazed and loved listening to him talk.

“In fact she was quite bad and according to Jas she was naughty at school, but no one seems to remember that now she is all dead and perfect.”

My thoughts on the story line

Ms. Pitcher was able to take a tragic story and put a humorous spin on it by letting the story be told in a child’s perspective.

The story takes place in London and the town that Jamie and his family lived was the victim of a terrorist bombing. Jamie tells a heart wrenching story of his family being at a park having a wonderful afternoon when terror hits.

Since that time, his family has literally been torn apart. His sister Rose, died in the bombings. Her twin, Jas is always trying to change her appearance when all their parent’s want is for her to stay looking like Rose. They eventually move to a different town but then learn that their Mother was not coming with them.

The book is basically a look at Jamie’s unique spin on the whole situation and how he just is trying to get his family back together. He is actually hilarious and kept me on my toes. I really enjoyed getting the story from a child’s mind. The things that he thought or sometimes would say out loud had me rolling. You know how the old saying goes..”Out of the mouth of babes.” I must say that Jamie was my favorite character!

The whole book was not all funny, there were times that brought tears to my eyes too! Ms. Pitcher did a wonderful job on balancing the emotions though. The book held laughter, tears and a lot of heart! I thoroughly enjoyed it and am very glad that I had requested it. I was not sure at first, but the story line really intrigued me. I couldn’t pass it up!

5

H. Lee1