Friday, March 25, 2011


Writer, Gail Simone, Grant Morrison; Geoff Johns
Artist, Aaron Lopresti, Matt Ryan; Bernard Chang

Published by DC Comics

I don't think anything Gail Simone could have written for Wonder Woman would have reached the level of fan anticipation for her becoming the writer on the series. Everyone for the longest time mentioned her writing the book every time they saw something negative with another writer taking the character.

I told myself the above as I checked this volume out from the library trying not to build this up in my head to a state of only finding disappointment. I'm trying to the same thinking about Neil Gaiman's upcoming episode for Doctor Who.

My only real problem with Rise Of The Olympian is the design of Genocide. I like everything from concept to the way she is written but the design looks like a generic 80's design. For a character that's suppose to be that big of an introduction to Wonder Woman's mythology they picked something that looks like some sort of plant character out of a Rob Liefeld early days image book. And green is not a good villain color.

Speaking of costume designs. I think the Gods stole their new threads from the Marvel character The Constructor. That really took me out of the story for a bit as the weird confused me. I hate when some weird confuses me because I love the weird, the weird is good...usually.

Now that design issues aside I really loved the artwork. The battles scenes were presented with tons of emotion and fury. You felt punches, you enjoyed the scenes shown to you. The drama and passion of the characters are right there for you.

I enjoyed this book in so many ways but it seemed to have so much crammed into it. The battles were cool, the drama build was exciting, the use of the wider DC Universe fit perfect, and you never go wrong with Gorilla Knights.

Also the variant covers for these issue are all poster worthy.

4 out of 5 Stars


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

REVIEW: Chiggers by Hope Larson


Published bySimon & Schuster

I read this after a few hours at the gym sitting on our balcony resting on a nice sunny day. I read it without putting it down once; which is always pretty weird for me since I'm constantly jumping from one book to another.

I have been a fan of Hope Larson's artwork for a while but this is the first time I've actually read a whole book by her and I'm really glade I checked this out at the library. 

If you haven't noticed from past reviews I get a lot of books from the library and libraries are a big part of my life. Without libraries I would never read books such as Chiggers because of having limited funds for buying books I usually only buy things I know I'm going to enjoy to a certain degree and keep in my personal collection. Thus, without libraries I would never reach out to writers, artist, publishers, or story styles I don't already have within me.

Sorry, got on a little library rant but I do love them so. My normal graphic novel reading is of the superhero style so libraries give me a chance to read books like Chiggers which I have had recommended to me many times in the past.

Hope Larson's stories have a lot of life and energy to them. I keep thinking something is going to explode. Sort of like being around someone full of life and at some point you know their head is just going to explode. That maybe not what the story is trying to get over to the reader but that's what I felt?

The only problem I had reading Chiggers was every so often I felt like I was missing a page or didn't read something? The writer may have been signaling little jumps in time but I didn't feel it in the way that was probably meant but that a small thing to point out in a otherwise fine story about several young people truly experiencing the social chaos of life for the first time.

4 out of 5 Star


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

REVIEW: Tangled by Carolyn Mackler


Published by Harperteen

I borrowed this book from Mar's personal books so it was the type of book I would read a little and then put down for a while to read something from the library; so the reading time it took me for Tangled was longer than normal but that in no way showed how much I enjoyed this book; which I did enjoy very much.

The story is told from the point of view of several different characters who have lives that have crossed and in a way  I say this is a story collection but I know story collections or anthologies is a bad word in the publishing world and there is a  reason books like this are never called a collection of any sort, even if it is or isn't, Mar and I went a few minutes back and forth on that subject sitting on the balcony reading one day.

My favorite part of the book is how it keeps you reading and moving into things because the formating and how the stories were told didn't let you guess what was going to happen until the last minute. If you have read a lot of books or write your own books you probably have a hard time not thinking about what this is leading to or what this means when reading something. I hurt my own enjoyment of books at times by over thinking where things are going and for the most part I couldn't do that with Tangled. When people ask me why I hardly ever give any prose books 5 stars its usually for this reason.

Before anyone asks, yes I did love The Earth, My Butt, And Other Big Round Things, I have a signed copy of the book, and if you are asking what do I consider her best book it still is The Earth... but that doesn't in any way mean that I'm down grading Tangled. The Earth... is actually one of my favorite books of the past five years.

Carolyn Mackler creates characters that you care about and even more important also characters you hate. Characters with their own voices, lives, and inner joys or fears and most of the time like real life both at the same time. When she needs to go places some others would shy away from in her stories she goes there as much as the story needs her to.

4 out of 5 Stars


Sunday, March 20, 2011

REVIEW: Are These My Basoomas I See Before Me?

WRITTEN BY Louise Rennison

I loved this series when I first started reading these books by Louise Rennison but I think after a time a little of the quality of the books disappeared for me in the similarity between each succeeding book. Only up to the point of the last two books did the writer change up things in a different way. 

I rated the first two books at 4 stars but everything up until this book I found myself only giving 3, which isn't bad either; so when I found myself reading the last book in the series I enjoyed it much more, still a 3 but a capital 3 this time. 

Maybe this line of thinking was because I had a long time between reading the next to last book and ARE THESE MY BASOOMAS I SEE BEFORE ME? Anyways, I enjoyed the last book and I recommend the whole series as a whole.

It was kind of strange that a series with the sort of short journal entry format would last ten books. That's just a thought me and others have had. I also found myself instead of picturing journal entries with the last book thinking about a Twitter feed. Times they change quick.

Another complaint I found myself having while reading the series after the first couple books was the switch to photo covers from the original artist style. As many know I'm not the biggest fan of photo covers and especially those I find not to be that original. I also thought the new covers tended to paint the books as YA books when in fact they are more Middle School, 7th or 8th grade books.

Anyone looking for a wrap up ending to the series will not find it here. Besides a brief mention from Georgia that this would be her last journal, but she doesn't give a reason, you wouldn't even know this is the last book. The books ends with her finding a book friend but doesn't several others? The ending was sort of flat to me.

This review has me complaining a lot, whining, which is very much my nature but I loved the this series. I found myself laughing out loud many times. It contains its own way of speaking and a fun nature to growing up that you don't see often these days.

3 out of 5 stars
Brian C. Williams

* Just to let people know who follow me on LiveJournal that right now I'm on hold there until I decide if I want to pay for an account. I've hit the max on books to add to my library there.


Monday, March 14, 2011


WRITER: Gail Simone
ARTISTS: Aaron Lopresti, Matt Ryan; and Bernard Chang
COLORISTS: Brad Anderson and Kanila Tripp
LETTERS: Travis Lanham and Steve Wands


A really good action adventure collection of stories which crosses the human world and the worlds Wonder Woman inhabits in a combination of much enjoyment. Gail Simone is great at doing this and a core skill in telling a good superhero story in my opinion is this skill.

No matter if she's writing Wonder Woman, The Secret Six, or Birds Of Prey its so refreshing to have a writer who can blend all the facets of a comic book universe together with humor and raw energy. She can handle humor, horror, romance, and fuck it to the wall action. God when she decides to turn up any level within one of her stories it sure gets your attention.

Even with the great action my stand out favorite moments in this book are with the Gorilla Knights in the Wonder Woman The Movie story. Loved the main story because it got me thinking about George Perez's run on Wonder Woman. I think I shall pull Gods And Mortals off my DC bookcase. And that leads me to how much I love Gail Simone's run on this character. It sits right there nicely with the Perez run. 




Tuesday, March 8, 2011


SCRIPT: Tom Taylor
PENCILS: Brian Koschak
INKS: Dan Parsons
COLORS: Michael Wiggam
LETTERING: Michael Heisler
COVER ART: Sean Mcnally


When I started this book which I got on loan from the library I thought the humor and characterization would keep me from enjoying it. I didn't know if I would like the art style either because animated type styles are kind of hit and miss for me.

That didn't happen here and I so love it when you go in thinking I might not enjoy this book but it really surprises you and leaves you happy you picked it up.

I enjoyed the art by Brian Koschak and overall the story really keep me within the Star Wars universe while also adding to it; which is what tie-in stories are suppose to do isn't it?

The story moves along very quickly which suits the younger audience it is directed at but it also has plenty for older readers. Long time Star Wars fans should enjoy this but you can also come into it with only a brief knowledge of the universe and still enjoy it.

A great read by the pool or while out to dinner. Good for a trip in the car with the kids, for the kids, or the co-pilot. Don't read while driving.

3 out of 5 Stars

Review by Brian C. Williams