Graphic Novel Review: This Was Our Pact

This Was Our Pact by Ryan  Andrews
This Was Our Pact
by Ryan Andrews (Goodreads Author)

5 out of 5 stars


Ben and his friends are determined to follow the river on the night of their Autumn Festival. Every year thousands of lanterns are floated down the river, and legend says that the lanterns float up to join the stars. Ben makes a pact with his friends to find out the truth about where the lanterns go, and they hop on their bikes to follow the lanterns. But the weird kid, Nathaniel, follows them, and when everyone else turns back, Nathaniel and Ben discover the true magic that surrounds the lanterns.

This book is so beautiful and whimsical! I was enchanted from the very beginning. The lovely artwork, the imaginative plot, the emotional characters, and the engaging dialogue kept me entranced through every page. Continue reading

Graphic Novel Review: Batman Overdrive

Batman by Shea Fontana
Batman: Overdrive
by Shea Fontana,  Marcelo Di Chiara (Illustrations)

4 out of 5 stars

Young Bruce Wayne is weeks away from getting his driver’s license, and decides to repair his father’s classic car, and maybe give it some upgrades, and maybe start calling it the Batmobile. Bruce is tracking a car theft ring, and hoping they will lead to clues about his parents’ murders. He is isolated and alone, but as he searches junkyards for replacement parts and tracks the car thefts, he befriends two teens that he is certain he can trust… until he can’t.

I loved this graphic novel! Batman has never been my favorite superhero- too dark for me- but I really enjoyed reading about a young Bruce who is just forming his identity as a hero and learning from his early mistakes. Bruce is charming and just so cool. He takes too many risks and has a lot of anger inside though. It was great to see his character growing and developing as he dealt with some of those issues. Continue reading

Comic Review: Green Lantern Legacy

Green Lantern by Minh Lê
Green Lantern: Legacy
by Minh Lê, Andie Tong (Illustrations)

5 out of 5 stars 

Tai discovers the power of the Green Lantern when his grandmother passes on her jade ring to him. With very little training from the other Green Lanterns, Tai tries to stop vandalism in his neighborhood. But there is an even bigger threat hiding right under his nose, and Tai will need his friends support while he learns to harness his new powers.

I loved this comic from start to finish!
Tai is such a deep and complex character. His close relationship with his family is at the heart of everything he does, and there is a huge emotional aspect to his story that really drew me in. Tai is Vietnamese-American, and his family heritage is important to him. I loved seeing the rich Vietnamese culture, and the traditions of kindness and generosity in his family. Continue reading

Graphic Novel Review: Midas

Midas by Ryan North
Midas 
by Ryan North Shelli Paroline  (Illustrations)Braden Lamb (Illustrations)

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


Captain Joey and her space crew are approaching a hidden planet, known only in the ancient past as Earth. They have heard rumors that a weapon transformed the entire planet into gold, and they are searching for that weapon to protect their people against the dreaded Federation. But when the “weapon” turns out to be the perfectly preserved body of the legendary King Midas, can Joey and her friends still find a way to stop the power-crazed Federation general from enslaving their home planets?

This epic space saga covers a lot of ground, from the total destruction of several planets to long-forgotten mysteries of the ancient past, and Captain Joey and her intrepid crew are just the rebels to boldly adventure through it all and still find time for snarky one-liners and peppery dialogue. The plot is never dull, and does a good job of giving a lot of world-building information in small chunks that fit in with the action.

I was surprised at every turn in the plot, and I kept thinking, “There is no way they are gonna make it out of this one.” But somehow the team would pull through, only to be confronted by another impossible challenge! Continue reading

Graphic Novel Review: The Iliad

The Iliad by Gareth Hinds
The Iliad 
by Gareth Hinds 

2 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

This graphic novel retelling of Homer’s Iliad was not quite what I expected. It’s much too word-heavy for a graphic novel, and I found myself bogged down in the text. Most of the panels have so much text that there is barely room for the artwork. And the artwork itself is nothing special. I didn’t care for the cartoony look, and it just didn’t grab my attention. It looks somewhat amateur, or hastily drawn.

If you are a big fan of the Iliad, you might like this, but I did not enjoy reading it. Usually I love classical literature, and I have read The Iliad before, so I was happy to be revisiting the story of the Trojan War with all the drama. But this book does not deliver drama. It feels stale and static, like the characters are all made of stone.

Disappointed in this one. Continue reading

Manga Review: MacBeth

Manga Classics by Crystal S. Chan
Manga Classics: Macbeth 
by Crystal S. Chan (Adapted by),William ShakespeareJulien Choy (Illustrations)

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


Despite its popularity, MacBeth has never been one of my favorite Shakespearean plays. Too bloody and gory and gloomy for my taste. But if you like a dismal adventure with plenty of violence and mayhem, MacBeth has plenty of that! And this manga adaptation rings true with the moods and poetry of the original play. I like that the exact dialogue of the play is used in this manga, and the artwork beautifully illustrates all the action and drama. Continue reading

Graphic Novel Review: Pilu of the Woods

Pilu of the Woods by Mai K. Nguyen
Pilu of the Woods 
by Mai K. Nguyen

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


Willow has a fight with her sister, and runs out to the woods where she used to go hiking with her mother. She meets a tree spirit named Pilu, who has run away from her grove, and the two form a friendship and help one another navigate their turbulent emotions.

Both girls are struggling with loneliness and anger, and they are remorseful after arguing with their families, but don’t know how to stop. When Willow’s emotional monsters begin to take on a real form, the two girls are in danger, until Pilu discovers how to resolve the emotional pain both girls are hiding.
Continue reading

Comic Review: Batman and the Justice League

Batman and the Justice League Vol. 1 by Shiori Teshirogi
Batman and the Justice League Vol. 1 
by Shiori Teshirogi

3 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


Justice League done in a manga style? Yes, please!
A young boy from Japan comes to Gotham City looking for his missing parents, and becomes the unwitting victim of a devious plot involving the Joker. Only Batman and the Justice League can solve the mysteries of the boy’s missing parents, and the enigmatic power leaking from magical ley lines around the globe.

I enjoyed reading this manga of the Justice League!
However, I didn’t like some of the characters. Batman has never been my favorite, and I HATE the Joker. I can’t even look at his ugly face. But I liked the story and the other characters. I would enjoy reading it more if it focused more on Superman, who is a favorite superhero of mine. Continue reading

Manga Review: The Lion and the Bride

The Lion and the Bride Vol. 1 by Mika Sakurano
The Lion and the Bride Vol. 1 
by Mika Sakurano

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


Yua is dating her high school teacher, and when her grandmother dies, she has nowhere to go, so she marries her teacher, but he has a secret past that will threaten their married bliss.

This manga is just so ridiculously silly that I ended up loving it! I mean, the whole situation of marrying a teacher is already fraught with impossible scenarios, and this manga takes it to a whole new level of hilarious drama.  Continue reading