review

The Wicked + The Divine – Rising Action (Volume #4) REVIEW

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Rising Action by Kieron Gillen

Published October 5th 2016

Genre: Graphic novel, Fantasy

Pages: 144

Source: Bought it

Every ninety years, twelve gods are reincarnated as young people. They are loved. They are hated. And sometimes – just sometimes – they fall into open Superstar wars.
The fourth volume of the award-winning, best selling series from acclaimed creators KIERON GILLEN, JAMIE McKELVIE and MATT WILSON is the most explosive yet.

In this series, Gods appear on Earth every 90 years but only live 2 years each time.

This volume was so much better! The last one was really disappointing, it felt as if it was only made to fill up time until this one.

I was so happy to pick up Rising Action, the characters were amazing and the plot was addictive, exactly what I needed. It ended on a cliffhanger, as usual, so, if you’re bothered by that, maybe don’t pick up the series.

Otherwise, if you want a graphic novel with plenty of characters and an intriguing plot, check out The Wicked + The Divine! It might be hard in the beginning to get used to all the characters but it is totally worth it.

Rating: 4 stars

Volume 1

Volume 2

Volume 3

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Wrap up

September Wrap up

This was a pretty good reading month for me. I managed to read 5 books, and all of them were 3.5+ stars.

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I started off September by reading The Tea Dragon Festival by Katie O’Neill. In this graphic novel, Rinn finds a real dragon called Aedhan. Rinn is used to tea dragons but Aedhan is completely different. He’s been asleep for 80 years and its up to them to discover why. I love O’Neill’s art style and overall message of her stories, this one was no exception. It came out this month so, if you want, you can check it out.

This month was different in terms of reading because I finally participated in a readathon properly! Thomas (SFF180) created the Space Opera September readathon, where we only read Space Opera books, which was a great way for me to finally pick up some of the books I’ve been meaning to read for some time.

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I started it off by reading All Systems Red (Murderbot Diaries #1) by Martha Wells. This novella follows Murderbot, a security AI in what seems to be an ordinary mission. As the mission progresses, more and more systems fail. It’s up to Murderbot to discover if this is a coincidence or if there’s something else going on. I loved this novella and can’t wait to read the sequel.

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Then, I read A Closed and Common Orbit by Becky Chambers, which is the second novel of the Wayfarers series. I read the first one, Long Way to a Small Angry Planet last year and it was one of my favorite books of 2018, so I was pretty excited to pick up this one. Even though it wasn’t as good as the first, I really liked it. It focused on some interesting characters and it was thrilling to follow their journey.

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After that, I read The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams. This is the first book of the series and it was interesting. Not one of the best books I read this month but good enough. I’m currently writing my review so you can keep an eye out for that.

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Finally, I read Leviathan Wakes by James S. A. Corey, which is the first book in The Expanse series. I loved it so much. It had so much going on, I don’t even know where to begin explaining the plot. If you enjoy space opera novels, pick this one up as soon as possible, you will not regret it.

And, that’s it! Have you read any of these books? Let me know!

book haul

September Book Haul

If you follow me on Instagram, you might already know these books but, for those who don’t (you really should) here are the books I got this month:

  • The Church of Dead Girls by Stephen Dobyns
  • Dumb Witness, Endless Night and The Secret Adversary by Agatha Christie
  • Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir
review

The Girl with Seven Names REVIEW

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The Girl with Seven Names by Hyeonseo Lee

Published July 2nd 2015

Genre: Non-fiction

Pages: 304

Source: Borrowed

An extraordinary insight into life under one of the world’s most ruthless and secretive dictatorships – and the story of one woman’s terrifying struggle to avoid capture/repatriation and guide her family to freedom. As a child growing up in North Korea, Hyeonseo Lee was one of millions trapped by a secretive and brutal totalitarian regime. Her home on the border with China gave her some exposure to the world beyond the confines of the Hermit Kingdom and, as the famine of the 1990s struck, she began to wonder, question and to realise that she had been brainwashed her entire life. Given the repression, poverty and starvation she witnessed surely her country could not be, as she had been told “the best on the planet”? Aged seventeen, she decided to escape North Korea. She could not have imagined that it would be twelve years before she was reunited with her family. She could not return, since rumours of her escape were spreading, and she and her family could incur the punishments of the government authorities – involving imprisonment, torture, and possible public execution. Hyeonseo instead remained in China and rapidly learned Chinese in an effort to adapt and survive. Twelve years and two lifetimes later, she would return to the North Korean border in a daring mission to spirit her mother and brother to South Korea, on one of the most arduous, costly and dangerous journeys imaginable. This is the unique story not only of Hyeonseo’s escape from the darkness into the light, but also of her coming of age, education and the resolve she found to rebuild her life – not once, but twice – first in China, then in South Korea. Strong, brave and eloquent, this memoir is a triumph of her remarkable spirit.

This is the story of Hyeonseo Lee, a woman who escaped from North Korea. We follow her story, since she was little, living with her parents in her country, to the present day.

This novel was a complete surprise. I knew life in North Korea was difficult but had no idea of the extent of it. The public executions, the rules, the education, all seems surreal. This book was eye-opening and that’s one of the reasons I consider it worth picking up.

Lee also shows us that the hardest part might not be leaving North Korea but staying out. The goal is usually to get a South Korean citizenship but, until they get to South Korea or a South Korean Embassy outside of North Korea, the refugees might be intercepted by the Chinese police, which immediately sends them back to their country, where they face the horrible consequences of their escape. It might also be hard for a North Korean to survive outside their country because their education has no value in the modern world. All of this makes their life even harder but, luckily, there are organizations and people with good hearts who help them.

Even if you don’t want to read this book, I think you should know Hyeonseo Lee’s story. You can listen to her TED talk, available on Youtube. It’s only fifteen minutes. Still, I recommend checking out the book. Maybe it’s available in your local library, or you can borrow it from somebody, like I did.

Rating: 4 stars

“This is when I understood that we can do without almost anything – our home, even our country. But we will never do without other people, and we will never do without family.”

review

We3 REVIEW

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We3 by Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely

Published July 1st 2005

Genre: Graphic novel, Science Fiction

Pages: 104

Source: Borrowed

Writer Grant Morrison and artist Frank Quitely tell the unforgettable story of three innocent pets-a dog, a cat and a rabbit-who have been converted into deadly cyborgs by a sinister military weapons program.With nervous systems amplified to match their terrifying mechanical exoskeletons, the members of Animal Weapon 3 have the firepower of a battalion between them. But they are just the program’s prototypes, and now that their testing is complete, they’re slated to be permanently “de-commissioned”-until they seize their one chance to make a desperate run for freedom. Relentlessly pursued by their makers, the WE3 team must navigate a frightening and confusing world where their instincts and heightened abilities make them as much a threat as those hunting them-but a world, nonetheless, in which somewhere there is something called “home.”

In this graphic novel, humans have developed animal super weapons. Three of them, a dog, a cat and a rabbit, are able to escape. The reader, then follows their escape as they’re chased by the authorities and an even bigger animal weapon.

The first thing I noticed in this graphic novel was it’s goriness. It has a lot of blood and explicit images so, if you’re bothered by that, maybe don’t pick up this graphic novel.

I didn’t think the characters were very complex but that might be because this graphic novel did not have a lot of text.

The story was interesting to follow, even though, like the characters, it wasn’t very complex. Still, it grabbed me and I ended up reading the book in one sitting.

Overall, it was an entertaining graphic novel with an unique concept that I enjoyed.

Rating: 3.5 stars

review

The Tea Dragon Festival (Tea Dragon #2) REVIEW

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The Tea Dragon Festival by Katie O’Neill

Published September 17th 2019

Genre: Graphic novel, Fantasy, Middle Grade

Pages: 136

Source: Netgalley – in exchange for an honest review

Rinn has grown up with the Tea Dragons that inhabit their village, but stumbling across a real dragon turns out to be a different matter entirely! Aedhan is a young dragon who was appointed to protect the village but fell asleep in the forest eighty years ago. With the aid of Rinn’s adventuring uncle Erik and his partner Hesekiel, they investigate the mystery of his enchanted sleep, but Rinn’s real challenge is to help Aedhan come to terms with feeling that he cannot get back the time he has lost.

Katie O’Neill has yet again created an outstanding graphic novel.

The Tea Dragon Festival has a wonderful set of characters all wrapped in a beautiful world and a heartwarming story.

If you haven’t checked out this series, you really should. I recommend it so much!

Rating: 4.5 stars

review

The Tea Dragon Society (Tea Dragon #1) REVIEW

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The Tea Dragon Society by Katie O’Neill

Published October 31st 2017

Genre: Graphic novel, Fantasy, Middle Grade

Pages: 72

Source: Borrowed

From the award-winning author of Princess Princess Ever After comes The Tea Dragon Society, a charming all-ages book that follows the story of Greta, a blacksmith apprentice, and the people she meets as she becomes entwined in the enchanting world of tea dragons.
After discovering a lost tea dragon in the marketplace, Greta learns about the dying art form of tea dragon care-taking from the kind tea shop owners, Hesekiel and Erik. As she befriends them and their shy ward, Minette, Greta sees how the craft enriches their lives—and eventually her own.

In this graphic novel, a young girl finds a scared dragon and saves it. Turns out this is a Tea Dragon whose leaves have been used to make tea for ages.

Just like in Aquicorn Cove the art style and story were adorable.

Katie O’Neill has become one of my favorite graphic novel authors and I look forward to reading more of her books.

Rating: 5 stars