Tonoharu, by Lars Martinson

Four stars, read in March 2017, then again in August. I didn’t write what I thought about each book as I finished it, so I can only think of the trilogy as a whole—but you really have to read all three, so it’s just as well. The story is written a bit confusingly; the two…

How to Fake a Moon Landing, by Darryl Cunningham

Four stars, read in March 2017. Three and a half stars, maybe, but I don’t mind rounding up to balance out all the reviews that hate it way more than I think is warranted. (Though I do wonder, since this is yet another instance of books titled “how to __” which do not in any…

A + E 4ever, by I. Merey

Five stars, read in July 2016. This book is gorgeous. I don’t have anything objective to say about it—I just want to gush feelings for a while. It’s so lovely, in fact, that I went and found a bigger-than-usual picture of the cover to use here, just so I could look at it. I read…

This One Summer, by Mariko Tamaki and Jillian Tamaki

Four stars, read in May 2015. This reminded me of The Way, Way Back—obviously because of the setting, but also the age of the main character, that time in adolescence that’s so rough because you’re trying to figure out what’s going on around you and how you’re supposed to relate to it. It was so…

Nimona, by Noelle Stevenson

Five stars, read in September 2015. I didn’t know anything about Noelle Stevenson before I picked up Nimona, but I was intrigued by the lovely cover. It was outstanding, getting much darker than I expected it to, and also way more awesome. The protagonists are supervillains, the antagonists are heroes, and at times you question whether either group…

Comics Round-Up

This past weekend was a long one for me, and I spent two of the three days off work putting a sizable dent in my graphic novel TBR stack (with mostly excellent results). Beautiful Darkness, by Fabien Vehlmann and  Kerascoët : four stars. This book basically just revels in how horrible people are. The characters aren’t particularly…

The Plain Janes, by Cecil Castellucci and Jim Rugg

Three stars, read in December 2015. A middle grade graphic novel about a group of girls who form a “secret art gang,” sneaking out at night to create works of art in public spaces all around their city.  This was disappointing because the premise is awesome, but the delivery is so cliche it’s almost—but not—a…

The Beats: A Graphic History, by Paul Buhle

Four stars, read in August 2015. I read On the Road five years ago, my first foray into the collective oeuvre of the Beat Generation. It wasn’t a huge success. But I’ve always had it in my head that I want to explore their work more, and I’m really into graphic biographies right now, so…

Comics Round-Up

The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl Vol. 1: Squirrel Power, by Ryan North and Erica Henderson Four stars. This is by far the funniest Marvel comic I’ve read yet. Squirrel Girl is such an upbeat, confident character; she solves problems with ass-kicking, yes, but also empathy and creative thinking, and that is cool. The “screenshots” of tweets between…

Woman Rebel: The Margaret Sanger Story, by Peter Bagge

Four stars, read in August 2015. It occurs to me that a lot of our current problems are still problems because people don’t know enough about Margaret Sanger. The divide over abortion and birth control persists a century later because people (especially men) don’t understand how inextricably sex and politics are linked for women, and this…

Boxers and Saints, by Gene Luen Yang

Four stars, read in December 2015. How can I use a word like “good” to describe these books, when everything inside them is so horrifying? And when I can feel elements of sympathy for all the different viewpoints represented, but there are none that aren’t also responsible for committing terrible atrocities? I feel like the…

Bandette, by Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover

Five stars, read in February 2015. Bandette is fabulous, funny, and French. She’s a master thief who looks like Audrey Hepburn and behaves like a court jester. That pretty much sums up this book, and I don’t think you can do any better. She’s such an excellent character. I find Lieutenant Price and Monsieur’s client—based…

The Influencing Machine, by Brooke Gladstone

Four stars, read in January 2012. I love the way this book was done. It’s graphic nonfiction (illustrated by Josh Neufeld), which makes it a really fast and fun read. But it’s full of historical data, too, as well as being a commentary on the way media influences us, and has throughout history. I found all…

Persepolis, by Marjane Satrapi

Four stars, read September 2013. I’m really becoming a fan of the graphic memoir genre. I thoroughly enjoyed this, even though the translation seemed a little clumsy and the illustrations were awkward in places (I mostly just couldn’t stop rolling my eyes every time a character held up one forefinger in the air while pontificating…

March, by John Robert Lewis

Five stars for the series, read in February 2015 (volume three in 2016 when it was released; review updated in 2017 to add relevant links). This series is a spectacular, detailed personal account of a brilliant period in our recent history. It’s the story of the civil rights movement as seen by Congressman John Lewis,…