Staying at home is the norm... What are you reading?

Johnny Novgorod

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In an effort to meet my Goodreads pledge this year I picked up all the crap I could read in like an afternoon.

Snotgirl, by Scott Pilgrim.
Your Black Friend, by SanFran.
Courage Calls to Courage Everywhere, by Jeanette Winterson.
The Rogue Prince, by GRRMHTTP.
Batman 516-517, by the people who write Batman.
Dirty Beasts, by Roald Dahl and Quentin Blake.

Happy New Year!
 

Drathnoxis

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I read the entire Haruhi Suzumiya series of light novels. I liked them well enough, they were pretty light, feel good books. Endless Eight in particular was miles ahead of the anime adaptation on the basis that I only had to read it once and not eight times. The series does suffer from a few problems, especially in the later books.

The characters are mostly static and undeveloped. Asahina, Koizumi, and Nagato are essentially the same as they were in their very first introduction and are not particularly deep characters despite being part of the main 5.

Kyon has a tendency in the later books to go on for pages about how "this is a problem for the normal humans of Earth, an he needs to be the one to solve it on his own" despite the fact that he can't do anything and has no plan, and in fact doesn't really do much of anything to resolve it anyway. It gets pretty annoying.

Absolutely no development on the romance plot between Kyon and Haruhi. The series is constantly teasing this, every character, all the time, from the beginning of the series, but we never get any payoff. After 11 or 12 books it just gets tedious. JUST GET ON WITH IT ALREADY!

The last book (written around 10 years after the previous book) is a total snoozefest. It's so weird, it doesn't even feel like a Haruhi novel. Like most of the characters are barely present in the text and the majority is spent discussing mystery novel tropes and analyzing a fabricated story written by an ancillary character. Also there's one moment where Koizumi and Haruhi instantly agree that "motives don't matter" which is a very odd perspective. I liked all the other novels, but this one I was wishing it was over before I was half way through.
 

Hawki

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Star Wars: Doctor Aphra - War of the Bounty Hunters (3/5)

I didn't think as highly of this as the other Doctor Aphra graphic novel that I read, but to be fair, I don't think that's entirely this installment's fault. Not only does it seem to be further along in an overall storyline, but it also seems to be part of a titular "War of the Bounty Hunters" crossover/mega series or something. Don't know, but even that aside, this was decent.

The TL, DR version is that Doctor Aphra and Starra Santos (sp?) go on an information retrieval mission as the carbonite-frozen body of Han is auctioned off. Which is weird, because I thought that Boba Fett was taking Han straight to Jabba after Empire, but meh, maybe the comic series covers it. There's revelations aplenty, with do-overs, backstabbing, and a much older Qi'ra, who doesn't seem to care that her former boyfriend is frozen.

Anyway, like I said, probably missing out on a load of context here. But as it was, perfectly serviceable, had fun reading it.

Kirby Manga Mania: Volume 1 (2/5)

I really didn't like this graphic novel. It said clearly on the spine "JG" (junior graphic), so I wasn't expecting Shakespeare, but by God, I was expecting something better than this drek.

Okay, let's wind up. I should specify that I know little about Kirby, have never played a Kirby game, or consumed anything involving Kirby at all outside Smash Bros., so arguably I was going into this at a disadvantage. But even so, as a collection of short stories, this can be summed up as:

1: Someone (usually Kirby) is an idiot.
2: Someone (usually Dedede) suffers from said idiocy
3: Laugh at this, you sheep!

And so on, and so forth. The only reason this isn't a 1/5 is because some stories towards the end are a bit more creative, but "a bit" is the key pair of words. Maybe Kirby fans will get something out of this, but I didn't.
 

lostinreality

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I finally got my hands on "God's crooked lines: The search for truth", by James F. Donelan. Started reading a few days ago, love it so far.
 

Drathnoxis

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Started reading the Soul Eater manga, because the anime ended so terribly and apparently the manga is better. Man is the author horny, though. I mean, the anime was pretty horny but the manga is so bad I'm a little uncomfortable reading it at work because if anybody saw the screen on the wrong page they would assume I'm looking at porn. Like, it's barbie doll porn where they don't have nipples (as long as they aren't wearing a shirt) or genitals, but still. Also in the anime Maka has a gravity defying skirt, in the manga she just has a regular skirt (and plain panties).
 

Hawki

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Star Wars: Mutiny at Mon Cala (4/5)

Not much to say - graphic novel collection, deals with the OT trio and associated characters performing a rescue op on Mon Cala in order to rescue the mon calamari king, so the Rebels can gain the mon calamari fleet (takes place 1 year after the Battle of Yavin). Not much to say, but it's a fun read.
 

Hawki

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Witches Abroad (3/5)

At this point, it's fair to say that Discowrld just isn't my thing. Not from lack of trying, mind you, but, well, meh.

Anyway, the novel takes place in the Witches sub-series, and is basically a parody of travel stories (witches travel across the Disc and make asses of themselves), and fairy tales. Which would be fine, if not for the fact that parodying fairy tale tropes is low hanging fruit, and that the novel doesn't do anything particuarly, um, novel with the concept. Also, the humour in the book is front-loaded, and is flung at the reader without much respite.

Overall, meh. Rankings currently stand as follows:

4) The Colour of Magic

3) Witches Abroad

2) Ms. Bradshaw’s Handbook

1) Wintersmith

Guardians of the Galaxy (3/5)

To be clear, this is a collection of GotG issues (1-12) from the 2008 comic series. Even then, it's clear that this is part of larger continuity, though I could generally work out what was happening. Anyway, it's pulp action schlock - fun in some areas, banal in others.
 

Hawki

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Marvel-Verse: Shang-Chi (3/5)

This is a collection of five Marvel comics featuring Shang-Chi. I say "feature," not "star," because he only stars in 2 of them. The other 3 are ones where he's an ancillilary character in a Wolverine story and two Spider-Man stories. That's, um...something. 0_0

This is a chicken and egg scenario, but I'll just say it, at least in the context of these stories, Shang-Chi is boring. His character is "East Asian martial arts expert," with nothing beyond that. It's outright bizzare that in this graphic novel, a new reader would learn more about the backstories of Wolverine and Peter Parker than Shang Chi himself, which indicates that either the editors had no confidence in the character, or alternatively, there's no interesting backstory to draw from. I can't answer that question, but, um yeah.

Anyway, it's fine, I guess, but it's weird in what it does, and doesn't focus on.
 

Hawki

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Read some stuff:

Dark Knights of Steel: Volume 1 (3/5)

Avatar: The Legend of Korra – Patterns in Time (3/5)

Avatar: The High Ground – Volume 2 (3/5)

Avatar: The High Ground – Volume 3 (3/5)

Star Wars: A New Dawn (2/5)

Star Wars: The High Republic – Tempest Runner (3/5)

League of Legends: Ruination (4/5)
 

Absent

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The boring one
A graphic novel biography of french poet, screenwriter and dreamer Jacques Prevert. Cannot be told without little windows on other artists of that era (Breton, Tanguy, etc), who crossed his path. A marvellous example of a life lived with (and despite) the correct outlook. Makes you wonder how many forever unknown "preverts" have drowned in society without having benefited from similar luck, friends and also talent. Still, Prevert (his works, his life and persona) is always a breath of fresh air. His verses, sometimes merry, sometimes gloomy, always playful, are reliably soothing. But I'd go as far as saying that his uncompromising life trajectory and his recognition avenge a lot of people. Prevert existed, therefore Prevert is possible. Or has been.
 

Hawki

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Mort (4/5)

So, this novel was pretty neat. Not the first Discworld novel I've read, but the best, and the only one so far I've fully enjoyed. Well, almost fully - the ending's a copout - but everything up to that point is pretty neat.

Basically, Death takes an apprentice, Mortimer (or Mort), and then has Mort fill in for him as Death takes a sabattical. Mort saves someone who was meant to die, cue disruptions to the timeline, whacky hyjinx ensue. That's selling the book short, and I found myself sniggering throughout it, but, yeah. Pretty good read.

Anyway, current Discworld ratings are below:

5) The Colour of Magic

4) Witches Abroad

3) Ms. Bradshaw’s Handbook

2) Wintersmith

1) Mort
 
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