Aggretsuko, the hit Netflix show in production for season three, stars Retsuko the Red Panda, a young office worker stuck in a thankless job, whose only stress release is singing death metal at the local karaoke joint. With the help of her friends, can she ever find the job satisfaction she craves – – not to mention adventure, the approval of her mother, and even… love?! These comics explore all these issues and more, brought to life by today’s top talent!
Rating: 4 out of 5.
I haven’t yet watched the anime of Aggretsuko, but I’ve heard a ton about it and have wanted to check it out. When I saw there was going to be a comics series featuring her and her fellow characters, I had to pick it up. The art style perfectly matched what I have seen of the characters and anime and Retsuko was a great character to follow. Her bouts of using karaoke to blow off steam was hilarious and relatable at the same time. If you’re a fan of the anime or if you just want to get acquainted with the characters and feel it out, check out this one!
Collecting the first four issues of Natalie Riess’s delectable series, SPACE BATTLE LUNCHTIME! Earth baker Peony gets the deal of a lifetime when she agrees to be a contestant on the Universe’s hottest reality TV show, Space Battle Lunchtime! But that was before she knew that it shoots on location… on a spaceship… and her alien competitors don’t play nice! Does Peony really have what it takes to be the best cook in the Galaxy? Tune in and find out!
Rating: 4 out of 5.
I heard about this one ages ago and wanted to pick it up, so I was excited when I saw it making the rounds and had to pick it up. In it we follow Peony, who is suddenly whisked away from Earth to join an intergalactic cooking competition (similar to Chopped). She’s met by all types of creatures from different worlds, some who are ambivalent or nice, and some who aren’t so nice.
The art style is quirky, and every character is unique. It was a thoroughly enjoyable journey as we watch them all compete. There’s definitely the starting of more underhanded happenings that are hinted at, and the cliffhanger at the end makes me want to pick up the sequel.
An entertaining mix of biography, imagery, and humor written in a fresh, young, and riotous voice, this thoroughly researched exploration salutes these awesome women drawn from both historical and fantastical realms, including real life, literature, mythology, and folklore. Each profile features an eye-catching image of both heroic and villainous women in command from across history and around the world, from a princess-cum-pirate in fifth century Denmark, to a rebel preacher in 1630s Boston, to a bloodthirsty Hungarian countess, and a former prostitute who commanded a fleet of more than 70,000 men on China’s seas.
Rating: 4 out of 5.
I really enjoy the trend of books coming out that specifically calls out extraordinary women, or women who took charge of their lives in a time that they were not expected to. This was the first of those books I had seen, so I was excited when I received it as a gift. It’s the perfect type of book to pick up and read a story here or there, which is how I read most of it.
I really appreciate the fact that each story comes with content warnings which are explained at the beginning of the book. Not only specific warnings of types of content, but each story has a maturity level. This is great if you might be sharing some of the stories with children.
Also of note are the footnotes, some of which are serious and a good info dump and some of which are hilarious. I really felt this collection was a great introduction to some rebellious women in the past and the author’s writing style perfectly fit the stories he was telling.
The Ice in Our Hearts BC Powell
Publication date: August 20th 2020
Genres: Romance, Sports, Young Adult
Bryce is a snowboarding sensation, a cocky teenager from California with a giant chip on his shoulder called Type 1 diabetes. He competes because he has something to prove.
Daria is a rising star in figure skating, a withdrawn teen from Russia with a tragic past. She competes to provide her family with a better life.
Primed to overthrow archrivals who dominate their sports, they’re both headed to the Winter Olympics. But soon after arriving at the Games, a flurry of ill-timed setbacks threatens to shatter their dreams.
When two teens from halfway around the world meet, they discover an unlikely but undeniable connection. As they gear up for their final shots at medals, they help each other realize the greatest barrier to the top of the podium might be hiding inside their minds.
Take a breathtaking ride with Bryce and Daria as they find true understanding, try to overcome the bitterness of their pasts, and share a romance more meaningful than winning gold.
Written by the parent of a child with Type 1 diabetes.
I really enjoyed this story about two teens from different sides of the world coming together and falling in love, but I also really enjoyed that the story wasn’t as simple as that. Both of them had their own struggles and worries that they were living with and working through and because of that, while they had similar goals they had different motivations. It was great to see the differences in their personalities work together.
Also, it’s really obvious that this book is incredibly well researched and thoughtfully put together. There were points that perhaps people not versed in certain topics may struggle with, but overall it was really well done.
BC Powell is a fantasy author from Los Angeles, CA. Described as “a stunning fantasy adventure,” “incredibly original,” and “a wild ride,” his debut science fiction fantasy novel “Krymzyn” was published in October, 2014. “The Infinite Expanse”, the highly anticipated second book in “The Journals of Krymzyn” series, was released in March, 2015.
Powell has a diverse background, having held several creative positions in the entertainment industry, including an executive role at ABC-TV, but writing fiction has been his lifelong passion. “The Journals of Krymzyn” represents, in his words, “finally finding the amazing story I want to tell with characters who are able to bring the story to life.”
He dual majored in journalism and philosophy at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. When he’s not writing, he can often be found hiking the hills of Southern California, daydreaming on the beach, or ocean kayaking. He credits his three sons, two currently in college and one in high school, as his inspiration for writing in the new adult genre.
USA TODAY bestselling author Delores Fossen does it again, with a romantic suspense book that forces a US Marshal to confront his past—and the woman who might hold all the answers…
Can he help her recover her memory before they are both killed?
The only person who knows who killed Marshal Jack Slater’s father is Caroline Moser. But the Texas profiler has no memory of the murder, her abduction…or Jack. And her witness-protection safe house has just been compromised. Now in Jack’s protective custody, Caroline must trust her ex to help her recall her past before a murderer steals their future.
I haven’t read any of the previous installments in this series, but after reading this you can definitely pick it up without having read them – but I feel like some of the continuing storylines and character connections would have more depth had I picked up the others first.
The story itself is action packed and very fast paced, I definitely flew through this story. I really enjoyed Jack’s character, but sometimes wasn’t always loving Caroline – though some of the things I didn’t like could definitely be explained with her traumatic experiences and injuries which happened before the book started. It did grate on me a bit that her panic attacks were talked about so much, but I never saw one happen in the book.
All in all this was a great read that I thoroughly enjoyed, and I may at some point go back to read the others so I can better understand all the back story.
USA Today bestselling author, Delores Fossen, has sold over 70 novels with millions of copies of her books in print worldwide. She’s received the Booksellers’ Best Award, the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award and was a finalist for the prestigious Rita ®. In addition, she’s had nearly a hundred short stories and articles published in national magazines. You can contact the author through her webpage at http://www.deloresfossen.com
Siblings Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert were planning to adopt an orphaned boy to help out around their farm, Green Gables – instead, they got Anne Shirley. A plucky redheaded girl with a vibrant imagination, Anne turns first Green Gables and then the rest of Prince Edward Island on its ear.
Manga Classics® is proud to be the only authorized manga adaption of Anne of Green Gables by the Heirs of L.M. Montgomery, with a foreword by Kate McDonald Butler – granddaughter of the original author!
This volume presents a faithful recreation of this classic kids novel, from the Lake of Shining Waters to the Dryad’s Bubble!
Rating: 4 out of 5.
I love Anne of Green Gables, it’s something I was introduced to as a child and always has that nostalgic feeling to it. I really enjoyed this retelling of it as it condensed down a lot of the key scenes and themes of the original story. The art style perfectly captured Anne and the other characters, with everyone being unique and recognizable. Sometimes these manga re-imaginings don’t lend themselves as well to classics, but this one fit perfectly.
The Line Tender meets The Secret Horses of Briar Hill in this hopeful, heartfelt story about one girl’s search for legendary horses and her quest to piece her family back together.
Twelve-year-old Claire Barton doesn’t like the “flutter feeling” that fills her chest when she worries about the future, but she knows what she loves: the land that’s been in her family for three generations; her best friend Maya; her family’s horses, Sunny and Sam; and her older brother Andy. That’s why, with Andy recently sent to rehab after a DUI, and her parents planning to sell the horses, Claire’s world feels like it might flutter to pieces.
When Claire learns about equine therapy, she imagines a less lonely future that keeps her family together, brother and horses included. But, when she finds mysterious wild horses in the woods behind her house, she realizes she has a bitmore company than she bargained for. With this new secret-and a little bit of luck-Claire will discover the beauty of change, the power of family, and the strength within herself.
I did not expect to love this book as much as I did, but it thoroughly hit me in the feels. I really enjoyed Claire as a character as she was navigating through dealing with her brother being in rehab for his addiction to pain pills, dealing with anxiety and in general figuring out who she was independently from her brother (or anyone else). I was really in love with how the feeling of anxiety was described throughout the book, Claire likening it to feeling like birds fluttering around her and inside her – though it wasn’t immediately called anxiety, I knew exactly what that feeling was.
I also really enjoyed Claire’s journey to discovering what she was seeing when she went into the forest and the unwinding mystery that occurred. Claire was really on a journey to find herself and figure out who she wanted to be – as well as come to terms with the truths surrounding her brother’s addiction.
I would definitely say there are trigger warnings for anxiety and addiction (and what happens to the loved ones of addicts). I won’t lie, I lost my older brother due to a drug related death – so there were parts of this story that hit me between the eyes, especially when Claire was inside her own thoughts, Baughman definitely rings true with the internal conflicts she gave Claire and her family as they tried to navigate their new normal. All in all I absolutely loved this book and Claire’s overall journey.
I also created a playlist of songs that spoke to me regarding some of the feelings in the book, you can access it on Spotify, but I’ve also included the list of songs below.
Wild Horses by The Sundays
GET UP by Shinedown
Waving Through a Window (Dear Evan Hansen)
Second Change by Shinedown
Lithium by Evanescence
Serenade by Jim Brickman
Sarah R. Baughman is an author whose debut middle grade novel, THE LIGHT IN THE LAKE, is forthcoming from Little, Brown Books For Young Readers in 2019. A former middle and high school English teacher currently working as an educational consultant, Sarah graduated from Grinnell College and the University of Michigan, where she studied English, German, and Education. Sarah is represented by Katie Grimm at Don Congdon Associates. When she’s not writing, she’s probably reading, running, or getting outdoors with her family.
When I heard that there was a graphic novel series which was a prequel to Labyrinth, and specifically was the story of how Jareth became the Goblin King – I had to read it. So I started picking up the individual issues through on my Kindle and reading through them that way.
Regarding the series as a whole, I really enjoyed it. It was told in two timelines, one being following Maria as she tried to save her baby who had been stolen, and the other following Jareth’s perspective while Sarah was making her way through the labyrinth to save Toby. It was really interesting seeing the two storylines and their similarities, as well as which characters were present in both timelines.
The art style was amazing and perfectly fit the Labyrinth aesthetic created by Jim Henson all those years ago. If I had to give the story a star rating overall, I would probably go with a strong four stars, but my breakdown by issue is below.
There were definitely parts of the series that I didn’t love, but I would definitely recommend any Labyrinth fan picking this up as it is a solid prequel and does help to fill in some holes here and there.
Mean Girls meets Siobhan Vivian’s The List in THESE VENGEFUL HEARTS, an utterly addictive standalone YA debut that follows 16-year-old Ember Williams as she seeks revenge against the Red Court, a secret organization of Heller High’s most elite female students that specializes in granting and requesting favors—and which is responsible for the accident that left her older sister paralyzed.
A thrilling novel about a secret society and the dangers that lie in wait for anyone brave enough to join—perfect for fans of Karen M. McManus, Kara Thomas, and Maureen Johnson.
Whenever something scandalous happens at Heller High, the Red Court is the name on everyone’s lips. Its members deal out social ruin and favors in equal measure, their true identities known only by their leader: the Queen of Hearts.
Ember Williams has seen firsthand the damage the Red Court can do. Now, she’s determined to hold the organization accountable by taking it down from the inside. But will the cost of revenge be more than she’s willing to sacrifice?
I was really excited to get into this one since I really enjoy stories that include secret societies and someone infiltrating those secret societies for revenge? Sign me up. I did enjoy the read and it’s twists and turns, but some of the twists were a bit predictable to me. To me Ember was a bit unlikable, especially with her waffling back and forth. I understand the conflict the author was trying to inject into the story, but did feel it could have been fleshed out more to really give it the impact it could have had.
I did enjoy some of the side characters and if you’re looking for something very Mean Girls-esque, this will certainly fit the bill. It was an enjoyable read and I am interested to see more from this author as she further refines her writing.
Katherine Laurin lives in Colorado with her husband, two sons, and tiny dog. When she’s not writing, Katherine enjoys reading, traveling, hiking, and listening to true crime podcasts. These Vengeful Hearts is her first young adult novel.
Collecting every (terrible) Grumpy Cat comic book story ever — in one giant (overhyped) comics collection!
The World’s Grumpiest Cat — and the world’s most adorable internet sensation — continues to delight fans of all ages. With her ever-present pout and sassy disposition, Grumpy Cat has won the hearts of people everywhere. Now, her unbearable cuteness and infectious sourpuss are featured in a collection of comic stories. If you love the memes, the videos, and that irresistible scowl, then get ready for the wildly fun antics of Grumpy Cat. Her comic book escapades are guaranteed to make you smile… even if she’s scowling!
Rating: 4 out of 5.
I had no idea that there were Grumpy Cat comics, so when I saw this on NetGalley I had to pick it up. In the comics we follow Grumpy Cat of course, but also her brother Pokey and their friends. It has a lot of great humorous references and the opposite personalities of Grumpy verses Pokey makes for fun romps that Grumpy refuses to enjoy. It was a really fun read and great for fans of not only Grumpy cat, but cats in general.