Top 5 Wednesday is a great feature created by GingerReadsLainey and hosted by ThoughtsonTomes. To find out more about Top 5 Wednesday and the upcoming topics, check out its Goodreads page. This week it’s all about your favourite non-traditional written books, so graphic novels, comics, manga, audiobooks and so on and so forth. So, this week I’m writing about my favourite graphic novels/trade paper backs (because I don’t live near a comic store so it’s easier to read the volumes) and by pure chance they are all from different publishers. In no particular order they are…
March by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin and Nate Powell
This graphic novel trilogy was pretty much the first thing I read this year and it’s my new favourite thing ever. It’s all about the Civil Rights Movement in America and it’s told through John Lewis’s eyes, what protests he was involved in, who he knew and all the hardships and successes. It is such a powerful and important graphic novel series, the sort of thing everyone should read.
Five Ghosts by Frank J. Barbiere and Chris Mooneyham Five Ghosts has a very Indiana Jones feel, especially as the main character is an archaeologist who searches for weird mystical artefacts. Oh, and he also happens to have a stone stuck in his chest that gives him the power of five different ghosts. The thing about Five Ghosts I really love is the art style, it’s like those old pulp fiction stories and it can be creepy and dynamic, especially when the ghosts make an appearance.
Top 5 Wednesday is a great feature created by GingerReadsLainey and hosted by ThoughtsonTomes. To find out more about Top 5 Wednesday and the upcoming topics, check out its Goodreads page. This week, in honour of autumn TV it’s all about those books we’d love to see adapted for TV. Here’s the five books I think would make great TV shows.
Five Ghosts by Frank J. Barbiere and Chris Mooneyham
This is a comic series about an adventurer kind of like Indiana Jones but he has this stone embedded in his chest which grants him the powers of five ghosts, or rather the ghosts take over when he needs it most. It’s very pulp-fictiony and would make a great adventure TV show because it’s full of supernatural elements, archaeology and bad guys.
Sabriel by Garth Nix
The Old Kingdom series would make such a good TV series! It’s all about a young girl who inherits her father’s legacy of sending the dead back where they came from. It’s magical and creepy and set in a different world to ours. It’s a rich world so having it as a TV show would be a lot better than a film.
The Passage by Justin Cronin
This would be a great TV Show for fans of The Walking Dead and The Strain. Most of the story is set in a post-apocalyptic future where a disease has pretty much wiped out everyone and those who are left have to struggle to survive against creatures that are pretty much vampires. The interesting thing about The Passage is that because it’s set a good 100 years after the breakout of the virus, the characters don’t know what life was like before, there’s no nostalgia just a sense of getting on with life the best they can.
Emancipated by M.G. Reyes
This would be a show would be full of the usual high school tropes because it’s a bunch of teenagers living together but also have an air of mystery as to why some of them have been emancipated and there’d be secrets and lies to uncover.
Geezer Girls by Dreda Say Mitchell
A crime TV show about some women who were once under the control of a London gangster but now try to live their own lives until that gangster comes back onto the scene? Sign me up! It’s good to see women be bad or morally ambiguous, who will do bad things to protect those they care about plus there’s the family of choice trope.
Top Ten Tuesday is a feature run by BrokeAndBookish each week. This week it’s all about underrated books and to be more subjective about it, I’m gonna see what’s underrated by having them be under 2,000 ratings on Goodreads. For those interested my Goodreads is here and I’m finally getting the hang of updating it! So without further ado, here are some underappreciated books I think you should read!
Techbitch by Lucy Sykes and Jo Piazza (51 ratings on Goodreads)
This book is some great chick-lit that doesn’t go for all the tropes you might expect it to. It’s about a woman coming back to work at a major fashion magazine to find her former assistant has been filling her roll and the whole magazine is going to become a digital one. It’s a great culture clash of ideas about PR and how magazines should be and it’s a lot of fun. My review is here.
Emancipated by M.G. Reyes (524 ratings on Goodreads)
Admittedly I hadn’t heard of this book till fairly recently but I really enjoyed it. It’s a contemporary YA about a house full of teenagers who have been emancipated from their parents or guardians for various reasons and they all have their own secrets and problems. It’s an addictive read. My review is here.
Rocket Girl Vol. 1: Times Squared by Brandon Montclare and Amy Reeder (913 ratings on Goodreads)
This comic is so fun and very feminist. DaYoung is a teenage cop from the future is sent back to 1986 to stop scientist creating a machine that will destroy the future. The art is brilliant; it really feels like DaYoung is flying through the pages (yeah she can fly because of her future tech) and while the 1980s setting is a lot of fun there is still a mystery to solve. My review is here. (more…)
Top Ten Tuesday is a feature run by BrokeAndBookish each week – I’m thinking I might not take part every week but just see if a week takes my fancy. Where has this year gone?! As we’ve only got a few weeks left, here’s the ten books I’ve loved the most this year. In June I talked about my favourite books I’d read so far this year so if you want to know about some other awesome books and to see which ones made both lists shimmy over here.
For once I’ve put these in order, going from ten to my number one book of the year.
10. The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
I love me some thrillers with unreliable narrators and The Girl on the Train certainly has that! I loved how Rachel wasn’t reliable or even likable a lot of the time and it was one of those mysteries that left me guessing till the gripping finale.
9. Fear and Loathing in La Liga: Barcelona vs Real Madrid by Sid Lowe
Barcelona and Real Madrid’s rivalry is legendary and Fear and Loathing in La Liga delves deep into both clubs history and looks at Spain’s history too. This was a fascinating read, it was sometimes a bit dense and a little dull when it was talking about players I didn’t know about but on the whole it was great read.
8. A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness
I thought A Monster Calls was just a children’s book and I was so wrong! Yes it has illustrations and is about a young boy but it deals with grief and death and abandonment so well. It really makes you think and the beautiful passages go so well with the often scary drawings.
Fabian Grey has the power of five ghosts thanks to the Dreamstone. He can use the powers of an archer, a wizard, a detective, a samurai and the one he fears using the most, a vampire. Fabian must come to terms with his powers as he tracks down his kidnapped friend Sebastian. Along the way he discovers monsters and a tentative ally in the form of Van Helsing.
I love this comic series a ridiculous amount. The premise is amazing – Fabian Grey is like Indiana Jones with superpowers – and the art is very pulp-fictiony and the colour tones used add to the creepiness.
Fabian travels to Romania to find Sebastian and there he finds a town plagued by a sickness and some strange monsters. Once again, Five Ghosts doesn’t hold back on the violence. The battles are brutal and the monsters are really quite disgusting and scary. Also with Sebastian’s kidnap you learn more about secret organisations and about the Dreamstone and its powers.
Fabian’s reluctance to let the vampire ghost take control was explored really well and the way he can now sort of communicate with the ghosts that possess him was interesting.
Van Helsing was a great edition to the world and the sepia toned panels that showed his backstory were great. He and Fabian work well together but don’t always see eye to eye – I’d love to see him team up with Fabian again.
Five Ghosts is one of my favourite comic series and with Monsters & Men it continues being great with even more mystery and action. 5/5.
Top Ten Tuesday is a feature run by BrokeAndBookish each week – I’m thinking I might not take part every week but just see if a week takes my fancy. This week is about the books that I think would make good films or TV Shows – Ii chose some because they’re my favourites and some because I think the world is so rich that it would make a great screen adaptation.
Five Ghosts by Frank J. Barbiere and Chris Mooneyham Five Ghosts would make an excellent adventure film like Indiana Jones but with some supernatural elements. I did hear there might be a TV show made out of Five Ghosts which would be equally awesome.
The Twelve by Justin Cronin The Twelve is about a vampire-filled apocalypse. It would make a great TV show but I think The Walking Dead has filled the post-apocalyptic world filled with monsters quota for media. (more…)
I’ve been reading a lot of comics this year so thought I’d do a five mini reviews of some of the series that I’ve read so far. Some of these reviews are for individual volumes and others are for a complete story arc.
Young Avengers – Kieron Gillen & Jamie McKelvie
Like with most Marvel/DC comics there have been numerous incarnations of different characters and teams. This run of Young Avengers is the most recent and the team consists of Hawkeye (Kate Bishop), Wiccan (Billy Kaplan), Hulkling (Teddy Altman), Kid Loki, Marvel Boy (Noh-Varr) and Miss America (America Chavez). I love every member of this team and the writers do a great job of introducing each character to readers who may know nothing about them or their powers without too much needless exposition. I only knew Kate Bishop from Matt Fraction’s Hawkeye series so I was new to all the other characters but soon figured it out.
The main “big bad” is the Mother who can bring the Young Avengers dead parents back to life, though they are not how they remember. Besides all the action stuff, at the heart of Young Avengers is the relationships between the characters. Wiccan and Hulkling are in a relationship that has its rocky moments and then they are a group of teenagers that are often reluctant friends – especially with Loki as no one really knows how much they can trust him. Young Avengers is really funny and the art is gorgeous – the story goes across three volumes and it really is a lot of fun. 5/5
Five Ghosts Vol.1: The Haunting of Fabian Gray – Frank J. Barbiere and Chris Mooneyham Five Ghosts is very Inidana Jones-like and it is awesome. Fabain Gray is a treasure hunter who after having an encounter with an artefact called “The Dreamstone” is possessed by five literary ghosts and granted access to their unique abilities. Those five ghosts unnamed but it can be guessed that the archer is Robin Hood, the wizard is Merlin, the detective is Sherlock Holmes, the samurai is Musashi, and the vampire is Dracula.
There’s a mystery surrounding the Dreamstone as Fabian tries to work out how to use these ghosts powers while continuing to be an infamous treasurer hunter and also trying to help his sister. The art is gorgeous and more realistic than some of the superhero stuff I’ve read, and it’s reads like an action-adventure film as Fabian travels to deserted temples and jungles. It’s a very cool book. 4/5.