My bitesize reviews usually come in chunks of 4 books, but this time you’re getting a bumper edition of 5 books. Why? Well, these were the final 5 books that I read in 2020, so it just seemed nice and neat to finish them off all on one go. Plus, it’s only an extra 1, and it was such a strong end to 2020 for me!
As these were all my final reads of 2020, and y’all know I had a Goodreads goal that I was too stubborn not to meet, these are all graphic novels!
So get ready for some quickfire thoughts on some graphic novels, and of course you can check out my past library of Bitesize Reviews!)
Lumberjanes, Vol. 1: Beware the Kitten Holy -Noelle Stevenson 2.2/5
I guess I just don’t get it. I know this book/series gets raved about but I just didn’t get it. And from an Adventure Time writer? Damn. Disappointed.
I’m really not a fan of the art style, and I don’t really like when the dialogue is in lower case. I prefer all caps – but that’s a personal preference.
But also, I don’t get the characters. I didn’t feel like any of them got their own development or even time to show their personality outside of one overbearing trait.
And the story…what story? Things happened, and there was kinda action? And a few monsters? But…so what? Nothing really mattered or led to much that excited me.
The dialogue had me both inwardly and outwardly cringing. It was painful at times.
I honestly think this would be excellent as an animated show, like Adventure Time is, but I think as a graphic novel it misses the mark.
But this is immensely popular, so what do I know?
Black Widow: Deadly Origin – Paul Cornell 1.2/5
What the fuck happened in this graphic novel? I have NO idea. The timeline was all kinds of all over the place, and don’t get me wrong, that style of storytelling can work in the hands of a skilled writer. Unfortunately, that’s not how I felt with this one.
Couple that with some really overly-busy and messy panels, it just felt like a giant mess.
I had a miserable time reading this. Over-stuffed panels, a messy storyline, poor dialogue, less than liked artwork (my opinion, obviously) and a narrative I cared less and less about with each page turn. It was just all a mess for me. Such a shame cos I was kinda on board for learning more about this character, and I ultimately didn’t care.
Ms. Marvel, Vol. 1: No Normal – G. Willow Wilson 3.5/5
It’s not exactly a secret that I’m DC over Marvel, but I’m not opposed to dipping my toe in the Marvel pool! But this graphic novel is pretty much the reason why I don’t read Marvel too often. It was ok. A 3 star review isn’t a bad thing, not a great thing from me, personally. It’s just OK.
I LOVED the representation, complerly. I’m here for it, and we need more of it. But ultimately I ended up not connected with Kamala too much. I got her struggles with her family, and how awful she was treated at the party, but when it got to the superhero stuff, she lost me. She almost felt whiney and too naive. Like, really girl? Get a grip, c’mon, use your brain a little bit?
But perhaps I’m too old and jaded to ‘get’ the teenage frustrations anymore.
I liked the artwork, when something wasn’t the focus people had a ‘ditto’ face from pokemon that I personally loved because it was hilarious – but I’m not sure that was the intention.
Good story, ok artwork, ok characters. All in all, it was ok.
Vampirella Vol. 1: Crown of Worms – Eric Trautmann 4.2/5
YASS! Omg this is what I’m HERE for! I’ve never read Vampirella before, but heard a lot about her and damn I wish I’d been reading her this entire time!
This was dark, gory, gritty and so very, very noir at times! I was getting some nihilistic, Sin City vibes reading this and I loved it.
Vampirella is sexy in her signature outfit or her leather pants, and every panel was glorious to see.
I know nothing of the lore in Vampirella, and honestly, I didn’t need to going into this volume. They managed to give exposition without ever bashing me over the head with it – I was so grateful for some minor background info that didn’t slow the story down.
As for the story itself, it was quick, but never left me behind and it was definitely interesting.
I’m looking forward to reading more from the Vampirella series.
Blackbird, Vol. 1 – Sam Humphries 4.8/5
OMG I’m so happy that my final book of 2020 was a hit! I ADORED this graphic novel so much, to the point where I’m going to buy a physical copy of it!
Can I first just say that this art: WOW! I want to put this artwork ALL over my walls! It’s exquisite! Everything is beautiful, fierce, raw and yet polished in an effortless way!
The story: ok, perhaps at times it’s a *touch* confusing or maybe a lil bit repetitive in a minor amount, but for me personally, it didn’t detract from the story. But I do hope that plot points are a touch more concise in Volume 2.
I’m all about stories that involve magic in any way, shape or form and I really thought I’d read pretty much every skeleton type of magic story, but then Blackbird Vol. 1 came along and BOOM! It gave me something new!
I’m already waiting for Volume 2 with bated breath!
I need to know what happens to these characters, I need to unravel the mysteries! Oh man, not since Sunstone have I wanted the next volume so badly!
And we have reached the end of another batch of bitesize reviews! I hope you enjoyed them and if you’re after more mini reviews feel free to check out others I’ve done!
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