Friday, April 28, 2017

Faith: Hollywood and Vine


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Today's post is on Faith: Hollywood and Vine by Jody Houser, Francis Portela, Marguerite Sauvage, and Andrew Dalhouse. It is the first in the Faith comic series. It is 123 pages long and is published by Valiant. The cover is blue with Faith sitting on power lines as she writes on her laptop. The intended reader is someone who likes comic books, interesting heroines, and superhero stories. There is no mild foul language, no sex, and voilence in this book. The story is told from first person close of the main character Faith. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- Valiant's most demanded hero steps out of Harbinger and into an all-new miniseries adventure!
Orphaned at a young age, Faith Herbert - a psionically gifted "psiot" discovered by the Harbinger Foundation - has always aspired to greatness. But now this once ordinary teenager is taking control of her destiny and becoming the hard-hitting hero she's always known she can be - complete with a mild-mannered secret identity, unsuspecting colleagues, and a day job as a reporter that routinely throws into her harms way! Well, at least she thought it would When she's not typing up listicles about cat videos, Faith makes a secret transformation to patrol the night as the City of Angels' own leading superhero - the sky-soaring Zephyr!
But flying solo is going to be tougher than she ever thought when Zephyr uncovers a deep-rooted alien conspiracy. Two-bit burglars and car thieves are one thing, but when the world needs a hero to stave off an full-blown extraterrestrial invasion, will Faith find herself in over her head or ready for her biggest challenge yet?


Review- I had so much fun with this volume. I really like Faith. She is open to the world and she wants to embrace it. Faith has moved from being with a group of superheroes to working mostly on her own. She still has contact with some of her friends but she is pulling all the work herself. She has a secret identity and a normal job. But she does go out and stop the bad things from happening at night. She discovers that people are going missing and they are like her. So off we go with Faith as she uncovers what is going on and tries to keep her life together at the same time. I cannot wait to read the next one.

I give this volume a Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I borrowed this volume from my local library. 

Monday, April 24, 2017

Otomen volume 3


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Today's post is on Otomen volume 3 by Aya Kanno. It is the second in her Otomen series. It is 200 pages long and is publishes by Shojo Beat. You need to have read the first two volumes to understand the story. The cover is light blue with the main and his love interest on it looking at the reader. The intended reader is someone who likes shojo manga, humor, and love stories. There is no foul language, no sex, and very mild violence in this manga. The story is told from third person close of the main character with moments of the other characters added in for plot development. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- Asuka takes Ryo to an amusement park where he plans to confess his feelings to her. Too bad all the rides Ryo wants to go on frighten Asuka! Can he overcome his fear for the sake of love?

Review- We have several stories going on in this volume and they all add to the world/ character building. From Asuka and Ryo working together at a daycare and Asuka dreaming about them being married and parents. We get to go on a date with them and of course everything goes wrong. One is about Juta and Asuka trying to get to know him because all the girls that Juta flirts with think that he has a girlfriend. Juta is protecting his secret about being a manga-ka with Asuka and Ryo as his characters. We find out that Juta is supporting his ten sisters with this writing. And Asuka discovers a friend in the manly world of Kendo, who sees Asuka as his sworn enemy. Asuka is getting more open about his Otomen ways but he still fears letting his mother down. That said I like where the story is going and it so sweet my teeth hurt but I love it!

I give this volume a Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I bought this manga with my own money. 

Friday, April 21, 2017

Ruin and Rising


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Today's post is on Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo. It is the third on her Grisha trilogy. It is 417 pages long and is published by Henry Holt and company. The cover is red with a palace on bottom and a phoenix on top. The intended reader is someone who has read the first two volumes. There is mild foul language, implied sex, and violence in this novel. The story is told from the first person perspective of the main character. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- The capital has fallen.
The Darkling rules Ravka from his shadow throne.
Now the nation's fate rests with a broken Sun Summoner, a disgraced tracker, and the shattered remnants of a once-great magical army.
Deep in an ancient network of tunnels and caverns, a weakened Alina must submit to the dubious protection of the Apparat and the zealots who worship her as a Saint. Yet her plans lie elsewhere, with the hunt for the elusive firebird and the hope that an outlaw prince still survives.
Alina will have to forge new alliances and put aside old rivalries as she and Mal race to find the last of Morozova's amplifiers. But as she begins to unravel the Darkling's secrets, she reveals a past that will forever alter her understanding of the bond they share and the power she wields. The firebird is the one thing that stands between Ravka and destruction—and claiming it could cost Alina the very future she’s fighting for.


Review- This is a very good finish to an excellent trilogy. It looks like Alina and company are in a bad place but Alina has learned very well from the Darkling. She quickly takes control and gets the story back on track. She does worry more about why she wants to get the third amplifer and that does add something to her character. But the real point to me was Alina and Mal choosing each other no matter what the cost. Of course it is not that easy. Everything gets burned to the ground but I was very happy with the ending. I am glad that Bardugo is not done with this world because there is so much that we do not get to see but I will when I read Six of Crows.

I give this volume a Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I borrowed this book from my local library.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Labyrinths: Emma Jung, Her Marriage to Carl, and the Early Years of Psychoanalysis


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Today's nonfiction post is on Labyrinths: Emma Jung, Her Marriage to Carl, and the Early Years of Psychoanalysis by Catrine Clay. It is 394 pages long including notes. The cover is a picture of Emma with Carl only half in it. The intended reader is someone who is interested in Emma Jung and her life. There is no foul language, talk of sex, and no violence in this book.

From the back of the book- A sensational, eye-opening account of Emma Jung’s complex marriage to Carl Gustav Jung and the hitherto unknown role she played in the early years of the psychoanalytic movement.
Clever and ambitious, Emma Jung yearned to study the natural sciences at the University of Zurich. But the strict rules of proper Swiss society at the beginning of the twentieth century dictated that a woman of Emma’s stature—one of the richest heiresses in Switzerland—travel to Paris to "finish" her education, to prepare for marriage to a suitable man.
Engaged to the son of one of her father’s wealthy business colleagues, Emma’s conventional and predictable life was upended when she met Carl Jung. The son of a penniless pastor working as an assistant physician in an insane asylum, Jung dazzled Emma with his intelligence, confidence, and good looks. More important, he offered her freedom from the confines of a traditional haute-bourgeois life. But Emma did not know that Jung’s charisma masked a dark interior—fostered by a strange, isolated childhood and the sexual abuse he’d suffered as a boy—as well as a compulsive philandering that would threaten their marriage.
Using letters, family interviews, and rich, never-before-published archival material, Catrine Clay illuminates the Jungs’ unorthodox marriage and explores how it shaped—and was shaped by—the scandalous new movement of psychoanalysis. Most important, Clay reveals how Carl Jung could never have achieved what he did without Emma supporting him through his private torments. The Emma that emerges in the pages of Labyrinths is a strong, brilliant woman, who, with her husband’s encouragement, becomes a successful analyst in her own right.


Review- When I started reading this book the only thing I knew about Emma Jung was that she was married to Carl but I do not have a good understanding of this complex woman and the driving forces in her life. We follow Emma over the course of her whole life but we spend the most time with her in the years of her marriage to Carl Jung. She was the woman behind the man and Emma did more for Carl than just be a wife, housekeeper, and mother. She was the steady center to his life. But Emma learned from Carl too and she became a talented and knowledgeable analysis herself. Clay does not hold back from the less than wonderful details about their life together. Carl was unstable and that affected Emma but she had to be the strong one and the faithful one. Carl was so busy being Carl Jung that he never really understood what Emma gave him. But in the end Emma found her own way in life and I think that she was happy with her life in the end.

I give this book a Four out of Five stars. I was given this book in exchange for an honest review by Harper Collins.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Otomen volume 2


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Today's post is on Otomen volume 2 by Aya Kanno. It is the second in her Otomen series. It is 192 pages long and is publishes by Shojo Beat. You need to have read the first volume to understand the story. The cover is dark blue with two of the main characters  looking at the reader. The intended reader is someone who likes shojo manga, humor, and love stories. There is no foul language, no sex, and very mild violence in this manga. The story is told from third person close of the main character with moments of the other characters added in for plot development. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- Asuka Masamune is a guy who loves girly things--sewing, knitting, making cute stuffed animals and reading shojo comics. But in a world where boys are expected to act manly, Asuka must hide his beloved hobbies and play the part of a masculine jock instead. Ryo Miyakozuka, on the other hand, is a girl who can't sew or bake a cake to save her life. Asuka finds himself drawn to Ryo, but she likes only the manliest of men! Can Asuka ever show his true self to anyone, much less to the girl that he's falling for?
Asuka's mother shows up with a surprise announcement--it's time for Asuka to meet his fiancée! What kind of girl does she have in mind for him? And how will Ryo respond to the match?

Review- Asuka makes me laugh but he is so sweet.  His romantic fantasies are over-the-top. It is Christmas at the beginning of the volume and he wants to spend Christmas with Ryo. But Ryo never has cerebrated Christmas person before because her family are Buddhist, like most Japanese. But Asuka sees Christmas as a romantic holiday to spend with the person you love. So of course Asuka goes overboard but it is very cute. Asuka's mother comes home to tell him that he has a fiancée and they should just go ahead and get married! But the girl is a little nuts. She discovers Asuka's hobbies and she is willing to use them against him. But Ryo saves him in the end and Asuka has stars in his eyes as she does. But I do have a problems with Asuka's mother. She just wants her son to fit into how she thinks he should be. No matter what pain it causes Asuka, I hope Kanno deals with that. I want Asuka to be able to be himself with everyone.

I give this volume a Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I bought this manga with my own money. 

Friday, April 14, 2017

Tales of the Peculiar by Ransom Riggs


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Today's post is on Tales of the Peculiar by Ransom Riggs. It is 160 pages long and is published by Dutton Books. The cover is green with the title and embellishments are in gold. The intended reader is someone who has read Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children trilogy to really get the stories. There is no foul language, no sex, and very mild violence in this collection.  The stories are told from third person perspective. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- Before Miss Peregrine gave them a home, the story of peculiars was written in the Tales.
Wealthy cannibals who dine on the discarded limbs of peculiars. A fork-tongued princess. The origins of the first ymbryne. These are but a few of the truly brilliant stories in Tales of the Peculiar—known to hide information about the peculiar world—first introduced by Ransom Riggs in his Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children series.
Riggs now invites you to share his secrets of peculiar history, with a collection of original stories, as collected and annotated by Millard Nullings, ward of Miss Peregrine and scholar of all things peculiar.


Review- This is a very fun read for fans of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, like myself. I  enjoyed reading some of the stories that were referenced over the course of the trilogy in full. We get ten stories of some peculiars and the world that they lived in. Riggs takes us through different times in the history of peculiars; from when they lived with normal humans to the making of the first loop for them to hide in. I wish that this collection was longer and had the full stories that we read parts of over the original trilogy. I hope that Riggs does more like this but I would understand if he wants to move on to his next project.

I give this collection a Four of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I borrowed this book from my local library.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

The Secret War: Spies, Codes and Guerrillas 1939-1945


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Today's Nonfiction post is on The Secret War: Spies, Codes and Guerrillas 1939-1945 by Max Hastings. It is 700 pages including notes and is published by Harper Collins. The cover is like folder with a red x in the center. The intended reader is someone who is interested in World War 2 history and spies. There is foul language, talk of sex, and violence in this book. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- Examining the espionage and intelligence stories in World War II, on a global basis, bringing together the British, American, German, Russian and Japanese histories.
There were two Second World Wars: one fought on the battlefields, and another conducted by men and women few of whom ever fired a weapon in anger, but whose efforts vastly influenced the conflict.
‘The Secret War 1939-45’ examines that other war waged by British, American, German, Russian and Japanese intelligence-gathering personnel. Moving chronologically through the conflict, Max Hastings charts the successes and failures of allied and axis forces, espionage and counterespionage.
Observing how the evolution of electronic communications dramatically increased the possibilities and significance of these secret battles, this is the story of intelligence beyond Bletchley to the FBI, Russia and the spies of axis dictatorships. For the first time since his best-selling ‘All Hell Let Loose’, Max Hastings returns to the Second World War, this time to chronicle its second, untold story.


Review- This is a very detailed book about spies and who they worked for from just before the beginning of the Second World War  until the end. But the details are too much and the story gets lost in them. At times the story would come back with interesting characters and background information but then the details would get it bogged down. The notes are excellent resources if you want to do more research on your own but after reading this book I think that I know enough at this time. It was interesting reading about how badly undervalued the intelligence groups were but still they some how managed to work and help with the war effort. There are some great quotes about who to bomb first and how badly everyone worked together. Looking at it now, it is amazing how far we have come in the spy game.

I give this volume a Two out of Five stars. I was given this book by Harper Collins in exchange for an honest review.