Ginny Lurcock’s Comic Round-up: Volume 1, Issue 3

I read a lot of comics. A lot. Of comics. Always have and probably always will. And while comics are still snubbed, they’re gaining ground fast. Or maybe I’m just hanging around with a better group of people…

Either way, most comics no longer fall into the category of pearl-clutching. I still want to review them, though. To share my love (or hatred or head-scratching or…) with you. So every other month I’ll be posting a round up of the comics I’ve read. Rated from least favorite to most favorite. Basically. It usually gets a little vague in the middle.

The saucy comics will continue to get their own reviews. Or a separate round-up. Who knows, I’m flying by the seat of my pants here…

So without further adieu…

Ginny Lurcock’s Comic Round-up (Volume 1, Issue 3)


Medisin: First Do No Harm by Jeff Dyer, Mark McKeon, David Brame (Contributor), Joaquin Pereyra (Contributor)

Synopsis: Health care for super villains! Criminal mastermind Malady has recruited a team of down on their luck physicians to provide medical aid for the world’s worst bad guys. Led by brilliant Ethan Sharp, the blackmailed doctors struggle to uphold their own ethical codes (or lack thereof) in violent and confusing battlefields

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 97 pages
Publication Date: July 25th, 2017
Genre: Super Hero
Content Level: Adult
Trigger Warnings: All.Of.Them (child abuse, rape, misogyny, phobias, isms, etc.)
Featuring: the worst characters. Ever.
Rating: this was trash

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: Well this entire thing was basically disgusting. Racial slurs, sexism, homophobia, ableism, misogyny, and shitty art to boot. They took an interesting concept and turned out a real shit show.

I’ve got to go vomit before I read anything else.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


Harley Quinn’s Little Black Book

Synopsis: It’s the sensational debut of a massive team-up series in which Harley meets (and almost certainly annoys) the greatest heroes and villains of the DC Universe! Harley is pairing up with the greatest heroes of all time, featuring adventures with Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, and more! But can she keep up with superheroes of this caliber?

Celebrated Harley co-writers Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti take on this monumental series, spinning off of the best-selling HARLEY QUINN series. Collects HARLEY’S LITTLE BLACK BOOK #1-6.

Meta Details and Rating:
No. you fucked up Harley Quinn. You don’t get meta details

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: Harley Quinn is my fave. A bisexual with mental health problems, she was the first time I saw myself on TV. The episode of Batman where she just wanted to buy a new dress… I still get choked up over it.

So to see her turned into a constant punchline slash masturbatory fantasy…

I’m crushed. You’ve crushed me. Hope you’re happy.

(You probably want more of a review than that, so lemme give you a quick and dirty run down. The art is pretty solid, especially the cover art for each volume. The little doodles Harley does on the pictures? Love them. That being said, we had Wonder Woman naked, we had two bros discussing boning aliens, we had Hal Jordan fucking his Russian counterpart, we had… so much misogynistic trite bullshit that I realized Harley is a joke to these writers. They took a complex character I adore and made her a joke. So again, I’m wrecked. I need time to recover from this bullshit.)

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


The Hellblazer, Volume 1: The Poison Truth (The Hellblazer: Rebirth #1) by Simon Oliver (Writer), Moritat (Artist), Andre Szymanowicz (Colourist), Sal Capriano (Letterer)

Synopsis: John Constantine, the hard-hearted Hellblazer returns home to London to face an impossible choice: live an immortal life bonded to a demonic curse, or shift that curse to eight million people–killing each and every one of them! What to do, what to do…

The Hellblazer is back in the first volume of the continued story of one of DC’s most iconic and long-lasting characters by writer Simon Oliver (FBP) with art by Moriat (The Spirit).

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 168 pages
Publication Date: May 9, 2017
Genre: Fantasy, Super Hero
Content Level: Adult
Featuring: Naked Constantine being a dick
Rating: *raspberry*

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: My knowledge of Hellblazer comes exclusively from the movie featuring Keanu Reeves and the fact that my husband likes the character, so I was amped to get a comic of his reboot.

Until I opened it.

Starting out, it felt kind of lackluster. Instead of a loveable rogue, we get a guy who was willing to maybe kill eight million people all for warm beer and good Indian food. Or was he?

oooooo…. edgy…

In the end, I couldn’t finish it. The art wasn’t linear, characters changed by the panel. Naked Constantine reminded me of my grandfather when he was dying of cancer, invoking feelings. The only thing I liked was the hints of Swamp Thing and Mercury…

But in the end, even that worked against it, because I would’ve rather had a whole comic exploring that than what I got…

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


DC Super Hero Girls: Vol 3, Summer Olympus (DC Super Hero Girls Graphic Novels #3)
by Shea Fontana, Yancey Labat (Illustrations)

Synopsis: Welcome back to DC Super Hero High!

In the newest original graphic novel from the DC Super Hero Girls line, catch up with the students of Super Hero High School as they find out that fun, friendship and hard work are all parts of growing up! DC SUPER HERO GIRLS VOL. 3 continues to develop the relationships forged in DC SUPER HERO GIRLS: FINALS CRISIS and HITS AND MYTHS. Written by Shea Fontana, this story is perfect for girls 6-12.

The DC Super Hero Girls line is an exciting new universe of super heroic storytelling that helps build character and confidence, and empowers girls to discover their true potential. Developed for girls aged 6-12, DC Super Hero Girls features DC Comics’ most powerful and diverse lineup of female characters as relatable teens, playing out across multiple entertainment content platforms and product categories to create an immersive world. Icons including Wonder Woman, Supergirl, Batgirl, Harley Quinn, Bumble Bee, Poison Ivy, Katana and many more make their unprecedented teenage introduction, as each character has her own storyline that explores what teen life is like as a super hero.”

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 128 pages
Publication Date: June 27, 2017
Genre: Super Hero (I’m sensing a theme)
Content Level: Kid’s
Trigger Warnings: Syrian refugees and the shittiest parenting (thanks Zeus)
Featuring: every DC character you love being forced to be in the worst book possible.
Rating: Make it stop…

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: I’ve previously stated (often and to anyone that will listen) that fiction written for children can be as well-crafted and moving as fiction written for adults. That if you exclude these titles from you’re TBR list you could be missing out on some great stories.

This is not one of those stories…

Instead, it’s one of those pieces of art designed for children that I hate. Clunky and half-assed because why put effort into writing for kids? It’s like those shows that kids like but cause parents to go “how bout we go out and I buy you a toy instead” because if you have to watch Curious George one more time you’re going to seriously lose your shit.

Kids deserve good art. Give them an appreciation of it when they’re young to fuel their creativity and inspire art of their own. To deny them that by giving them less is insulting and it hurts us all.

As a parent, you have to trust me.

Also… the thing where Zeus has a Syrian refugee daughter? First, why did he make her ride in a boat of death to escape? Second, why leave her in a camp except for the summer? Third, you left her mom in the camp?

I know you’re an asshole, Zeus, but seriously…

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


Scarlet Rose #1: “I Knew I’d Meet You” by Patricia Lyfoung

Synopsis: A new Charmz series – Fun historical adventure with a female lead. The Scarlet Pimpernel has nothing on THE SCARLET ROSE! Maud is quite happy living her simple life with her father and learning the exciting art of sword fighting. But when her father is murdered, Maud is whisked away from the life she knows by her rich and lordly grandfather. He wants to give her a home – on his terms – and help Maud become a real lady. All Maud wants to do is keep on fighting, so that she can have her revenge on her father’s killer. High adventure and historical fiction come together in a swashbuckling thriller! Swords, vengeance, and a dashing highwayman known as the Fox comprise the key components to The Scarlet Rose, as Maud learns everything she thought she knew about her life wasn’t true, and how to grow and grieve after losing her father. The Scarlet Rose blends exciting, thrilling action with grounded, emotional characterization.

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 96 pages
Publication Date: September 5, 2017
Genre: Historical
Content Level: YA
Trigger Warnings: child abuse (always child abuse)
Rating: Ugh

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: I’m going to give this story the benefit of the doubt and assume that it’s translation from French made it lose some of it’s charm. Like a bad dub, but in a comic book.

While it’s an interesting concept and the artwork is decent, the characters were lacking any real depth and instead felt like tropes made… ink?

It wasn’t enough to have me reading more.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


Shade the Changing Girl Vol. 1: Earth Girl Made Easy

Synopsis: Far away on the planet Meta, Loma’s going nowhere fast. She’s dropped out of school, dumped her boyfriend and is bored out of her mind. She longs to feel things. That’s where her idol, the lunatic poet Rac Shade, and his infamous madness coat come in. Loma steals the garment and makes a break across galaxies to take up residence in a new body: Earth girl Megan Boyer.

Surely everything will be better on this passionate, primitive planet with a dash of madness on her side and this human girl’s easy life. Only now that she’s here, Loma discovers being a teenaged Earth girl comes with its own challenges and Earth may not be everything she thought it’d be. Megan Boyer was a bully who everyone was glad was almost dead, and now Loma has to survive high school and navigate the consequences of the life she didn’t live with the ever-growing and uncontrollable madness at her side. Not to mention that there are people back on her homeworld who might just want Shade’s coat back.

Written by Cecil Castellucci (The Plain Janes), drawn by Marley Zarcone (Effigy) and overseen by Gerard Way, Shade, the Changing Girl starts a whole new chapter in the story of one of comics’ most unique series.

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 144 pages
Publication Date: July 4, 2017
Genre: Science Fiction
Content Level: Adult
Trigger Warnings: drug use, bullying
Featuring: the coat of many colors… because it’s MADNESS
Rating: Wait… wut?

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: I don’t… I read half of this twice and I’m still not sure I fully understand. I get that the alien girl wanted to try on the madness coat and come to earth and she slips into body of this comatose horrible ultimate mean girls heather and then crazy shit happens?

She starts going mad. Everyone at school hates her. She doesn’t get earth. She can’t go back home. Other aliens are searching for her. Mean girl’s boyfriend is trying to fuck her…

I just… don’t understand what the point of it was. The alien was abusive towards her lover and dismissive of her life all on her own and then throw in a terrible consciousness she gets flashes from… ?

It falls short of the blurb’s intentions… but at least it looks pretty while it does it.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


Lady Stuff: Secrets to Being a Woman by Loryn Brantz

Synopsis: A collection of Loryn Brantz’s vibrant and relatable Jellybean Comics about her everyday experiences as a lady

Home manicure tips, awkward seduction techniques, scoping out the snack table, and—most important—prioritizing naps: Lady Stuff reveals these womanly secrets and more. In sections like “Grooming and Habitat Maintenance,” “Mating Habits,” and others, these brightly colored, adorable comics find the humor in the awkwardness of simply existing.

Like the work of Sarah Andersen, Gemma Correll, and Allie Brosh, Loryn Brantz’s Jellybean Comics are accessible and funny; lighthearted takes on the author’s everyday experiences and struggles being a woman.

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 128 pages
Publication Date: September 26, 2017
Genre: Humor
Content Level: YA/Adult
Rating:

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: Sometimes something that works as a web comic or a one off doesn’t work as well in a collection, and I feel like that’s what happened here. I wouldn’t have minded that whole sections were unrelatable if it had been a daily web comic. I probably wouldn’t have noticed that there were so many repeated messages with slightly different art.

And if it was a web comic, I’d have demanded a print of several of the comics to frame and cherish forever.

Example:

(edit: looking at the blurb again, it seems it was a web comic)

Basically a mixed bag. Check it out from your library if you’re interested but if not you’re not really missing anything.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


The Adventures of Miru, Volume 1 by Rick Laprade, J McClary, Elenora Dalla Rosa (Contributor)

Synopsis: The adventure begins here! When Miru crash lands on the world of Gaia, he inadvertently becomes the most wanted creature around. Along with a rag-tag band of allies, Miru begins his journey to save all existence from the devious Dr. Monopoly and his wicked master, the demon king, Samsura!

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 96 pages
Publication Date: September 9, 2017
Genre: Science fiction
Content Level: *shrug* YA?
Rating: I really like the mouse.

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: Alright, so here’s the thing. It was alright, basically only alright. The story wasn’t overly strong or amusing, I didn’t like the art on any of the humanoids. But the mouse.

I love the art on that mouse.

I just want a whole book with art of that mouse (and Miru can tag along, too. He’s sort of adorable)

So it was a 2.5 stars for me. Passable, but only because of the mouse.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


The Lost Boys Vol. 1 by Tim Seeley

Synopsis: In this follow-up to the 1987 cult classic film, horror masters Tim Seeley and Scott Godlewski wade into the bloody, badass world of California vampires for an all-new tale of thrills, chills, and good old-fashioned heart-staking action in THE LOST BOYS VOL. 1!

Welcome to scenic Santa Carla, California. Great beaches. Colorful characters. Killer nightlife. And, of course, all the damn vampires.

The Emerson brothers (Sam and Michael) and the Frog brothers (Edgar and Alan) learned that last part the hard way–these underage slayers took on the vampire master Max and his pack of punked-out minions, and drove a stake right through their plans to suck Santa Carla dry. After scraping the undead goo off their shoes, they figured everything was back to normal.

But now there are new vamps in town.

A coven of female undead called the Blood Belles has moved in, and they’ve targeted Sam, Michael, the Frog Brothers, and every other vampire hunter in Santa Carla for bloody vengeance.

It’ll take every trick in the brothers’ monster-killing book to stop these bloodsuckers from unleashing an entire army of the damned. And they’ll need help from an unexpected source–a certain shirtless sax-playing savior known only as the Believer!

Do you still believe? Collects #1-6.

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 144 pages
Publication Date: August 15, 2017
Genre: Vampires
Content Level: YA
Trigger Warnings: more child abuse
Featuring: all your beloved characters from the original. I think. If you squint
Rating: Only read the first half…

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: I have a bit (bite?) of a thing for vampires, and The Lost Boys lives in my heart as one of the best vampire movies of all time. Tim Seeley wrote the Nightwing comics I’ve been jamming on lately. As a result, I had high hopes for the book.

And I’m still trying to figure out if met those expectations or not…

For the most part, the story was pretty entertaining. Slightly absurd, but that’s part of The Lost Boys charm. It was also well paced for the first half. So despite the fact that Michael and Star looked just flat out wrong I was really enjoying it.

Lady vampires kicking ass and taking names. How could I not enjoy it?

Then someone hit fast forward and everything resolved itself way too quickly. They had everything set up for so much more, infinitely more, and they just sort of resolved it all lickity split. Everything was just a little too convenient, and as a result the story just fell flat.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


What Does Consent Really Mean? by Pete Wallis, Joseph Wilkins, Thalia Wallis

Synopsis: “Consent is not the absence of ‘NO’, it is an enthusiastic YES!!”

While seemingly straightforward, Tia and Bryony hadn’t considered this subject too seriously until it comes up in conversation with their friends and they realise just how important it is.

Following the sexual assault of a classmate, a group of teenage girls find themselves discussing the term consent, what it actually means for them in their current relationships, and how they act and make decisions with peer influence. Joined by their male friends who offer another perspective, this rich graphic novel uncovers the need for more informed conversations with young people around consent and healthy relationships. Accompanying the graphics are sexual health resources for students and teachers, which make this a perfect tool for broaching the subject with teens.

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 64 pages
Publication Date: November 21, 2017
Genre: PSA
Content Level: YA
Trigger Warnings: Rape
Featuring: a lot of common misunderstandings about what consent really means
Rating: while not the most exciting read, it’s basically essential.

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: 100% an after school special in comic form. Still, whatever gets people talking about consent is 100% important. I’d recommend it for all high schools if they were still allowed to have sex education programs that discussed sex beyond a simple “don’t.”

But if you want a way to talk about it with your kids (or to point out to a friend that they’re being a total dumbass about their backwards consent ideas) then pick this sucker up.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


Disney Manga: Tangled by Shiori Kanaki

Synopsis: Inspired by the hit Disney movie, Tangled. Rapunzel has lived inside an isolated tower all her life, able to see the world outside her window but forbidden to leave. When the notorious thief Flynn Rider shows up, she makes a deal with him to finally break free and experience the world outside her prison. Is the world as scary as Mother Gothel promised it would be? Or will she find the answers behind her magical, flowing hair and the truth about her childhood? This magical adaptation retells the hit Disney movie using beautiful manga artwork.

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 176 pages
Publication Date: August 15, 2017
Genre: Fairy Tale
Content Level: Children
Trigger Warnings: Child abuse (seriously, again?)
Featuring: AMG RAPUNZEL HAS HUGE ANIME EYES *faints*
Rating: *crossed arms* if you hadn’t removed my favorite lines…

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: Super cute art of one of my all time favorite Disney movies… the only problem is that they cut some of Eugene’s best lines and the songs do not translate well to static text.

So Yay! Rapunzel with big, sweet, soft anime eyes. Huzzah! To and even more effeminate yet masculine Eugene. Kudos for chibi characters at each chapter break. Fuck yeah, Rapunzel putting things together near the end is more flushed out…

But Eugene’s best lines!!

I mean, it’s adorable. I’m getting a print version of it and using it as self-care for bad days, but I’ll still softly mourn Eugene’s best lines.

(I’m a Eugene fangirl, so sue me)

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


Heathen V.1 by Natasha Alterici

Synopsis: Heathen Volume One collects the first four issues of the acclaimed fantasy series from creator Natasha Alterici. Aydis is a young Viking woman, who after being banished from her home, sets out on a mission to right the wrongs of a corrupt god. Her first move is to find and free the cursed Valkyrie Brynhild. Gods, demons, and creatures of lore, Heathen is packed with fun intriguing characters and lavish artwork. The trade features an oil painting cover, cover gallery, and a forward by award winning lesbian fiction author Geonn Cannon.

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 108 pages
Publication Date: January 20, 2016
Genre: Fantasy, Mythology
Content Level: Young Adult
Trigger Warnings: Homophobia, dickbag gods
Featuring: probably the best Hati and Skoll ever
Rating: It’s so pretty…

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: The art work and story telling contained in this first volume were stunning. Aydis being punished for her Sapphic desires was gut wrenching. Brynhild’s whole curse is just… just heart breaking. And yet, there were still moments of hilarity (Hati, Skoll, and Saga were amazing together, just FYI).

All in all, this was a gut punch of a volume, and so when I got to the end I screamed. I screamed hard.

I desperately need more. I need to know how what happens next. I need to see it. I… Oh god, I need the next damn book.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


Little Pierrot Vol 1: Get the Moon by Alberto Varanda

Synopsis: Little Pierrot is a young boy with a very large imagination and his head forever in the stars. Joined by his snail buddy, the aptly named Mr. Snail, he sets off to explore the boundaries of space in a series of magical and surreal adventures: first to reach the Moon, and then the Stars… Classic comics storytelling for young readers in the vein of Calvin & Hobbes.

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 52 pages
Publication Date: September 5, 2017
Genre: …Calvin and Hobbes-esque? Is that a genre? Am I doing this right?
Content Level: Kids can read it, but they might not get it
Featuring: A snail so cool I want a pet snail… how even?
Rating: Really great. Some of these are now part of my meme memory.

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: Don’t do what I do. Do not flip the pages thinking it’s all one story. When the sketched snail is at the bottom corner of the page, that story is over.

Now that I’ve shared that hard won knowledge… let me review

*cracks knuckles*

This was adorable. The art was amazing. Just, totally beautiful. The stories were also pretty great. Well, most of them. Some were misses, but by and large it was a cute book or adults who want to look at their life through the lens of childhood.

I shouldn’t compare the comics I read, but I do… so I can tell you that while this felt like something that would make a great webcomic, like Lady Stuff, it still made an amazing book. That it’s sort of an adult adaptation of Calvin and Hobbes, but in a totally different (yet equally wonderful) way than Spencer & Locke was.

Really nothing to do with anything, just liked that there was a similar vein in some of the comics I read this go round…

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


Lady Mechanika La Dama de la Muerte by Joe Benítez

Synopsis: After suffering a tragic loss, Lady Mechanika takes a trip to a small Mexican village just in time for their DIa de los Muertos celebration. But the festivities turn truly deadly after the arrival of the Jinetes del Infierno, the mythical Hell Riders. Collects the complete Lady Mechanika Day of the Dead special, La Dama de la Muerte.

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 85 pages
Publication Date: September 26, 2017
Genre: Steampunk
Content Level: Adult
Trigger Warnings: *sigh* child abuse, torture, graphic violence, racism
Featuring: Dia de los Muertos
Rating: So so good

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: I will admit I’ve never read any of the Lady Mechanika titles before. I will probably go back now though and check it out. A great quick read about vengeance and redemption that would have been enough with mediocre art… but the art was not mediocre. It was stunning. Exceptional. I want it in prints and tattoos and… It was really great. Please check this out.

(And I’m not just saying that because I love Mexican folk art… especially in celebration of Dios de los Muertos… )

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


Wonder Woman, Volume 3: The Truth by Greg Rucka (Writer), Liam Sharp (Artist)

Synopsis: A part of DC Universe Rebirth!

New York Times best-selling writer Greg Rucka continues his return to WONDER WOMAN! Rucka is joined by fan favorite artist Liam Sharp as Diana’s life is unraveling around her. Diana’s search for the truth about herself, her history, and her home Themyscira, takes her on a journey into darkness. But the price of understanding may be one sacrifice too many for Wonder Woman.

Collects WONDER WOMAN #13, 15, 17, 19, 21, 23, 25.

Rebirth honors the richest history in comics, while continuing to look towards the future. These are the most innovative and modern stories featuring the world’s greatest superheroes, told by some of the finest storytellers in the business.

Honoring the past, protecting our present and looking towards the future. This is the next chapter in the ongoing saga of the DC Universe. The legacy continues.

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 168 pages
Publication Date: August 15th, 2017
Genre: Super Hero
Content Level: YA
Trigger Warnings: human experimentation and psychological abuse
Rating: Wonderful *snicker*

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: You may remember from my previous reviews that the Rebirth of Wonder Woman is told by alternating the Lies story line and the Year One story line. I loved the Year One story line, collected in volume 2… but it really proved that the Lies story line was not as strong.

Except it totally was and I just didn’t realize it until I got to The Truth.

Holy shit. I mean, Holy Shit. Ho-ly Shit. It all makes sense now. Everything has come together. And it’s brutal and heart breaking and just so freaking wonderful I cannot put it into words.

Namely because I’m too full of feelings for Diana and rage towards the person (people) who’d been lying to her this entire time. This entire time. From the moment she left her home to become champion, protector, lover and friend.

And they just… but she still…

*snort* *huff* *rage*

Continuing their streak of excellent story telling and great art, the Wonder Woman Rebirth comics are a thing of beauty. And as well all know, a thing of beauty is a joy forever.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


Disney’s Fairies Vidia’s Crown

Synopsis: When Queen Clarion’s crown goes missing on the night of Pixie Hollow’s biggest bash, all fingers point to one thief: the rude and stand-offish fairy Vidia! To keep from being banished from Pixie Hollow forever, Vidia and her friend Prilla go on an outrageous hunt for the crown that takes them from one end of Never Land to the other. Can they find the crown in time to save Vidia’s reputation?!

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 185 pages
Publication Date: I have no idea. Sometime in 2008?
Genre: Fantasy
Content Level: Children
Featuring: Vidia!
Rating: I adored this.

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: I will not lie to you. When the book opens and it looks like Vidia is a villain, I nearly flipped a table. I went off on a long rant about how some children’s media will take their regular cast and bend them until they’re an utter asshole just so they can learn a valuable lesson.

Teaching kids the valuable lesson that there are no consequences for your actions, and you can be evil for a bit just as long as you feel bad after and say sorry…

But then it turned out that Vidia was framed and I felt like an asshole. I mean, my point still stands, but it doesn’t have anything to do with this story. Instead, we get someone we know doesn’t fit in because of her abrasive personality, who has friends but doesn’t really like people outside her small friend group and even then they fight sometimes and…

Me…

We had me.

We had me being blamed for something I did not do and then working desperately to clear my name because even though I say it doesn’t matter what people think about me, it does. It really does. I get to go through this series of events and track down what actually happened and finally be a hero and then I cry, because god I needed to read that.

And if I needed it as an adult, I should’ve had it as a child.

So despite my shocking realization that Pixie Hollow is a communist society where they’re all dependent on “fairy dust” and McCarthy was right… despite that, Disney’s Fairies remains a franchise that’s designed for children that I can happily recommend to adults as well.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


QUICK NOTE! I wasn’t caught up with Gotham Academy when I picked up Second Semester, so I read the volumes I missed. Because of that, there are two reviews out of order in here. I know normally I go worst to best, but Volume 2 and 3 are thrown in with Second Semester. Because… well, you’re all smart. You get it. I’ll get back to the reviews now.


Gotham Academy Vol. 2 by Becky Cloonan

Synopsis: Olive has received information that her mother might be alive—and now, she and her friends must investigate! Of course werewolves, ghosts, and new student Damian Wayne won’t make it easy! Collects issues #7-12 and the sneak peek story from DC SNEAK PEEK: GOTHAM ACADEMY #1.

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Purchase
Format: eBook
Length: 144 pages
Publication Date: March 16, 2016
Genre: Super Hero, Mystery
Content Level: Young Adult
Rating: Pretty good

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: I love the art of Gotham Academy as well as most of the narrative. Most. Sometimes, though, they try to shove so much in an issue that it gets jumbled. Adding in reading it digitally when pages can jump and it’s a maddening experience.

So while I love nearly everything about Gotham Academy (it’s cast, it’s absurdity, it’s utter mind fuck please stop making me cry plot) I wish DC would stop trying to cram so much into it. To narrow their focus to the academy and stop trying to tie in other events and force cross overs.

There’s enough with Calamity, Olive’s love life, the Maps and Damien shipping I’m doing, and wondering why the fuck Headmaster Hammer keeps hiring these emotionally unstable and usually criminal teachers.


Gotham Academy V. 3 by Various

Synopsis: “Another turning point, a fork stuck in the road. Life grabs you by the wrist…” and hands you this year’s Gotham Academy yearbook!

The students of Gotham’s most prestigious prep school are back and they’ve just survived one heck of a year within the walls of Gotham Academy. Now it’s time for everyone to look back and experience some of the lost adventures from the school year that was. Featuring stories and art by some of comics’ best and brightest creators including Dustin Nguyen (BATMAN: L’IL GOTHAM), Derek Fridolfs (BATMAN: L’IL GOTHAM) and Rafael Albuquerque (AMERICAN VAMPIRE), as well as from regular series writer Brenden Fletcher (BATGIRL)!

Collects GOTHAM ACADEMY #13-18.

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Purchase
Format: eBook
Length: 144 pages
Publication Date: November 8, 2016
Genre: Super Hero, Mystery
Content Level: Young Adult
Rating: Eh…

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: Volume 3 is all meaningless nothing stories that should’ve been at the end of each book if you were going to include them at all. Don’t get me wrong, I loved that each one had it’s own art style… but it was more like the guest week in a web comic than anything actually related to the narrative.

Well, other than the Robin cross-over, but that had no pay off by the end of the series’ run. It’s possible it’ll be in Second Semester, but…

Totally unnecessary. Read it when you’re desperate to avoid doing anything actually productive, just like guest week comics.

(And be warned, while I loved the different art for every story… some of it was bad and/or vaguely offensive)

(Also… just FYI… there is one reason to read the end… but it’s only if you ship Damien and Maps because that is some epic level flirting he employed.)


Gotham Academy: Second Semester, Vol. 1: Welcome Back (Gotham Academy: Second Semester) by Brenden Fletcher, Becky Cloonan, Karl Kerschl, Adam Archer (Goodreads Author) (Illustrator)

Synopsis: GOTHAM ACADEMY is back for its second semester!

When you’re Gotham Academy student Olive Silverlock, winter holidays can be a drag. Luckily, when a new student shows up at Gotham Academy to keep her company while the other students are away, Olive finds what could be a brand new friend…or a whole lot of trouble. And when Maps, Kyle, Colton, Pomeline and the rest of the students of Gotham’s #1 prep school return for a new semester, the adventures are twice as mysterious and twice as dangerous!

Collects GOTHAM ACADEMY: SECOND SEMESTER #1-3, 5-8.

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 144 pages
Publication Date: July 25, 2017
Genre: Super Hero, Mystery
Content Level: Young Adult
Trigger Warnings: mental illness, bullying, more freaking child abuse
Featuring: OH MY GOD, IT’S NOT QUEER BAITING, HE’S ACTUALLY GAY.
Rating: Wait… there’s a gif…

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: oh my. Oh my word. That was… that was lovely. Remember how I previously complained about extraneous bullshit? Well that’s missing in Second Semester, and just like I imagined it was everything.

It. Was. Everything.

The art and the story telling in this volume are both glorious. The cast of characters is evolving and they’re becoming so much more than the gems they were in the first volume of Gotham Academy. I want to pick a favorite here and emote all over them, but I honestly cannot. I want to vomit up praise over the plotline, but when I try it’s all jumbled text and spoilers. Curse words and gifs.

*deep breaths*

So Second Semester focuses on the folks at Gotham Academy. It gives all the players some time, allows important characters to develop. It tells several narratives that are all woven together around Olive and her story and it does it all with style and flair. Honestly, it is just an amazing series that kept me on the edge of my seat and my heart pounding. I cannot wait to read more.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


(this is where shit got real…)


Suee and the Shadow by Ginger Ly (Writer), Molly Park (Illustrations)

Synopsis: Meet Suee: Twelve years old, wears her hair to the left in a point, favors a black dress, has no friends—and she likes it that way! When Suee transfers to the dull and ordinary Outskirts Elementary, she doesn’t expect to hear a strange voice speaking to her from the darkness of the school’s exhibit room, and she certainly doesn’t expect to see her shadow come to life. Then things start to get really weird: One by one, her classmates at school turn into zombie-like, hollow-eyed Zeroes. While Suee investigates why this is happening, her shadow gains power. Soon, Suee must confront a stunning secret that her shadow has been hiding under her own two feet—something very dark and sinister that could put Suee and her newfound friends at risk!

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 240 pages (holy shit!)
Publication Date: September 19, 2017
Genre: Horror
Content Level: Middle Grade
Trigger Warnings: more fucking child abuse, this time with added neglect! Also, more bullying
Featuring: Shadows
Rating: I want to turn all the lights on but shadows are evil so I also want to keep them all off…

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: Oh.My.God. Ohmygod. That was just stunning. It was so amazing. I cannot believe how…

(I just read the twist on the last page and my mind is blown. Forgive me a bit.)

So what can I say about Suee and the Shadow. It’s a slow burn of a detective story with wonderful art as these three kids become friends and learn to work together to overcome unspeakable evil.

The art was amazing. Simple but still crisp, it only added to the narrative without distracting from it at all. The pacing and narrative were exceptional. I was kept on the edge of my seat, biting my nails as I flipped pages.

There were even red herrings. It was glorious. Creepy horror with an anti-bullying message, an absolute must read.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


Spencer and Locke by David Pepose, Jorge Santiago Jr (Contributor)

Synopsis: Collecting the hit mini-series, Spencer & Locke follows hard-boiled Detective Locke as he investigates a brutal murder with the strangest of partners — his childhood imaginary panther, Spencer. But when they face brutal gunfights, deadly car chases and memories of Locke’s traumatic youth, can this unlikely pair survive long enough to find the truth?

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 128 pages
Publication Date: August 22, 2017
Genre: Detective Comics meets Calvin and Hobbes meets wholly shit some people should not have kids
Content Level: Adult
Trigger Warnings: oh guess… come on. You know you want to! Really? No? Okay… CHILD ABUSE! Kidnapping, drug use, violence, torture, medical experimentation, and … a lot of child abuse.
Featuring: Spencer. I want a Spencer
Rating: Holy shit, this was incredible

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: If Calvin and Hobbes grew up, got dark, and became a cop… it still wouldn’t be as captivating as Spencer & Locke. I was kept on the edge of my seat. I cried. I…

Listen, it’s gonna take me awhile to get over the feels from this one, folks.

The art and narrative worked together seamlessly here to tell an incredible story. Flash backs and drug induced hallucinations weave together with what’s happening in the present. Ideas are hinted at, allowing you to draw your own (occasionally horrifying) conclusions. It’s dark and it’s gritty and it’s what modern detective comics should strive for. Fuck, this is what all comics should strive for.

The bar has been set, and it’s been set fucking high. Going forward, this will be one of the comics I compare all others to.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


Taproot by Keezy Young

Synopsis: Blue is having a hard time moving on. He’s in love with his best friend. He’s also dead. Luckily, Hamal can see ghosts, leaving Blue free to haunt him to his heart’s content. But something eerie is happening in town, leaving the local afterlife unsettled, and when Blue realizes Hamal’s strange ability may be putting him in danger, Blue has to find a way to protect him, even if it means… leaving him.

Meta Details and Rating:
Source: Netgalley
Format: eBook
Length: 127 pages
Publication Date: September 26, 2017
Genre: Paranormal, LGBT
Content Level: Young Adult
Trigger Warnings: death
Featuring: the best ghosts and gardeners!
Rating: I saw the cover this morning when formatting this post and sucked in a breath as my heart cracked open again. It’s that good.

Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: Lemme start by saying I love thick babies. I adore them. And throw in the art style that Taproot employs and I’ll be yours forever.

So it should come as no shock that I loved this story down to the very bottom of my heart. There is so much love I felt for this cute, creative, heartwarming story that during the emotional climax I didn’t just cry… no. I gasped and then sobbed. It was a good, long, ugly cry followed up by laughing through tears and an epilogue where I was just so happy Keezy Young gave me more and I had time to adjust.

Even though I kept waiting for the rug to get ripped out from under me. I ran around behind the characters like my husband does with our daughter wanting to prevent every last boo-boo. (I am more of a “let her fall once and she’ll learn not to jump on the fucking stairs” kind of parent.)

Taproot was amazing. In a round of comics where I didn’t think anything could top the emotional connection I felt to Spencer & Locke, Taproot blew them out of the water. It’s the kiss at the end of The Princess Bride compared to the five previous most pure kisses. That’s how great it was. I went out and preordered a print copy. That’s how great it was. Keezy Young has a total fangirl in me.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.


That’s all for this round. Tune in October 13th for even more comic magic!

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