“Injection, Vol. 2” by Warren Ellis

Injection, Vol. 2 (Injection, #2)(Author: Warren Ellis) + (Year: 2016) + (Goodreads)

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Review:

I was pretty excited to read the second volume of Injection, but I must admit it was a disappointment.

Everything that I found interesting and worthwhile in the first volume was gone here. The new main character, Vivek Headland, was rather boring and overrated and the rest of the characters had basically no space to develop.

The story itself started out from something interesting, the Injection, and morphed into a dull saga of Headland’s peculiarities and strange sexual tastes. Add to that several long and boring monologues and a few random shooting sprees, and you are as far away from what was originally interesting in this story, as you can be.

The art was not as impressive either, mainly because it changed focus from interesting manifestations of the Injection to sex scenes and thugs.

I see how to some the mix of a world-changing virus, ghosts and cannibalism might be interesting, but for me it was over the top while actually not giving anything of value to the reader.

I might have completely lost interest in the series, unfortunately.

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“The Wicked + The Divine: Imperial Phase I” by Kieron Gillen

The Wicked + The Divine, Vol. 5: Imperial Phase I(Author: Kieron Gillen) + (Year: 2017) + (Goodreads)


Review:

Well… this was not good. Considering that WicDiv has had ups and downs before, I hope that it will still get better. However, what I see is that the story is getting closer to its end and I feel that the writers are getting tired. Even the characters seem to have exhausted their fun potential and are becoming more and more unpleasant.

The Great Darkness plot is generally worthy of a main story-line, but unfortunately, it seems to be relying entirely too much on the characters, rather than the actual force of evil that’s threatening them. This entire issue was about the characters reacting to their impending doom and them growing, or not, in the face of danger.

I can say that I honestly don’t like Laura. She was kind of annoying at the beginning of the series, but now she’s openly a pain in the ass. All of her shenanigans seem kind of pointless because the only person she ever hurts is herself. Yet, she seems driven to be a bad person every single time.

On the contrary, I used to dislike Baal and to often see him as an useless accessory to the story, but in this volume I found him a lot more likeable. Same goes to Cassandra who was basically the only person making any kind of sense in Imperial Phase.

I’m pretty sure I will continue reading, as I want to finish the series, but I will keep my hopes up that it will get better, because the current situation is not good.

* As always, the art was amazing.

“Throne of Glass” by Sarah J. Maas

Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, #1)(Author: Sarah J. Maas) + (Year: 2012) + (Goodreads)


Review:

If you have been following my blog for some time, you would know that I have a special place in my heart for YA novels. If you haven’t, there it is. If I have a reader’s block, or I just want to read something that I expect to like, I will choose YA.

After I got fed up with Atlas Shrugged, I decided to take a break and read something light and nice. Even more so, I chose a series that has received a lot of positive reviews in the last few years.

I would say that Throne of Glass is largely overhyped. I would not put it at the bottom of the YA books I’ve read, but it’s definitely not good enough, in my opinion, to be placed so high up, either. With 378 339 ratings and an average of 4.23, it stands as overhyped through and through.

My biggest issue with this book was the main character. Celaena is the single most self-involved character that I’ve read about. What is worse is that unlike other similar characters, in which that is a bad quality and is supposed to be noticed and disliked, I don’t have a drop of doubt that Sarah J. Maas thinks that Celaena is perfect as she is. Well… don’t be fooled.

The first 30% of Throne of Glass are Celaena talking about herself and bragging to no one in particular. She is beautiful, she’s strong, she’s the best, she’s the fastest, the deadliest, the smartest, the most clever, etc. etc. etc. Celaena literally takes everything every other character says and in her head argues that she’s better in it. “Oh, that lady is beautiful!” – “No, I’m more beautiful”. “You are beautiful.” – “Not only that, but I’m also the deadliest assassin, beat that!”. “You are the deadliest assassin!” – “And I’m also super beautiful, you loser.” She was really hard to stand, honestly.

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And coming back to the fact that she’s the deadliest assassin in the world yadda-yadda, she talks a lot, but she kills just once in the entire book and the rest is just bragging. Every character in the book has heard of her and she is super scary, yet she has the chance to kill an evil monster and she doesn’t.

While we are at it, Celaena also happens to spend her days reading, play the piano masterfully and be just 18 years old! Because you can learn how to kill a person in 12804 different ways, while also reading and playing the piano.

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The other characters that are more prominent in the book are prince Dorian and Chaol, the chief of the royal guard. One is pretty and likes Celaena and the other one is strong and likes Celaena. You get where I’m going? Both of them severely lack personality, so that’s about what we know about the two of them. There are very minor details revealed, because, after all, who cares what kind of people they really are, Celaena is beautiful and deadly, right?!?

The things that I did like about the book were the general setting and the magical elements. If the author starts paying more attention to those, I can see a pretty interesting story forming. The Wyrdmarks plot was by far the best story of in the book and I was actually interested to read more about it.

“Mythic, Vol. 1” by Phil Hester

Mythic, Volume 1(Author: Phil Hester) + (Year: 2016) + (Goodreads)


Review:

Unfortunately, this year’s Image comics Humble Bundle was a bit of a let down. I mean… if you haven’t read most of these, the prize is definitely worth it. However, they have been including the same volumes for the last two years, so there was almost nothing for me there.

Aaand this is where Mythic comes in. This was the only volume from the bundle that actually interested me, so I read it separately hoping for something fresh and groovy.

It didn’t live up to the expectations.

A group of mythical heroes, deities and gods gets together as a supernatural SWAT team. What could go wrong? A lot, apparently. The characters were rather flat and way too many. There wasn’t really much space for us to get to know them. Some of the characters got barely any introduction and the ones that did have a more detailed back story were just a few. At the end of issue #7, for example, it was mentioned that we will learn more about Asha. What we actually got in issue #8 were a few self-introductory sentences of the type of “I am powerful! I am life! You can’t kill me.” Dr. Baranski was an equally as underdeveloped character. It was entirely too convenient how she was and how her story went. And her entire personality was so over-exaggerated, that I couldn’t buy her motives at all.

The art was okay, nothing too spectacular or out of the box, but still pretty and detailed. The characters looked kind of old-school, but it was tolerable for the most part. I didn’t particularly like the depictions of human faces, because a lot of the time it was hard to distinguish certain characters.

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On the other hand, the logo on the cover is really cool!

 

“Wonder Woman: Warbringer” by Leigh Bardugo

Wonder Woman: Warbringer (DC Icons, #1)(Author: Leigh Bardugo) + (Year: 2017) + (Goodreads)


Review:

Let’s start off with me admitting that I was prejudiced about this book. After so much Wonder Woman over-saturation, I expected to be bored by Warbringer. Also, as I didn’t really read the summary, I thought this will be a usual take on the story which is already familiar to us thanks to the movie.

Color me surprised!

Wonder Woman: Warbringer does start with Diana on Themyscira, but she is not lured away from the island by the prospect of saving Steve and the world, but by the idea of her first-ever quest, which involves a young girl – the descendant of Helen of Troy, the original Warbringer, and the possible end of the world by the hands of the vengeful war gods and the humans.

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At first I was not sure where the entire Alia story was going, but it turned out to be a very charming twist of traditional mythology. I quite enjoyed the fact that Bardugo took the Greek myths so seriously and embedded them in the story far beyond the mere origin of the Amazons. In fact, this book reminded me more of the Percy Jackson books than it did of the traditional Wonder Woman lore and I say that with all of my affection. I felt a pang of nostalgia remembering the feeling of being excited by the ancient gods and myths and monsters – something I haven’t felt for a really long time.

The part of the story I didn’t enjoy as much was the plot twist itself. While I expected something similar, because it was obviously bound to happen from the start, I didn’t see that particular ending happening. It was logical, about that I have nothing contrary to say, however, it just seemed a bit… unnecessarily naive. The character who turned out to be the villain seemed to stand no real chance to win and so the stakes seemed so low that I didn’t even break a sweat worrying about the well-being of the heroes. Yeah, certain bad things that I cannot mention because of spoilers did happen, but nothing less than the ending was expected.

This kind of also made me consider how much more interesting it would be if we had a darker, more somber version of Wonder Woman out there. I did enjoy this book, as mentioned above, but isn’t it true that The Dark Knight, a much broodier and scary version of the previous Batman movies, is also the best one?

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Bonus round: Diana speaks so much in Bulgarian. I couldn’t not be amused. But even more so by the fact that the Bulgarian guy she speaks to doesn’t really react much, he’s just “Eh”. A real Bulgarian would set up a table, bring rakia, make a salad and call all of the other Bulgarians in the region to meet the new person.