Received in April

The following are the books, movies, television shows, etc. I received last month for review and/or giveaways:

Ariane Books:
The Mystic Quest: The Magical Journey Begins by Nancy Harvey

Dark Horse Comics:
Earth Boy by Paul Tobin

Del Rey:
Star Wars: Thrawn Ascendancy Book II: Greater Good by Timothy Zahn
Paper & Blood by Kevin Hearne

Disney Hyperion:
The Last Fallen Star by Graci Kim
Willa of Dark Hollow by Robert Beatty
Paola Santiago and the Forest of Nightmares by Tehlor Kay Mejia

Insight Comics:
Marvel Comics: The Variant Covers by John Rhett Thomas

Random House:
Scorpion by Christian Cantrell

Random House Children’s / Delacorte Press:
Finn and the Time-Traveling Pajamas by Michael Buckley

Simon & Schuster Children’s / Aladdin:
The Revenge of Magic: The Chosen One by James Riley
Girls with Rebel Souls by Suzanne Young

Subterranean Press:
The Best of David Brin by David Brin
Everything in All the Wrong Order by Chaz Brenchley
City of Songs by Anthony Ryan

Tor:
Immunity Index by Sue Burke

Marvel Comics: The Variant Covers – Book Spotlight

Marvel Comics: The Variant Covers by Insight Comics

Marvel started experimenting with “enhanced” comic covers, which soon became “Variant” covers and grew in popularity since the ’90s. This fantastic collection is an oversized book full of hundreds of artwork from a variety of titles and artists across 216 full-color pages.

This book spans the past several decades from Marvels’ vast spread of characters. I don’t collect variant covers. But this book is a lot of fun and contains a lot of amazing artwork. It will take me quite a while to go through all of it in depth. There are sections on themes, monsters, characters, and artists. And the centerfold by Daniel Acuna, spreads out across 4 pages. This would be a great gift for Marvel fans. It’s definitely a collector’s item. It’s an impressive collection of stunning artwork with something for everyone.

Birds of Paradise – Book Giveaway!

Courtesy of Titan Books, I have a copy of Birds of Paradise by Oliver K. Langmead for one lucky winner!

Contest is open to US residents only. No PO Boxes please. To enter, just fill out the form below. Contest ends April 15. I’ll draw a name on April 16, and notify winner via email.

ENTER DAILY TO INCREASE YOUR CHANCE OF WINNING!

Good luck!

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Adler – Graphic Novel Review and Excerpt!

Adler by Lavie Tidhar (Author), Paul McCaffrey (Illustrator)

Synopsis:
1902. Wounded in the Boer War, Jane Eyre returns to a London transmogrified by emerging modernity. An old friend, the glamorous inventor Lady Havisham, introduces her to the American adventuress Irene Adler, and the two seek lodging together. But Adler is engaged in a brutal secret war against a mortal enemy of the British Empire: Ayesha, She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed, who seeks revenge against the colonizers who destroyed her country. And Jane, not unwilling, is swept up in the case.

As Queen Victoria holds on to her throne with the help of experimental new medicine, Adler and Ayesha both fight for the secret weapon developed by the scientist Madame Curie. And as Ayesha and her amazons (not to mention her pet assassin Carmilla) take over the London underworld, Adler must form a team of determined women to stop them – before the Empire is destroyed.

Review:
Adler is a fun and exciting standalone graphic novel. Fans of Sherlock Holmes will be familiar with Irene Adler. She is an American adventurer, singer, and amateur sleuth in this inspired miniseries. Jane Eyre becomes her Watson, as the two team up to bring down the nefarious Ayesha who wants revenge for her lost country.

There is a helpful cast of characters with a short bio of each. And while the series is called “Adler,” she has a team of talented women, cleverly coined “The League of Extraordinary Gentlewomen.” The artwork is fantastic. I loved the Victorian steampunk look down to the elaborate and unique outfits. I thoroughly enjoyed this fast-paced, thrilling adventure. I’d love to see more Adler graphic novels in the future, as there are endless possibilities with this fresh take on familiar literary characters.

Excerpt from the Graphic Novel (Click on image to enlarge):

Resident Alien Omnibus Volume 1 – Graphic Novel Review

Resident Alien Omnibus Volume 1 by Peter Hogan (Author), Steve Parkhouse (Illustrator)

Synopsis:
Living undercover as a semi-retired, small-town doctor, a stranded alien’s only hope is to stay off humanity’s radar until he can be rescued. When he’s pulled into a surprising murder mystery by the town’s desperate mayor and struggling police chief, “Dr. Harry Vanderspeigle” learns more about the human condition than he ever wanted to.
This omnibus collects Resident Alien Volumes 1 to 3.

Review:
When I saw the trailers for Resident Alien starring Alan Tudyk, I got really excited for the series. Then, I heard it was based on a graphic novel series, and immediately bought the first omnibus. A murder mystery with an alien? Sounds like it was made for me! Of course, some minor things are changed for television. The comic version of Harry isn’t as odd. And the characters seem more exaggerated on tv. But I’m already obsessed with these graphic novels.

Harry is a sweet man with a penchant for mysteries. He just happens to be an alien. While his arrival on Earth didn’t go unnoticed, they have yet to track him down. He appears as a mild-mannered, small-town doctor. Though it seems children can see his true form. Throughout the series, we see bits of dialog from his life before he came to Earth. But as of this first set of volumes (1-3), we still don’t know why he came here, other than he shipwrecked a few years ago. Each volume is a standalone story, but digs deeper into the character of Harry and those around him.

The artwork is fantastic, and adds to the noir feel. And the look of Harry is the quintessential alien – large, dark eyes, elongated ears, and gray skin. I loved everything about this set of stories – from the mysteries to the interpersonal relationships. With plenty of suspense, humor, intrigue, and heart – this series should appeal to mystery and scifi fans alike. I read quite a few comics, but this is now one of my all-time favorite series. I mean, it’s Diagnosis Murder, if Dick Van Dyke’s character was an alien-in-hiding – what’s not to love?

OFFICIAL TRAILER RELEASE: V Wars

V WARS premieres December 5, 2019 on Netflix!

SYNOPSIS:
Dr. Luther Swann (Ian Somerhalder) enters a world of untold horror when a mysterious disease transforms his best friend, Michael Fayne (Adrian Holmes), into a murderous predator who feeds on other humans. As the disease spreads and more people are transformed, society fractures into opposing camps pitting normal people against the growing number of these “vampires.” Swann races against time to understand what’s happening, while Fayne rises to become the powerful underground leader of the vampires.

Based on Jonathan Maberry’s best-selling books – first published in 2012 by my client IDW Publishing – about a genetic mutated outbreak that leads to the first vampire vs. human war, “V Wars” stars Ian Somerhalder.

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