This past weekend was a long one for me, and I spent two of the three days off work putting a sizable dent in my graphic novel TBR stack (with mostly excellent results).
Beautiful Darkness, by Fabien Vehlmann and Kerascoët : four stars.
This book basically just revels in how horrible people are. The characters aren’t particularly vilified, and they’re not justified either. No explanation, just humans behaving like humans. (I don’t know if they actually are humans—they’re tiny people who apparently lived inside a young girl; at the beginning of the book we see them climbing out of the girl’s dead body into the forest where they now have to fend for themselves—but that isn’t the point.)
The first volume of this manga series was okay, but I really liked the next few. I was expecting to be frequently pissed off by the premise (essentially a Pygmalion/My Fair Lady situation), but it’s handled surprisingly well. She’s all over the place about it, but the protagonist basically learns—partly on her own, partly from her “coach,” partly from her friends—that she needs to learn what she likes and wants and then work within those themes, instead of just trying to turn herself into a clone of what the magazines say boys want. For some reason my library only owns the first five books, so I’ll have to find six through thirteen somewhere else.
This was mostly just okay, although right at the end I did get caught up in wondering what happened next. I don’t like the protagonist that much, but I think she’s the kind you have to get to know—we’re meeting her in the middle of what’s obviously a very bad time in her life (and given very little information about what is going on). I couldn’t believe the plethora of spelling and grammatical mistakes. But I suppose I would like to check out volume two, if I can get my hands on it.
I don’t care much about Marvel’s “heavyhitters” right now—Cap, Iron Man, Hulk—I’m really mostly into the female heroes. But Thor is the one I can muster a bit of interest for, and I’ve been wanting to read Loki and Angela for a long time. I quite liked this; I want to find more of their individual stories, and I might like to check out the rest of the Original Sin event as well.
Very violent, very cool. Bloody Lips is a spectacular villain, and I love Elektra even though the wispy way they draw her legs kinda freaks me out. Her ankles are barely one brushstroke. I’d like to pick up the next one, and I’d also like to read the Frank Miller one that’s so famous.
Copperhead, by Jay Faerber and Scott Godlewski : three and a half stars.
This wasn’t part of my long weekend, but I read it recently. I liked it, even though it’s a western, which is generally tied for genre-in-which-I-have-the-least-possible-interest. I went straight on to volume two, which I also liked, and I’ll read volume three when it comes out.