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drallapaul

drallapaul

Currently reading

Eclipse Volume 2
Zack Kaplan
Rise of a Merchant Prince: Book Two of the Serpentwar Saga
Raymond E. Feist
Elephantmen: Mammoth Book 1
Joe Kelly, Richard Starkings
The Joy Diet: 10 Daily Practices for a Happier Life
Martha N. Beck

Things are coming to a head – and not before time

Descender Volume 4: Orbital Mechanics - Jeff Lemire



This fourth volume deals with different characters as Tim-21, Tim-22, Effie, Driller all end up in situations which seem to be finally bringing this storyline to a close. The conflict between machines and lifeforms is reaching a climax as both sides flex their muscles, hopefully concluded in the next volume.

The characters are developed well and makes the whole experience enjoyable. The artwork can be frustrating some times but is generally work a look. Worth a look, especially if you've read the three previous volumes.

Futuristic fantasy comic collection – violent and vengeful

Extremity Volume 1: Artist - Daniel Warren Johnson

 

 

This collection seems to take place in a future, possibly on Earth, where technology has mainly disappeared and the population are discovering it again. There is a massive conflict between two races and it's a tale of revenge with much bloody action, some monsters and flashbacks.

 

Although quite interesting, it's very colourful and reasonably well-illustrated but not all to my taste. It's quite good but nothing special. Interesting relationships are developed and, to some extent, these are the heart of the story.

 

The STD causes problems for the police and others

The Beauty Volume 3 - Jason A. Hurley, Jeremy Haun

 

 

An STD called “The Beauty” causes peoples’ looks to improve but at a cost, especially as someone has found a way to kill them. This set of stories deals with various characters as Detective Vaughn investigates the murder of various Beauties and Joe continues to find out about what people want.

An interesting concept, this series is worth a look – well-written and clearly illustrated.

 

Engaging and enjoyable, this is well worth a read.

 

Marian Keyes novel about a marriage break-up in Dublin.

The Break - Marian Keyes

 

 

This long novel deal with Amy, a 40ish PR expert, living in Dublin with her husband and her three children. When her husband, Hugh, decides to take off for six months, their lives change dramatically.

 

With a fair amount of first-person narrated introspection, the novel moves along quite well with flashbacks about Amy's previous marriage, the early part of her second marriage and the birth of her children. Characterisation is good and the varuious characters are well-drawn and unique.

 

Interesting regarding the ways of a modern Irish family, this book also encompasses infidelity, sexual pleasure, abortion and many other modern issues. It's bang up-to-date for this period regarding social media and the power of the media.

 

As a 64-year-old man, this is not exactly my first choice of novel as chick-lit is not really my genre. However the book, although long, is engaging and entertaining with occasional humorous moments to lighten the mood. I'd recommend it to any fan of the author and of the genre: you won't be disappointed.

 

A fantasy tale about a magic talking sword – in Texas!

God Country - Donny Cates

 

 

Emmet has Alzeimer's disease and his family find him hard work until he comes into possession of Valofax, a talking huge sword which removes the disease. Gods and demons try to recover the sword and mayhem and plenty of violent action ensue. A final confrontation with the main god resolves the situation once and for all.

 

With plenty of original ideas, this comic collection is well-written and clearly illustrated. It is well worth a look as it is entertaining and engaging.

 

 

Three medieval short stories with supernatural elements – good stuff

By Chance Or Providence - Becky Cloonan

 

This short comic collection of 42 pages has three short stories taking place in the Dark Ages or later featuring supernatural elements. They are interesting, well-illustrated and well-told. Worth a quick look.

 

Three medieval short stories with supernatural elements – good stuff

By Chance Or Providence - Becky Cloonan

 

This short comic collection of 42 pages has three short stories taking place in the Dark Ages or later featuring supernatural elements. They are interesting, well-illustrated and well-told. Worth a quick look.

 

Conclusion to this tale of the rise of Christianity in the frozen North

Black Road Volume 2: A Pagan Death - Brian Wood

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This comic collection deals with Magnus, a fierce warrior, out to defeat a renegade Bishop who plans to establish his own Christian rule in the North of Scandinavia. Alongside him is Kitta, a smith, and ahead of him is Jessica, a Jewess also possibly out to kill the bishop. Flashbacks, betrayal, battles, bloodshed and death of loved ones are all part of the plot.

 

Well-illustrated and interesting, this is worth a look. It all arrives at a satisfactory conclusion and it's recommended to lovers of tales about barbarians or history.

 

Dark Ages fantasy tale about the effect of the rise of Christianity

Black Road Volume 1: The Holy North - Brian Wood

 

 

This comic collection reminds me of the works put out by the French comic book company, Glénat, who specialised in historical comics in their Vécu series (check them out if you understand French!). This deals with Magnus, a fierce warrior, hired to escort a Christian priest on the Black Road, fraught with danger. He is joined by Julia, a Jewess, and pursued by Kitta, the blacksmith.

Flashbacks, betrayal, battles, bloodshed and death of loved ones are all part of the plot.

 

Well-illustrated and interesting, this is worth a look. There's more to come but it's recommended to lovers of tales about barbarians or history.

 

OK fantasy novel - first part of a series

Shadow of a Dark Queen - Raymond E. Feist

The first part of a series called the Serpentwar, this novel is all about a fierce campaign between the human race and the Saaur, a race of serpent/lizard creatures hell-bent on conquest. The main character, Erik, is a blacksmith who gets embroiled in this conflict against his will. Other characters abound and luckily there's a list of them at the beginning of the book if the reader can't remember them all.

There's not a great deal of fantasy elements apart from the odd show of magic and some interesting individual characters. Elves, dwarves etc.. are mentioned but do not feature greatly.

Not a bad read - and I'll plough through the rest of the series at some point - but I didn't enjoy it as much as I'd hoped.

Detective story in outer space – this one is closer to home for Klem

The Fuse Volume 4: Constant Orbital Revolutions - Antony Johnston

 

 

This time Klem and Ralph are investigating a murder on the Fuse (a colony out in space) with terrorist implications. This case involves Klem's son, the Deputy Mayor, at a time when she plans to retire to Mars. Family plays a large part in this story and it is exciting and interesting to read

 

Just like any detective story, there is a lot of action and some clever deductions. Bloodshed and death ensue and all the mysteries are cleared up. Given that each volume is a mostly independent story, there's no reason why there should not be a Volume 5. Recommended to any one who likes a detective story.

 

Events are coming to a head – lots of action

Birthright Volume 5 - Joshua Williamson

 

 

In this volume (which is meaningless if you haven't read the previous volumes), we are heading for final confrontations and this volume is virtually one long fight between the various protagonists (Kylen, Mikey, Kallista, Mastema) resulting in death and destruction.

 

Still well-illustrated and interesting enough, this volume is worth a look, leading (hopefully) to a last volume. Recommended to those who have read the previous volumes and who want to know how the story progresses.

 

A tale of diamonds, betrayal, murder and revelations

The Angolan Clan - Christopher Lowery

 

 

This long novel deals with a successful businessman who flees the Revolution of the carnations in Portugal of 1975 and deals with diamonds from Angola. It also deals with the aftermath of his business ventures in 2008.

 

Jenny, the main protagonist in this latter part, uncovers the mystery behind the business and becomes embroiled in a devious plot involving murder, forgery and dastardly deeds.

 

There are a lot of characters to keep track of and they are well-developed and the novel is enjoyable enough to want to know what happens. Well-researched, it does have a lot of short descriptions, some of which are really unnecessary in my opinion.

 

Enjoyable fantasy comic collection with great illustrations

Seven to Eternity, Vol. 1: The God of Whispers - Jerome Opeña, Rus Wooton, Matt Hollingsworth, Rick Remender

 

 

This collection is Volume 1 of a series taking place in a fantasy world in which the Mozaks are rebelling against the Mud King who makes people offers of the greatest desires to enslave them. It is well-written although a little wordy in places but the beautiful illustrations make up for that. They are reminiscent of the work of Philippe Druillet, a real compliment. (If you don't know Druillet's work, look it up or buy it!)

 

Highly recommended and I look forward to the next volume.

 

As the title says – a revenge story which is worth a look

Violent Love Volume 1: Stay Dangerous - Frank J. Barbiere



This comic collection deals with Daisy dealing with her father being killed by a violent gang and her search for revenge. It's a sort of Bonnie-and-Clyde story which will no doubt be developed further in Volume 2. With mainly black,white and red artwork, there is plenty of character development and the plot moves along at a fair pace. Enjoyable and engaging, it should appeal to many a comic fan. I enjoyed it more than I expected to.

 

Second volume of a series about two corrupt policemen

The Fix Volume 2 - Nick Spencer

 

 

This is about a pair of corrupt gambling policemen in Los Angeles, involved with all the wrong people, trying different angles to get out of debt to a bigwig nasty-piece-of-work criminal. One involves trying to find the murderer of an actress, another involves befriending a drug-sniffing dog.

 

The illustrations are OK without being special. A second volume which is not particularly motivating and I've decided that this series is for me: not engaging enough and no sympathetic characters.