Comics / Graphic Novels

StarPower and the Search for Black Hole Bill (StarPower #2)

Star Power Vol 2

Summary:

The search for new hope and old enemies.

In the aftermath of her battle with the Ninth Wormhole, Danica Maris learns The Star Power is unresponsive. With the help of her friends and colleagues aboard Space Station Sanctuary Six, she must discover a way to reignite the amazing powers bestowed upon her and rekindle the light of a friend trapped in darkness.

(Summary and cover courtesy of goodreads.com)

Review:

This installment starts out a little slower than I think volume 1 did, but it quickly picks up as Danica Maris is onto more adventures.  In a sense, this story felt a lot like a bridge between the last storyline and the next.  The challenge of Black Hole Bill was interesting, but I found the subsequent story much more intriguing.

I also really enjoyed that we get to find out a lot more about each of the respective characters and how they interact with each other.  We get a much better sense of who they are as a group and what they want to do in the future.

Warning: Contains repeated violence.

Rating: 5 stars!

Who should read it? Graphic novel fans looking for something with a superhero flair as a standalone story.  It’ll be pretty confusing if you don’t start at the beginning.

Want to read the whole series?

  • StarPower and the 9th Wormhold (StarPower #1)
  • Star Power and the Mystery of the Zel Gux Dynasty (Star Power #3)
  • TBD (Star Power #4)

Rejected Princesses

Rejected Princesses

Summary:

Blending the iconoclastic feminism of “The Notorious RBG” and the confident irreverence of “Go the F**ck to Sleep”, a brazen and empowering illustrated collection that celebrates inspirational badass women throughout history, based on the popular Tumblr blog.

Well-behaved women seldom make history. Good thing these women are far from well behaved…

Illustrated in a contemporary animation style, “Rejected Princesses” turns the ubiquitous "pretty pink princess" stereotype portrayed in movies, and on endless toys, books, and tutus on its head, paying homage instead to an awesome collection of strong, fierce, and yes, sometimes weird, women: warrior queens, soldiers, villains, spies, revolutionaries, and more who refused to behave and meekly accept their place.

An entertaining mix of biography, imagery, and humor written in a fresh, young, and riotous voice, this thoroughly researched exploration salutes these awesome women drawn from both historical and fantastical realms, including real life, literature, mythology, and folklore. Each profile features an eye-catching image of both heroic and villainous women in command from across history and around the world, from a princess-cum-pirate in fifth century Denmark, to a rebel preacher in 1630s Boston, to a bloodthirsty Hungarian countess, and a former prostitute who commanded a fleet of more than 70,000 men on China’s seas. (Summary and cover courtesy of goodreads.com)

Review:

This book is fantastic in every way, shape and form.  Porath manages to imbue history with humor and relevant examples of heroines throughout history that rarely get discussed.  I was introduced to the book through the “Stuff You Missed in History Class” podcast and I am so glad I picked up the book.  Porath goes out of his way to try to portray diverse historical figures from all around the world with thoughtful research.  The stories are bite size (perfect before bed!) and it’s an easy book to pick up and put down.

If I had kids, I would love to read this to them before bed (although maybe skipping over some of the grisly parts).  Porath does a very good job indicating the rating of the stories and letting readers known if there may be sensitive content.  I’d highly recommend this book for anyone interested in history!

Warning: Contains violence and sexual content, but there are ratings on each page.

Rating: 5 stars!

Who should read it? Anyone looking for some badass non-traditional heroines with some lesser-known history mixed in.

Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales: Donner Dinner Party (Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales #3)

Donner Dinner Party

Summary:

 The Donner Party expedition is one of the most notorious stories in all of American history. It’s also a fascinating snapshot of the westward expansion of the United States, and the families and individuals who sacrificed so much to build new lives in a largely unknown landscape. From the preparation for the journey to each disastrous leg of the trip, this book shows the specific bad decisions that led to the party’s predicament in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The graphic novel focuses on the struggles of the Reed family to tell the true story of the catastrophic journey.
This popular topic is a perfect addition to the Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales brand, and a great showcase for Hale’s storytelling skills. (Summary and cover courtesy of goodreads.com)

Review:

I heard about this series from “Stuff you Missed in History Class” and absolutely loved the idea of using graphic novels to tell non-fiction stories.  Despite having been fascinated by the Donner Party as a kid, I learned a lot of new facts about the story and what happened up in the mountains.

The graphic novel format softens the blow in a sense, without glossing over the bad parts of the story.  I really loved the narrator’s commentary on the different aspects.  I think this would be a great book for anyone looking to learn more about history, parents who want their kids to learn something a little more educational or someone looking for something to read with kids. 

Warning: Contains repeated violence, starvation and cannibalism.

Rating: 5 stars!

Who should read it? Anyone looking for a fun and non-traditional way to learn about history.

Want to read the whole series?

  • Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales: One Dead Spy (Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales #1)
  • Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales: Big Bad Ironclad! (Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales #2)
  • Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales: Treaties, Trenches, Mud and Blood (Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales #4)
  • Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales: The Underground Abductor (Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales #5)
  • Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales: Alamo All-Starts (Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales #6)

StarPower and the 9th Wormhold (StarPower #1)

Summary:

One Woman Stands Vigilant Against the Void

Danica Maris is an assistant astronomer on Space Station Sanctuary Six until she is mysteriously chosen to wield the cosmic energy known as the Star Power. The light of the Star Powered Sentinels has returned, but she is shining alone. 

An ancient enemy has emerged from the ruins of the old galactic empire to extinguish the Star Power and enslave the Millennium Federation. Now, the last Start Powered Sentinel must stand against the approaching darkness and be a light in the void.  (Summary and cover courtesy of goodreads.com)

Review:

This was a story that picked me up immediately and it only got better.  I love the depth of all of the characters and how each of the races has a full thought-out background.  Danica Maris is an unlikely hero who manages to rise to the occasion and be endearing at the same time.

The concept of the star powered sentinel also appeals to me having a love from anything to do with space.  It’s an interesting twist to hear how things the history/future of the universe came to be.  I like the mini background blurbs interspersed in the story.  I’d definitely recommend this series!

Warning: Contains repeated violence

Rating: 4 stars!

Who should read it? Graphic novel fans looking for something with a superhero flair as a standalone story.  

Want to read the whole series?

  • StarPower and the Search for Black Hole Bill (Star Power #2)
  • Star Power and the Mystery of the Zel Gux Dynasty (Star Power #3)
  • TBD (Star Power #4)