Of course I was going to read this one. First of all, it was written by C.S. Pacat, the author of one of my all-time favourite series ever: Captive Prince. Second of all, I’ve read an original story based on the series, in novel format, by Sarah Rees Brennan titled Fence: Striking Distance and really enjoyed getting to know the characters. Finally, it’s just been a long time since I’ve read a comic, so it was simply pleasurable to get back to the genre.
I’m reviewing the entire series at once because I basically read the four volumes in one sitting. I couldn’t help myself, I was addicted and my (sub)conscious was waiting for something specific and romance-related to happen. (It never did, unfortunately, but the wish pushed me to keep reading and that’s not a bad thing.) So this is the story of Nicholas, a newbie in the world of fencing, but he’s got potential that the Kings Row coach notices after he fences against one of the country’s best fencers, Seiji.
I thoroughly enjoyed Nicholas and Seiji’s rivalry, especially since both have such different personalities and ways of seeing the world around them. Their rivalry doesn’t end on the fencing court because they must share a room together. I have to say that watching them slowly get to know one another was one of the main reasons why I read this series with such fervour. The other main reason was Aiden, because his character story is very important in Sarah Rees Brennan’s Fence: Striking Distance so I was very interested in seeing him again in the comics. I do recommend getting to the comics first and then the two novels, because you will understand the novels so much better that way.
As interesting as these comics were, the fourth volume was a letdown for me and I actually have no idea what the future comics (should there be more) will look like. The reason why I was so let down is that there seemed to be too many similarities with previous issues. I understand that this is a sports-themed comic and that fencing matches will be a big deal throughout, but I wanted more of the characters’ pasts, emotions and interactions with one another. I will, however, keep an eye out for the rest as I did get attached to Nicholas and Seiji quite strongly. I do recommend this series if you like to see underdogs succeed.
The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, Vol. 4: I Kissed a Squirrel and I Liked It by Ryan North
My rating: 4 of 5 stars Received: Diamond Distributors Published: 2016 Publisher: Marvel Recommended Age: 12+ Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Comics, Action, Science Fiction, Dating
The hero who refuses to be beat celebrates 11 consecutive issues without a new #1! And she’s letting you seize the chance to be the Unbeatable Squirrel Girl in a choose-your-own path encounter with Swarm, buzzkill made of bees! Then, Doreen takes charge of her life -her love life, that is – and starts dating. But just who will kiss a Squirrel and like it? Surely not…Mole Man?! When the subterranean super villain falls deep in love, he’s willing to hold the world hostage to get Doreen’s attention. Can she save everything without becoming Mrs. Mole Man? But enough with the hearts and the flowers and the kissing, you read this book for computer science and super heroics (not necessarily in that order). You’ll get both – and more – in a showdown with Count Nefaria! Continue reading →
The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, Vol. 3: Squirrel, You Really Got Me Now by Ryan North
My rating: 3 of 5 stars Received: Diamond Distributors Published: 2016 Publisher: Marvel Recommended Age: 12+ Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Comics, Action, Science Fiction
New series, New Avenger! With her unique combination of wit, empathy and squirrel powers, computer science student Doreen Green – aka the unbeatable Squirrel Girl – is all that stands between the Earth and total destruction. Well, Doreen plus her friends Tippy-Toe (a squirrel) and Nancy (a regular human with no powers). So, mainly Squirrel Girl. Then what hope does the Earth have if she gets hurled back in time to the 1960s and erased from history? At least Nancy will never forget her friend, but what invincible armored Avenger can she call on to help, through the magic of social media? Decades apart, can they avert doom, or will everything go wrong forever? Howard the Duck hopes not…he has an appointment for a crossover! Continue reading →
The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, Vol. 2: Squirrel You Know It’s True by Ryan North
My rating: 2 of 5 stars Received: Diamond Distributors Published: 2015 Publisher: Marvel Recommended Age: 12+ Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Comics, Humor, Action, Fights
The breakout character of 2015 continues her one-woman crusade against injustice and jerks! These TAILS of the Squirrel Girl will show you the Marvel Universe’s most powerful super hero from a bunch of brand-new perspectives, several of them Quite Astonishing. Continue reading →
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars Received: Diamond Comic Distributors Published: March 27th, 2018 Publisher: BOOM! Box Recommended Age: 13+ Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Comic, Humor, Friendship, Romance, University Life, LGBTQIA+
Fast friends Susan, Daisy, and Esther continue their second year at Sheffield University, and these are formative times, indeed. Education and looking ahead to the future isn’t all that college holds in-store for these ladies–grocery store protests, family reunions, and even an MMORPG wedding are all on this semester’s docket.
My rating: 3 of 5 stars Received: Distributor Publication Date: November 24th 2015 Publisher: BOOM! Box Recommended Age: 13+ Pacing: Super Fast Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Humor, Comics, Contemporary, College, Friendship,
Susan, Esther, and Daisy started at university three weeks ago and became fast friends. Now, away from home for the first time, all three want to reinvent themselves. But in the face of handwringing boys, “personal experimentation,” influenza, mystery mold, nuchauvinism, and the willful, unwanted intrusion of “academia,” they may be lucky just to make it to spring alive. Collects issues #1-4.Continue reading →
My rating: 4 of 5 stars Received: Distributor Published: December 2017 Publisher: Marvel Recommended Age: 12+ Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Action, Superheroes, Politics, Discrimination
The villains are at Kamala’s door, and Ms. Marvel has to save a city that doesn’t want saving. The malleable Ms. Marvel continues her hero’s journey as an enemy from her past begins targeting those closest to her, a challenge that calls into question everything about her — not just as a super hero, but as a human being! Who can Ms. Marvel trust when everyone in Jersey City is against her? As Kamala’s life hangs in the balance, a new crimefighter moves in on her turf. Plus: Bruno may be far away at a prestigious school in Wakanda, but even thousands of miles from his former best friend, Kamala Khan, adventure still finds him! Continue reading →
Ms. Marvel, Vol. 7: Damage Per Second by G. Willow Wilson
My rating: 3 of 5 stars Received: Distributor Published: August 2017 Publisher: Marvel Recommended Age: 12+ Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Action, Superheroes, LGBT, Politics
Civil War II is behind her, and a brand new chapter for Kamala Khan is about to begin! But it’s lonely out there for a super hero when her loved ones no longer have her back. It’s time for Kamala to find out exactly who she is when she is on her own. Plus: it’s election time! Kamala gets out the vote! Continue reading →
Ms. Marvel, Vol. 6: Civil War II by G. Willow Wilson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars Received: Distributor Published: December 2016 Publisher: Marvel Recommended Age: 12+ Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Action, Superheroes, Coming of Age, Culture
While CIVIL WAR II brews, the next generation of Avengers has bigger things to worry about – like a tri-state academic competition! As rival schools clash, Ms. Marvel’s teammates Spider-Man and Nova are now her enemies! But when Kamala gets called to the real battle’s front line, she faces a fight she can’t embiggen her way out of. She’s about to learn a valuable lesson: Never meet your idols! As war intensifies, tragedy strikes too close to home – and Ms. Marvel must choose between her heroes and her family. When friends become foes, Ms. Marvel struggles to put her life and Jersey City back together. Kamala will be forced to grow up fast and find her true place in the world. But will she be an international sensation…or a menace? Continue reading →
Ms. Marvel, Vol. 5: Super Famous by G. Willow Wilson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars Received: Distributor Published: 2016 Publisher: Marvel Recommended Age: 12+ Pacing: Normal Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Action, Superheroes, Coming of Age, Romance
She’s your new favorite. She’s everyone’s new favorite. And now she’s joining the big leagues. Look out world, Kamala Khan is officially an Avenger! But will being one of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes be everything she imagined? Or is life as a celebrity harder than she thought? But while saving the world is important, Jersey City still needs its protector too. A development company that co-opted Ms. Marvel’s face for its project might well have more in mind for gentrification than just real estate. Can Kamala take down the evil suits destroying her home without ruining her personal life? Speaking of which, who exactly is that with Bruno? Get back on board and cling on, Kamala Korps, the ride is about to get wilder than ever! Continue reading →