Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation

I like graphic novels and I LOVE Kindred so when I heard about Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation I was really excited. Except it was January and that’s the month of no spending around here, so I had to wait. It was worth waiting for.

Great illustrations. Really good adaptation of a fairly complex story. I am pretty sure Octavia Butler would be pleased.

The Mad Scientist’s Daughter

This is my month for feeling like I’ve read books that I haven’t read. Or having a book remind me strongly of another book I’ve read, even if I can’t remember exactly which book… The Mad Scientist’s Daughter is another one of those.

I was a little disappointed in this one, mostly because I really didn’t like any of the darn characters. I guess I liked Finn. But really, no. The characters were just all unlikable. The story was interesting and I enjoyed the writing — so it wasn’t a total wash. Not bad. Not great.

The Darkest Part of the Forest

Why is it that all of my audiobook holds come in all at once? Grrrr. Anyway…

Holly Black, on audio, FTW!

I don’t think anyone writes faeries as well as Holly Black. Seriously. The Darkest Part of the Forest was as creepy as you’d expect and as good as you’d expect, from a Holly Black YA novel. Hazel might be my favorite of all of Black’s characters. OK maybe not but I liked her. Sir Hazel… awesome.

Heroine Complex

TW checked out Heroine Complex and when she didn’t immediately put it into the library bag after she read it, I assumed that meant she liked it and I should read it.

So I did.

Totally cute and pretty mindless and I enjoyed it. Demons, man. Asian American women superheroes, FTW! I’d read another one in the series.

Necessity

The Thessaly books are so darn interesting and Necessity was pretty much what I expected, though it would have been nice to see more about the human contact there at the end. Sigh.

I also kind of wish I hadn’t read these until they were all available at one time — so complicated and it was always a little difficult to remember who was who after waiting so long for the newer books.

I still think Plato is stupid… lol

Smoke

It took me a very long time to read Smoke because of the holidays and this darn flu that won’t go away. I almost want to read it again because I’m pretty sure there were some sections that just didn’t “stick” because I was distracted or unwell.

I liked it. I liked it a lot. But, there were a lot of moving pieces and there was a lot of missing info about the Smoke itself both of which caused me to feel a little frustrated by the ending.

And, as I was grabbing a link to throw in here, I realized that some people are calling this YA but… I’m not sure it was intended to be YA. Hmmm. YA is weird that way, ya know?

The Life of Elves

Welp. I read it. It was no Elegance of the Hedgehog but it did have a lot of pretty words. But, The Life of Elves just wasn’t amazing like I wanted it to be. (And, it read like the first book in a darn series… no idea if Barbery plans/planned a sequel but I’m pretty sure I won’t read it.)

3 More Cybils

Now, all that’s left are poetry, early readers, some non-fiction and… yea. A whole lot of books. Anyway, on with the tracking of the ones I have read…

Bone Gap was not the book I expected it to be. Which is impossible for me to explain (I’ve tried, TW doesn’t get it, lol) so I didn’t quite love it. I did like it, though. I think.

I did like Inheritance of Ashes but not as much as I expected to. I found both sisters to be a little… annoying, which made it hard for me to really care whether they could sort out their relationship.

Shadowshaper is the one I had heard almost nothing about (shocked, not shocked, sigh) and had no expectations about. I loved it. Even when I was cursing the damn #patriarchy (which was all the way through it.) Loved this one because I loved Sierra (and her grandmother, even if we only got to know her toward the end.)

2 Cybils Shortlist, Middle Grade SciFi/Fantasy

I wasn’t really looking forward to either of these books but ended up enjoying both, though one more than the other…

I really loved The Dungeoneers. Some of the characters were really complex and that’s something I like in middle grade fiction. The good guy was a bad guy who maybe was also a good guy except he wasn’t. And, that was hard. I hope I can read the next one in the series. Someone remind me…

Mars Evacuees was the book I was saving for last because I wasn’t enthusiastic about it at all. I don’t really like “space fiction” all that much. (Don’t hold it against me, y’all.) And, true to form, TW liked this one more than I did. Something about the tone didn’t feel like it was middle grade. TW disagreed. I don’t know — it took me a long, long time to care at all about any of the characters and the ones I cared most about were not the “Mars Evacuees.”

The Fog Diver

My expectations for The Fog Diver were low. Another post-apocalyptic/middlegrade/ya/adventure book. Ho hum? OK not ho hum, because I LIKE this genre but still… turns out, this was one of the better ones.

Really clever cultural references gone wrong, gone very very wrong. Likable characters. A plot that moved fairly quickly. Mostly it was the cultural references that got me.

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Off-topic but not really: I’m considering not doing the Cybils Challenge next year. Or ever again. It’s not that I don’t love these books, I do. But, so many of them are series’ books and I just can’t keep up with the series’ while also reading a bunch of newly introduced series. When I try, I find myself reading nothing but YA and Middle Grade fiction/scifi/fantasy. I need to find some sort of balance. So… stay tuned, this may be the last full shortlist challenge I attempt. Figures, since odds are high that I’m not going to successfully complete it, for the first time – ever.