Monday, May 29, 2017

Rat Queens Vol. 1: Sass & Sorcery (Review)

Rat Queens Vol. 1: Sass & Sorcery
(Rat Queens, #1)

By: Kurtis J. Wiebe & Roc Upchurch (Illustrator)
Publisher: Image Comics
Release Date: March 26th, 2014
Genres: Adult Fantasy/Fiction

My Review: (4/5 stars*)

Place yourself in a world where it's constant mayhem, full of baddies, assassins, monsters, and groups of gangs who thrive off quests and conquering. Massacres, gore, and filthy language abound emitting from a wily pair of individuals who look more like fantastical pinups diversified in a town of distinct races. The Queens are Betty, Dee, Hannah, and Violet, and their title they go by is the Rat Queens.

After a string of violence occurs in a place named the Palisades the governing officials gather to express their alarm. The killings and destruction threatens to grow unless a worthy or totally unworthy group can stop it. The Mayor Kane asks each band of warriors to take on quests to help clean up the streets. They don't get to pick what their tasked with, these groups are the Peaches, Four Daves, Brother Ponies, Obsidian Darkness, and of course, the Rat Queens.

Between the very inappropriate diction to the outrageous, unfiltered personalities of each character, and the issues they encounter along the wayit's wickedly compulsive. It's a very sarcastic and dark humored story paired with ferocity and adventure. Rat Queens is the absolute definition of a GRAPHIC novel and should be only in the hands of an adult. It has many sexual references, cussing, and illicit behavior. If you are all for that type of storytelling by all means indulge! 

Their is the beginnings of development in each of the Queens' story-lines. Plenty of dirty secrets cropping up that'll be exciting to see how each are carried out in future issues. I enjoyed each and every one of the characters as they are all so different and fun in their own individual ways. Hannah is my favorite due to her kick-ass nature and usage of language, also she's got a lot cool powers. I feel like she can easily take a walk to the dark side if not kept in check by her gang. Also, the artwork by Upchurch is phenomenally illustrated. The visual presentations are beautifully done. One of my biggest problems with comics is when the writing doesn't reflect the art but in this particular series they imaginatively compliment one another.

In all honesty, I thought this graphic volume was terribly violent but the narrative worked with it in a way I wasn't expecting. It gave you just enough of conspiracy, raunch, wit, and bite to get you invested. I can see their is much growth left, and that is worth sticking around for. Rat Queens isn't for the faint of heart, but the beautiful chaos and fascinating warrior women will keep you involved and impatient to see what's next in their exploits. I strongly prompt readers who aren't effortlessly offended to give it a chance.


Who are the Rat Queens? 

They're a pack of booze-guzzling, death-dealing battle maidens-for-hire and they're in the business of killing all the god's creatures for profit. Meet Hannah the Rockabilly Elven Mage, Violet the Hipster Dwarven Fighter, Dee the Atheist Human Cleric and Betty the Hippy Smidgen Thief. 

This modern spin on an old school genre is a violent, monster-killing epic that is like Buffy meets Tank Girl in a Lord of the Rings world on crack! 


Saturday, May 27, 2017

Look at the Birdie (Review)

Publisher: Delacorte Press
Release Date: October 20th, 2009
Genre: Short Stories/Fiction

My Review (4.5/5 stars*)

Look at the Birdie is my first experience with Kurt Vonnegut's books. It's taken me a great deal of time to find myself in the right reading state of mind to pursue a novel with such a renown author attached. I always have the tendency to push away from mainstream authors, or even sometimes classics as it feels nearly sacred to read or write about them. Call me crazy but sometimes even though I find a book so epic I just can't even find the words to describe and harness my feelings into a review.

Vonnegut isn't just a storyteller but a mindfully talented inventor who delivers raw scrutiny of society as he sees it by unique analyzation. He tells all his stories simply yet underlays each one with human observation & emotion. It's a compilation of unusualyet smart, near-brilliant insights that help form each creative tale.

Look at the Birdie is exactly the novel for those people who haven't read anything by this author before because it gives you plenty of amazing samples of previously unpublished short stories that will make you a fan of his work. So if you're uncertain where to begin in his collection of novels this is certainly the place. Each one tugs at a distinct part of you which is why I couldn't put it down. Some are very short reads (100 pages) or as little as 10 pages but all of them pack an unforeseen twist.

If you're introspective, and into the strange often unpredictable nature of life's anomalies Look At The Birdie should be your next book. I rather enjoyed it in many regards.


Look at the Birdie is a collection of fourteen previously unpublished short stories from one of the most original writers in all of American fiction. In this series of perfectly rendered vignettes, written just as he was starting to find his comic voice, Kurt Vonnegut paints a warm, wise, and funny portrait of life in post—World War II America–a world where squabbling couples, high school geniuses, misfit office workers, and small-town lotharios struggle to adapt to changing technology, moral ambiguity, and unprecedented affluence. 

Here are tales both cautionary and hopeful, each brimming with Vonnegut's trademark humor and profound humanism. A family learns the downside of confiding their deepest secrets into a magical invention. A man finds himself in a Kafkaesque world of trouble after he runs afoul of the shady underworld boss who calls the shots in an upstate New York town. A quack psychiatrist turned "murder counselor" concocts a novel new outlet for his paranoid patients. While these stories reflect the anxieties of the postwar era that Vonnegut was so adept at capturing– and provide insight into the development of his early style–collectively, they have a timeless quality that makes them just as relevant today as when they were written. It's impossible to imagine any of these pieces flowing from the pen of another writer; each in its own way is unmistakably, quintessentially Vonnegut. 

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