Posted in Book Reviews, DC comics, Graphic Novels

REVIEW: Harley Quinn: Breaking Glass by Mariko Tamaki


*No Major Spoilers*

Harleen is a tough, outspoken, rebellious kid who lives in a ramshackle apartment above a karaoke cabaret owned by a drag queen named Mama. Ever since Harleen’s parents split, Mama has been her only family. When the cabaret becomes the next victim in the wave of gentrification that’s taking over the neighborhood, Harleen gets mad.

When Harleen decides to turn her anger into action, she is faced with two choices: join Ivy, who’s campaigning to make the neighborhood a better place to live, or join The Joker, who plans to take down Gotham one corporation at a time.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This graphic novel caught my eye at the library, and I thought I’d give it a try. I do like Harley Quinn as a character and since this was going to be a new take on her origin story I thought this deserved my attention. So let’s shatter this review of Harley Quinn: Breaking Glass!

First off, I love the diverse cast of characters involved. Ivy is African American and even though her parents are an active part of the community they still struggle with fighting the gentrification of the neighborhood. Ivy spends a lot of her high school days protesting the school’s film club’s non-diverse movie club. I think seeing her fight for justice as a whole and not just environmental issues makes her a more relatable character.

Harley is as chaotic as always. She’s picking fights with boys she calls ‘boogers’ and teaches them a valuable lesson about not messing with her or her family. She behaves like she’s in middle school and not in high school, which got on my nerves a bit. Harley quickly falls in love with her found family and seeing her defend them was heartwarming.

I was glad this novel wasn’t 100% focused on Harley and Joker. I do enjoy seeing the friendship dynamic between Harley and Ivy no matter what story or universe. Joker is more of a background character up until the final climax. He is still somewhat rational, and Harley even sees that eventually.

I don’t really have any major gripes with this story except Harley’s immaturity and the overuse of the word ‘booger’. Again, this is supposed to take place during high school not middle or elementary school. Just a small nitpick on my part.

Overall, I really enjoyed this fun graphic novel. It was a fresh take on Harley Quinn’s backstory and I thought this was a great found family story also. Even though Harley’s insults toward boys could’ve been more diverse, I think this suits Harley as well.

Posted in Bite-Sized Reviews, Book Reviews, DC comics, Graphic Novels

COMBO REVIEW: Comic Book Edition


*No Major Spoilers*

Batman vs Bigby: A Wolf in Gotham by Bill Willingham

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

I like the video game, A Wolf Among Us and I think it was interesting to see two great detectives go head to head on a case. Small learning curve is involved because of the video game being mentioned, but I think the comic explains itself pretty well. There are a lot of literary references scattered throughout the story and I enjoyed the Easter Eggs.


The Death of Doctor Strange by Jed Mackay and Lee Garbett

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I like how the comics and movies aren’t carbon copies of each other. The comics and the movies are their own separate universes. But enough about that. I have read different eras of Doctor Strange and I loved the character before I saw Benedict Cumberbatch’s interpretation of the Sorcerer Supreme. After I finished the story, I watched a video that explains the story just to make sure I understood it. The narrator seemed ‘meh’ on the story, but I thought it was fantastic. Not too much of a learning curve if you have basic knowledge of Doctor Strange, and what I didn’t know about the character was explained well in the story itself.


Lady Mechanika Vol 1: The Mystery of the Mechanical Corpse by Joe Benitez

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

I received this comic from 2019’s Free Comic Friday, and I never got around to reading the issue at the time. I get easily distracted by other books, so it’s difficult for me to stick to a regiment of reading. Nonetheless, the world of Lady Mechanika is terrifying yet fascinating. In the story, there was a cirque visiting the outskirts of the town, and even though they were involved in the mystery, I would’ve like to see their show.


D.C. Bombshells Vol 1: Enlisted by Marguerite Bennett

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I liked having a women-driven story. Seeing Batwoman play baseball, and deal with haters makes it seem like not much has changed between WWII and today. Learning that in this story Batwoman is Jewish and part of the LGBT+ community made her a relatable character in my opinion. I like how no matter the story, Harley Quinn will always find Poison Ivy, just like how Harley always finds the Joker.

Posted in Book Reviews, Graphic Novels, Rapid Reviews

RAPID REVIEW: Mooncakes by Suzanne Walker

*No Major Spoilers*

Nova Huang knows more about magic than your average teen witch. She works at her grandmothers’ bookshop, where she helps them loan out spell books and investigate any supernatural occurrences in their New England town.

One fateful night, she follows reports of a white wolf into the woods, and she comes across the unexpected: her childhood crush, Tam Lang, battling a horse demon in the woods. As a werewolf, Tam has been wandering from place to place for years, unable to call any town home.

Pursued by dark forces eager to claim the magic of wolves and out of options, Tam turns to Nova for help. Their latent feelings are rekindled against the backdrop of witchcraft, untested magic, occult rituals, and family ties both new and old in this enchanting tale of self-discovery.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Mooncakes has been making it’s way around social media, and I have finally gotten the appetite for some desserts. So let’s dine on this review of Mooncakes.

This graphic novel reminds me a lot of These Witches Don’t Burn. They both have cute witches, and magic, but Mooncakes doesn’t have any relationship drama. I like that the romance between Nova and Tam feels natural and it’s of the popular trope, friends to lovers.

One thing I loved about the story was how Nova is deaf and wears a hearing aid. It was nice seeing disability being represented here in a positive way. Also, for Nova and her family treating Tam like she’s family even though she’s a werewolf.

One small gripe I have is how jarring some of the panels progress. One of the grandmas would tell Nova that her friend is coming over soon, and in the next panel she’s next to Nova talking like she didn’t teleport. Maybe it’s just my imagination though.

Overall, I enjoyed Mooncakes. It was cute and colorful, and even when the story gets dark, it’s still bright and colorful. I would recommend this novel for people who are undecided on whether to read it or not. As well as fans of witches, werewolves, and magic potions.

Posted in Book Reviews, Graphic Novels, Rapid Reviews

RAPID REVIEW: Doctor Who: The Ninth Doctor Vol. 1: Weapons of Past Destruction by Cavan Scott

*No Spoilers*

Leaving World War II behind, The Ninth Doctor, Rose and Captain Jack discover that Time Lord technology, lost in the wake of the Time War, is being sold on the intergalactic black market! Now the threat of a new temporal war brews on the horizon, with the Doctor and his friends caught between the twin threats of the Unon and the Lect – two species with intertwined histories who are jostling to replace the Time Lords on the universal stage. Can the Doctor stop history repeating itself?


Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

I have a special place in my heart for the 9th Doctor. Besides him being my first Doctor, I love his characterization. Fresh from the aftermath of the Time War and him meeting Rose who reminded him of what it’s like to be alive. So let’s travel through time in this review of Weapons of Past Destruction.

I have dipped my toe in to the Doctor Who comics before and it’s something I’ve enjoyed but not something I’ve spent a lot of my time pursuing or collecting. I depend on the library for a lot of the bookish content I consume, and it’s no different here. This comic takes place shortly after season 1, episode 10 The Doctor Dances.

I like how Rose tends to get separated from the Doctor and thus sees and assess the situation through her perspective, then when she meets back up to the Doctor he is still in war mode to an extent. She reminds him that there are two sides to every story. She has been my favorite companion of the reboot era.

Overall, I enjoyed this comic. The artwork is nice, and I felt like this was a good Doctor Who story. Since this is so shortly after the Time War, we see even more of the aftermath that the war had on the outer universe. So, I would recommend you have a basic understanding of Doctor Who before you dive into this story.

Posted in Book Reviews, Graphic Novels, Marvel Comics, Rapid Reviews

RAPID REVIEW: Marvel-Verse: Shang-Chi by Various Authors

*No Spoilers Here*

Shang-Chi is the Marvel-Verse’s Master of Kung Fu – and his deadly hands are full in these action-packed adventures! Wolverine seeks out Shang-Chi to train him in the skills necessary to defeat the savage Sabretooth! A class at Midtown High leads Shang-Chi into a team-up with Spidey against Midnight and his ninja army – and the wallcrawler asks for Shang-Chi’s guidance on learning a little Spider-Fu! But will Shang-Chi find himself over his head in his newest adventure?


Rating: 4 out of 5.

When it was announced that Shang-Chi was going to be introduced into the MCU, I was initially excited. I love meeting new characters and when I saw this at my local library, I knew I had to check it out. So let’s dive into Marvel-Verse: Shang-Chi!

I think that this was a good introduction to the character for those Marvel fans who may not be familiar with or unaware of Shang-Chi. His friendly interactions with Spider-Man and his other allies makes him a very likable character. When he is shown in the first story trying to teach Wolverine about some fighting techniques he’s serious and not much banter. I think that’s to show more of Wolverine processing and learning from what Shang-Chi was trying to teach him.

Overall, I think if you’re hesitant to learn about Shang-Chi, this graphic novel would be a good place to start. You don’t get much backstory for Shang-Chi, but you can see how he is as a hero and how he interacts with other superheroes.