Monday, 12 January 2015

Bout of Books 12 Wrap-Up!

Bout of Books
This past week I took part in Bout of Books 12, for no other reason than that I wanted to get 2015 off to a great reading start! I didn't read as much as I wanted, but I did manage to read four books and considering I didn't really set myself any goals other than 'READ', I think I did rather well!

by Owen Sheers

My Rating: 3.5 Stars

Based on the fable of Branwen, Daughter of Llyr, this interpretation revives one of the most action-packed stories in the whole myth cycle. Moving this bloodthirsty tale of Welsh and Irish power struggles and family tensions into the 21st century, this retelling retains many of the bizarre and magical happenings of the original. After being wounded in Italy, Matthew O’Connell is seeing out WWII in an obscure government department, spreading rumors and myths to the enemy. When he is assigned the bizarre task of escorting a box containing six raven chicks from a remote hill farm to the Tower of London, he soon finds himself ensnared in an adventure that leaves him powerless.

As part of the 2015 Fairytale Challenge I read my first retelling of the year this past week. White Ravens is a retelling of one of the tales from The Mabinogion, old Welsh Celtic folk tales that are thought to be the oldest written stories in Britain. I enjoyed this retelling, though it was certainly a lot less epic and much quieter than the blurb had me believe!

by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples

My Rating: 5 Stars

When two soldiers from opposite sides of a never-ending galactic war fall in love, they risk everything to bring a fragile new life into a dangerous old universe. 

From New York Times bestselling writer Brian K. Vaughan (Y: The Last Man, Ex Machina) and critically acclaimed artist Fiona Staples (Mystery Society, North 40), Saga is the sweeping tale of one young family fighting to find their place in the worlds. Fantasy and science fiction are wed like never before in this sexy, subversive drama for adults. 

I've been meaning to start Saga for so long, and after I received some money for Christmas I headed straight into Waterstone's to buy the first three volumes. I've since acquired the fourth after finding it over on the Book Depository! I loved this so much; the dialogue is so fun and the character designs are fantastic. This kind of plot has been done so many times before - star-crossed lovers pop up everywhere nowadays! - and yet Vaughan and Staples have managed to create a story that really stands out.

by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples

My Rating: 5 Stars

Thanks to her star-crossed parents Marko and Alana, newborn baby Hazel has already survived lethal assassins, rampaging armies, and horrific monsters, but in the cold vastness of outer space, the little girl encounters her strangest adventure yet... grandparents.

After reading Volume 1 I jumped straight into Volume 2 and, again, I loved it. I don't know what else to say: this series is amazing.

by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples

My Rating: 4 Stars

Searching for their literary hero, new parents Marko and Alana travel to a cosmic lighthouse on the planet Quietus, while the couple's multiple pursuers finally close in on their targets.

Naturally, after finishing Volume 2 I jumped straight into Volume 3, and I would have read Volume 4 immediately afterwards if I hadn't been as sleepy as I was. Again, I love this series. I didn't like this volume quite as much as the previous two, but it was still fantastic; I think I felt a lot of this volume centered around Gwendolyn and I'm still waiting for her to grow on me. 

So Bout of Books 12 was pretty successful for me! I read 4 books, and while 3 of them may have been graphic novels I enjoyed everything I read. 

I also read 70 pages of A Room of One's Own by Virginia Woolf, but I haven't finished it yet. That means all in all I read 710 pages this week. Hooray!

What did you read this week?

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