Beast Boy Loves Raven: A Review

Beast Boy Loves Raven

Written by Kami Garcia

Illustrated by Gabriel Piccolo

My Rating: 4 stars!

Cover Rating: 10/10 always with these the artwork is so stunning. It tells the story instantly and any teen titan fan would sure pick this up!

Publisher: DC Comics

Publish Date: September 28th, 2021

Number of Pages: 208

Received: DC Comics sent me a copy in exchange for an honest review.

Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis:

From #1 New York Times bestselling author KAMI GARCIA (Beautiful Creatures) and artist GABRIEL PICOLO, the creative duo behind the New York Times bestselling graphic novel Teen Titans: Raven, comes the romantic meet-up we have all been waiting for! 

It seems like years, but it’s only been a few days since Raven Roth recovered her memories, trapped her demon father, Trigon, into her amulet, and had her heart broken for the first time. But she doesn’t have time to think about the past…she has to focus on finding a way to get rid of Trigon for good.

Garfield Logan still can’t believe he has powers that allow him to change into different animals, but the price of knowing that his parents kept this secret hidden from him just feels too high. And what’s more, his difficulty controlling these abilities could have unexpected consequences.

Both are seeking answers from the one person who seems to have them all figured out: Slade Wilson.

When their paths converge in Nashville, Raven and Gar can’t help but feel a connection, despite the secrets they both try to hide. It will take a great amount of trust and courage to overcome the wounds of their pasts. But can they find acceptance for the darkest part of themselves? Or maybe even love?

Opening Page:

Musings:

Beast Boy Loves Raven tells the story of how Beast boy, Robin, and Raven all meet. This is the first appearance Robin makes in these comics.

Robin is a mostly serious character who knows what he is doing. He is smart and tactical and very practical. I’m very interested to see how his character is fleshed out in the next comic.

Beast Boy and Raven meet in the same area while they both wait separately for their meetings with Slade. Beast Boy is immediately attracted to Raven and tries to charm her. It takes a while for her to trust him, but she comes around. They make a really cute couple already.

This is my favorite artwork of the whole story. The pain and intensity with the uniqueness of beast boy starting to transform. It’s stunning and also builds up the dynamic of the relationship between Beast Boy and Raven as she tries to figure out what she can do to save him.

All in all:

I really enjoyed reading this! It’s a fun read that makes me want so much more of these stories and I really hope that they do continue this well into the future. I want to see how the Teen Titans assemble in this new storyline.

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Spinning Silver: A Review

Spinning Silver by Naomi Novak

My Rating: 5 stars!

Cover Rating: 7/10 it’s a very solid and pretty cover. I think the only thing about it that throws me off is how the winter king looks a little like there’s been white out put over him and he looks kinda blank as a result.

Publisher: Del Rey

Publish Date: July 10th, 2018

Number of Pages: 465

Received: my lovely boyfriend bought it for me as a part of a blind date with a book.

Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis:

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • “One of the year’s strongest fantasy novels” (NPR), an imaginative retelling of the Rumpelstiltskin fairy tale from the bestselling author of Uprooted.

NEBULA AND HUGO AWARD FINALIST • NAMED ONE OF PASTES BEST FANTASY BOOKS OF THE DECADE • NAMED ONE OF THE TEN BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY AND ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The New York Times Book Review • NPR • Time • Tordotcom • Popsugar • Vox • Vulture  Paste • Bustle • Library Journal

With the Nebula Award–winning Uprooted, Naomi Novik opened a brilliant new chapter in an already acclaimed career, delving into the magic of fairy tales to craft a love story that was both timeless and utterly of the now. Spinning Silver draws readers deeper into this glittering realm of fantasy, where the boundary between wonder and terror is thinner than a breath, and safety can be stolen as quickly as a kiss.

Miryem is the daughter and granddaughter of moneylenders, but her father’s inability to collect his debts has left his family on the edge of poverty—until Miryem takes matters into her own hands. Hardening her heart, the young woman sets out to claim what is owed and soon gains a reputation for being able to turn silver into gold. When an ill-advised boast draws the attention of the king of the Staryk—grim fey creatures who seem more ice than flesh—Miryem’s fate, and that of two kingdoms, will be forever altered. She will face an impossible challenge and, along with two unlikely allies, uncover a secret that threatens to consume the lands of humans and Staryk alike.

Opening Sentence: “The real story isn’t half as pretty as the one you’ve heard.”

Musings:

Spinning Silver is a dense fantasy full of detail and different perspectives. It felt like as your reading the book evolves from one book into another much like Miryem’s gift of turning silver into gold. Though my one little critique would be that this book should have had little character names put in the front of each perspective change. It took me tell well towards the end to finally get ahold of each name and perspective and it’s lucky that the writing was so good because it did take me out of the book a bit every-time to figure out who I’m reading about.

The beginning is the tale of Miryem the moneylender, cunning and with all the amount of self-respect it takes to assure that her dues always get paid back to her. I had so much fun and interest just with that part of the story, but with the arrival of the Staryk riding white through the forest, the fear and awe of magic arrives in this novel.

The king of the Staryk comes into Miryem’s life and forces her to perform a duty for him. Make his silver turn to gold on three different occasions and he would make her his queen. Miryem has no interest in being a Staryk queen, but she doesn’t want herself or anyone she loves to die so she goes through with it.

The second main point of view in this novel is that of Wanda. Wanda is a village girl who deals with having an abusive father who wants to sell her off to be married for money he can use to buy his alcohol. Miryem goes to collect a debt at her house one day and because they cannot pay it she has Wanda come work for her everyday till the debt could be paid.

The third main point of view is Irina’s she’s the daughter of a duke who plans to make her the Tsarina with the silver jewelry made from Staryk silver that Miryem makes to sell them. I can’t say how much I love Irina. She’s so strong and cunning. She has this understanding of politics that is amazing and at first she seems unassuming, but no she has so much wit about her.

‘Spinning Silver’ is such a dense fantasy. Every section has its time till the very end. There’s always a main story woven with smaller situations and it’s woven tightly to make a beautiful quilt of words. I loved the world building. Especially the Staryk’s castle and world. The frigid cold and high magic. It had me in awe the entire time reading. There’s this one part that had my eyes glued to the book for how magical it was. Sadly, it’s pretty late into the book so I won’t be detailing it here.

Overall:

This book is about the care we have for our loved ones and how far we will go to save them. It’s full of magic, loyalty, and fights against great foes. One will become bigger then they ever dreamed in order to attempt to defeat a great evil. That is something I think is beautiful. If you haven’t already, read ‘Spinning Silver’. This review barely scratches the surface of all there is to explore in this book. It’s a book worthy of loving.

About the Author

Naomi Novik is the acclaimed New York Times-bestselling author of the Nebula Award-winning novel Uprooted, Spinning Silver, and the nine-volume Temeraire series, as well as a founder of the Archive of Our Own. Her upcoming book A Deadly Education is the first of the Scholomance trilogy, and will be available September 2020.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

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The Extraordinary Part: A Review

The Extraordinary Part by Ruppert and Mulot

My Rating: 5 stars

Cover Rating: 9/10 The cover is amazing! It is what drew me to the comic in the first place. The only reason this isn’t a 10 out of 10 is because after reading the comic I think there were other imagery that would be even better as a cover.

Publisher: Europe Comics

Publish Date: July 27th, 2021

Number of Pages: 156

Received: Netgalley provided an e-arc in exchange for an honest review.

Synopsis: “Nineteen-year-old Orsay lives an uneventful life in the French countryside, until the day he gains extraordinary powers in his hands after an encounter with a mysterious creature known as a whol. On a trip to Paris in search of a cure, he meets and falls for Basma, a passionate activist for whols’ rights. But Orsay isn’t convinced that whols should be considered equal to humans. Especially once Melek, another human with the same powers, embarks on a murderous rampage to avenge those she sees as her kin.”

Opening Sentence: “Hi dad.”

Musings:

From the start I kept thinking that this comic was really cool. I loved the imagery and the ideas it has. The Whol’s are these really beautiful large art piece like creatures that how up all over cities in Paris.

They are for the most part harmless. However, If you get in contact with a Whol and water it combines with you and the body part attached to the Whol become Whol like.

This comic while featuring teens definitely feels like its aimed more at adults. It can be pretty graphic and there’s a bit of explicit sexuality featured in it. However, I feel that it doe fit the tone and the story this first installment is starting to flesh out.

What made me really attached to this comic is the imagery. It’s beautiful. Yet, the stark contrast of great beauty and the grotesque red of murder makes this novel a pull between right and wrong and how far one should go for what they believe in. Many of the characters in this comic I would say go way too far.

All in All:

I had a blast reading this comic. I remember when I first started it immediately texting my boyfriend and saying “Whoah! Look at this! It’s so cool I’m obsessed!” Talking to him all about it. I definitely recommend this to anyone who loves unique imagery and a unique sci-fi.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

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Watching: Gunpowder Milkshake

It was pulling me to watch this film with every part of my being so, I let myself enjoy it and I absolutely adored it.

This film was funny a good bit gorey and a whole lot of fun. I loved the imagery of it. The neon and the milkshakes themselves really stood out. The diner-esque set ups that weren’t just the diner itself. The dentist hospital with the very neon feel. The gorgeous library that had some of the most beautiful themed rooms.

Every single fight was absolutely 100% unique. The curiosity became how would Sam kill next? She was someone you couldn’t look away from and the way she fought was so different based on the situation presented to her. Everything was made to be a weapon. Weather that be a gun, a milkshake, a bowling ball case, or a car. There was no thing that wouldn’t be utilized by Sam.

The story too was so much fun. She’s an assassin taking care of a little girl who is the daughter of a man she kills. All of it is so lovely. The connection she makes to her. The connection that Sam’s mom broke when Sam was young. How it all connects and comes together at the end.

I loved this movie. I was smiling and excited and so curious at every moment. I loved Emily the little girl Sam protects and how brave she was and how she declares herself as an apprentice.

This movie is so fluid and so cool. Almost like watching a dance routine. Definitely a lot of the fights felt that way. It was so awesome to watch!

All in all, there’s not much more I can say, but that I felt so happy watching this movie. I didn’t stop smiling and I had a blast. It’s a glorious bit of fun.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

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Watching: The Suicide Squad

Another fun movie night with my best friend last night. This time it was my choice and of course my excitement lead me to choosing ‘The Suicide Squad’. I knew the day before that this is what I wanted to watch and I’m very proud of my choice.

Looking at this poster, everything you need to know about this movie is right there. It was so much fun to watch. To my surprise, the same night my boyfriend texted me that he was watching this with his sister. I know he hasn’t seen any of the other movies related to this which is why I was shocked. This movie is definitely a stand alone so it didn’t matter. But, I was also excited cause I had already told my best friend I was going to watch this with her that night.

One thing this movie did was further increase my crush on Harley Quinn.

Harley’s growth is something I think everyone’s been talking about that’s seen the movie. She’s owned by no one and she saves herself and becomes more free in who she is as a person and I adore this for her! Every scene she was in was gold and watching her on the screen made me so happy. She’s witty and unpredictable and so strong and wild and free and one of the most amazing heroes in this film. I love her.

I now want a rat named Sebastian. This little guy I loved from the very beginning. He’s so adorable and has such a big personality. So many of the funniest and quirkiest moments in the film included him. I would die for Sebastian.

Rat catcher and Bloodsport had some of the most wholesome moments in the whole film. I wanted to give them both a hug so many times. I just adored them.

King shark a.k.a sharky boy or just sharky to me gave me so many laughs. I loved every moment he was on screen. He also caused some of the most gruesome deaths, but the balance he had as a character made me forgive him. I loved him too.

I thought at the beginning I wouldn’t care much about this character, but I did. His mom being everywhere was hilarious. Plus his power was so awesome looking. He was so fun to watch.

All in all, I absolutely had a blast watching the suicide squad. It’s a delightful film with dumb humor that was perfect for my heart. I’m definitely going to be rewatching in the future for the pure enjoyment of it.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

Places to donate to Trans communities:

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Watching: 13 Ghosts

Last night my best friend Marble asked me to watch a movie with her and of course I was down. I always enjoy watching a movie with her. So, this movie night she picked 13 Ghosts. A movie I’d never seen and knew nothing about. This is how it went:

The first thing of note is that this poster is exactly all that this movie is. The flashes of visions the psychic has and the all around fear that is present throughout the film. It’s a perfect representation of 13 Ghosts.

One thing about this movie is that it’s very memorable, especially because it’s visuals are so unique to it. The opening itself with the very strange way all this yellow tape moves in this car junk yard adds to the very creepy feel the movie has. Add that to the many many opening deaths that occur in very awful ways it is something to remember.

Then we have the family featuring the dad played by Tony Shalhoub who is also the actor who plays Adrian Monk. Seeing him in this movie is what initially really got me invested. I wanted to see the man who plays one of the most iconic characters ever play a whole different role.

Honestly, his role here wasn’t so dramatically different. His wife was also dead in this movie. He’s still acting scared even though in this movie there’s a more real threat then general germs like in Monk. He was still as steady and clear minded as he is in Monk.

What was cool and what I think most of the budget was spent on was the house. It’s massive and full of turning parts like a huge puzzle. Glass walls with words written on them are everywhere. If I had to guess most of the budget was spent on creating this for the movie. I gotta say they did a pretty awesome job with it.

I think the makeup done for the 13 ghosts was pretty much what you see at any six flags fright fest. Which is scary often, but it did make me analyze the film more in the way it was made rather being fully immersed in it, but again it is very much a product of that era of film so I’d say they did a pretty good job.

While there is quite a few glaring flaws of the film, I did very much enjoy watching it. I don’t really think any of them should have survived the film. The reasons for their survival were pretty chance based and so many more things could’ve gone wrong, but the ending was pretty neat.

Overall, I’d recommend this writers fever dream of an idea became real just for how unique it is. If you like early 2000’s horror films you’ll enjoy this movie.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

Places to donate to Trans communities:

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Watching BoJack Horseman: Season 1, Episode 3

I’m back at it again to talk about another BoJack Horseman episode! I am so excited! There’s so much nuance to this show and it is so worth exploring as much detail as possible.

Opening Scene: BoJack is on the set of ‘Horsing Around’ he’s doing a scene with Sarah Lynn. The family is having pancakes for breakfast and Sarah is hiding under the table. At first it starts out fun and Sarah makes a funny tv show joke about being afraid to pop from a pop quiz. Then the scene ends and BoJack gives a pep talk. It’s happy at first, but then it grows darker and the little girl looks horrified. This was the perfect way to showcase ‘Horsing Around’ and Bo Jacks headspace at the time. Also, to introduce his dynamic with Sarah Lynn as a very warped role model.

Favorite Part of the Episode: The whole episode and how it’s themed. This is introducing Sarah Lynn. It gives her background with BoJack. Deep nuances to their relationship and the tragedy that ‘Horsing Around’ caused her to become. All that in the third episode and in around 20 minutes. This show is art and so well written I am in awe every second I watch it.

Best Lines: “Well those boobs and jerkwads are the best friends you will ever have. Without them you are nothing. Remember that. Your family will never understand you. Your lovers will leave you or try to change you. But your fans you be good to them and they’ll be good to you. The most important thing is you got to give the people what they want; even if it kills you, even if it empties you out until there’s nothing left to empty. No matter what happens, no matter how much it hurts, you don’t stop dancing and you don’t stop smiling and you give those people what they want.” -BoJack to little Sarah Lynn opening scene

“But I do wonder as a third way feminist, if it’s even possible for women to reclaim their sexuality in this deeply entrenched patriarchal society, or if claiming to do so is just a lie we tell ourselves so we can more comfortably cater to the male gaze.” – Diane to BoJack (God, just God. This show it gets so deep and this is simply a quick quip and you could easily go past it and just enjoy the episode, but it says so much. Do women claim sexuality for themselves or is it truly for the male gaze? To me I think we can, but still this is such a deep thing that could be discussed, yet the line lasted a few seconds.

“You are not her father and you are not doing her any favors by refusing to set boundaries.” Diane to Bo Jack about Sarah Lynn taking advantage of him. God finally the truth. Someone said it! This show always does a great job at not condoning behavior and giving the facts even if it goes to that dark place there is always consequences, but also a sense of hope.

“I’m at a place right now where I never need to grow as a person or rise to an occasion, because I can constantly just surround myself with fans and enablers till I can die tragically young.” -Sarah Lynn to BoJack

Highlights:

Sarah Lynn is on the news. 12 years after being on ‘Horsing Around’ Sarah released a music single about being sexy and loving sex. Cut to 12 years after that and she is no longer relevant. Instead it’s all about Sextina Aquafina who is talking about how Sarah Lynn should go to the place famous people go where no one cares if they live or die.

BoJack and Todd are at the furniture store. Todd had broken Bo Jack’s bed and these girls come up freaking out, but not about them, about Sarah Lynn and Andrew Garfield who are also in the store. Of course hurting Bo Jack’s already bruised ego. They start talking and Andrew breaks up with Sarah and she starts taking way too many pills. The little girl from the tv show has definitely grown up and her mental health has been ruined from her time on the show. Then she ends up stabbing herself. It’s in public and Andrew didn’t want her to make a scene which of course makes it bigger and she ends up taking a dump on a sofa. It’s over the top dark humor and a really sad tragedy already. Sarah Lynn’s life is already feeling so far gone.

BoJack talking to Diane about the incident with Sarah. He says after seeing her crazy reactions he checked her into rehab. Diane talks about him seeing Sarah again and he says he is more of a before rehab friend, which really tells you all you need to know about him. He’s not a good influence on anyone. Then, Sarah reappears at his door. She talks to him about not needing rehab and then snorts pills in front of him. Instead of helping her and taking her back to rehab like a good friend and role model he lets her hide out with him. He’s even excited about it. I can’t help, but think about what’s to come later. Sarah Lynn’s story is only begun.

Sarah’s subtle manipulations. Sarah knows exactly how Bo Jack is and what she means to him. She is a memory of his fame. She wants to have him there because he’ll give in to anything she wants. At this point in her life she wants drugs and to party all the time and BoJack doesn’t have the sense to stop her and get her to get clean. He enables her and she comes back to him because she knows that. He never tells her no and it sucks cause it feels like he may be the one person that could.

A mini joke. At the party Sarah throws a group of guys passes carrying boxes that saw chips dips and then chains and whips. A super subtle very easy to miss joke, but in this show there’s so much of that. It’s so nuanced and I love it.

Introducing Sarah’s dream. From little Sarah wanted to be an architect. A dream that was immediately shut down by her mom and ignored by Bo Jack. It is the hope and the line that could be used to save Sarah.

BoJack spends the day with Sarah. It seems fun and wholesome for the most part. As the sun sets Sarah tell BoJack that Herb has butt cancer which upsets him. He looks guilty and later on in the show we find out why. He ends up distracting himself and Sarah by giving her his tv award. He says he would have given that to his kid if he had one, but he wanted Sarah to have it. Then he starts singing the end credits to ‘Horsing Around’. BoJack is using Sarah too. She’s there to feed into his memories and feel like he’s on that wholesome show again. For him to feel like a good father figure, but he isn’t and he never was.

BoJack’s final straw is Sarah pawning the tv award he gave her. Only time he stops things is when his ego gets hurt. It’s not about helping her, but soothing his ego.

BoJack kisses Sarah. Not only that, but he has sex with her. They may both be adults, but that was the last thing either of them needed. They both need help and instead they turn to drugs and sex and bonds that aren’t healthy and it only unravels them both further. Todd and Diane try to give Bo Jack reason. To be true friends to him, but he doesn’t listen. Yet they stay friends anyway. Diane tells Bo Jack that he’s now taking advantage of Sarah. She has substance abuse problems and Daddy issues and he knew that and still had sex with her. Again, this show always sheds that light that this is not good for anyone. It’s not even remotely about humor, but laying out mental illness and drug and substance abuse does and how it can be so destructive to peoples lives.

End Scene: BoJack finally says he will take Sarah back to rehab and instead she leaves. She doesn’t want to grow anymore. She says that it’s already too late. As she leaves she says her new catch phrase “Suck a dick, dumb shits” and walks out the door. BoJack takes advice Diane says as it being societies fault for the tragedy of Sarah’s predicament. That he’s not to blame for any part. He holds onto that deeply because to face the truth would be to face that he isn’t a good person and that he isn’t just a victim. So he does what’s easiest and that’s even sadder.

Turns out reporters were outside and they got pictures of the two having sex. The beginning of more pain later. And so it ends.

All In All: This episode was so powerful and good just on its own. It says a lot that you could watch this episode and know so much about BoJack and one of the biggest story lines in the show just on its own. This is BoJack and Sarah Lynn and their spiral into darkness together. This is one of the most important early episodes of BoJack. Also, one of the saddest, but it still is only the beginning.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

Places to donate to Trans communities:

Trans Equality 

The Trevor Project

Transgender Law Center 

Some BLM resources: 

Link to bail funds to donate to!

Link to petitions to sign! 

Link to a video to watch if you can’t donate!

My friend started Live Streaming so check them out HERE!! 

Check out my Instagram and Twitter

Check out the Sisters of Twilight website.

Saints and Misfits by S.K. Ali: A Review

Saints and Misfits by S.K. Ali

My Rating: 5 stars

Cover Rating: 7/10 this is a super pretty cover! It’s sweet and lovely and it fits the book very well.

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

Publish Date: June 13th, 2017

Number of Pages: 328

Received: Netgalley provided an e-copy in exchange for an honest review.

Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis:

An Entertainment Weekly Best YA Book of 2017
Kirkus Top 10 Contemporary Teen Novel of 2017
A 2018 William C. Morris Award Finalist 

Saints and Misfits
 is an unforgettable debut novel that feels like a modern day My So-Called Life…starring a Muslim teen. 

There are three kinds of people in my world:

1. Saints, those special people moving the world forward. Sometimes you glaze over them. Or, at least, I do. They’re in your face so much, you can’t see them, like how you can’t see your nose. 

2. Misfits, people who don’t belong. Like me–the way I don’t fit into Dad’s brand-new family or in the leftover one composed of Mom and my older brother, Mama’s-Boy-Muhammad. 

Also, there’s Jeremy and me. Misfits. Because although, alliteratively speaking, Janna and Jeremy sound good together, we don’t go together. Same planet, different worlds. 

But sometimes worlds collide and beautiful things happen, right? 

3. Monsters. Well, monsters wearing saint masks, like in Flannery O’Connor’s stories. 

Like the monster at my mosque. 

People think he’s holy, untouchable, but nobody has seen under the mask. 

Except me.

Opening Sentence: “I’m in the water.”

Musings:

I loved this book for being about a girl embracing her heritage and ultimately accepting that there is strength is facing the darkness that touched you. Saints and Misfits may have been a light read, but the ending pulls everything together and makes an impactful mark on your heart.

What I loved:

Getting to know a bit about Muslim culture. I don’t really know much about what it means to be Muslim and this was a nice little drop of knowledge for me. Reading stories like this one helps me understand more and see a fragment of the beauty of Muslim culture.

The value of religion and family. Janna falls for Jeremy and in the book she comes to decide weather or not they should pursue anything further then a crush. Her faith matters deeply to her and the question of dating someone outside of her faith being good for her or not is an important question.

Janna’s relationship with the older man she helps take care of. I love how adorable it is that she helps this man and he talks to her and recites poems that she writes down and saves for later reading. This wholesome relationship in the book was so cute to read about.

No one is perfect no matter how put together they seem to be. I love that this novel explores this in both a darker sense and in a lighter way too. You never know what’s going on beneath the surface in others lives and from a glance you can think someone is infallible, but taking the time to know someone you see they are human just like you are. In the darker sense sadly some people are more nefarious and that’s a sad thing to think about.

All in all:

I really enjoyed reading this. It felt real and full of teen drama. What it’s like to deal with internet problems and issues between friends and trying to balance family, grades, and life in general. So much lives inside Saints and Misfits. It was a wonderful read.

About the Author

S. K. Ali* is the author of Saints and Misfits (Simon & Schuster, 2017), a finalist for the American Library Association’s 2018 William C. Morris award. Her debut novel won critical acclaim for its portrayal of an unapologetic Muslim-American teen’s life. Saints and Misfits was featured on several Best Teen Novels of 2017 lists including from Entertainment Weekly, Kirkus Reviews and the New York Public Library. It was also a CBC Canada Reads 2018 longlist title and featured in the Globe and Mail, Toronto Star, NBC News, Huffington Post, Salon, Bustle, CBC Radio’s The Next Chapter, The Social, The Morning Show and other North American media.

Sajidah holds a degree in Creative Writing from York University and has written about Muslim life for various outlets, including the Toronto Star and NBC News. Her second novel, Love From A to Z(Simon & Schuster, 2019), a story about finding love in the time of Islamophobia, was a Today Show pick, a Goodreads Readers Choice Nominee and on several best 2019 YA lists, including Kirkus and Entertainment Weekly’s top ten. Love from A to Zwas the first YA title chosen to be part of the Today Show’s “Read With Jenna” book club.

Her picture book, The Proudest Blue (Little Brown, 2019), co-authored with Ibtihaj Muhammad, debuted on the New York Times Bestseller list and was featured in the New York Times, NPR, Amazon Editor’s Choice, The Today Show, among other media. Along with We Need Diverse Books co-founder, Aisha Saeed, Sajidah is the co-editor of a Middle Grade anthology called, Once Upon an Eid(Amulet, 2020), winner of the Middle East Book Honor Award and a Kirkus and School Library Journal Best Book of 2020.

S. K. Ali lives in Toronto with her family, which includes a very vocal cat named Yeti.

*first name: Sajidah (Saj-da)

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The Unstoppable Wasp by Sam Maggs: A Review

The Unstoppable Wasp by Sam Maggs

My Rating: 5 stars

Cover Rating: 10/10 This a beautiful cover! Showcases Nadia looking powerful and strong in her wasp suit and encapsulates the feeling of G.I.R.L showcasing our strong and intelligent heroine.

Publisher: Disney Book Group

Publish Date: July 14th, 2020

Number of Pages: 272

Received: Netgalley provided an e-arc in exchange for an honest review.

Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis:

Bestselling author Sam Maggs brings Nadia Van Dyne (the Unstoppable Wasp) and her genius friends to life in an all-new original YA novel based on the world of The Unstoppable Wasp Marvel comics series.


Nadia Van Dyne is new to this. New to being a Super Hero, new to being a real friend and stepdaughter (to one of the founding Avengers, no less), new to running her own lab, and new to being her own person, far, far away from the clutches of the Red Room―the infamous brainwashing/assassin-training facility. She’s adjusting well to all of this newness, channeling her energy into being a good friend, a good scientist, and a good Super Hero. It’s taking a toll, though, and Nadia’s finding that there are never quite enough hours in a day. So, when she’s gifted a virtual assistant powered by the most cutting-edge A.I. technology that the world has to offer, Nadia jumps at the opportunity to “do less, experience more”―just like the advertisements say.The device works― really works. Nadia has more time to pursue her passion projects and to focus on new discoveries. But it’s never quite that simple, and not everything is as it seems. This thrilling adventure finds Nadia confronting her past as she tries to shape her future, and learning that sometimes the best way to effect big change is to think small―maybe even supersmall, Unstoppable Wasp-style. She’ll need the help of her genius G.I.R.L. (Genius In action Research Labs) squad and found family to save herself and (not to be too dramatic) the entire world as we know it. Along the way, Nadia discovers that when she teams up with the people who love her the most, they’re totally Unstoppable.

Opening Sentence: “She was going to force Nadia to hurt her, and Nadia hated when people forced her to hurt them.”

Musings:

I adored ‘The Unstoppable Wasp”! It caused me to nerd out completely throughout. I loved every part of it. It’s definitely perfect for that young Marvel lover in your life.

What I loved:

The fun facts! I find it really adorable how every once in a while Nadia would nerd out and explain a concept about science or technology to the reader. It felt like she really and truly adored science and enjoyed sharing little tidbits with the people around her.

The diversity of the cast. Nadia is Russian and gives little tidbits about Russian words and foods and each member of G.I.R.L. are all from different backgrounds and lend a bit of their culture through who they are throughout the story.

Nadia’s struggle with Bi-polar disorder. Everyday is a time-management struggle for Nadia. Managing her mood, being a cool American teen, connecting with the mother who died before she could meet her, coming up with ideas for her like-minds project. Nadia has so much on her plate at all times and managing her mental health at the same time is overwhelming and causes her to struggle with her personal relationships.

How real Nadia feels. Nadia may be a super hero, but who she is inside and her struggles, wants, and desires make her feel like a girl doing her best to follow her dreams and also just enjoy being alive even with life feels overwhelmingly hard.

All in all:

‘The Unstoppable Wasp: Built on Hope’ is a wonderful read that made my nerd heart very happy. It’s beautiful to me. Nadia isn’t 100% succeeding in every area of her life she’s doing her best and she wants to do great for the world. Sometimes you got to rely on the G.I.R.L.’s around you who only want you to succeed. Everyone in this book feels like a family.

As a side note: I super nerded out hard talking for the longest time to my boyfriend about the version of Hank in this novel. I got so much out of this book and it‘ll live inside my heart as one to remember.

About the Author:

Sam Maggs is a bestselling author of books, comics, and video games. She’s been a senior games writer, including work on Marvel’s Spider-Man; the author of many YA and middle-grade books like The Unstoppable Wasp, Con Quest!, Tell No Tales, and The Fangirl’s Guide to the Galaxy; and a comics writer for beloved titles like Marvel Action: Captain Marvel, My Little Pony, and Transformers. She is also an on-air host for networks like Nerdist. A Canadian in Los Angeles, she misses Coffee Crisp and bagged milk.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

Places to donate to Trans communities:

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House of El: Book One: The Shadow Threat: A Review

House of El: Book One: The Shadow Threat by Claudia Gray

Illustrated by. Eric Zawadzki

My Rating: 4 stars!

Cover Rating: 10/10 the art is stunning! Perfect art style for this story I adore all the art!

Publisher: DC Comics

Publish Date: January 5th, 2021

Number of Pages: 208

Received: DC Comics provided a physical copy in exchange for an honest review.

Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis:

Welcome to a brand-new vision of one of comics’ most famous tragedies from New York Times bestselling author Claudia Gray and illustrator Eric Zawadzki. In this first graphic novel in a trilogy, explore Krypton like never before: through the eyes of two teenagers on opposite sides of the same extinction-level event.

Zahn is one of Krypton’s elites: wealthy, privileged, a future leader. Sera is one of Krypton’s soldiers: strong, dedicated, fearless. Their rule-bound society has ordained that their paths should never cross. 

But groundquakes are shaking the planet’s surface. Rebellious uprisings are shaking the populace. Krypton’s top scientists–Jor-El and Lara–conduct a secret experiment that is meant to reform their planet from the cellular level up. Zahn and Sera must join forces to investigate the hidden dangers truly threatening Krypton. In the process, they form a bond that will endure past the end of the world…

Opening Sentence: “Wake up!”

Musings: As someone who has never read any Superman comics and has not watched Superman since I was a kid, I liked that I could still gain a sense of the world and an understanding of events in an easy way. The beautiful art helps immensely and paints the picture of an advanced world that has lost the value of emotion allowing growth and change in society. Everyone is made perfect and emotionless. A cool and calculated mind.

What I Loved:

The idea of the world. This is a society that has progressed so far that minds are made so perfect there is no desire to progress. Due to this, the rich live a life that doesn’t acknowledge that the world is unstable and falling apart. In order to fix this, experiments to give back emotions to a select few begin and through contrast these people find the desire to search for solutions to fix the world they live in that is beginning to break apart.

The art. There’s so much color and action on every page. It depicts the desperation of the world lived in and the comfort of the Rich’s lives. It’s beautiful and I love it.

All in all:

This comic is the start of a fun, action-filled adventure. I’m excited to see how Zahn and Sera band together in order to help save their world and restore their humanity along with it.

THANK YOU ALL FOR READING! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below! 

Places to donate to Trans communities:

Trans Equality 

The Trevor Project

Transgender Law Center 

Some BLM resources: 

Link to bail funds to donate to!

Link to petitions to sign! 

Link to a video to watch if you can’t donate!

My friend started Live Streaming so check them out HERE!! 

Check out my Instagram and Twitter

Check out The Book Raven Poetry website

Checkout The Book Raven Poetry Instagramand Twitter

Check out the Sisters of Twilight website.

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