Comics · Monthly Books

January’s Books (plus ramblings on Civil War II: The Oath)

BOOKS READ IN JANUARY 2017

Young Adult
* Heartless, Marissa Meyer
* Carve the Mark, Veronica Roth
* Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit, Jaye Robin Brown
* True Letters From A Fictional Life, Kenneth Logan
* Thick As Thieves, Megan Whalen Turner
* You Know Me Well, Nina LaCour & David Levithan
* Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares, Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

Comics
* The Unbelievable Gwenpool Vol. 1: Believe It, Christopher Hastings & Danilo Beyruth
* Doctor Strange Vol. 2: The Last Days of Magic, Jason Aaron & James Robinson
* Spider-Man: Miles Morales Vol.2, Brian Michael Bendis & Sara Pichelli
* Lumberjanes Vol. 1: Beware the Kitten Holy, Noelle Stevenson, Grace Ellis, Shannon Watters, & Brooke Allen
* Lumberjanes Vol. 2: Friendship to the Max, Noelle Stevenson, Grace Ellis, Shannon Watters, & Brooke Allen
* 3gatsu no Lion (5), Umino Chica
* Hikaru no Go (1) – (17), (19) – (23), Hotta Yumi & Obata Takeshi

SINGLE ISSUES READ IN JANUARY 2017

Marvel
* Avengers #1
* Avengers #2
* Avengers #3
* Avengers #1.MU
* Champions #4
* Civil War II: The Oath #1
* Hawkeye #1
* Hawkeye #2
* Hulk #1
* Hulk #2
* Inhumans vs. X-Men #2
* Invincible Iron Man #3
* Marvel Zombies #1 (Secret Wars)
* Ms. Marvel #14
* Patsy Walker, A.K.A. Hellcat! #14
* Rocket Raccoon #1
* Rocket Raccoon #2
* Scarlet Witch #14
* Spider-Man/Deadpool #1.MU
* Spider-Man: Miles Morales #12
* Spider-Man: Miles Morales #13

DC/DC Young Animal
* Shade, the Changing Girl #3
* Supergirl: Being Super #1

Boom/Ka-Boom
* Mega Princess #2
* Mega Princess #3

If I had any reading goal for the year, it was to pace myself. So far, I’m not really doing too well in that department. Besides all the YA I’ve been reading, I was also listening to Yoon Ha Lee’s Ninefox Gambit, which I’m currently 40mins away to completing, so it’ll be in the February list. I am probably going to write mini-rambles on each and every one of the YA books in my newsletter later so right now I’m going to say that I wish Thick As Thieves is being published earlier in the year because I REALLY WANT TO TALK ABOUT IT but I also don’t want to spoil anyone so I’m going to be biting my lips til May. Carve the Mark is really enjoyable, and I know there’s a lot of talk about it being racist, and while I had a moment while reading it when I thought, “some people are going to have issues with this”, personally, I didn’t. I think Sabaa Tahir’s thoughts on the matter pretty much sums up my own initial thoughts, so I won’t be ranting about it… yet. (Still gathering my thoughts and having a long think over it!)

I had been keeping You Know Me Well in my TBR because I didn’t want to have no new Nina LaCours to read, and since We Are Okay is coming out soon enough, I figured that it was time to pull it out of my pile. I really enjoyed it, and a lot of it reminded me of my own teen years – closer to my experiences than most YA I read, I guess – but it isn’t my favourite LaCour or Levithan. Which made me want to pick up Dash & Lily again, because Cohn & Levithan is my favourite Levithan collaboration, even if I’m a bigger fan of John Green and Nina LaCour. And it was (Christmas) magic, which is funny because I was reading it throughout our Chinese New Year celebrations. And then, for good measure, I watched the Naomi & Ely movie on Netflix. (Which made me want to reread that next, but I’m not going to… because I’m still in Malacca and my book is in KL.)

One of the January weekends, I was catching up with the 3gatsu no Lion anime. It made me reread volume 5, which was the last volume I purchased (I kind of stopped purchasing manga in general after that), which made me feel in need of (1) Go and (2) cheering up, so I decided to reread volume 1 of Hikaru no Go. Of course, I should have learned this ages ago – one does not simply reread a single volume of Hikaru no Go. I went from volume to volume, skipping only the side story collection, and by the time I knew it I’ve read everything up to the last volume in a single sitting. What you won’t see in the list of books above is that for two days after, I read nothing but Hikaru no Go fanfiction, because I couldn’t let go of the story yet.

And then there are the single issues… I had a “maximum 3 titles” policy when it came to my pull-list last year. Somehow, that has changed. Probably have something to do with the fact that Jennifer Walters is now Hulk, and Riri Williams took over Invincible Iron Man, and Kate Bishop is the Hawkeye of Hawkeye… you get the picture. When characters I love get solo titles, I’m going to throw my money at Marvel. (When Kamala Khan left Avengers, I had every intention to quit reading Avengers and pick up Champions, and I did, but I was sent free copies of #1, and after starting it I couldn’t stop >_>).  And – I am in the minority, I know, but I really dislike Supergirl. HOWEVER, I love Mariko Tamaki’s writing so much that I picked up her Supergirl title, and I’m absolutely loving it so far.

I also had no intention on following the Inhumans vs. X-Men or Monsters Unleashed events, but again, I received the first issues, and liked them enough that I’m continuing (or may continue, in the case of MU). I don’t know why I thought I wouldn’t like Monsters Unleashed! Superheroes beating up kaiju instead of other superheroes for once, that’s amazing really, when you think of the last couple of Marvel events.

Enough with the stuff I love. I want to talk about one particular comic that left a bad taste in my mouth – Civil War II: The Oath #1. I already hate the whole Civil War storyline – I hate hero vs. hero plots in general, but this one in particular did not make much sense to me. No one seems in character. The Carol Danvers in the CWII storyline is nothing like the Carol Danvers I’ve been reading. And, okay, I hate how this event affected Kamala Khan’s life. I’ve also been staying away from the Hydra!Cap stories, because I hated the idea of it, and I’m just waiting for that bit to be undone. And with CWII: The Oath, well…

civilwarii

It hurts. I know this is Hydra!Cap bullshit, and I know that this isn’t the “real” Steve Rogers and not a view that will be widespread throughout Marvel comics (I hope), and I know this is even timely, but it hurts. Because there was a reason why Uncanny X-Men made such an impact on me, growing up. There’s a reason why these comics resonated with so many people who are different in any way, who aren’t straight white men. And now we have STEVE ROGERS saying this. I just can’t – I need more time to process this, too.

This morning I woke up to the news that this particular comic is kicking off the new Marvel event: Secret Empire. From comments I’ve read, the dudebro fans are saying it’s “left-wing propaganda”. I don’t see it that way at all. I don’t see how you can read anything by Nick Spencer lately, and think anything but the opposite. And the fact that he’s helming this new event makes it even worse. The thing is, I gave up on mainstream superhero stuff sometime in the mid to late nineties, because of the early nineties Rob Liefeld-style stuff (which only reached me via secondhand stores much later). G. Willow Wilson and Ms. Marvel brought me back. And now, it kind of feels like Nick Spencer is trying to run me out again.

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