Comics · Contemporary

Sometimes, it takes a different kind of courage to level up

When Svetlana Chmakova’s Awkward (which I wrote about here) was released in 2015, it renewed my love for comics for middle graders. And when I found about Brave, it went immediately on my mental TBR list. Brave is set in the same school, and we see a lot of the kids that were in Awkward, but it focuses on the Art Club’s Jensen. Continue reading “Sometimes, it takes a different kind of courage to level up”


Fish Girl by Donna Jo Napoli & David Wiesner

Fish Girl is a mermaid living in captivity in a boardwalk aquarium. Her only friends are the other creatures in the aquarium, and the owner, who tells her stories at the end of each work day if she “behaves” – that is, she shows herself only in flashes, enough to excite an audience, but not enough for them to consider that she might be a real mermaid. Humans would hurt her if they knew the truth, she’s told. But one day she meets a young human girl who only wants to be friends. They meet in secret sometimes, and after awhile Fish Girl begins to wonder what it would be like to leave the aquarium. Continue reading “Fish Girl by Donna Jo Napoli & David Wiesner”


Just So Happens, Skim & The Shadow Hero

Just So Happens by Fumio Obata

I was recommended this title because of the London/Tokyo/Kyoto setting, but I ended up loving it because of the gorgeous watercolour art. Focusing on Yumiko, a Japanese woman who had been living in London for years, and her visit to Japan upon her father’s death. The story is told in a simple, subtle manner, slowly unveiling her relationship with her parents and siblings. In the beginning, Yumiko seemed disconnected from Japan – she would avert her eyes when passing by other Japanese people, as her English boyfriend observed. She didn’t talk a lot about home, either. Once she reached Tokyo, however, we get to see her memories – past conversations with her father, who seemed to wish she would take on more feminine, filial attributes (and get married/stay close). Continue reading “Just So Happens, Skim & The Shadow Hero”

Comics · Malaysiana

My Giant Geek Boyfriend by Fishball

Yet another comic for the #AsianLitBingo! And another Malaysian one – this time featuring a Chinese Malaysian author/main character.

This book is a compilation of comics by Fishball, who (mostly) chronicles the ups and downs of being in a relationship with a man who is 30cm taller than her – which makes him way, way taller than the average Malaysian. The comics are all bilingual with Chinese and English text, and are freaking hilarious. According to the comic, Fishball is of average Malaysian height, which makes her a little taller than me, but I relate to all the bits about being inconvenienced by one’s (lack of) height. Continue reading “My Giant Geek Boyfriend by Fishball”


Dreamin’ Sun Vol. 1 by Ichigo Takano

Shimana Kameko felt like she no longer belonged at home – ever since her father remarried, he was utterly devoted to his new bride, and now that she had a new brother she felt more invisible than before. Deciding to run away from home, she skipped school to think about what to do next, when she met a strange man who claimed that he would let her rent out a room at his place for cheap if she fulfilled three conditions. And that was how Shimana ended up in an odd household with Taiga, Asahi and Zen. Continue reading “Dreamin’ Sun Vol. 1 by Ichigo Takano”


#NCBD: Comics I Read Last Week (May 13th)


America #3 by Gabby Rivera & Joe Quinones

America… did not impress me. At least not the first two issues. I love America Chavez, and I liked the art as well as a lot of the ideas that the story was putting across, but the dialogue felt cheesy, and the story rather choppy. If America wasn’t one of my favourite characters I might not have continued, but I’m glad I did, because this third issue is SO MUCH BETTER. There are still things I might take issue with, and I still wish this series would give us more of who America is when she ISN’T superhero-ing, and is a just college student, but overall, I enjoyed this issue. I loved her interaction with mohawk!Storm most of all, and the bit about her childhood. Continue reading “#NCBD: Comics I Read Last Week (May 13th)”