Review: Who Was Alexander the Great by Robin A.H. Waterfield, Kathryn Waterfield, Andrew Thomson (Illustrator)


May Contain Spoilers

I love anything having to do with Alexander the Great (it must be because of Bucephalas), so when I saw Who Was Alexander the Great at the library, I grabbed it. I have read books in this series before, and I really like how the subject matter is presented. The information is given in easily digestible chapters for even the most reluctant reader, and there are many illustrations to break up the text.

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Manga Review: A Bride’s Story V 5 by Kaoru Mori


May Contain Spoilers

Most of this volume centers around the twins’ wedding. They are, of course, their usual impulsive, self-indulgent selves, and I felt bad for Sarm and Sami. I don’t think the boys are going to know what hit them as they are ordered through life by their new demanding brides. To give the girls some depth, they finally realize that by marrying, they are effectively leaving their family and joining a new one instead. Oh, how the bitter tears of two young women who finally, FINALLY, realize that their lives have been changed more than they stopped and thought about. Lucky for them, their parents only live a short walk away.

The volume ended with Amir and Karluk. Amir finds an injured hawk, brings it home, and attempts to nurse it back to health. I thought this was a really depressing chapter especially after the jovial celebration in the beginning of the volume. As Amir tries desperately to heal the bird, Karluk starts feeling a bit neglected. He even seeks advice for dealing with his wayward wife. Amir has been hunting for the hawk nearly every day, and patiently hand feeding it morsels from her kills. When Amir realizes that she’s made Karluk feel bad, she is dismayed that she caused her husband distress. Ugh. Then I started thinking what is he going to do when they have kids?

The wedding celebration was an extravagant, jubilant affair, for everyone but the brides. Forced to sit in their ceremonial finery, for what the Laila and Leily must have left like absolute days,  they finally coerce Sami and Sarm into stealing food for them, and helping them to escape from their confinement in the house. It did seem rather unfair that the girls didn’t get to partake in their own wedding feast, but I despaired at them ever curbing their energetic behavior. Until, of course, they realized that they no longer had a place in their childhood home. Let the waterworks begin. Both Sami and Sarm were at their wits end trying to soothe their distraught wives. Poor guys.

Once again, the illustrations are simply stunning, and this series should be read for no other reason than to pour over Kaoru Mori’s highly detailed and exquisite artwork.

This is the last print edition of the series that I’ll review. The library only has one more volume, but I would rather read the digital edition when it is released in October.

Grade: 4.25 stars

Review copy borrowed from my local library

About the book:

Acclaimed creator Kaoru Mori’s tale of life on the nineteenth-century Silk Road takes on an air of celebration as, at long last, Laila and Leily’s wedding day arrives! But the marriage ceremony may be even more taxing for the girls than their search for a pair of grooms. Sitting still and silent as their guests celebrate and eat is a trial that will push the girls’ patience to its limit, not to mention that of Sami and Sarm! As the twins finally make their vows and commit themselves to their husbands, the gravity of the moment finally sets in. Though they have dreamed of marriage for years, only now do they realize that everything in their lives is about to change…
Crafted in painstaking detail, Ms. Mori’s pen breathes life into the scenery and architecture of the period in this heart-warming, slice-of-life tale that is at once wholly exotic, yet familiar and accessible through the everyday lives of the characters she has created.

Manga Review: A Bride’s Story V 3 & 4 by Kaoru Mori

May Contain Spoilers

In Volumes 3 and 4, the focus of A Bride’s Story shifts to Mr. Smith and the villagers he comes in to contact with on his journey to Ankara. Amir and Karluk make cameo appearances, so we don’t completely lose sight of them. Amir’s family has fallen on hard times because of their failure to steal her back and marry her off to another tribe, and I can’t say I felt too bad for them, even if Amir did.

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Manga Review: A Bride’s Story V 2 by Kaoru Mori @yenpress


May Contain Spoilers

Wow. This series is stunning so far. The hardcover presentation is top-notch, and the art is gorgeous. The age difference between Karluk and Amir didn’t even bother me as much this time around. The entire volume was engaging, and I couldn’t put it down.

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Manga Review: Blade of the Immortal Omnibus 1 by Hiroaki Samura @DarkHorseComics


May Contain Spoilers

I was first introduced to this series when Dark Horse was releasing the floppies over 20 years ago (!). That was before licensed manga was released right to left, but instead was flipped to read left to right. Blade of the Immortal was cut up and the panels arranged in an order more palatable to Western readers at the time. Boy how things have changed! Instead of taking the opportunity to release these omnibuses in their original layout, the publisher choose to keep everything the same, and just bound three volumes together for each omnibus. Since I read a digital review copy, I unfortunately can’t weigh in on production quality, other than to say that the digital review copy was so clean and crisp, and a joy to read, that I wish that they releasing this in digital format as well as paper.

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Review: Dread Nation by Justina Ireland


May Contain Spoilers

I am a sucker for zombie books, so when I heard about Dread Nation, I was all over it. This is set in an alternate America, when the dead started walking – and eating the living – during Gettysburg. That kind of put the brakes on the strife between the States, and they settled the Civil War to band together and fight the dead. Jane, the protagonist, was born just before the dead rose up, and she hasn’t known any other life than one that involves fighting the undead.

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Review: Blood and Sand by C.V Wyk @torbooks


May Contain Spoilers

When I saw that Blood and Sand had a Roman setting, and features gladiators, I was all over it. I love stories set in Ancient Rome, and I was intrigued to read this take on the Spartacus legend. While the protagonist had a habit of not acting in her best interests, I found this a solid read.

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