April 2024 Books

Books Reread

Tom Doherty Associates

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue
CW: abusive relationship, alcohol abuse, assault (physical and sexual), death, depression, drugs, prostitution, sexism, suicide (attempted), war
I reread this one this month as a reference for one of my MFA classes. A woman in 1714 makes a deal with the Dark to live forever. But there’s a catch, no one will ever remember her. Three hundred years later, she meets a boy who does. I’ve already reviewed this one for the blog, and you can read my original review here. I was paying more attention to the construction of the novel this time and the way information was revealed to the reader, which I thought was done quite well. Also, addressing my thoughts from the first time I read it, new editions have fixed the Rembrandt mistake. There’s still a mistake that Addie tries Champagne for the first time twice. And about the ending, I like it more now than I did the first time I read it. I love the art history aspects of the story and the way Addie learns to make her mark, but I will say, she could have been fixing climate change or stopping wars by planting ideas in the brains of powerful people, instead of just inspiring artists to make art about her. Just saying. Also, Julia Whelan reads the audiobook, and she has to be one of my favorite narrators.
3.5/5 forgotten faces

The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan
**Book Hangover Alert
The final installment of this wonderful series! The final smackdown with Gaia. Is it controversial of me to like this series even more than the PJO books? We love to see more Reyna and Nico and their developing friendship. We love Piper and Annabeth’s friendship. We love Nico in a Hawaiian shirt. We love Reyna being made pegasus friend (sobbing). We love Will Solace. We love Leo. We love Percy and Annabeth. This book is just excellent, and I don’t have anything else to say about it.
4.5/5 drops of demigod blood (looking at you, Percy)

New Books Read

Annie Bot by Sierra Greer*
CW: sexual assault, domestic abuse, misogyny
About once a month, I just have the urge to binge read a book. This was the book for this month. I read it in one night while my roommates were at a party. Annie is an android designed to be a girlfriend for her owner Doug. But of course, Annie grows and develops and begins to question her place in the world. I liked the concept and the exploration of power, humanity, and misogyny. This reminded me a little of the Sonmi section of Cloud Atlas and a little of Ex Machina. I think the question of what constitutes personhood is really interesting, and I think the critique of women as objects is cleverly done.
3.5/5 robots

Audible

Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray*
This was not my favorite Victorian novel. It follows Becky Sharp and Amelia Sedley during the Napoleonic Wars. I liked the character of Becky Sharp and the satirizing of British society. It was a bit long, and the audio performance a bit slow (I had to speed it up to 1.2x). It was still enjoyable though.
3/5 cashmere shawls

The Iliad by Homer, tr. Emily Wilson
**Book Hangover
I read Wilson’s translation of The Odyssey last year, so I was excited for The Iliad. The Iliad follows Achilles, Patroclus, and Hector during the Trojan War from the point where Agamemnon offends Achilles who then refuses to fight for the Greeks anymore, through to just after Hector’s death. I think I liked The Iliad more than The Odyssey, even though there really are a lot of names and cataloguing of the Greeks and the Trojans. I really like the poetic form Wilson uses, which lends itself so well to reading aloud, just like the original epic poem was intended. I also loved the more accessible language (Pope’s translation seems needlessly obfuscating). I recommend reading the Translator’s Note first (to get in a properly awed state), then read the poem, then go back and read the Introduction.
4/5 shields of Achilles

The Writer’s Guide to Everyday Life in Regency and Victorian England from 1811-1901 by Kristine Hughes*
I read this book for research for my novel. An every day history book covering the Regency and Victorian periods. It was kind of useful, but I did feel like the majority of the book focused on the 1840s instead of the whole period it says it covers. I was most interested in the 1880s so I didn’t feel like this book was super useful for me. Good background knowledge on the era, though.
2.5/5 pudding recipes

The Story of Art without Men by Katy Hessel***
This book is gorgeous and timely. Named after one of the seminal art history textbooks (The Story of Art), Hessel remedies the dearth of women in that book and shifts the focus to the many woman who have been forgotten or under-appreciated. I didn’t love Hessel’s writing style (a lot of long, overly complicated sentences), and I felt that the book could have been a little more carefully edited. But that said, it’s a wonderful work with beautiful, full-color images that finally gives women artists a little bit of the recognition they deserve.
4/5 women artists

Pushkin Press

Mary and the Birth of Frankenstein by Ann Eekhout
**Book Hangover Alert
One of my current favorite genres is historical novels that imagine something about the life of a real person. This story follows Mary Shelley on the fateful trip to Switzerland where she wrote Frankenstein, and a trip she took to Scotland a few years before, weaving the two together to paint a portrait of the inspiration for one of the most famous horror stories ever written. Frankenstein is one of my favorite classics, and I loved this spooky, dream-like, magical look into the mind of Mary. Not sure how much of Eekhout’s characterization of Percy Bysshe Shelley was invented and how much was based on truth, but I found myself questioning why someone as smart and interesting as Mary wound up with him.
4/5 monsters

HarperCollins

The City of Brass by S. A. Chakraborty***
**Book Hangover Alert
Daevabad Trilogy book 1 of 3
CW: fantasy racism, genocide, child trafficking
This book was excellent. Street thief scam artist Nahri accidentally calls up a djinn while doing a fake exorcism on the streets of Cairo. This results in the discovery that she is part djinn and the ifrit are after her. So the djinn she calls up takes her to Daevabad, a city of djinn, where she has to learn to survive the intrigue of the court. The whole ending was a wild ride and I could barely keep myself from throwing the book against the wall (which would have been bad because I was reading the e-version on my iPad). It was so good. I loved the world and the characters and the intrigue. Super excited to read the rest of the series.
5/5 djinn

Simon and Schuster

What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew: From Fox Hunting to Whist–the Facts of Daily Life in Nineteenth-Century England by Daniel Pool*
I read this one for research as well. It is also a Victorian history book, referencing a lot of things from Victorian novels that are confusing for modern readers. I thought it was a little more useful for my purposes than the Writer’s Guide above, but it could have had more info about death, mourning, and grieving. It does not matter how many Victorian history books I read, I will never understand what English pudding is. (One other interesting thing I learned from this book was that lady’s maids were known as abigails which is actually referenced in Annie Bot–the androids in cleaning and housekeeping mode are called Abigails.)
3/5 types of pudding

*This book only includes straight, white, cis people. The main character of Annie Bot is technically not white (the man who owns Annie the android chooses to model her on his Black ex-girlfriend, but made her skin a few shades lighter). But the book doesn’t really engage much with racism, so I’m still giving it this designation. What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew has one paragraph on gay men.

**Book Hangover Alert indicates the kind of book that will leave you full up on love. Satisfied, but wishing the book never had to end. You’ll be laying on the floor with no idea what to do with yourself (other friends have called this feeling Good Book Depression or say that certain books necessitate Floor Time). This is the kind of book that gets its teeth in you and won’t let go easily. After the last page you’ll be thinking about this book for a long time. You’ll bother all your friends trying to get them to read it so that you won’t be alone in your Hangover.

***This book is part of my Books for a Social Conscience series! Read The Story of Art without Men to acknowledge the amazing contribution to art that women, trans, and nonbinary people have made. Read The City of Brass for an amazing Middle Eastern inspired fantasy with some LGBTQIA+ rep.

Reads marked as part of the Books for a Social Conscience series will regularly address topics like race and racism, colonialism and post-colonialism, LGBTQIA+ experience, feminism, BIPOC experience, social and political issues, history, identity, class, disability experience, immigration, gun violence, poverty, colorism, environmentalism, and more! The goal of these books is to diversify the stories we’re reading, grow our empathy for those who are different from us, and amplify voices who are often silenced.

March 2024 Books

Books Reread

The House of Hades by Rick Riordan
**Book Hangover Alert
Still really enjoying rereading these. Not going to blurb this one because spoilers. Still in awe of Uncle Rick. I really admire the way he had POV chapters from all 7 main characters and it worked. I like the way each section from a certain character had it’s own mini character arc within the whole. Also love my baby Nico, who must be protected at all costs.
4.5/5 dead legionnaires

New Books Read

Tor Publishing Group

Ebony Gate by Ken Bebelle and Julia Vee
The Phoenix Hoard book 1 of 2
This one was fun. I read it for my world building class. Emiko is just trying to leave her bloody history in the past, but when a magical debt is called in by a death god, she must take up her sword again to save her new home, San Francisco’s Chinatown. I enjoyed the world and the family politics Vee and Bebelle set up.
3/5 swords

Tor Publishing Group

The First Bright Thing by J.R. Dawson***
**Book Hangover Alert
CW: domestic violence, alcoholism
Full disclosure, J.R. Dawson is one of the professors for my program who taught the world building class I keep mentioning. In 1926 the Ringmaster, Rin, keeps her circus of Sparks (individuals with powers) one step ahead of the shadow chasing her from her past, while trying to prevent the next Great War that she and Mauve, a Spark who can see the future, can see coming. Rin must find a way to protect her circus and all those who love her and learn to believe herself worthy of that love. I loved the world of the circus and the nonlinear storytelling and the found family, queer vibes.
4/5 illusions

HarperCollins

This Appearing House by Ally Malinenko*
CW: cancer
Once again just have to say that middle grade authors get so much respect from me. They are so important, and everyone should read middle grade books. (I read this one for world building as well.) A house appears at the end of Jac’s street out of nowhere and that combined with Jac’s shaking hands and headaches makes her afraid that her cancer could be returning, 5 years after diagnosis and successful treatment. Jac and her best friend enter the house on a dare, but this isn’t your average haunted house. Jac is sure it’s trying to tell her something. But can she figure it out before it kills her? This book is so important for any kids (or even adults really) living with or recovered from cancer. I cried. I think the percentage of middle grade books that make me cry is higher than the percentage of adult books that make me cry.
4/5 mourners

Apsara Engine by Bishakh Som***
Delightfully strange and queer. This is a collection of graphic short stories. They are very weird but also very good. The art is also lovely.
3/5 odd little creatures

Knopf

Interview with a Vampire by Anne Rice
The Vampire Chronicles book 1 of 13
CW: slavery, pedophilia vibes?
I can’t say whether or not I liked this book. It was kind of a slog to get through and I was wishing it was over for most of it. But now that it is over…I sort of want to read the next book? I sort of want to see the movie or the new show? I can’t stop thinking about it? The vampire Louis narrates his life story from his conversion to a vampire in the late 1700s until present day to a human journalist. It’s kinda gay (but could be gayer, tbh). It’s kinda unhinged.
3/5 fangs

Books I did not finish

Islam, Arabs, and the Intelligent World of the Jinn by Amira El-Zein
I feel bad saying I didn’t finish this because I didn’t stop because it wasn’t good. I was reading it for research on a potential project. For now the project is shelved, but I may continue it some time in the future, in which case I’ll probably return to this book. I did learn a lot about the Muslim concept of the jinn in comparison to humans and it was very interesting.

*This book only includes straight, white, cis people.

**Book Hangover Alert indicates the kind of book that will leave you full up on love. Satisfied, but wishing the book never had to end. You’ll be laying on the floor with no idea what to do with yourself (other friends have called this feeling Good Book Depression or say that certain books necessitate Floor Time). This is the kind of book that gets its teeth in you and won’t let go easily. After the last page you’ll be thinking about this book for a long time. You’ll bother all your friends trying to get them to read it so that you won’t be alone in your Hangover.

***This book is part of my Books for a Social Conscience series! Read The First Bright Thing for historical fiction that doesn’t erase queer people. Read Apsara Engine for trans voices in graphic storytelling. Read Gone Wolf for a better understanding of racial trauma.

Reads marked as part of the Books for a Social Conscience series will regularly address topics like race and racism, colonialism and post-colonialism, LGBTQIA+ experience, feminism, BIPOC experience, social and political issues, history, identity, class, disability experience, immigration, gun violence, poverty, colorism, environmentalism, and more! The goal of these books is to diversify the stories we’re reading, grow our empathy for those who are different from us, and amplify voices who are often silenced.

February 2024 Books

February was kind of a reading slump for me.

Books Reread

The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan
**Book Hangover Alert
Heroes of Olympus book 3 of 5
This book is just so excellent. I really enjoy the first two books, but this one, when the team is all assembled? *Chef’s kiss* Now that the seven Greek and Roman heroes are all assembled, the quest to defeat Gaia can begin in earnest. This book focuses on the team’s first task, following the Mark of Athena to recover the Athena Parthenos. I’m really impressed by Riordan’s ability to navigate POV with so many important characters. I’ve been thinking a lot about craft lately and his books are just so well structured from a craft standpoint.
10/5 pairs of Chinese handcuffs

New Books Read

Hodder Children’s Books

The Arrival by Shaun Tan***
This is a lovely little graphic novel told in only pictures. It follows our protagonist as he moves to an unfamiliar, fantastical land and has to adapt to new cultures and customs, make new friends, and not lose himself along the way. It’s so lovely and heartwarming and the way the art tells the story is really impressive. I also love the world Tan creates and all the little creatures that populate it.
3.5/5 lil creatures

Tor Books

Middlegame by Seanan McGuire
**Book Hangover Alert
It was so hard to fulfill my obligations while I was reading this book because I just wanted to keep reading it. I love McGuire’s Wayward Children books, but honestly, this book is on another level. It is so good. Alchemist James Reed is attempting to build the Doctrine of Ethos, believed by alchemists to be the fundamental force of the universe. But when he creates two children to embody the Doctrine, he fails to take into account their humanity. Roger and Dodger were created for a purpose, but must find their own way. I feel like that was a very inadequate blurb, so just ignore it and go read the book. This book also has ace rep, which we love. I see you Dodger. Also, not really important, but I learned so much about Hands of Glory? And they are way cooler and have way more lore than JK Rowling made it seem like in Harry Potter.
5/5 timelines

Tethered to Other Stars by Elisa Stone Leahy***
**Book Hangover Alert
CW: bullying, microaggressions, racism
Another absolute banger. I read this for my world building class this quarter and it was fantastic. Middle grade novels do not get enough praise. Wendy is a middle schooler trying to fit in to a new school, keeping her head down and avoiding the notice of ICE, when Luz, an undocumented immigrant, takes sanctuary at the church near Wendy’s house and refuses to be deported. Wendy faces bullying, injustice, and the struggles of making new friends. This book tackles a lot of really big issues in such an empathetic, human, and approachable way.
5/5 telescopes

National Geographic Books

Blind Man’s Bluff by James Tate Hill***
*
This is a fascinating memoir about a man who lost his sight as a teenager but continued to pretend that he could see much better than he could. The story follows his journey through internalized ableism to self-acceptance. I enjoyed this. I thought it was really interesting, though I do feel like Hill could have grappled a little more explicitly with internalized ableism and societal ableism. By the end of the book, it’s understood that he’s come to terms with his own blindness, but I guess I would have appreciated more of a critique of ableism. Hill made some interesting POV choices, telling a couple of the chapters in second person. While I think that was a cool choice and it let me as a reader feel I was experiencing what he did, it did get a little tiresome to read after a while. I think it may have been better to restrict that POV choice to the prologue and tell the rest in first person. But that’s probably just personal preference.
3.5/5 screen readers

Before the Borderless: Dialogues with the Art of Cy Twombly by Dean Rader
**Book Hangover Alert
This book is a collection of ekphrastic poetry on the art of Cy Twombly. When I was the Editor-in-Chief of the Rappahannock Review, we published a poem by Rader that appears in this book, though the version in this book is revised a little. I’ve been thinking a lot about ekphrasis lately as I’m getting ready to teach a course on the interplay between image and text. This whole book was so good. I wouldn’t say I’m a huge fan of Twombly’s art, but Rader’s poems bring them a lot more meaning and dimension for me. And conversely, when I look at the art, the poems gain new meaning as well. I’m really impressed by Rader’s use of white space and enjambment, and I highly recommend this book to poetry and art lovers.
4/5 paintings

Broadway Books

A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson*
My dad has been bugging me to read this book for forever, and now I finally have. It gives a good background for understanding Western science up to 2003. I prefer Bryson’s travel writing, just because I’m generally more interested in that, but this book did have some good general knowledge things that I’m glad I know now. It was published in 2003, though, so some things are now outdated. I would personally have been more interested in learning about women’s contributions to science and scientific inquiry form non-Western countries, but I guess that wasn’t the goal of this book.
3/5 male scientists

Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchett*
City watch book 1 of 8
Discworld book 8 of 41
It’s always a good day to read a Terry Pratchett book. The Night Watch, led by Captain Vimes, is a bit of a joke in Anhk-Morpork, capital of the Discworld, but when a mysterious Brotherhood begins summoning dragons as part of a plot to put a puppet king on the throne, Vimes has got to shape up and get to the bottom of it. This book has all of the trademarks of a wonderful Terry Pratchett novel, plus some cute swamp dragons.
3.5/5 dragons

*This book only includes straight, white, cis people.

**Book Hangover Alert indicates the kind of book that will leave you full up on love. Satisfied, but wishing the book never had to end. You’ll be laying on the floor with no idea what to do with yourself (other friends have called this feeling Good Book Depression or say that certain books necessitate Floor Time). This is the kind of book that gets its teeth in you and won’t let go easily. After the last page you’ll be thinking about this book for a long time. You’ll bother all your friends trying to get them to read it so that you won’t be alone in your Hangover.

***This book is part of my Books for a Social Conscience series! Read The Arrival for a visual telling of an immigration story. Read Tethered to Other Stars to learn more about undocumented immigration and racism and microaggressions as they affect children and families. Though I feel like it could have done more, Read Blind Man’s Bluff to learn more about internalized ableism and to learn more about an experience of blindness.

Reads marked as part of the Books for a Social Conscience series will regularly address topics like race and racism, colonialism and post-colonialism, LGBTQIA+ experience, feminism, BIPOC experience, social and political issues, history, identity, class, disability experience, immigration, gun violence, poverty, colorism, environmentalism, and more! The goal of these books is to diversify the stories we’re reading, grow our empathy for those who are different from us, and amplify voices who are often silenced.

January 2024 Books

January’s books set a pretty high standard for the year. I hope all the books I read this year are as good.

New Books Read

Macmillan Publishers

The Hundred Years’ War on Palestine by Rashid Khalidi***
CW: war
If you’re trying to educate yourself on the Israel/Palestine conflict, this is a good one. Khalidi begins his history in 1917 after the break up of the Ottoman empire and traces the impacts of various outside forces on the region. Khaldi breaks his survey int 6 declarations of war, or resolutions or accords that resulted in the continued colonization and oppression of the Palestinian people. This book has so much information in it. I think my main problem in reading it was that I didn’t have much background knowledge of the region. This wouldn’t be the book I would start with, if you’re trying to learn about Palestine, but it does have tons of good information.
3/5 declarations of war

Make Me a World

Lucha of the Night Forest by Tehlor Kay Mejia
Lucha of the Night Forest book 1 of 2
CW: addiction, substance abuse
This was a nice little dark fantasy. After Lucha loses everything, she makes a pact with a sinister god to destroy the thing that has destroyed her city, her mother, and now her sister: a drug called olvida. But there’s more to the forest–and to Lucha–than meets the eye. With the help of a priestess of the forest goddess, Lucha discovers her own powers and the secrets of the gods. This was enjoyable. I liked the world. I’m not sure it needs to be a series. I did feel like we could have solved all the problems in one book if we’d tried harder.
3.5/5 hallucinogenic hares

Once Upon a Broken Heart by Stephanie Garber
Once upon a Broken Heart book 1 of 3
This one was so fun. Just before the wedding of her lover and her step-sister, broken-hearted Evangeline Fox makes a wish to crafty Fate, Jacks, the Prince of Broken Hearts. This foolish wish sets off a chain of events and intrigues that span continents as Evangeline tries to find her happily ever after. This book takes place in the same world as Caraval, and I love the world Garber created. It’s also nice to see Jacks again. (How can a character with zero morals be so lovable??) Garber is also excellent at describing clothing. I want every outfit described in the book. Excited to read the rest!
4/5 gorgeous outfits

Felix Ever After by Kacen Calendar***
**Book Hangover Alert
CW: anti-trans prejudice, dead-naming, misgendering, body dysphoria
I love that I read a book whose title included the words “once upon” and then immediately read a book with a title including the words “ever after.” I just think it’s neat. Felix is a trans high schooler trying to find love and focus on his summer art portfolio for his elite high school. But Felix is being harassed online and in school by an anonymous fellow student at his school. Determined to figure out who’s behind it and get revenge, Felix is blind to the love that surrounds him. This book was so wonderful. I read the first 50 pages and then the next day I read the rest of it in one go. I could not put it down. The end was so healing and wonderful.
5/5 self-portraits


G. P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers

Beasts of Prey by Ayana Gray
Beasts of Prey 1 of 3
I wanted to like this book and I didn’t and I couldn’t really figure out why. After a terrible fire at the Night Zoo, indentured servant Koffi and disgraced initiate Ekon must work together to track down a terrifying beast in the impenetrable Greater Jungle. But they each have their own agenda and, worse, so does a suspiciously cult-like religious order of warriors Ekon was expelled from, who are also looking for the beast. This book has an interesting world, character development, a pretty map in the front cover. I don’t know why I didn’t like it. I just didn’t really want to keep reading it. I got to the end of every chapter, and I was like, I could be done now. Maybe I just wasn’t the target audience (which is okay!). I did finish it because I didn’t feel it was fair to give up when I didn’t even know why I didn’t like it. But I won’t be reading the rest of them.
3/5 jungle beasts

Pan Macmillan UK

In the Lives of Puppets by TJ Klune
**Book Hangover Alert
Obsessed with TJ Klune. I loved The House on the Cerulean Sea, and I love this book too. Think Pinocchio + Wall-e, with a dash of Frankenstein–if Frankenstein had loved his monster instead of fearing him. Obsessed. Victor grows up in the woods, the only human raised by three robots on the edge of civilization. After Victor’s father (also a robot) is destroyed and taken to the city, Victor and his robot friends must go on a journey to save him–and also the world. We love to see asexual representation, and this book has it. For me, there was exactly the right amount of romance in this book (which I do realize means less than most people seem to want). Also I want to say that the narrator of the audiobook is 10/10. This book is a warm hug. It’s hilarious. It’s poignant. It’s devastating. It’s beautiful. I adored it.
5/5 robots

Tor Books

Light from Uncommon Stars by Ryka Aoki***
**Book Hangover Alert
CW: anti-trans prejudice, misgendering, body dysmorphia, dead naming
This book was a wild ride from start to finish. Shizuka Satomi, a famous violin teacher, is looking for her seventh and final student, whose soul will complete the bargain Shizuka made with Hell. Shizuka finds Katrina, a young trans violinist, who has been forced to run away from home. But both Shizuka and Katrina get a little more than they bargained for and discover the secret to escaping Hell. There are also aliens building a Stargate in a giant donut. This book is just so good. Also a warm hug. So healing and lovely. The research Aoki had to do for this book just astounds me. And don’t read this book on an empty stomach. The food descriptions are incredible.
5/5 donuts

GMP

Mother Clap’s Molly House by Rictor Norton***
CW: homophobia, rape, pedophilia
I’ve been trying to get my hands on a copy of this book for ages, and I finally got it through inter-library loans at Drexel. Norton’s book explores the formation of a gay subculture in England between 1700 and 1830. This includes the examination of molly houses, or the first gay clubs. It was so fascinating. There’s so little research out there on molly houses, so I’m glad I finally got to read this book.
3.5/5 molly houses

Lady Tan’s Circle of Women by Lisa See***
**Book Hangover Alert
CW: foot binding, misogyny
This book was stunning. A sweeping historical fiction that follows the life of Lady Tan Yunxian, a woman doctor who really lived during the late 1400s and early 1500s in Imperial China. Though we have some documentation about Lady Tan, much about her life remains unknown. See creates an incredibly vivid nuanced portrait of Yunxian and the lives of women in this time period. It’s a wonderful story of women’s friendship and how woman can thrive in a society designed for and by men. I will say the descriptions of foot binding were very difficult to read. I’m in pain just thinking about it. Also so impressed by the amount of research See did.
4.5/5 remedies

DC Comics

V for Vendetta by Alan Moore and David Lloyd
CW: torture, genocide, experimentation on humans, rape
Randomly decided to read this because I was thinking about a quote from the movie. This series of comics follows V, a mysterious masked vigilante as he works for vengeance and anarchy in a near-future Great Britain. It’s actually surprisingly different from the movie. I guess serialized comics are a much different shape than a 2 hour movie. I know Alan Moore also hated the movie. The comics are less about the people organizing to overthrow the government and more about vengeance and anarchy. The government men in the comics in general had more nuance (although I couldn’t keep them all straight), and it was disappointing that two of the five female characters in the comics didn’t get to be in the movie. Moore and Lloyd’s comic was interesting in that it came out in the 80s and 90s and it had more than just one type of woman. It’s not perfect, but it’s surprisingly good in it’s female representation. Also the oppressive authoritarian government thing, unfortunately still relevant. One more thing, but it’s a spoiler. Read More: SPOILERS AHEAD

I’m not sure I can forgive V for torturing Evey, even if it was to teach her something, “to free her” from the oppression in her mind, even if she forgave him. However, I’m not sure the comics really ask me to forgive him. The movie does, and I think that’s why I’ve always felt weird about it. But in the comics, I don’t feel like I’m asked to excuse V’s behavior. He’s not a good guy. He’s bringing down an oppressive regime, yes, but he’s not noble. Or at least, that was my interpretation.


3.5/5 Guy Fawkes masks

***This book is part of my Books for a Social Conscience series! Read The Hundred Years’ War on Palestine for an in-depth look at conflict in the region. Read Felix Ever After for a heartwarming LGBTQIA+ love story. Read Light from Uncommon Stars for a warm hug of a book that deals with LGBTQIA+ themes. Read Mother Clap’s Molly House to learn more about gay and lesbian history in England. Read Lady Tan’s Circle of Women for an empowering tale of women in Imperial China.

Reads marked as part of the Books for a Social Conscience series will regularly address topics like race and racism, colonialism and post-colonialism, LGBTQIA+ experience, feminism, BIPOC experience, social and political issues, history, identity, class, disability experience, immigration, gun violence, poverty, colorism, environmentalism, and more! The goal of these books is to diversify the stories we’re reading, grow our empathy for those who are different from us, and amplify voices who are often silenced.

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