Monday, August 24, 2015


Man, I haven't made a post here in ages. But I have the urge to write my thoughts on something I read, and this is still a thing that exists, so here we go.
After seeing a post that piqued my interest, I decided to check out a manga called Gamma. It's only 20 chapters, so here's my thoughts:
I like the concept: it's a world where superheroes of all types - typical "tights and capes" heroes, sentai teams, magical girls, and so on - exist and fight their respective enemies. The main focus is on the Earth Defense Force and two sisters who act as counselors and support to heroes and ex-heroes, due to the stress of the heroing life and the loss of purpose they feel after being depowered. One of them also happens to be a former magical girl, who lost most of her powers not long ago.
The way it plays on various hero tropes is neat, and it has homages to several different types of superhero and monster movies. There's one scene that's pretty much that universe's equivalent of the Battle of New York from The Avengers, complete with its own version of Iron Man, Cap, Hulk, and... Spider-Man.
Actually, the Spider-Man expy, named Hornetman, is one of my favorites.
Another scene I particularly like is where they provide counseling for the Sixth Ranger of that universe's sentai team. It lampshades a lot of the usual sixth ranger themes and sentai tropes ("Why do they always fight in a rock quarry?" "I dunno." "Oh look, the monster grew large. Now it's rampaging downtown. Why do they always go to the middle of the city once they grow giant?"), and when we see the team unmasked, they're pretty clearly designed to look like the Gokaigers.
Later, during a monster attack, their giant robot is dropped into the ocean to fight a kaiju, like a scene right out of Pacific Rim. There, it teamed up with an Ultraman-expy. 
As the story goes on, we get to learn more about the various heroes in that world, but it's not a series where the good guys always win; quite a few characters I liked bit the dust by the end.
Though I do have to criticize the art just a bit. I don't mind fanservice when it's tastefully done, but it's a little ham-fisted in this one. I'm pretty sure there's no defense organization that would ever make their uniforms have shorts and skirts quite as short as the characters wear, and apparently a superheroine wearing a skintight outfit means there's nothing left to the imagination, and I mean nothing.
No, seriously, there's this dramatic moment where she's weeping about encountering the villain who killed her best friend - a powerful, emotional moment, slightly diminished by the amount of detail the artist put into showing the outline of her nipple under the suit.
Then in the last volume, he just goes "Screw it, let's just toss in some nudity, the manga's ending soon anyways." That's also the volume where the yuri overtones go from subtext to text, with pretty much every female character hooking up with another one, though I consider that a point in its favor.
So come for the superheroes, the story, the fanservice, or the yuri, and you'll have plenty of it to go around. It was a relatively short read, but pretty entertaining, if it's your style.
Until next time (whenever that may be), this has been whatever I read.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Batman 23.2: Riddler #1

I know, I know, another comic review. For a blog about whatever I read, I sure do read a lot of comics. This time, though, it's one I felt I really needed to talk about.

With the conclusion of "Trinity War," the DC universe is overrun by villains, and the heroes are presumably dead. Suffice to say, that won't take, but the writers are using this time to focus on the villains of their comics, creating several in-between issues dedicated to them for their "villains month." In this case, we have an issue of Batman focusing on The Riddler.

Now, I like The Riddler. I cosplay as him, and I've stocked up on quite a few riddles for those moments. This comic gave me a few new ones to use, and out of the five riddles presented to us at the start of the comic, I managed to solve three of them, though they are all well-crafted. (I'm also glad that the design they used for this issue is similar to the version I cosplay. I couldn't stand how he looked earlier on in the reboot, with his hair cut into the shape of a question mark.)

Snyder and Fawkes use this issue to not only show Edward Nigma, aka The Riddler, as he carries out a heist. It shows his thought process and plans as he carries out each step expertly, in a manner befitting his intelligence. He's not just leaving riddles around for Batman to know where he'll strike, he incorporates each riddle into his plans without basing the plans around them; the closest we get to them being set for anyone to find is when they appear on the security monitors, otherwise he asks them to either the other characters or himself as he carries out his plan. This makes his M.O. all the more effective, while still remaining true to continuity and character.

It can be hard to make a villain whose theme is "riddles" appear threatening and effective, but this comic does it quite effectively. I could believe everything was calculated, without him being the type of character who claims everything that happens works right into his plans; the unexpected can and does happen with every plan, and his is no exception.

The believability is made possible with the look into his mind the comic provides us with. I put it down feeling I had a better understanding of the character, and very entertained by his plans and heists. This makes a nice companion to "Forever Evil" without having to connect to it completely. If you want to read a Villains Month issue that can be enjoyed on its own and gives some nice character exploration, this is one to read.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Deadpool #7

If you've been following my blog, scarce though my updates may be, you'll probably note that I only do single-issue reviews of a comic if it's a really good issue.

This is one of those.

Deadpool #7 takes a time-out from the ongoing story arc, framed as an "inventory issue" from the "late '70s/early '80s," and published now to buy the creative team some time. As such, the entire issue is a lovingly-crafted callback to an earlier time in comics. Everything is designed to look like it was made in that time period, but with the Deadpool being Deadpool, well, he's still got plenty of anachronistic references to throw out there.

This issue ties in to the classic "Demon in a Bottle" Iron Man storyline, with Deadpool hired to make sure Tony Stark doesn't quit drinking. Mind you, that doesn't stop the writers from throwing in plenty of other characters from the Marvel universe, from Spider-Man to the Power Pack, and even Cable, who sports a very 90's look to him, especially since he wasn't even created at that point, but since he is a time traveler… wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey.

Along with the brilliantly old-timely artwork, what sells this issue is the excellent dialogue. It manages to seem perfectly in-place with the time it's supposedly set in, without seeming forced or dry as a result. Peter Parker gets some great lines at the beginning, Tony Stark's snark is strong, and Deadpool, well, they have Deadpool's dialogue as an art form by this point.

There's even a brief scene where it looks like Deadpool's going into one of those old comic strip commercials that have heroes saving the day with whatever they're advertising. The way it was worked in was perfectly-timed, and the scene was executed wonderfully.

Oh, and be sure to read the letters page. The issue is from the 80's, so the letters are too.

Am I going on about this comic too much? Okay, so maybe I'm heaping on the praise, but frankly, this comic earned it. It was fun, it was entertaining, and there's a lot of heart in this issue. It was enjoyable every step of the way, and re-reading it for this review, it just gets better. Whether or not you follow Deadpool's comics each time a new one comes out, or if you're just a casual reader of comics, this is a great one to get.

Until next time, this has been whatever I read.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Age of Ultron (and what I've been up to lately)

Hey, look, an actual post! Yeah, this blog is still up and running, although very slowly. It's not that I haven't been reading, of course, just that I've had so much else to do that I haven't had the time to write any reviews. Still, here's something.

So, what have I been reading in this time? Well, I picked up plenty of Love Hina omnibuses, which is a series from one of my favorite mangaka; I'll write a full review of that series later, although it's an older one. I've also been reading the Dresden Files books, which I've found quite entertaining, although I doubt I'll review any of them any time soon.

I've also been following plenty of comics, aside from my last post about Throne of Atlantis. So before I get to the main review, I'll do a quick glance at some of those.

Hawkeye: an excellent look at the life of Clint Barton when he's not wearing a mask and acting as an Avenger, showing a more vulnerable and human side to a man without powers who fights among supers.

Swamp Thing and Animal Man: While Rotworld ran for quite a while, it had some excellent moments (Green Lantern Frankenstein, anyone?), and the conclusion that came out this week brought about a nice end. So much so that I think I'll give the series a break for now.

Cable and X-Force: I have mixed feelings about this one. On one hand, I don't really care about Cable (at least when he's not teamed up with Deadpool) and I'm not fond of the new outfits. But it has Doctor Nemesis, and the good doctor is awesome in so many ways; that's what's been keeping me reading.

Thunderbolts: Surprisingly better than I expected; maybe it's just Deadpool's presence, but it's been entertaining enough to keep me reading.

Justice League of America: The first issue proved interesting enough to keep me on for at least another issue; a nice introduction to a promising team, with the settings for a big showdown later on.

All-New X-Men and Uncanny X-Men: the fallout after AvX continues, with the X-Men of old looking upon their future selves and getting freaked the hell out. Meanwhile, Cyclops continues to go off the deep end, but things are looking interesting as new mutants emerge.

Wolverine and the X-Men: If you need me to tell you how great it is, that means you haven't been reading it. Why aren't you reading this comic? Go out, get the paperbacks, catch up with the comic, and start following it. Seriously, it's great.

Deadpool: Same as WatXM.

Okay, now that I've given you a brief overview of some of the titles I've been following, time to take a look at the first issue of Marvel's newest event: Age of Ultron. For those unfamiliar with Ultron, I'll give a quick overview: Hank Pym built a robot, the robot is super-powerful and super-evil, and it occasionally stops by to try and wipe out and/or enslave humanity. That's the very short version of it, but frankly, I don't know enough about Ultron myself to give you a more complete version.

Issue 1 features a nice and shiny cover, featuring a pile of defeated heroes, with the reflection of Hawkeye in Ultron's shiny face as he readies an arrow. Will the purple archer be the hero this time around? Well, judging by the role he plays, it could very well be.

The story begins "in media res." That is, we start off in the middle of the story, with no idea how it reached that point. It's a storytelling device used to build intrigue and mystery before offering an explanation. We see a world in shambles, where society has crumbled and only the ruthless remain.

This is a world that has reached such a low point, the heroes of it are doing one of two things: either hiding away in shame and fear, or taking lives. Hawkeye, in this case, is one of the latter; he's unafraid to kill if it means getting to his goal, although in this case, that goal means rescuing a friend.

We also see Hammerhead and The Owl, two villains who are typically C-list at best, running gangs and making deals with Ultron in order to survive just a bit longer. If these are the villains still alive, one can only wonder what happened to the rest.

The world is policed by robotic drones, content to wipe out any and all organics. There's also a threat of being infected by something, although whether it'll make the victims go Matrix Agent on everyone or just plain die has yet to be explained.

This is a "darkest hour" story. Spirits have been broken, and heroics are no more. Even the unbreakable have fallen, whether physically or spiritually. It is not a light and happy story about heroics.

So what is it that makes Hawkeye the best character to follow in this world? How is it that he can continue to fight when even the bravest now cower? I believe that it is because Hawkeye is "just human" that allows him to do this.

The other heroes tend to have powers to back them up. Even Iron Man has his suit and his mental link with electronics; all Hawkeye has is a bow and arrow he can aim well with. To him, every super villain who he has to face overpowers him as much as Ultron overpowers the others. He is used to the odds being stacked against him, and that is how he has the strength to keep fighting even now.

That said, we still don't know how Ultron wrecked the planet, unless there's a comic that I missed leading up to it, in which case, please let me know. Hopefully this will be shown in detail later, but until then, I'll casually follow this, just to keep in the loop.

There are also plenty of Age of Ultron tie-ins, but each of them are marked with "AU," which would indicate "alternate universe," unless I'm mistaken. Feel free to speculate as to what that means, but my assumption is that things will get wibbly-wobbly and timey-wimey before the reset button is hit and everything returns to normal.

Whether or not you'll like Age of Ultron depends on your taste in comics. If you like hopeless, last stand, gritty sorts of comics, you'll probably enjoy this; it's well-written, for what it is, and the artwork is fine. If you prefer to have some fun with what you read, though, then you'll probably want to give this a pass.

Until next time, this has been whatever I read.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Throne of Atlantis (Aquaman & Justice League #15) Review

Contrary to what pop culture may claim, Aquaman does not suck. This preface shouldn't be necessary, thanks to the Justice League cartoon ("King of the seas, remember?" said the man who cut off his own hand and replaced it with a harpoon to save his son), Brightest Day, and most recently, Geoff Johns' run on Aquaman and Justice League. I've mentioned before how I am a fan of Aquaman, and how in the hands of a talented writer, he can be one of the most impressive heroes in DC comics.

As such, it is my pleasure to review issues 15 of Justice League and Aquaman, the first two parts of the "Throne of Atlantis" arc. Written by Geoff Johns, who revitalized Aquaman with his inclusion in Blackest Night and Brightest Day, as well as his excellent run in DC's New 52 (see my earlier reviews for my thoughts on that), we now get to see an all-out Atlantean war against the surface, and Aquaman struggling to maintain peace between his two worlds.

It begins in Justice League #15, so I'll discuss more than just Aquaman in this part. While it begins with an attack on Atlantis, the way that it happens makes it clear that someone is playing them against each other. As such, Atlantis is acting in self-defense (from an Atlantean perspective), no matter how excessive the counter-attack might be. With that in mind, one might wonder: is this a metaphor for the Israel-Palestine conflict? I'm going to say no, it's a comic, stop trying to politicize everything and let me enjoy my comics in peace, theoretical reader asking me this sort of charged question.

Still, every good action needs setup, and we see a very humanizing moment for Wonder Woman, as she goes out with Superman. Now, I was never on the Supes/Wondey ship. I'm still not, but if you like it, I can't particularly blame you after seeing this scene, as Clark helps bring Diana closer to earth. It's a sweet moment for the two characters, showing a side of Wonder Woman we haven't seen in a while, and a side of Superman we don't see enough of in his current runs.

Of course, there's no shortage on action, either, starting with Batman and Aquaman taking down some thugs, with Mera once again proving that she's more than a badass in her own right.

Speaking of Mera, she gets a crowning moment of awesome in Aquaman #15. Her hydromancy is taken to its limits, but she alone saves more lives than the rest of the Justice League combined after the initial assault. That said, the lives lost number far greater than those saved regardless; in a war against Atlantis, there will be casualties on both sides.

Also in Aquaman is a little more on the New 52 Aquaman's backstory. The latest arc took us through a chapter of his life from before Atlantis, before Arthur was the Aquaman we know today, and now we learn a little more about what he did when he returned to the ocean and took his place as king. Suffice to say, he's not proud of the things he did, which are now being used against him.

However, the characters aren't going through the regular motions of "let's fight everyone until we figure something out." This is a classic brother versus brother conflict, with Aquaman wanting to stop conflicts by talking to his brother, Orm. Aquaman wants peace between the two worlds he lived in, but with such a high body count, there's no stopping the conflict. He wants to do what's right, but in a battle orchestrated by unknown forces, with each side itching to get revenge, what exactly is the right thing to do?

If you want to jump in on Aquaman or Justice League, this is a great place to do it. If you're reading one already, perhaps this will get you interested in the other. The story is great, the artwork wonderful, and they tie together seamlessly. If you're a fan of Aquaman, you'll like the start this storyline is off to. If you're not a fan of Aquaman, maybe this will change your mind.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Marvel Now: X-Men, Iron Man, Thor, and Deadpool

Not one to be outdone by DC's massive reboot, Marvel comics has launched its own "Marvel Now!," starting several series over from issue 1. While this isn't as much of a reboot as DC's, it is still reassembling new teams, starting new adventures, and generally trying to make a good starting point for new readers. I've picked up quite a few comics from this relaunch, so let's take a look at some of them.

As always, there will be minor spoilers.
X-Men Legacy

Before the relaunch, I was following X-Men Legacy, and it was mostly focused on Rogue, her team, and her romance with Magneto. (I, of course, will always support Rogue and Gambit, but that's neither here nor there.) The new Legacy takes it far away from that, and instead focuses on David Haller, son of Professor Xavier.

This is a character I'm only somewhat familiar with, and my understanding about him is pretty limited. As such, I got to look at this issue from the point of view of someone with minimal knowledge about David and his powers, but from the looks of it, he seems to have multiple (mostly evil) personalities locked away in his head, and he can channel the various powers of each one. If this is vastly wrong, please feel free to correct me, but that's the impression given by this comic.

The first issue is mainly spent giving us an idea of his personality. In spite of all the evil personalities locked away inside his head, he wants to do good, but knows that he's got a lot of insanity to deal with. He also has some serious issues with his father, which may be causing just as much trouble as the many personalities.

That said, the story is structured well enough; the scenes in the "Qortex Complex" and in Kangchengyad (where David resides) get linked together nicely, without having to spell anything out, even if it may make things seem odd at the beginning.

However, I wasn't drawn in to this comic particularly much. I haven't really connected with David's character, and I can't bring myself to care where his story goes. They're setting up some interesting things, but whether or not those make it worth buying has yet to be seen.
All-New X-Men

This is a bit of a backwards title, given that the main sell of the comic is that it features the return of the original X-Men. Not that they ever left - they're just a lot different than they used to be. Beast became all blue and furry, Jean died, Angel turned evil, returned to the side of good, went evil again, died, then came back an amnesiac, Cyclops jumped off the slippery slope, and Iceman… actually, Iceman hasn't changed quite as drastically.

Still, even though the last part of the chapter features Beast going back in time to bring the original five to the present, saying so is in no way a spoiler, since that's all that's been advertised about it. Until then, we get to see some of the new mutants popping up around the world, and just how far Cyclops will go to recruit them to his cause. I don't even need to point out the parallels he has to Magneto and his Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, although Cyclops still claims the title of "X-Men."

The new mutants we've seen so far don't have the most unique powers (by which I mean there were characters on "Heroes" with the exact same powers), but their personalities are at least somewhat different from what we've usually seen. After all, they're struggling with these new powers they suddenly found, which is something we haven't been able to see in an X-Men comic since Hope's five lights.

The main thing that has me reading this is Beast, everyone's favorite fuzzy blue mutant (aside from Nightcrawler). Let's just say that things are not going well for him, and he believes this to be his last chance to try and set things right and see his old friends as they once were again.

I have to wonder how long this will be able to go on for, since there's no way he can keep the old team together in the present for too long without having serious ramifications on the timestream, but it will be an interesting read at first. Brian Michael Bendis has an even amount of fans and detractors, given his style, but one can't deny that the man can write comics well.

All in all, I'll give this one a little time. I'm mostly interested in seeing how the classic X-Men react to seeing them as they are now, but I don't know how long I'll stick with it.
Thor: God of Thunder

Now we get away from the X-Men stuff, and start looking at everyone's favorite hammer-throwing, golden-haired god of thunder. Rather than focus on Thor beating up frost giants and other baddies on Earth, we start by seeing him perform his godly duty of answering prayers. Even on planets far away, if someone prays to Thor, he'll give it a listen.

As this comic starts to look at Thor's status as a god, it also expands upon the various other deities, both on Earth and other planets. We know that the Norse gods are far from the only ones on Earth, although with Thor they do get the most focus. Other planets have their own gods, though, which this comic uses to an interesting effect.

As such, it's important that he fight an enemy worthy of a god. Normally that would mean some other wicked god (Loki is no longer available to fulfill that role, of course), but this time it's a threat that can make even other gods cry out in terror. Judging by the last few pages, it's far from a threat to be taken lightly.

Still, this is not a traditional Thor comic. There's little focus on other Asgardians, and the only time spent on Earth is in the past. It's a different look at the god of thunder, which some might enjoy more than others. So far, there's been more "acts of god" than beating up bad guys, but when Thor summons rain, he at least makes it look cool.
Iron Man

Fresh off his success with "Journey Into Mystery" (which you better have read. Seriously.), Kieron Gillen is taking on the genius, billionaire, playboy philanthropist Tony Stark. This time, Iron Man's got to deal with the Extremis nanotechnology, which is reappearing in the wrong hands.

The writing has all the signatures of Gillen's style, with clever dialogue, quite a lot of text boxes, and themes of the past coming back to haunt someone. The characters are smart, even the ones you wouldn't think to be, and when the action kicks in, we get to see Tony kicking ass, taking names, and showing what he's learned from his years as Iron Man and his last experience with Extremis.

I can't say much for the art, but while I like the designs and coloring, there's something about the faces that doesn't sit well with me. Maybe it has something to do with how everyone seems to close their eyes while smiling, but that's my only complaint with the artwork.

I'm a fan of Gillen's work, so I'm looking forward to seeing how this progresses. Normally I don't read the Iron Man comics, but I trust Gillen to make the characters not only relatable and likable, but to put them through situations that make us both cheer and cry for them.

Of course, I'm also looking forward to his take on the Young Avengers, especially since Loki is joining the team. Seriously, I can't wait for that one.

For all your comedic, sociopathic, fourth wall-breaking, stabbing and shooting needs, Deadpool is here. While Dan Way's take on Deadpool has met with mixed reviews, it did well enough to keep him on the title for quite some time, but now Brian Posehn and Gerry Duggan are taking over, and boy are they off to a great start.

We're re-introduced to everything that makes Deadpool crazy awesome. He bursts out of a giant dinosaur monster's gut, having teamed up with (and thoroughly disgusted) Thor, then goes on to fight zombie presidents. Yes, that's right, the US presidents have been brought back from the dead, and they're not happy with what has become of the United States of America… so clearly the solution is to do what zombies do best.

Every step of the way, Deadpool has a quip, reference, or joke to make, and the visual gags (keep an eye out for monster pieces in the background) make it all the better. He has yet to address any of his yellow text boxes, but that also means none of the "multiple personalities" that Way gave him (a sad misunderstanding of his medium awareness), and the comic does not suffer for the lack of them.

Even characters who aren't Deadpool get some nice moments, but Deadpool can run with those just as well as anything else. Some cameos from Thor and Captain America, as well as SHIELD's role in Deadpool's new assignment, add some nice variety to this comic, while creating some foils for how Deadpool and how he's viewed by the heroic community.

In short, this is one I'd recommend to any fans of Deadpool. While my favorite comic featuring him is still currently "Cable and Deadpool," this is looking good so far, and promises to be a good run.
Anyways, that's what I've got so far. I'll try to post something other than comic reviews soon, so I don't get too repetitive. Until next time, this has been whatever I read.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Doctor Who: Shada

If you've spent any time around me, you'll have picked up on a few key facts. In fact, you'll have probably figured these things out even if we've never met, and you've just read a bit of things I've written. First of all, I am a fan of Doctor Who. Secondly, one of my biggest inspirations in writing is the late, great Douglas Adams, creator of "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy." So you'd think I'd like a Doctor Who novel based off the script by Douglas Adams, right?

You'd be damn well right to think that.

Now, here's a little history on the Doctor Who serial "Shada." It was originally meant to be the season finale of season 17 of Doctor Who, but was never completed because of a strike at the BBC. Instead, the bits and pieces they did record were used in "The Five Doctors." There have been various attempts to recreate it from the pieces that remain over the years, leading us to this novel.

While the novel itself is written by Gareth Roberts, it's still a Douglas Adams piece through and through. Roberts worked off the versions of the script that Adams wrote, adding in scenes to fill any plot holes that were created in the editing process and generally polishing it up as best he could. The voice of Adams is evident from the very first page, while the rest of the book is equally saturated with his influence.

It's clear that Gareth Roberts has a great respect for the works of Adams, maintaining true to his vision and channeling the same type of tone and amusing commentary that he's known for. There are minor comments that reference other works of Adams, including a well-timed tribute to his most famous work near the end that I won't spoil for you.

Of course, that means it goes without saying how incredibly funny it is. The descriptions, the running gags, the ones that come right at you out of nowhere, all with great timing and a well-written tone.

The book is written for the 4th Doctor, famously played by Tom Baker, as he travels with Romana and K-9. Of course, as the novelization was written well into Matt Smith's run as the 11th, it includes some references to later Doctors, such as mentioning the Corsair's gender-changing regenerations and the Doctor's love of edible ball bearings. In spite of those, there's no breaking character, from the perfectly-voiced dialogue to the internal descriptions.

I hope it's not presumptuous of me to say that Roberts' affection towards Doctor Who and the works of Douglas Adams is at least equal to mine. Either way, his love of the series and respect towards Adams shines through in this novel.

As for the story itself, it's filled with all sorts of wonderful characters, and a story that moves at a brisk pace, tying together various story threads into a cohesive narrative. There are plenty of twists, turns, and cliffhangers, as expected of Doctor Who, culminating in wonderful displays of brilliance from all the characters and an ending befitting a season finale.

At this point, it occurs to me that I haven't even said what the story is about. A brief synopsis: the Doctor, Romana, and K-9 visit Cambridge University to respond to a distress call from the Doctor's old friend, Professor Chronotis (who fans of Douglas Adams might recall from Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency), a Time Lord who retired to live out his final regeneration in peace. Of course, they arrive right as he's being tracked down by Skagra, a brilliant but bloody crazy alien with a god complex and no fashion sense. He's after "The Worshipful and Ancient Law of Gallifrey,"which happens to be in Chronotis's possession... or was, until it was lent to Chris Parsons, who mostly tries to use it to impress a girl who actually doesn't need impressing.

This leads to a series of adventures and chases through time, space, and Cambridge, as Skagra attempts to unlock an ancient evil and do something nasty to the universe. And every moment of it was brilliant.

It actually took me a while to complete the book after reading it. It's a large one, at well over 300 pages, but I ended up taking my time just to savor it. Most every chapter had me pause for a minute just to bask in the excellence of Douglas Adams' storytelling, until the end, where I kept going and going to see what would happen next.

Am I a biased reviewer? I'd like to think not, since I set some pretty high standards for Roberts to meet. But they were met and then some, resulting in one of the best expanded universe novels I've had the pleasure to read.

Until next time, this has been whatever I read.