March has been a busy one, between shopping trips, turning 22, and a whole load of other things, I’ve barely had time to read!
Well, when I say that, I mean that I’ve barely had time to focus on a book that actually interested me. Recently, as I said in my previous post, I’ve been in a bit of a reading slump, and it wasn’t until I read Nevernight that I came out of it.
But before then, I still tried to read a few books, so I thought I’d do a wrap-up and give my thoughts on what I’ve read this month. I would usually wait until April to make this post on my youtube channel, but the next two weeks are dedicated to the Superheroathon, which is going to have its own wrap up at the end of it. So I thought I’d do a written wrap up over here instead.
So, let’s get to it then!
Firstly, I read Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D Volume One – The Coulson Protocols.
I read this one because the TV counterpart to this comic was coming back to English TV this month, and I wanted to finally explore the comics a little, so I gave this one a shot.
The comic storyline was quite fun – someone had stolen a whole load of S.H.I.E.L.D files and were using those files to figure out how to kill the superheroes, so the team set off to try and find the culprit. Classic S.H.I.E.L.D storyline, and enjoyable too. The plot twists were great, and I loved how many superheroes turned up in the comic.
There was only one thing I couldn’t get passed.
Everyone was so different from their TV counterpart. I’ve been a S.H.I.E.L.D fan ever since the show started – have loved Coulson as a character since he turned up in the first Iron Man film, but all the characters were different in this.
Maria Hill was apparently evil, Coulson was the same rank, or slightly below, Ward, Fitz could have been working for the other side, it was weird. Like, really weird. And I wasn’t sure what to make of it, to be honest. It felt like the team hadn’t gelled as well as they do in the show, which for me left a fundamental hole in the story. I watch S.H.I.E.L.D partly for the story, but partly because I love the family they have become, having that missing was weird, to say the least.
On the whole, despite its flaws, I gave the comic a 4/5 stars, if not just because the supers knew that Coulson was alive, and they actually turned up to help.
Next, I went on to start Sabriel by Garth Nix.
I’d been looking forward to this one for a while, I’d heard many great things about this series over the years, but I sadly just could not get into it.
I DNF’d after 10 chapters sadly, even though I really wanted to like it. I found that I couldn’t connect with the characters or the story that well, I didn’t really care for what was going on or for the magic world Nix had created.
It was incredibly disappointing, especially after having spent so long looking forward to reading the book, I wished I could have continued, but I just found that I didn’t care at all for the characters.
That being said though, I am willing to give this book another chance at some other time. If I’m completely honest, I’ve been in a weird mood this year so I may have not liked this book because of that. So, hopefully, once this mood lifts, I’m going to pick it up again and give it another try. Who knows, maybe I’ll like it then. It had great potential, and it did have a storyline I’m usually interested in, so there’s a chance I’ll like it more the second time around.
I then moved onto Jessica Jones: ALIAS Volume One.
Again, I read this because Jessica Jones series two came out this month, and I wanted to explore her comic origins a bit more. I chose ALIAS because that is the Jessica incarnation I’m most familiar with.
But again, I had the same problem as I had with S.H.I.E.L.D. The comic was just so different from the TV counterpart. Jessica knows the Avengers, is friends with Carol Danvers and lives in the same city as the Fantastic Four. I know that in the comics, everybody lives together in the same universe and that copyright doesn’t prevent crossover, but it was weird.
I could have gotten over that though if it wasn’t for the fact that I didn’t feel like Jessica was very Jessica. In the Netflix TV show, Jessica Jones is a badass, superstrong, mess of a human being. She drinks, she swears, she sleeps around to distract herself from the trauma she has experienced. She calls out men and women who take advantage of others, or even hint at it. She’s abrasive, rude, and generally, well… Jessica.
In this comic, I felt like she was incredibly watered down. Yes, Jessica drank and was super strong, but she was nowhere near as badass as she usually was. She gave in too quickly with things, didn’t have the same drive she usually has, and generally she just… wasn’t herself. There didn’t seem to be any trauma, thanks to The Purple Man, no drive to point out sexism. All in all, I felt like she was letting people walk all over her, and to me, that isn’t Jessica Jones.
So again, I loved the superhero appearances, the references to Jessica’s time as an out and proud superhero, but for me, it wasn’t as good as the TV show. It didn’t give me the same feminist feeling, it just felt like there was something missing.
3/5 stars, mostly, again, for the superhero appearances.
After that, I moved onto the crowning glory of this month. Nevernight by Jay Kristoff.
I won’t speak much about it because I’ve already reviewed it in another post, but what I will say is this:
Nevernight is amazing. I loved every single second of this assassin’s journey for revenge. I loved the plot twists, the action, the world-building, all of it. I loved the questions it gave me at the end, the girl power vibes, and just about everything else.
This book brought me out of a reading slump so quick it nearly gave me whiplash. If you ever get the chance to read the book, I highly recommend it, unless you are squeamish over blood, guts, and gore. If you’re a lover of it like me, then you will be in for an unforgettable treat with this book!
Onto the final book of March before the Superheroathon, which was Marie Lu’s The Young Elites, and I have mixed feelings on this one.
First of all, I flew through it. The chapters were all incredibly short, and the story moved at a good pace, so things moved along quicker than usual, which was great, as I was short on time.
But with the quick speed, things fell by the wayside. Things like character and world building.
Out of The Daggers, a group of Young Elites, only three are focused on in any detail. We get the main characters back story and fully detailed scenes of her with these two other characters. We get the villains perspective at times, giving his motivations. We get a bit of detail as to why the main character is so dark inside.
But we don’t get any information on anyone else. We get incredibly brief descriptions of the other Elites powers and fleeting mentions of their names, but that’s about it. There’s no real backstory, no time to build up any sort of detail in character, and it had me incredibly lost the entire time.
The side characters blurred so much for me I could not tell them apart, I barely knew what anybody’s powers were, let alone what their code names were, so when there was a scene involving these characters, I spent them lost and confused as to who was doing what.
Personally, I feel like this book was better suited for a younger YA audience, rather than an older one. Or maybe the detail comes in the sequel, I don’t know. All I know is that I was confused and lost for half of the book, which disappointed me a bit.
Maybe it was my fault for building it up in my head so much, I knew it was about supervillains, or at least people perceived as supervillains, and got far too overexcited. I was expecting dark, detailed, possibly disgusting death scenes, just like Nevernight. When I didn’t get that, I couldn’t get passed it.
I might read this one again one day, expectations lower. Or maybe I should read the next one, see if there’s any more detail there. I could be missing out on a goldmine of a series, I’ll let you guys tell me down in the comments if I should continue or not.
3/5 stars again, it was a great concept, with a lot of delicious darkness in the main character, it just lacked the detail I wanted in everything else.
But that is everything I read in March, what did you guys read? Agree with me on any of this, should I continue with The Young Elites? Let me know down below in the comments!