#MangaMonday Review – The Brave-Tuber, Vol. 1 by Takahito Oosaki and Ikuro

Brave-Tuber Vol 1 by Takahito Oosaki and Ikuro Brave-Tuber, Vol. 1
By: Takahito Oosaki (Illustrator); James Gaubatz (Lettering)
Illustrator: Ikuro
Translator: Thomas Zimmerman (Translation); Dawn Davis (Adaptation)
Release Date: September 10, 2019
Publisher: Seven Seas
Received From: Publisher
(All reviews are our own, honest opinions.)

In a world replete with isekai, this manga is much more of a typical fantasy if that fantasy was thrown on its head and mixed in with a little YouTube and vlogging culture. If that sounds like a mix you’ve never heard of before, you might be right. The Brave-Tuber, Vol. 1 is written by Takahito Oosaki and illustrated by Ikuro, and is set to become an ONA in late December of 2019.

#UltimateBlogTour – Sapphire Smythe by R.J. Furness

Sapphire Smythe
By: R.J. Furness
Release Date: March 16, 2019
Publisher: Orgo Press
Series: Sapphire Smyth and the Shadow of Four
Received From: Publisher
(All reviews are our own, honest opinions.)

Shadows by R.J. Furness is the first serialized novel set within the Sapphire Smyth and the Shadow of Five series, which is named after the main character. This is a YA fantasy novel set in the modern day.

Review – The Tea Dragon Festival by Katie O’Neill

Book cover of The Tea Dragon Festival by Katie O'Neill The Tea Dragon Festival
By: Katie O'Neill
Illustrator: Katie O'Neill
Release Date: September 17, 2019
Publisher: Oni Press
Series: Tea Dragons #2
Received From: Publisher
(All reviews are our own, honest opinions.)

Set years before Katie O’Neill’s The Tea Dragon Society, new graphic novel The Tea Dragon Festival by Katie O’Neill returns to the world of tiny tea dragons. A brand new story featuring brand new characters, this tale is every bit as heartwarming as the first graphic novel which captured hearts all over the world.

Review – My Hero Academia: Smash!!, Vol. 1 by Hirofumi Neda and Kohei Horikoshi

My Hero Academia: Smash!!, Vol. 1
By: Hirofumi Neda (story), Kohei Horikoshi (original concept)
Illustrator: Hiofumi Neda (art); Kohei Horikoshi (original concept); John Hunt (touch-up and lettering); Julian [JR] Robinson (designer)
Translator: Caleb Cook
Release Date: August 6, 2019
Publisher: VIZ Media LLC
Series: My Hero Academia: Smash!! #1
Received From: Publisher
(All reviews are our own, honest opinions.)

The lastest spinoff of hit manga and anime My Hero Academia to be translated into English by Caleb Cook has finally hit shelves. My Hero Academia: Smash!!, Vol. 1 is created by Hirofumi Neda and Kohei Horikoshi. Unlike the series proper or other spinoff, My Hero Academia: Vigilantes by Hideyuki Furuhashi and Betten Court, this manga is a humorous four panel adaptation. Attention is divided between humorous takes on major story beats and some of the quieter moments in between.

Review – The Ghost and the Lady Vol. 1 by Kazuhiro Fujita

The Ghost and the Lady Vol. 1
By: Kazuhiro Fujita
Release Date: (English Translation) October 25, 2016; (Original) July 23, 2015
Publisher: Kodansha Comics
Series: The Ghost and the Lady

My husband recommended I read The Ghost and the Lady Volume 1, not because he knew anything about the story or that it was created by the same mangaka that created Ushio and Tora, but because he saw the fabulously dressed man with a fabulous hat on the cover. And boy do I like fabulously dressed men with fabulous hats. Hey, he knows me well. As it turned out, this was a fantastic move as it has nearly everything I love in it – fabulously dressed people, a healthy dose of fantasy, awesome fights, some brilliant artwork, and (my favorite) history.

Bookworm Problems: No Time To Read

Second to reading slumps and something I am struggling with greatly currently is one of my biggest frustrations as a bookworm; having no time to read!

Working full time (along with spending roughly two and a half hours commuting) severely limits my time to read during the work week. I come home and am exhausted from both the commute and the work day which leads me following the same pattern every night: eat dinner, shower, lay out clothes for tomorrow and fall asleep. Sure, some nights I manage to watch a little television or get a little reading in but most of the time I’m worn out from the second I walk in the door and the only solution is to sleep.

While my commute is on public transportation (aka I’m not driving the whole way) it’s not always so easy to pull out a book and read comfortably. Cramped seats, people with huge bags in your face and then there are the inevitable days where it is pouring rain and I refuse to risk bringing a precious book anywhere near water.

SO, what is a bookworm to do? Find ways around the struggle of course.

Using both my Kindle and Nook apps on my phone I manage to get some reading in, more comfortably, on my commute and without risking damage to my books. I give myself at least fifteen minutes of reading time at night (with an alarm) so that I don’t stay up all night reading. And, yes, there are days that I do carry a book along with me on my commute.

Weekends are often spent with my books, forgoing social plans (sorry to all my friends) so that I can actually enjoy some me time, some down time and more importantly some reading time. Mental health days/ sick days/ vacation days are often spent with a book in my hands. At the end of the day, or the start of my first day back to work,  I relive my time spent with characters and other lands and it is the only thing that gets me through my day.

How do all of you fit in your reading time? Let us know in the comments below!

Tome Topple and Our Reading Goals

Happy first day of Tome Topple, everyone. For the next two weeks we will be reading books that are long. Very long. The books that have sat on our shelves and to be read piles for weeks or months or an embarrassingly longer amount of time than that.

For those who may not know, Tome Topple is a readathon originally created by @thoughtsontomes. The goal of this particular readathon is to read books that are 500 pages or longer. It begins today, August 4th, and ends August 17th.

There are several challenges for anyone who likes some stretch goals. Because who doesn’t like some extra challenge in their readathons?

Here are the challenges:

1. Read more than one book.
2. Read a graphic novel.
3. Read a book in a series.
4. Buddy read a book.
5. Read an adult novel.

I can’t help but feel that 500+ pages books are particularly rampant in sci-fi and fantasy. I mean, two of the books in my Tome Topple TBR are over seven hundred pages long. Or maybe I’m just naturally drawn to unnaturally long books.

And here is my Tome Topple TBR list:

The Waking Fire by Anthony Ryan (592 pages)
The Forgetting Moon by Brian Lee Durfee (777 pages)
Trigun Omnibus by Yasuhiro Nightow (696 pages)
Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor (532 pages)
The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O. by Neal Stephenson and Nicole Galland (752 pages)

I’m not sure how many of these books I’ll actually finish. This is a grand total of 3,349 pages, after all. Even for me that’s pretty excessive. As for the challenges, I do have a graphic novel on my list as well as a couple of book in a series.

But, the attempt will be made! At the very least I expect to finish Strange the Dreamer as that’s a library book and needs to be returned, ironically enough, on August 17th.

Are you participating in Tome Topple? What books will you be reading? Let us know in the comments below!

Book Con! The Good, The Not So Good, and The Confusing

Happy Tuesday, everyone! This weekend I went to Book Con. It was fun, it was tiring, and it was my first time at this convention. Not sure what took me so long. I’ve been to pretty much every other convention that held in the area. But, with no further ado, here’s what I thought about the experience. The awesome, the not so awesome, and the things that baffled me just a little bit.

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