Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Library Books: Star Wars Adventures

While at work the other day, I found two Star Wars Adventures graphic novels (Han Solo and the Hollow Moon of Khorya and Chewbacca and the Slavers of the Shadowlands).  They are both really quick reads (I read them both in like 20 minutes).  Both stories take place before the Rebellion, with Slavers from long before the movies (all of them) and Hollow Moon a few years before A New Hope.

Han Solo and the Hollow Moon of Khorya was the one I chose to read first (I thought it took place before Slavers, but in reality it doesn't).  Han and Chewie get busted for cheating in a casino.  The owner (Sollima/Solly) demands that Han retrieve a droid stolen from him by the Imperials.  Unfortunately he won't let Han take Chewie, wanting to keep the wookie as collateral so Han has to follow through. As soon as Han leaves, Solly tosses Chewie into an arena, believing the wookie will be dead in a day (or less); Solly has greatly underestimated Chewbacca though.  The Han story was alright, but the Chewbacca stuff really made this story awesome!

Chewbacca and the Slavers of the Shadowlands was told as a flashback.  The beginning of the story has Han, Chewie and Leia escaping from somewhere.  Once the danger is over, Chewbacca starts telling this story from his past. 

When Chewie was the wookie equivalent of a teenager, he was determined to prove he was an adult.  So he took some of his friends into the Shadowlands, a place forbidden to them.  But while there they encounter slavers.  Rather than go and tell the adults, Chewie is determined to stay and fight; that decision has tragic consequences.

Overall I really enjoyed reading these.  They were short and fun (the first one especially!); I really recommend them for fans of the Star Wars universe.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Sonic the Hedgehog Legacy Collection, Volume 2

When I wrote about Sonic the Hedgehog Legacy Collection, Volume 1, I said that I was excited to get reading Volume 2 because it was full of many of the stories I remembered from when I was younger.  And of all the stories in this volume, it was #25 that I was most waiting for.  Sonic #25 was the Sega CD tie-in, the episode where Sonic races against Metal Sonic.  I remember the comic being good back then, but I honestly wasn't expecting it to hold up so many years later.  I couldn't have been more wrong; #25 was easily the best of the entire collection, combining the fun of Sonic with a really good story.

But how did the rest of the volume hold up?  I have some mixed feelings on this.  The individual Sonic stories were generally pretty good (which is why I rated this 4/5 stars on Goodreads).  But this was the era of side stories, where people like Sally had a miniseries which was only briefly touched on in the comics collected here.  Unfortunately the comics keep referring to these miniseries, but they weren't included in this collection.  So I may have read them years ago, but honestly don't really remember them, which really took away from this collection (it also makes me nervous for Legacy Series Volume 3: are they going to include Mecha Madness?  If not that will be extremely disappointing!  Mecha Madness was part of the main storyline; leaving it out will mean that story arc won't make sense in the collection!  And that being my favourite story arc of the comics, I would be incredibly sad if it isn't included.)

Anyway, I apologize, this has been mostly me ranting.  I enjoyed this graphic novel, but most of my enjoyment may have come from nostalgia.  I don't really recommend it though because of the missing comics that are referred to (specifically the Sally and Tails miniseries).  And I am hoping Volume 3 won't let me down in regards to Mecha Madness.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Reading Reader's Digest

So over the last while I've been reading some Reader's Digests.  I've had a subscription for about a year and a half now, which has been piling up.  I managed to get through four of them (December 2012, February 2013, March 2013 and April 2013) and am now half way through the June 2012 issue.  Unfortunately, I still have quite a few to read through and I am losing interest in them.  So I'll probably be taking a break after I finish the June 2012 one to go read something else.

I find that a lot of the articles seem to go on a bit too long; a lot of times I might be interested in something but not to the depth the articles go into.  That being said, I've read about some pretty interesting things.  For example, I hadn't even heard of the Northern Gateway project ("The $273 Billion Question" from February 2013), which sounds like a disaster waiting to happen.  Or that Canada was working on robots to care for people ("Love Machine" from March 2013).  I didn't think the December 2012 issue was anything special, but it did have a really moving story reprinted from 1985 (I found it here as well) and a story that made me chuckle.  All in all there have ben some good stories and I'm looking forward to reading more.  Just not right away.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Sonic the Hedgehog Legacy Collection, Volume 1

For Christmas, my brother didn't just get me Nowadays.  He also got me Sonic the Hedgehog Legacy Collection, Volume 2. When we were younger, my brother used to collect the Sonic comics.  I'd read everything he got because I liked them, too.  I just never bought any because they were his collection.  Volume 2 is made up of most of the comics that my brother had, so I know it'll be full of stories I liked.  But rather than jump right into volume 2, I decided to read Volume 1 first.  So I ordered it from Amazon and finally read all 500 pages over the last day or so. 

Sure, I knew some of the stories, mostly ones that were reprinted in special editions (like Sonic Firsts, which told the story of Bunnie Rabbot's partial roboticization), but overall Sonic the Hedgehog Legacy Collection Volume 1 was a brand new read for me.  It's full of a lot of slap-stick humour (there was actually one story where they paused and said every tree-related pun they could think of before continuing the story!) which was silly but still pretty fun.  Most of these early stories have very little continuity (but what is there is usually pointed out by the editor) and seemed to be almost experimental at times (I'm looking at you, Verti Cal and Horizont Al).  And Snively sort of pulled a Dulcy from season 2 of Sonic SatAM (he just sort of appeared in issue 6 briefly and wasn't seen again for a few issues; at that time he made regular appearances and sort of replaced crabmeat as Robotnik's advisor, but was never explained as to why he was there.  Sure, having watched Sonic SatAM and read further into the comics, I knew why he was there.  But an explanation would have been nice).  That being said, there were some great extras that I'm glad I saw, too.  Like Robotnik's rules and Sonic's chili dog recipe.

So now that I've read Volume 1, I can't wait to get reading Volume 2, which I know has some of the stories I really liked when I was younger!!!!