book reviews, spoiler free

Overlord Spoiler Free Review

dfkqw_miOverlord by SianJefferson

Rating: XXXXX

Published December 2018 by Sian Jefferson

“Bring in the Evil Gauntlet!”
“The what? Look I don’t want to be rude or anything, but if you’re going to eat me then maybe we can skip the “torture by Evil Gauntlet” thing?”

Kit Thornwood does not fit in.

Not only is he the least heroic person in Heroestown, but he’s also a secret magic user. And now he has punched the mayor in the face.
On the run, Kit finds himself the unwitting new master of the Dark Tower, Stronghold of the infamous Overlord. 
Delighted to finally fit in, things quickly escalate when Kit discovers that balancing between being an evil overlord and not actually doing anything evil is a lot harder than he thinks, especially now there’s a whole town of heroes out to get him too!
Heroes! Minions! Swords! Dragons! Magic! Romance! Sarcasm!
Get ready for an epic clash between good and kind-of-sort-of-evil!

You may remember back in September last year I was lucky enough to get a sneak peak at a sampler of the newest book by Sian Jefferson, Overlord just before the Kickstarter went live. Now five months later, the project was sucsessfully backed and books recieved! I’ve been pretty excited about this for a while and I was overjoyed when it turned up, not to mention the extra goodies it came with! Four exclusive prints from various guest artists (including some of my favourites!) a “Bastion of Evil” sticker (which was the name of my backer tier) and a super cute and shiny “Dark Tower Tour with Gibbet” badge! After marveling over the gorgeous extras I dove straight in and read the whole thing in one glorious sitting!

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The brilliantly timed wit and humour I mentioned in my review of the sampler is still ever present throughout and there’s a great balance between that and some of the more serious parts of the book which I enjoyed, I literally laughed out loud at some of the little extra bits here and there like the old lady hanging from the castle ramparts yelling “SNORE” and making dollies or the minions in general because they are fantastic. Kit was a great character, he knew he didn’t fit in with the others in Heroestown and I really felt for him, I think the appeal of the minon characters for me comes from their no nonsense acceptance of him and the moment he finally feels like he’s somewhere he could belong. Kit is an absolute precious, soft boy and I just want to hug him but he stands up for what he believes in and defends those he loves or are under his care.

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Once again the art is fantastic, Sian’s style is defintley suited to this kind of story, it’s not too over fluffy, ‘cartoony’ or a little weird without being too gritty which is a perfect middle ground for me too after being put off of a lot of great sounding stories by their “adventure time” style art that’s a little too much for me. Sian’s use of colour adds a whole other level to the story and it’s scenes, especially the opposing blues and reds, not to mention the use of ‘sound effects’ which I feel really added to the action scenes especially, the art in this book is a complete feast for the eyes!

My only critisicm is that I found it a little short, I would have loved more devlopment on both sides from Kit and the heroes, but honestly this is probably just because I’ve been spoilt and read a lot of multiple issue books at the moment giving them a lot more room for more content. Overlord is still a well rounded, enjoyable book I think I maybe enjoyed it a little too much and was a little gutted when it was over, can we please have an entire minion book next please? I adore them! The story was great with some pleasing twists and turns which I always love and I highly reccomend checking it out, you can buy your own copy now from Sian’s Etsy here. I would absoloutely back a sequel if that was something the creator wanted to do as well (PLEASE).

Sincerley,

A very happy Kickstarter backer who may be just a little in love with Kit and would like to adopt some minions.

 

book reviews, spoiler free

Vengeful – Spoiler Free Review

40139338Vengeful by V.E Schwab

Rating: XXXXX

Published September 25th 2018 by Titan Books

“How many men would she have to turn to dust before one took her seriously?”

Eli Ever and Victor Vale were only medical students when their mutual discovery that near-death experiences can, under the right conditions, manifest extraordinary abilities.

They were best friends, and rivals, and then enemies. They were dead, then alive, and then—Eli killed Victor, once and for all.

Or so he thought—but Sydney Clarke felt otherwise, and used her own superpower to tip the scales. Now, a trio hides in the shadows, while another takes advantages of post-death life to take over the city of Merit.

If there can be life after death—will there be calm after vengeance, or will chaos rule?

It feels amazing to have finally held this book in my hands that has been in the making for five years and like both Eli and Victor has been made and remade. The taster in the form of the first chapter at the end of the special edition version of Vicious that was out this year was wonderfully tantalising and it’s fantastic to have finally dug into Marcellas story and the continuation of Victor and Eli’s world.

This book is pretty huge, at almost 600 pages compared to the 360 odd of Vicious I felt a bit daunted when I sat down to read it. I needn’t have feared though as the story moves so well and so quickly the pages fly by and when you finally look up you realise it’s dark out and you’ve not moved for a good few hours. This book is an absolute work of art that feels beautifully polished and perfected, you can almost feel all the immense hard work that’s gone into it and the result it fantastic.

We get multiple points of view including that of a couple of new characters and the return of some from Vicious, including Dominic who we had only recently met previously and is, like all of the characters in Vengeful extremely intriguing and in-depth but not uncomfortably so. We delve into the lives of these characters and the goings on of the past five years between the two books and although I enjoyed the way these were presented I did have trouble keeping track on where we were in the timeline a few times and found it easier to refer to these parts as then and now instead of trying to fit them in precisely.

It was brilliant to see more from my favourite dysfunctional family although I’m a little gutted we didn’t see more done with them, especially as a group but found Sydney really coming into her own and I hope if we get a third book that perhaps this one will focus on her a lot more. Also Mitch. I love Mitch to pieces and he was kind of relegated to just the tech guy here but I still enjoyed whenever he was around and that he’s still breaking stereotypes, no chocolate milk mentioned this time though sadly. I found Eli A LOT more interesting this time around and he actually became one of the characters voices I enjoyed the most. He really developed and getting into his back story really explained and gave a new depth to him that I think we were missing before, he was absolutely perfect and as obsessed with Victor as always. Victor himself I found more interesting but he’s even more one track that Eli and although I did enjoy the journey he went on I’ll admit I was too preoccupied with Eli and everyone else to obsess over him much.

As for the new characters, wow. We meet Marcella Riggins who is an amazing character, she’s just such a powerful, badass breath of fresh air. She’s an EO who doesn’t try to run or hide herself away, who is comfortable in her power and embraces it and the authority to demands with it and her presence. Villain or not she is was an absolute joy to read and I just couldn’t help enjoying it when she took down all the men who continued to underestimate her again and again. We also meet June the shapeshifter who is still a bit of a mystery and I’m desperate to know more. She’s a prominent voice in the book who we hear from quite a bit but we still know so little about her, just the snippets she chooses to share here and there, we get enough to know what she’s up to mostly and how some things make her feel but we don’t really know anything about her past or her real goals and I need to know more!

I could honestly go on about this book for a lot longer but it’s definitely one that needs to be checked out, much like the first book which if you enjoyed obviously you need to read this but also if you enjoy x-men and the like, especially the relationship between Charles and Erik which is echoed in a new and different way in these books. The writing in incredible, the characters are alluring and the book is addictive, you need to read this.