Zombie road trip

The Girl with All the Gifts (The Girl with All the Gifts, #1)The Girl with All the Gifts by M.R. Carey
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

So, the first 80 or 90 pages were meh. Then things went ballistic and I read a chunk of it fairly quickly. And then, although the story kept up a good pace, I slowed down again. Great take on zombies, but I felt strangely ambivalent about it.
That was pretty much me for the entirety of the book. Good story, bits were I was hooked and kept flicking pages and then stretches were I wasn‘t exactly bored, but the book didn‘t do much for me either. It was captivating enough though to keep going.

The main characters were well done, although they were a bit stereotypical.
I would have liked it if Caldwell had been explored more. A deeper dive into her psyche, her motivations and the events that shaped her.
Justineau was the one we were supposed to identify with and root for, I guess. And it worked. She turned out to be a lot more Ripley than I expected, which I liked. No damsel in distress here.
Parks turned out to be my favourite character, emotionally. He somehow underwent the farthest trek and personal development on this road trip.
Melanie had the toughest journey of personal discovery and coming to terms with what she is. Did she move a little too far into the sidelines at the end? I am not sure.

The plot developments at the ending were fascinating, very creepy, exciting and shocking. And hopeful, promising…. This elevated the book from 3 to 4 stars for me.
Compassion wins over science. I closed this paperback with a „cool, I liked that ending!“
I would read a sequel along the lines of „28 years later“.

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The walking dead and a ghost

Revival, Vol. 1: You're Among FriendsRevival, Vol. 1: You’re Among Friends by Tim Seeley
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Very nice chapter art. Good artwork in general. However, till the end I had a hard time telling apart the three female main characters. I was never quite sure, if it was the journalist, the cop or her sister…

The non-white characters were depicted in a very stereotypical way, almost like caricatures. I am not sure if I am rightfully bothered by that or too fussy?

A little creepy. People coming back to life just like that… Isn‘t there a TV show with the same theme?

Pretty wordy for a graphic novel.

Bizarre plot. It has potential? I was kinda lukewarm about this, but I might have to get the next volume after all…. especially because this volume stops in the middle of things and leaves the plot wide open…. argh.

3.5 ghostly stars.

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Haunted house?

Locke & Key, Vol. 1: Welcome to LovecraftLocke & Key, Vol. 1: Welcome to Lovecraft by Joe Hill
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Read Chapter One, realizing that this isn‘t doing anything for me. Confusing time jumps and an unclear plot.

I liked the art well enough. A very old looking teenager.

I skimmed though Chapter Two and part of Chapter Three, the plot got clearer, but not more interesting. A doorway that turns the little guy into a ghost, another ghost at the bottom of a well. Hm, ok. The other characters lacked interest for me.

It‘s me, not the story, I am pretty sure. Not in the right mood for it. Or maybe the story telling is really not good. Many seemed to have liked this a lot.

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Idiocy in the face of danger

Ice Station DeathIce Station Death by Gustavo Bondoni
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Scary name for a book. I went into this with extremely low expectations. Low-and-behold, good writing! Not as fast paced or suspenseful as my previous two creature horror reads though.

Creatures from the Triassic survived and adapted. We messed with them and now they are messing back….

Have a look here, after you found out what the big bad monster is:

In the last third of the book my interest started to flag a bit. The monsters were nicely monstrous and really TSTL (probably why they should have gone extinct in the first place), but still—the pacing was a little too sedate every now and then.

And the addition of a crazy woman relatively late in the book brought a wacky element to it that didn‘t really gell well with the rest of the story. I would have preferred if the author had just escalated the actual monster story instead.

Also there was a little too much thinking towards the end, when all I wanted was action and blood splatter. I really don‘t want to know the main character‘s relationship history at that point. I wanted to see him kill things. Which he did, eventually, in funny and creative ways, he was “someone who’s shown courage verging on idiocy in the face of danger.”

Bottom line, it was entertaining, I liked the main character, a little too slowly paced here and there, more focus on the monsters would have been nice. Somewhere between 3 and 4 stars. I would read something else by the author.

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Whatever! R.I.P.!

Coffin Hill (2013-2015) Vol. 3: Haunted HousesCoffin Hill (2013-2015) Vol. 3: Haunted Houses by Caitlin Kittredge
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Kind of ambivalent about the plot. I skimmed most of this. The artwork was allover the place. Sometimes good, sometimes quite bad, with characters looking fairly different compared to the first two volumes.

Bottomline this wasn‘t really worth it for me. The plotting of the three volumes was just too chaotic. The artwork was mostly good, with a distinct downturn in some of the panels in the third volume.

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Better than volume one…

Coffin Hill Vol. 2: Dark EndeavorsCoffin Hill Vol. 2: Dark Endeavors by Caitlin Kittredge
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The plot of volume 1 left a lot to be desired. The writing was choppy. A lot of scenes were left hanging and there were plenty of plot holes. Regardless, I decided to give the second volume a chance. Here we go.

It was better. The story was more streamlined, the time jumps were not as jarring. The artwork was good. It did tie up some loose ends from the first volume.

I am still not a huge fan, but I guess I will read the third volume as well to find out where it all leads.

The additional story at the end was nice, in a creepy way.

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Wicked witch… meh!

Coffin Hill Vol. 1: Forest of The NightCoffin Hill Vol. 1: Forest of The Night by Caitlin Kittredge
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

The plot leaves a lot to be desired. The writing is choppy. A lot of scenes are left hanging or simply don‘t make sense and open up many plot holes. Good scenes started and petered out into thin air.

It took around 40% into the comic for anything resembling a coherent storyline to emerge and my interest perked up. Two thirds into the story I started to loose it again, because the whole thing just didn‘t mature into anything meaningful.

The artwork was decent. Nicely done layouts.

Eve is an unlikable character in the beginning. And she pretty much remains unlikable, together with the rest of the characters. I did not care what happens to any of them.

And what kind of a lame ending is that? And this contrived cliffhanger? Why does Eve lie on the ground in the last panel? Yeah, no, the storytelling does not get many points.

Oh yeah, last issue/epilogue, whatever… Is that her mother? Grandmother? Do I care?

I will have a look at the blurbs of volume 2 and 3, but right now it is unlikely that I will read them.

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