Graphic Novel Review Roundup 2016

Book Reviews

2016 was a great year for me in terms of Graphic Novels and reading books. Not only did Peter and I travel more, we ended up reading more! Oh, and getting married and concentrating on our financial future was just the cherry on top. This post is a mega post: a graphic novel roundup of everything I’ve managed to read in 2016.

A Love Rekindled for Archie Comics

Thanks to our local library, I picked up more Archie comic books this year than well, my last two years in America. It’s quite funny that life goes full circle sometimes. I first encountered Archie Comics when I was a little girl in the Philippines. My family from LA brought some over, and I devoured them like crazy. My favorite ones were Betty and Veronica, and if Peter won’t kill me then I probably will consider doing a subscription (or probably not).

These are the Archie Comics I’ve managed to devour through this year, with a small blurb and my thoughts:

Haslams Bookstore Archie Comics Haul
Haslams Bookstore Archie Comics Haul

Archie Rocking the World – Another book I got from the library. It combines graphic novels and well, travel, as the Archies and their friends go about different countries as part of their world tour complete with drama and maybe a happy ending. The book is mostly about the world tour and provides snippets on where to go, and what to see in a particular city (and what they’re famous for). There’s also supplemental comics about the early stages of the bands that were featured, so also quite cool.

Betty & Veronica: Girls Rule! – I got this fresh from the library, like it was almost new I could smell the new book smell from the paper. Mmmm – call me a weirdo but I do like the smell of books. Anyway, this is a collection of stories that mostly revolves around Betty & Veronica, and of course, girl power! It was entertaining and a fairly quick read.

Ranma 1/2 Graphic Novels
Ranma 1/2 Graphic Novels

A Return to My Asian Roots: Manga

Manga proved to be a bit out of my reach when I was growing up in the Philippines. We didn’t have local libraries there so if you got hooked onto a specific manga, you’ll have to source them online (or buy the books one by one, which definitely wasn’t good news for me who has a small budget).

There’s only one book series in this list, Boys Over Flowers, which has around 37 volumes that are mostly available in the library. I picked up volumes 1-3 (maybe when this publishes I’ll be on book 4 or more), and then finished it within a few days of each other. This was the original story where Meteor Garden, the Taiwanese TV show based their storyline on, and which I binge watched in high school (or early college, I forget).

I will end up probably picking up Sailor Moon & Ranma 1/2 once I’m done with Boys Over Flowers. I’ve kind of given up on Fushigi Yugi as our library does not have all the volumes available and I don’t really want to pick up the books myself as that will get expensive. Boo.

Graphic Novels
Graphic Novels

European Comics: Asterix & Obelisk

While I was reminiscing on my path to graphic novels, I remembered reading about Asterix & Obelisk when I was younger, so I checked in the library and my gosh they do have it! Happy days!

Asterix and the Picts  – a story about how Asterix helped a frozen Pict (read: Scottish person) get back to New Caledonia (Scotland) to reunite with his lady love. It was a short book, less than 50 pages in total, but entertaining nonetheless. You could literally finish this within a day, but I didn’t. Why? I don’t know. Procrastination (and the fact that I have so many things to read already – blame my hoarding mentality in the library where I can get books for free!)

The Minions

I am a kid at heart and when I saw that the local library had the books about those cute yellow things that helped Gru out, I couldn’t help but pick it up too. Like the movie, the minions don’t really talk – and the comic shows that too. They just show gibberish words as well, which again, is like the movie. Unlike the other comics above, the minions comics has a few dedicated storylines. Every single page is mostly a different story. Would I buy this book? Nope, but if it is available in your library and you’re also a fan of the minions then pick it up. It’s definitely cute!

Griffin & Sabine

Was casually browsing my Facebook page when one of my friends from high school mentioned this book. I was curious so I asked her what it’s about and it’s a literary epistolary book, and is very visual. I was all for it so I picked it up.

Part love story, part mystery, the book is told through the point of view of Griffin, who lives in London, and Sabine, who lives in the Sicmon Islands in the South Pacific (a made up island, I already checked). They send each other very visual postcards, and Sabine even makes the stamps that she sends, which is pretty cool. The first three books were published in the early 90s, while another 3 books have been published later on. I’ve read the first three in the series, and hopefully by the time this article is published I would’ve read all 6!

Books Everywhere
Books Everywhere

Graphic Novel Roundup

And so, another year full of books, learning, visual stimulation and being engrossed in another world. My Goodreads account says I’ve read a total of 15 books, mostly graphic novels, and a few non-fiction ones that are great for life and business in general. Who knows what 2017 will hold. Will I get to read more books? Possibly. Will I still have the same taste in terms of genre? We’ll see – only time will tell. Hopefully you sort of enjoyed my 2016 book reviews. Don’t worry, I’ll only post them here on the blog sparingly 🙂




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