Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Blog Goals Update!

So I promised myself that I'd check the status of my blog goals this year, every 3-4 months! Since it finally settled in yesterday that it's already May, I'm a bit overdue. But hey, better late than never, right! Without further ado, here's an update on how things have been going.

Reading Goals:

#1 - Read More Short Fiction

So I've actually been quite proud of how well I've done on this goal! It helps that I went in search of some quality short story magazines to subscribe to. When they arrive on my Kindle, I get excited about reading them! I tried Clarkesworld and Lightspeed magazine first. They weren't really my cup of tea. Now I'm subscribed to Apex Magazine and Uncanny Magazine and they are GREAT! I highly recommend them. Short stories, poetry, and tons of amazing things to get lost in. I've read about 20 short stories already this year.

Even when I'm too busy to get through a whole novel, I can devour something short and sweet. I love it!

#2 - Clear my NetGalley TBR

Hmmm... okay. Well, being totally honest, I haven't done great on this one. We spent much of March and April moving, and I really haven't finished many books. Unless they were marked for a promised review, they've been languishing on my Kindle. I aim to fix that in the coming months though! My mini-goal, out of this, is to at least diminish it by 15 when I next check in. Fingers crossed.

Blogging Goals:

#1 - Post (relevant) content at least 3 times a week.
The good news is that I've consistently hit at least 12 posts a month since I made this goal! So I'm pretty spot on. The bad news is that I'm really striving for more fun and original content. I'm slowly starting to come out of my shell again, after the blahfest that last year was. It's progress!

#2 - Plan blogs ahead of time.

This... well... this I've been having trouble with, for the above mentioned reason. My creativity is slowly coming back though, so I'm going to try to type whenever the mood strikes me!

Overall Progress: Not too shabby!

I definitely have a lot to work on, but I'm hoping that now that we're settled in to the new house things will get easier. By the time I next check in, I'll be kicking butt at these! *grins* Do you have any goals that you're working on?


Monday, May 2, 2016

Graphic Novel Review: Through the Woods by Emily Carroll

Title: Through the Woods
Author: Emily Carroll
Illustrator: Emily Carroll
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderberry Books
Pages: Paperback; 208
Recommended Age Group: 16+
Release Date: July 15, 2014
Source: Library

Discover a terrifying world in the woods in this collection of five hauntingly beautiful graphic stories that includes the online webcomic sensation “His Face All Red,” in print for the first time.

Journey through the woods in this sinister, compellingly spooky collection that features four brand-new stories and one phenomenally popular tale in print for the first time. These are fairy tales gone seriously wrong, where you can travel to “Our Neighbor’s House”—though coming back might be a problem. Or find yourself a young bride in a house that holds a terrible secret in “A Lady’s Hands Are Cold.” You might try to figure out what is haunting “My Friend Janna,” or discover that your brother’s fiancĂ©e may not be what she seems in “The Nesting Place.” And of course you must revisit the horror of “His Face All Red,” the breakout webcomic hit that has been gorgeously translated to the printed page.

Already revered for her work online, award-winning comic creator Emily Carroll’s stunning visual style and impeccable pacing is on grand display in this entrancing anthology, her print debut.

Oh. My. Goodness.

I do believe I've found my favorite graphic novel of the year, so far. I'm sure you all know that I love fairy tales. If you've been following me for any length of time, that should be evident. What you might not know though, is that my favorite fairy tales (especially as a child) were the creepy ones. The unsettling ones. The ones that dealt with all the things that lurked in the dark.

Which is why Emily Carroll's Through The Woods has my heart, forever and always. These five stories aren't so much terrifying, as they are wholly unsettling. They creep in under your skin, and send shivers up your spine. It's beautiful how simplistic, and how short, all of these are. And yet, they manage to push across more atmosphere and depth than a lot of what I've read lately.

A lot of that has to do with the art. Oh, that sumptuous art. I had to include an example below, because it's just too good not to share. Again, it's simplistic. Yet, it's also not. The color palettes aren't varied too much, there's no stark definition, but each panel goes perfectly with the story that it's telling. One of my favorite panels was in "A Lady's Cold Hands". Our narrator talks of how cold and unfeeling her new husband is, and there's this panel where it slowly zooms in on him devouring bloody meat with his teeth. Are they really sharp? Is it your imagination? I leave that up to you.

This was brilliant! Gorgeous, gripping, and compulsively readable. I'm buying this in physical format as soon as possible, because I feel like it deserves to be shared.

Want to read it?


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