I received this book for free from Publicist, Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Mary: The Adventures of Mary Shelley's Great-Great-Great-Great-Great-Granddaughter Genres: Graphic Novel
Published by Six Foot Press on October 6, 2020
Source: Publicist, Publisher
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Illustrator: Ryan Andrews, Yishan Li
Angsty teenager Mary Shelley is not interested in carrying on her family’s celebrated legacy of being a great writer, but she soon discovers that she has the not-so-celebrated (and super-secret) Shelley power to heal monsters, just like her famous ancestor, and those monsters are not going to let her ignore her true calling anytime soon.
The Shelley family history is filled with great writers: the original Mary Shelley, author of Frankenstein, the acclaimed mystery writer Tawny Shelley, cookbook maven Phyllis Shelley…the list goes on and on. But this Mary Shelley, named after her great-great-great-great-great grandmother, doesn’t want anything to do with that legacy. Th2020en a strangely pale (and really cute) boy named Adam shows up and asks her to heal a wound he got under mysterious circumstances, and Mary learns something new about her family: the first Mary Shelley had the power to heal monsters, and Mary has it, too. Now the monsters won’t stop showing up, Mary can’t get her mother Tawny to leave her alone about writing something (anything!), she can’t tell her best friend Rhonda any of this, and all Mary wants is to pass biology.
So being a decent of Mary Shelley can be complicated. Mary is feeling the pressure from her mother and grandmother to become a writer but she is just not that good at it. Her mother writes mysteries, her grandmother writes cookbooks, even her aunt writes biographies about their famous ancestor! As a teen she is feeling the pressure and then one day in biology class she touches the dead frog she was dissecting and something happened. The frog ends up hopping off after class so it’s like see brought it back to life!
Then after that she is followed by a boy who needs her to sew his foot back on and it’s freaking Mary out. All of a sudden there are monsters coming to her house (or her treehouse) wanting her to fix them. It seems she has an ability to heal monsters. She tries to ignore the monsters but before she knows it she is involved with it because they won’t leave her alone. Her mother doesn’t want her involved in it.
I think this was an okay start to a series but on it’s own there wasn’t really a lot there. It felt like a backstory volume and so I hope there is another one that will give us more monster and maybe adventure with it all. I enjoyed the artwork though it’s a bit simple. I liked Mary and some of the monsters were cool so I would be interested in trying another one. This volume on it’s own though was just really so so.
Would I recommend it, eh maybe. I think I would say more wait until there are more volumes out because it’s kind of underwhelming on it’s own.
I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Rise of ZomBert Genres: Middle Grade
Published by Candlewick Press on July 14, 2020
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Could Bert really be a zombie cat? Two friends put their brains together to find out in a wry new mystery series.
While helping her best friend, Danny, film his latest horror flick, Mellie discovers a scraggly cat behind a dumpster outside the YummCo Foods factory. Mellie names the stray Bert and hides him in her room, knowing her parents won’t let her keep him. But soon Bert has decapitated all her stuffed animals, and before long he is leaving the headless corpses of birds and mice as gifts for her. Danny is convinced the cat is a zombie, living on the brains of his victims. But is that what is really going on? Award-winning author Kara LaReau lets loose a fresh and sharply funny new mystery series, with an irresistible touch of the macabre. Fans of creepy stories and animal lovers alike will devour this fast-moving first episode in one gulp.
It starts out with a cat making his escape from a lab. He promised the others he would be back for them. He is so weak that he doesn’t make it far before dropping. Then Mellie and her friend Danny where out riding their bikes and find this mangy looking cat that looks almost dead. Mellie decides to take it home and try to help it, she spends her money on cat food. The thing is is that the cat doesn’t want it even though he looks like he is starving.
Then the cat goes outside and finds some small critters and eats the heads but leaves the bodies for Mellie to find. He thinks he is leaving her good things but she thinks its gross and buries them. It’s because Bert only eats the heads that Danny decides he must be a zombie. He does look weird and has yellow eyes.
Then you have the YummCo lab that is trying to find the missing cat that escaped and you have some really dumb bad guys. Overall though it was entertaining enough to be fun.
I only have a couple complaints. I only got the sketches since it was an eARC but a couple of the illustrations I found a bit morbid and gross. One has Bert with a dead squirrel in its mouth! Reading about it is one thing but I don’t need pictures! The other thing was is it left you with a cliffhanger. And I mean I thought maybe my eARC was messed up! It was the kind you had to download to adobe digital and I had it on my phone and I had to look on my computer to see if it was the same way there because it was so abrupt! I hate that in adult books I don’t need it in my kids books!
Other than that it was a decent start to a series and I am curious to see what will happen next. Would I recommend it? Maybe, but I would wait till the second book is out unless you don’t mind being left hanging.