Monday 8 July 2013

Mini-reviews- Ghost busting and vampire hunting!

Today, quick reviews of Hamlet II-Ophelia's Revenge by David Bergantino, Butterfly vol 1 by Yu Aikawa and Hard Spell by Justin Gustainis.

Title: Hamlet II-Ophelia's Revenge
Author: David Bergantino
Series:  Bard's Blood

Published:  4 February 2003 by Pocket Books
Warnings: sex and gore
Source: bought
Review: Cameron’s father was murdered, his ghost tells him his aunt did it, and he randomly inherits Elsinore Castle, which he’ll get control of when he turns 21. He and his friends go to Elsinoret o celebrate. So, bunch of young adults, alcohol, and fun times. But there’s a problem-the ghost of a girl who drowned centuries ago is back, and she wants her Hamlet.
I love Hamlet so much. This was an impulse buy because it was Hamlet and it was cheap. I wasn’t really expecting much.
Part of this is a straight adaptation of Hamlet shoved into a modern day setting, which I am not against in the slightest. The names got adapted ok (Laertes becomes Larry, Gertrude becomes Geri, the theatre players become rock band The Playaz) apart from Cameron, which is seriously random compared to Hamlet.
Ophelia in this, is a  ghost who leads to some very big things happening. She’s interesting as ever, and is the one who develops most as she possesses various people.
The writing isn’t amazing, and some parts of the book seem a bit forced.

Overall:  Strength 2 tea to a quick, spooky redo of Hamlet.
Links: Amazon | Goodreads | Author website | 

Title:  Butterfly
 Author: Yu Aikawa
Series:   Butterfly #1
Published:  1 March 2011 by Tokyopop
Warnings: suicide, violence
Source: bought
Review: Ginji is highly against anything to do with the occult, due to the fact that he is haunted by the ghost of his brother, who killed himself. When he gets into an fight at a haunted mansion, which leads to them demanding bills and reparations, he has no way to pay up. Until a child called Ahega shows up and asks him to help out. Ginji can earn 20000 Yen a job-with the job being ghostbusting!
 This was  cheap at the Tokyopop stall. I got it not knowing what to expect. It was better than I thought it would be. There’s some humour from the awkward train of thought that Ginji has when wondering about the job,  and other little spots here and then. Ginji and Ahega complement each other well in terms of abilities (destroying and creating illusions respectively). Ginji shows more depth now, but I’d like Ahega to have more development later-there’s an interesting backstory coming. The characters in the short-bit-mystery (the swimming chapter) were also well developed.

Overall:  Strength 3 tea to a supernatural manga with promise.

Links: Amazon | Goodreads | Author website | 

Title:  Hard Spell
 Author: Justin Gustainis 
Series:  Occult Crimes Unit Investigation #1
Published:  26 July 2011 by angry Robot 
Warnings: violence, suggestive situations, 
Source: bought
Review: Detective Stan Markowzi is on the Scranton’s Police Department’s Occult Crimes Unit. He does exactly what you’d expect him to do-run around dealing with it when vampires, werewolves, faeries and the like mess up. The main plot starts when someone gets killed with mysteriokus symbols carved on him. That someone is a vampire. As more killings happen and some guy shows up claiming to be able to tell them everything, Max 
 I remember trawling round the internet and finding someone describing this as pararnormal investigations taken to the extreme end of fun. definitely my thing.
Rachel was my favourite character-she was sensible, and did a bit for plot development (pace advancement really). Stan was a good narrator and had a tragic backstory that motivates him.
It’s definitely fun, though maybe not my kind of fun. it takes a lot of cliches, like lesbian vampires and the white witch, which I like in moderation but got a bit overdone in parts.
The writing  plays with sarcastic humour in places. I have huge love for the hellhound on the police team. Called Daisy.

Overall:  Strength 3 tea  to a... unique pararnormal investigation. I’ll definitely read on in the series.

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Thanks for taking time to read this!
Comments are much loved.
Nina xxx

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