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Showing posts from 2015

Top 20 Comics of 2015

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These are my favorite comics of 2015, including manga, superheroes, graphic novels, reprints, etc. I try to be as true to how I feel about a book as possible when ranking them, which is why it may seem odd for some to see a superhero title hardly anyone read rank over an acclaimed graphic novel. If I enjoyed my experience of reading it more, it was placed higher on my list.

These are my favorite twenty comics of the year. I hope you enjoy my list, and hopefully check out some books that may have eluded you.

Honorable Mentions
Baba Yaga's Assistant (Marika McCoola and Emily Carroll)
Harrow County (Cullen Bunn and Tyler Crook)
Junji Ito's Cat Diaries: Yon and Mu (Junji Ito)
One-Punch Man (ONE and Yusuke Murata)
Princess Ugg (Ted Naifeh)

20. The Legend of Zelda: A Link To the Past (Shotaro Ishinomori) - I subscribed to Nintendo Power growing up, so I have fond memories of the comics that ran in the magazine, including this classic from master Shotaro Ishinomori, creator of manga …

Q&A

Check out a Q&A session I had with Library Journal here, where I discuss Yokai, the inspiration for my works and self-publishing.

YA Pioneers: Nicholas Adams

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YA may have blown up over the past decade, but it used to be a small section of bookstores.  In the early nineties, it consisted mostly of "teen thrillers," which mostly featured dark mysteries and serial killers, although there was some supernatural fare as well.  The authors of those days were ahead of their time and built an audience in teenagers, and paved the way for the YA that is beloved by so many today.

Many YA writers were established in other genres before venturing into YA, but used pseudonyms.  An adult romance author, for example, would clearly want to distance herself from horror novels aimed at teenagers, and could adopt a different pen name to do so.  Sometimes, the reasons behind pseudonyms aren't so obvious.

YA Pioneers
Nicholas Adams is a curious case.  It's actually a pen name that was created by Daniel Weiss Associates that was used by several authors to write teen thrillers during the 90's. 

Clay Coleman was the first author to use the pen n…

Best in Music 2015

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The following are my favorite songs and albums of 2015, a fantastic year in music.

10 Best Albums of 2015


1. Till It's All Forgotten by Farao - This folk-pop album is stunning.  Farao isn't afraid to experiment with sound, and the result is a slew of mesmerizing melodies that hypnotize your senses and make you feel the music.

Key Tracks: Hunter, Warriors, Silence


2. Liberman by Vanessa Carlton - Deceptively simple, Carlton's sound draws you in with its haunting melodies, strings and piano.  The sound is refined, sophisticated and ultimately, makes you want to put this on repeat.

Key Tracks: Take It Easy, House of Seven Swords, Operator


3. The Desired Effect by Brandon Flowers - A love letter to 80's music, Flowers has devised an album full of catchy pop sounds that dare you to sing along.  Full of energy and life.

Key Tracks: Can't Deny My Love, I Can Change, Between Me and You


4. Delirium by Ellie Goulding - Goulding's raspy voice dominates this album full of aweso…

Grading the All-New, All-Different Marvel: Round Two

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Here are more books from the All-New, All-Different Marvel, and how they stack up.


All-New, All-Different Avengers #1
Mark Waid, Mahmud Asrar and Adam Kubert

Miles Morales stumbles upon something he shouldn't have in the first issue of the new flagship Avengers book, and craziness ensues.  While we don't get to see how all of the players fit into this title, it's an interesting group, to say the least, and there's a great exchange between Nova and Ms. Marvel that hints at how these characters are going to interact.  Very fun.

Grade: A-


Angela, Queen of Hel #1
Marguerite Bennett, Stephanie Hans and Aaron Kim Jacinto

This sounds like it would be a really exciting book with a cool premise.  Unfortunately, it's pretty forgettable.  The art is, well, a little too 90's for my tastes, and the battles murky.  For some reason, I keep thinking that Angela should be a lot cooler than she's portrayed in Bennett's interpretation of her.  The ideas are there, but the char…

Grading the All-New, All-Different Marvel: Round One

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Secret Wars is not over, but the delays haven't kept Marvel from launching their new books in the All-New, All-Different Marvel.  Here is how the first wave of books rate...


Doctor Strange #1-2
Jason Aaron and Chris Bachalo

Well, this is a match made in heaven.  Jason Aaron is a writer bursting with creativity, and Chris Bachalo has a beautiful art style well-suited for the, well, strange.  This new Doctor Strange title really illustrates why this character is so much fun, with weird magic, mischievous demons, and cool characters.  This is the Doctor Strange book people have been waiting for.

Grade: A+


Guardians of the Galaxy #1
Brian Michael Bendis and Valerio Schiti

Star-Lord may be MIA, running a kingdom and all, but Kitty Pryde takes his place in a book that captures the spirit of the best Guardians of the Galaxy stories. With Rocket in charge, and The Thing joining the rag-tag team of heroes, this feels like a fresh start to the series. There's a fun dynamic between the charac…

Award-Winning

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I'm very excited to announced that "Yokai" is the winner for Fantasy in Library Journal's Self-Published Ebook Awards! 

I never expected any sort of recognition for "Yokai," especially when I submitted to this contest.  I guess when you hear so many "no's" in this industry and people don't respond the way you expect to something you've poured your blood, sweat and tears into, you just get used to rejection.  When I saw some notifications on Twitter a few hours ago, I saw tweets announcing the winners to Library Journal's Self-Published Ebook Awards, with my name attached to them.  And then, I clicked the link and sure enough, "Yokai" was listed as the winner for Fantasy, selected by a volunteer committee of librarians.  Just the fact that people who have dedicated their lives to books, to surrounding themselves with books and opening new worlds to the people who enter their sanctuaries, found themselves enjoying "Y…

Top 100 Horror Movies

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The Descent (2006)

The Blair Witch Project (1999) The Ring (2002) The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) The Exorcist (1973) The Shining (1980) Black Sunday (La Maschera del demonio) (1960) Halloween (1978) The Phantom of the Opera (1925) I Walked With a Zombie (1943) The Haunting (1963) Night of the Living Dead (1968) A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) Jaws (1975) Scream (1996) Alien (1979) John Carpenter's The Thing (1982) The Evil Dead (1979)