Well, grades have been posted, so it looks like I will graduate this weekend! Wahoo!
And now here are reviews of 3 of the final 4 Minx titles. I haven't read Token yet, and that's the last one. (But, um, if someone wanted to hook me up with a copy of that, I wouldn't complain. My library doesn't have it yet and the library that does won't ILL it to me. :( )
Emiko Superstar Mariko Tamaki and Steve Rolston
It's shaping up to be the most boring summer in history for boring geek girl Emiko. Her friends are off at camp and she's spending all day babysitting a small drooly baby for the all-American picture-perfect couple. *yawn* Then she discovers Freak Show, a variety cabaret that she might be a little too normal to be hanging out at, but it's the most exciting thing going on. Maybe... maybe she could perform, too? Be a little freaky? Then when she finds the diary of the woman she's working for and starts to see that maybe the couple isn't as perfect as they look. With that information, Emiko has an idea...
LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE this one. It's quiet on the surface--Minx novels are pretty short after all, but there is SO MUCH going on underneath. Just the right amount of angst. Emiko is a believable character that made believable choices and I never once wanted to whack some sense into her. My favorite Minx title. I must go find a copy of Tanaki's Skim!
Janes in Love Cecil Castellucci and Jim Rugg
The P.L.A.I.N. Janes are back, and still trying to save through art. Our main Jane is caught between Damon, Miroslaw, or her new secret admirer. All the other Janes also have their romantic issues, trying to catch their interests’ eyes in their own ways—Theater Jane’s romantic letters, Polly Jane’s direct frankness, and Jayne’s scientific analysis. There are other love stories, too.
But there is the negative—Damon has community service hours to serve after New Years, and Officer Sanchez still thinks P.L.A.I.N’s art is vandalism. What’s even worse is the state of the world. Terrorism is still rife in Metro City, and an anthrax attack kills a friend of Jane’s mother. After the attack, Jane’s mom won’t leave the house, and leaves the mail on the lawn, too afraid to open it.
I thought the first Janes novel tried to do too much, and would have worked better as a regular novel as opposed to a graphic novel. This one, however, fits in the comics medium better. Fans of the first novel will want to check this one out.
The New York Four Brian Wood and Ryan Kelly
Riley lives her whole life attached to her PDA Blackberry/iPhone thing, to the point where she lacks interaction with the flesh and blood humans in her life. After starting college and reconnecting with her estranged sister, Riley realizes she has to have some human contact, but it’s hard.
An interesting story with an ambiguous ending—and I am a fan of those. There are a lot of loose ends with the other characters that could have turned into serious subplots in a longer novel. I wish that this would be the first of a series, and we’d get a total of four books—one for each of Riley’s group of friends, but with the demise of Minx, it doesn’t seem likely. I'd be really into this if it were the first in a series, but as it will end up being a stand-alone, I'm a little disappointed.