Sunday, June 05, 2016

This Just In...



Based upon the author's own life, BREAKING CAT NEWS is a series of comics that imagines the three cats in one family (Elvis, Puck, and Lupin) as if they were reporters reporting on the news of the day. Everything from a spider on the ceiling, to their woman owner taking a nap, to buying new cat food, and even the arrival of a baby are explored through the eyes of these cat reporters. The incidents are filled with humor and are taken from real life. BREAKING CAT NEWS is a perfect little gift book for the cat lover in your life.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

The Thea Sisters Are Back



In THEA STILTON GRAPHIC NOVELS #5: THE SECRET OF THE WATERFALL IN THE WOODS, it's summertime at Mouseford Academy on Whale Island and the students are all preparing for the annual trek into the woods to watch the opening of the dam and to watch the return of the waterfall. However, when Professor Van Kraken is almost attacked by a bear in the woods, it becomes clear that something isn't normal. Some want to call the whole excursion off, but the Thea Sisters and a few others decide to investigate to see what exactly is going on. THE SECRET OF THE WATERFALL IN THE WOODS is another interesting tale about the students at Mouseford Academy and the selfish ambitions of Vissia de Vissen. I look forward to reading more of their adventures in future volumes.

Review: STAR WARS SHATTERED EMPIRE



What happened in the days immediately following the destruction of the 2nd Death Star in the movie RETURN OF THE JEDI? Well, STAR WARS: SHATTERED EMPIRE is a graphic novel that fills in some of the gaps. Instead of focusing on the main players from the original Star Wars trilogy, SHATTERED EMPIRE follows the exploits of a couple of, until now, unknown fighters of the Rebellion. There's Shara Bey, an amazing pilot and her husband, Kes Dameron, a skilled fighter. The couple fight in different divisions and are looking forward to the time they can retire and begin the life together that they have been fighting for. However, before that can happen, Shara is sent on one last mission to assist Luke Skywalker in an important task.

At the end of the SHATTERED EMPIRE story, there is the first issue of the PRINCESS LEIA comic. In addition, the issue of PRINCESS LEIA is followed by the very first issue of the STAR WARS comic from 1977.

Overall, I enjoyed SHATTERED EMPIRE. Shara was a great character and it was nice to see some back story about the parents of Poe Dameron.  It's a nice story that Star Wars fans will enjoy, particular fans of THE FORCE AWAKENS.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

State and Regional Premiere of DRINKING HABITS 2

This little play I've been directing, DRINKING HABITS 2, opens this Thursday, January 21st. If you're anywhere near Highland, IL this weekend or next, you should make a point to come see it. It's a hilarious farce that will leave you laughing. I'm proud to say that our production is the state and regional premiere of the show and that we are only the second place in the world that you can see this show. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased online or can be purchased in person at the Highland Chamber of Commerce or at the door.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Comic Review: THE BLACK HOOD #4: THE BULLET'S KISS, CHAPTER FOUR



In THE BLACK HOOD #4: THE BULLET'S KISS, CHAPTER THREE, Officer Greg Hettinger confronts two of The Connection's major henchmen in a cemetery. The fight doesn't go well for either side, but The Black Hood is unmasked in the conflict and Hettinger's real identity is revealed. Wounded and with the police hot on his trail, Hettinger is forced to leave the scene and his assailants are captured. He knows he only has a limited amount of time to find The Connection and get his revenge before he's hunted down and killed by The Connection himself. His circumstances force Hettinger to take drastic actions and seek help from those he trusts the most. The story keeps getting better and I look forward to the next chapter of The Bullet's Kiss. The end of the comic includes an essay about the problem of graft and corruption in Philadelphia.

Comic Review: THE BLACK HOOD #3: THE BULLET'S KISS, CHAPTER THREE



In THE BLACK HOOD #3: THE BULLET'S KISS, CHAPTER THREE, after being framed for drug possession, Officer Greg Hettinger fully embraces his alter-ego as The Black Hood and begins full-force vigilantism, seeking to locate man (known as The Connection) ultimately responsible for framing him. Slowly he begins to unravel the names of the drug-cartel ladder until it leads him to a cemetery and his most violent confrontation, yet.  I really enjoyed THE BLACK HOOD #3: THE BULLET'S KISS, CHAPTER THREE and found it to be the best chapter in the series, yet. I'm looking forward to more in the tale of The Bullet's Kiss. The comic has a short essay at the end about crime in real-world Philadelphia and the difficult in finding people to report criminals and criminal activity.

Graphic Novel Review: MUDDY MAX: THE MYSTERY OF MARSH CREEK



MUDDY MAX: THE MYSTERY OF MARSH CREEK is a graphic novel about Max. Max seems to be a fairly typical pre-teen. However, his parents are obsessive about mud: they won't let a drop of it touch him or enter their home. This is particularly difficult for Max because he lives near a marsh in a town that is famous for its mud. One day while trying to escape from the school bully, Max falls into the mud and he eventually discovers it gives him superpowers. Max and his best friend Patrick are determined to see what else Max can do when he comes in contact with the mud. They also begin to suspect that Max's parents are hiding something from him and that the secret has something to do with muddy Marsh Creek.

I enjoyed reading MUDDY MAX: THE MYSTERY OF MARSH CREEK. The book moves along at a nice pace with no slow moments. There are a few loose ends that make me believe that a sequel might be in the works. As for the illustrations, readers should be aware these are not colored-illustrations. They are done in more of sepia-tones: lots of browns with some black and white.