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Hurry Up and Hold: Ms Marvel

kamalaI cannot wait to have Ms Marvel in my library.

For those unfamiliar, Ms Marvel is only the greatest comic ever. And the last year of issues were 100% my gateway into the world of comics.

But backing up to the 70s, Marvel has a pretty great, entwined history with the honorific “Ms” thanks to Wonder Woman and Gloria Steinem. Even if you care nothing at all about comics or feminism, do read Jill Lepore’s phenomenal The Secret History of Wonder Woman because the man who created that series has the soapiest, weirdest life story.

So, Marvel married the terms in 1977 with the creation of Ms Marvel, a series that existed on and off for the next 33 years starring Carol Danvers (the eventual Kamala Khan’s hero and namesake). Promoting Danvers to Captain means Kamala gets to head a reboot and that we’ll get a Captain Marvel movie in 2018. A win for everyone.

So, the new Ms Marvel, Kamala Khan, is a Pakistani American teenaged girl first and foremost. Beyond that, she learns that she is a shapeshifter and must use those powers to save her world. Along the way, she gets to work with Wolverine and a giant teleporting dog (Lockjaw) while trying to balance her exciting new life with the demands of her family.

I started the series not having really read much by way of comics but knowing that Kamala was extraordinary. People love her, people relate to her, and I think just having her as an option for what a hero can look like is so important. I went in with the highest of expectations.

There is no possible way that this series can do anything but exceed even the most astronomical of expectations. It’s funny, exciting, hopeful, and is really compassionate to its characters.

And Henrietta is getting the two most recent volumes starring Kamala (No Normal and Generation Why) as well as about half of the original 1977 Danvers run. I can’t wait to have Kamala in my library and to be able to read where she came from.

But hurry up and hold them because as much as I want to be able to see their beautiful covers everyday, I want even more to be able to share the fun.

New Harper Lee Novel Announced!

Chills ran up and down my spine as I watched clips of people reading aloud from the book To Kill a Mockingbird. The clips were aired with the huge announcement that there is a sequel, with a scheduled release date of July 14th. The sequel, written in the 1950’s, is called Go Set a Watchman. The announcement has taken fans the world over by surprise.

GoSetWatchman

The new book features the main character, Scout, as an adult returning home to Maycomb, Alabama. She must deal with the issues surrounding her father, the community, and her own life. Harper Lee, now 88, was delighted when the manuscript of Watchman turned up last autumn attached to an original copy of Mockingbird. She showed it to a few people and, with their encouragement, arranged for publication.

Almost immediately charges began swirling around the announcement. Many people were suspicious about the timing, since Lee’s lawyer, her older sister, passed away mere months ago. But Lee herself has confirmed multiple times that she is aware and excited about the new release.

The original book Lee submitted for publication was actually Go Set a Watchman, but her editor at the time became more interested in Scout’s childhood backstory. When asked to write about that, Lee put aside Go Set a Watchman and wrote To Kill a Mockingbird.
ToKillMockingbird

Now we will all find out what happened next. In preparation for this astounding event, Jackson District Libraries have ordered multiple copies of the new novel. Come in, call or go online to place your hold on the waiting list for Harper Lee’s new book, Go Set a Watchman.

The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith

The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith

The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith

 

The Silkworm is the anticipated sequel to Robert Galbraith’s debut novel The Cuckoo’s Calling.

 

After the events of The Cuckoo’s Calling, detective and former Special Ops Cormoran Strike and his assistant Robin Ellacott are busy with lucrative clients. When author Owen Quine goes missing his wife hires Strike to find Quine, Strike finds himself in the back-stabbing world of writers and publishers. He discovers that Quine’s recently finished manuscript criticizes his family and friends. Meanwhile, Robin’s fiancé has set a date, and she finds herself torn between her relationship with the two men and her love of detective work.

 

Robert Galbraith is a pseudonym for Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling. Her skill is apparent throughout this book. The novel is set in London. I’ve visited the city, and I enjoyed the return to familiar landmarks. As the second book in the series, less time was needed to build the main characters, so the detective work shines. And most importantly, the ending was not obvious.

 

Have you read The Silkworm? Let me know what you thought in the comments below.

Tessa’s Book Recommendation: Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Bestsellers come and go with hardly a glance from me. Occasionally I will pick one up, especially if it is science fiction or fantasy, and usually I find it a huge disappointment, as it will also be for any experienced readers. Books such as Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, Ben Percy’s Red Moon, or Justin Cronin’s The Passage are a few examples from science fiction.



TheRoad


RedMoon


ThePassage


Then something special steps out of the fog of words and jacket covers.

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel stood out and let fall a soft flickering lantern light on the dystopian novel.

First the author gives us a personage, a celebrity named Arthur Leander, and then a pandemic, the Georgian Flu, to “wipe out civilization as we know it.” Then we are introduced to a new version of the traveling show. We meet people who behave in the flawed yet typical ways that society expects in a crisis.

StationEleven But these people are abruptly dropped and picked up again in an amazing and skillful use of flashbacks and point of view shifts. One wonders what happened, distressed by the characters’ dilemmas, but we quickly become enthralled in the next person’s experiences. And then, there we are, back with someone previous. Gradually the twists and turns come closer together. Finally we expect the end, if not the exact one we get.

It’s interesting to me that this favorite is set in Michigan, my current home. One of my other favorite post-apocalyptic novels, Alas, Babylon, by Pat Frank, was set in Florida, my home when I read it.AlasBabylon I would suspect influence from that, except that I am not the only person singing the praises of these two masterpieces.

Extremely evocative and sad, yet also hopeful, this book is one of the best post-calamity books I’ve ever read. ~ Tessa January 2014

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