My 2015 ❤ Best Reads

This year I surprised myself by reading around 100 books. I never though it would be possible.
Last year I read around 50 and thought it was a lot. This year the goal was that. But as soon I got in the 50 goal I set it up, more 10 books, more 5 books, more and more until I reached the 100 mark.

I've read 29 Graphic Novels/Comics, heard 15 audiobooks, read 26 physical books and 59 digital ones. 11 books were in the Fantasy genre, 5 were romances, 19 were either Thrillers or Crime novels and 30 were related with art, illustration or design.

The most surprising one in the graphic novels genre was Locke & Key by Joe Hill, Gabriel Rodríguez (Artist)
At first I wasn't convinced with  the artwork and wasn't sure about the story. But then I got hooked!
I'm only missing one issue to finish the series. But my favourite is the Guide to the Known Keys.
Anya's GhostThis one Summer and Through the Woods were my favourites in terms of illustration. Each one with it's own style. This one Summer artwork become one of my favourites artwork of all time!
In a more gory, brutal and violent style (which I also like) were The Strain; Southern Bastards and Outcast. These are ongoing series that I haven't continued yet. The Strain I've changed to the book trilogy. I will finish the comics after the books.

In the fantasy genre the bests were - The Strain, Coraline (I already knew the movie version, which make it hard to visualize something else while I was reading, but enjoy it a lot, and the illustrations by Dave McKean in this version are spot on). You might already know that I'm big fan of The Lord of Rings trilogy, more I read it more I like it. This time I've listened to the audiobook version of the Fellowship of the Ring and Two Towers and loved it! (I'm almost finished with The Return of the King, but I'm adding it already because I'm only a couple chapters away of finishing it).

I finally read three classical thrillers - Red Dragon and The silence of the lambs by Thomas Harris about the infamous Hannibal Lecter, and The Shining by Stephen King. I enjoy them all!

In the Crime genre these four books were a pleasant surprise - The Cove, 4th of July, The Redbreast and The Ice Princess.

and at last but not the least - four inspiring books that art/illustration related:
- Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative by Austin Kleon
- The Lord of the Rings Sketchbook by Alan Lee
The Art of DreamWorks Animation
- I Love Paper: Paper-Cutting Techniques and Templates for Amazing Toys, Sculptures, Props, and Costumes by Fideli Sundqvist

What about you? Which books were you're favourites of 2015?

2015 - The year of the books

illustration by a outra mafalda | nuts for paper

This year was a year full of readings and new books.
These are some of the books that I've added to my shelves during this year.

From the Drenai Saga by David Gemmell
- Legend
- The First Chronicles of Druss the Legend
- The Swords of Night and Day

From Sherrilyn Kenyon Dark-Hunter series
- Dance with the Devil
- The Dream-Hunter
- Acheron
- Styxx

The Strain trilogy by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan
- The Strain
- The Fall
- The Night Eternal

From Avalon series by Marion Zimmer Bradley
- Lady of Avalon
- Ancestors of Avalon
- Priestess of Avalon

The Killing trilogy by David Hewson

Women's Murder Club series by James Patterson
- 1st to Die
- 2nd Chance
- 3rd Degree
- 4th of July
- The 5th Horseman
- The 6th Target
- 7th Heaven
- The 8th Confession
- The 9th Judgment
- 1oth Anniversary
- 11th Hour
- 12th of Never
- Unlucky 13

I binged in Stephen King books
- Cujo
- It
- Bag of Bones
- Salem's Lot
- Nightmares and Dreamscapes
- Pet Sematary
- The Dark Half
- Night Shift
- The Shining
- Different Seasons
- The Tommyknockers
- Full Dark, No Stars
- On Writing
- Under the Dome
- Duma Key
- Just After Sunset
- Insomnia
- The Mist
- The Green Mile
- Boleia Arriscada

I also give in to Anne Rice books (specially in The Vampire Chronicles and also the Lives of the Mayfair Witches)
- Blood Canticle: The Vampire Chronicles
- Merrick
- Blackwood Farm:
- Lasher
- The Witching Hour
- Taltos
- The Queen of the Damned
- Interview with the Vampire
- The Vampire Lestat
- Blood and Gold: The Vampire Marius
- The Vampire Armand
- Pandora and Vittorio the Vampire
- Memnoch The Devil
- The Tale of the Body Thief

I also got in my hands all the books about Hannibal Lecter written by Thomas Harris
- The Silence of the Lambs
- Red Dragon
- Hannibal
- Hannibal Rising

From Jo Nesbo I started to collect the Harry Hole series.

- The Devil's Star
- The Redbreast
- The Redeemer
- Nemesis
- The Snowman

From Fjällbacka series or Patrik Hedström series by Camilla Läckberg

- The Stonecutter
- The Gallows Bird
- The Hidden Child
- The Ice Princess
- The Preacher

From Tess Gerritsen I went with the Rizzoli & Isles series

- The Surgeon
- The Apprentice
- The Sinner
- Body Double
- Vanish
- Mephisto Club

I collected some classics too:

- Dracula by Bran Stocker
- The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and Other Tales of Terror by Robert Louis Stevenson
- Frankenstein: Or, the Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley
- A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
- Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë
- North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell
- Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
- Moby-Dick: or, The Whale by Herman Melville
- Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë

The goal for 2016 is to read them!

Read in November 2015

1) The Redbreast by Jo Nesbo
Although this was the third book in this series about Harry Hole police detective/investigator of Norwegian Police, I started to read these series with this one. I enjoy it quite a lot, although I had to get use to the way the story was told.

2) 4th of July by James Patterson
Another book of the Women's Murder Club Series. I'm enjoying this series a lot, I just have to refrain myself of reading them all in (almost) in one sitting.

3) 20 ways to draw a tree by Eloise Renouf
Fun book with many ways to draw trees. It's good to remind myself that are many different ways to represent things.

4) Frank Miller: The Art of Sin City by Frank Miller
Perfect for fans of Graphic Novels and Sin City.

5) How to Make Book by Esther K.Smith
It's a pretty book, but some times is not that easy to follow the step to step guides.

6) The Art of Kung Fu Panda by Tracey Miller-Zarneke
7) The Art of DreamWorks Animation by Ramin Zahed
8) The Art of Megamind by Richard von Busack

Three books about the artwork and the work behind the scenes of animation films.

9) Pride and Prejudice by Nancy Butler (Graphic Novel - Marvel)
Beautiful covers, can stand the artwork inside.

10) I Love Paper: Paper-Cutting Tecnhiques and Templates for Amazing Toys, Sculptures, Props, and Costumes by Fideli Sundqvist
AWESOME book! Not just the design and photography of it, but the projects in it too. Great book for any paper lover.

11) The Walking Dead, Vol.01: Days Gone Bye by Robert Kirkman
I've never been very fan of zombies. This was a re-read of this comic book. Although I like the artwork and the story in the volume, I was never curious enough to continue read it.

Still reading:
1)The Killing by David Hewson
I'm reading this one since February. Still haven't finished. It's a very long book, but I'm enjoying it.

2) Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
I decide it was time to read some classics. This one was the first one that I've picked up.

3) From Hell by Alan Moore, Eddie Campbell and Pete Mullins
I wanted to read a quick Graphic Novel, unfortunately the one that I've picked was not that little or quick read. From Hell is about the Jack the Ripper case. As most of Alan Moore Graphic Novels is full with long and amazing text, which doesn't make it the quickest of the reads. Besides that it has around 500 pages.

4) The Lord of the Rings - The Return of the King by J.R.R. Tolkien
Yes still reading this one.

5) The Ice Princess by Camilla Läckberg
I've started this one already in December and I'm almost finishing it. So far I'm really like it. More about in the end of December.

Read in October 2015

1) Red Dragon by Thomas Harris (Hannibal Lecter)
This is a Horror/Thriller fictional book that dabbles a lot in human behaviour and psychology. It's also the first book that appear's the character of Hannibal Lecter.  Hannibal Lecter film adaptions are some of my favourite films of all time, and the story in this book I got even better. The story line is pretty much the same, however you go in more deep in knowing the characters specially Francis Dolarhyde (aka THE Red Dragon). It's hard for me not give a in depth review without spoiling the book/film. I adore it! But it's not for everyone.

2) Misery by Stephen King
I shouldn't have read this book in portuguese. I think that the something was lost in the translation. I really enjoyed the story. From the books I've read from this author, the best ones are usually about writers. And this one wasn't an exception. Now I should re-watch the film!

3) Locke & Key, Vol. 2: Head Games by Joe Hill, Gabriel Rodríguez (Artist)
4) Locke & Key, Vol. 3: Crown of Shadows by Joe Hill
5) Locke & Key, Vol.4: Keys to the Kingdom by Joe Hill, Gabriel Rodríguez (Artist)
6) Locke & Key, Vol. 5: Clockworks by Joe Hill, Gabriel Rodríguez (Artist)
This is an amazing comics serious. Writing by the son of Stephen King, eerie and creepy, it's the perfect reading for Halloween season (or any other time of the year if you like the genre). At the beginning I wasn't a big fan of the art, but the story compel me to continue and I ended up to get use to the artwork. I really like the concept behind the keys and what they do. And also the fact that you only understand what's going on as long you go by.

7) 3rd Degree by James Patterson (Women's Murder Club)
3rd book of a (kind of) long series. I have mixed feelings about this one. I liked the plot, and how the murder/mysteries happen. These books have a very specific action development, but what set me off was the fact one of the woman from the Women's Murder Club being killed. Specially because it was such strong character, with more development to be made and it was wiped. It also annoyed me because in the first book the love interest of the main character dies in the end, and now in the third one of her best friends dies. What's up next? Who will die next? (I'll for sure will be reading the books to know... they are at least 15 so I have a lot to read in the next years ;) )

8) The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris (Hannibal Lecter)
Second book about Hannibal Lecter. In this one you actually have more contact with the character of Lecter. I didn't enjoy it has much as the previous one, but I think the problem with it was that I read it too fast. In this book we are introduced to Clarice Starling, a FBI agent in training, which is an amazing and intricate character. I really like to know more about Jack Crawford (FBI agent that is present in all Hannibal books).

9) Lord of the Rings - Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien
Do I need to say more about Lord of the Rings? I love the books, I love the film adaptation. It's one of the stories that more I read more I love it.

10) Contos Góticos by Mary Shelley

11) The Amazing Book is Not on Fire by Dan and Phil
Such fun book! I've read it in one sitting. I've been a fan of these two for awhile now, and they are so awkward and hilarious at the same time. It was really fun to read some stories of their past what make them to be what they are today. (Dan and Phil are youtubers know as danisnotonfire and amazingphil)

Still reading
1) Lord of the Rings - The Return of the King by J.R.R. Tolkien
2)The Killing by David Hewson
3) The Redbreast - Jo Nesbo
The bottom ones are both amysteries and about police investigations. One happens in Denmark and the other in Norway. One as 708 pages and the other 636. I'm more than half way with the longest one and half way of the other one.

In the mail ❤ loveteacupkisses

Mermaid | Marie Antoinette | Narwhal print and sticker - art by loveteacupkisses (Tatyana Vogt)

In the past couple of years I've been collecting art from some favourite illustrators.
I found Love Teacup Kisses or Tatyana Vogt through her Youtube channel and I fell in love.

In her shop I found some grab bags that had prints that just wasn't selling anymore, so I pick to mistery grab bags, and these were the awesome prints I got!

I love them all, but I have a soft spot for Frida, Marie Antoinette and the pin up girl.
What's your favourite art from Love Teacup Kisses?

You can find her: Youtube, Instagram, and Shop.

Sea creature - Octupus Girl (?) | Frida Kahlo | Ingrid from Game of Thrones (?) | Pin up girl - art by loveteacupkisses (Tatyana Vogt)

Read in September'15

I've been back to reading a little bit more. I particularly re-discovered the pleasure of working while listening to audiobooks, or make a quick break with a chapter or two of a book.

1) Through the Woods (Graphic Novel with 5 short stories) by Emily Carroll
This Graphic Novel is amazing! The short stories are creepy and grab the attention. The artwork is BEYOND amazing. One of the favourites reads of this month.

2) Wytches (on going comic, this is vol.1) by Scott Snyder ( Author) and Jock (Illustrator)

3) The Lord of the Rings Sketchbook by Alan Lee
This books is full of amazing (mostly) pencil sketches for a Lord of the Rings Illustrations. It gives a different graphic perspective from the film, which I appreciate a lot.

4) Murder at the Vicarage (Miss Marple) by Agatha Christie
I've always love mistery and detective stories. This month I decided to start reading a few classics in this area. I grabbed two books by Agatha Christie. I decided not to go for the Poirot, because it's the one I'm most familiar with (although not through the books, but from the TV series), instead grab some Miss Marple mysteries.

5) The Body in the Library (Miss Marple) by Agatha Christie

6) The Cove (Audiobook) by Catherine Coulter
Finally decided to start this series of books by Catherine Coulter all related with FBI thrillers.
So far I'm liking the style. Although I listened to this audiobook (for moments) I felt I was watching and Hitchcock movie.

7) Forever Odd (Odd Thomas) by Dean Koontz
This is a series that I've started last year. I really like the character and all the paranormal and ghosts activity. It's a bit different from what I usually read (although it reminds me a lot an absolutely favourite which is Harry Dresden, from The Dresden Files Series by Jim Butcher). My only issue with the two books of this series I've read is that until a certain point in the story the pace is really fast and fun, and then it slows down so much, that it becomes almost dreadful. Maybe it's a style of the author, I'll have to read more to figure that out and maybe get use to it.

8) Boleia Arriscada (Short Stories) | Everything's Eventual 14 Short Stories by Stephen King
My favourite short stories (in order of appearance) "Autopsy Room Four"; "The man in the Black suit"; "Everything's Eventual" and "Riding the Bullet".
I've decided to skip the "1408" short story because I've seen the movie adaptation quite recently, and I still remember it (but I will read it someday). I've also didn't read "The Little Sisters of Eluria" because it does part of The Dark Tower series, which I'm not (yet) familiar with. I will read the short story, but only when I read the series.

9) O Senhor dos Aneis - A Irmandade do Anel (Audiobook) | The Lord of the Rings - Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkein
Technically I didn't finish this one in September, but I'm counting in finishing in the following days. The narrators voice is very soothing and expressive. Sometimes I found myself discovering details that I never had notice before. I'm not sure if it's because it's the first time I'm contacting with the book in english, or it's because I read too fast - in portuguese and (most of the times) in english too (probably both).

In the mail ❤ Askar O General by Dileidy Florez

Banda Desenhada original da Dileidy Florez publicada pela Chili com Carne.
Original Comic by Dileidy Florez published by Chili com Carne.

Os desenhos da Dileidy nesta Banda Desenhada são extremamente detalhados e com inspirações Persas.
Dileidy drawings in this Comic are extremely detailed and with persian inspirations.

Adoro este mapa que está no verso da capa da Banda Desenhada.
I absolutely LOVE this map in verse of the cover.

Adoro os pins que ela criou a partir de desenhos que estão na BD. Encontrar-los é um desafio parecido com como encontrar o Wally!
These buttons we're also created with some drawings in the comic. Find them can be a challenge, but it's a little bit like Where's Waldo!

Podem encontrar os trabalhos da Dileidy na página de Facebook e no Portfolio dela.
You can find more artwork by Dileidy in her Facebook Page and also in her Portfolio.

All life is an experiment - Quote

“Do not be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better. What if they are a little coarse and you may get your coat soiled or torn? What if you do fail, and get fairly rolled in the dirt once or twice? Up again, you shall never be so afraid of a tumble.”

― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Fall is (almost) here - Things I've read since Winter and I want to read next

Summer has been really good for me in terms of work. But in making time for other things it has been a little on the down side.

However I still managed to read a lot of books. And these are a few of my favourite books that I've read since the last post (which was in March!!).

I've finished The Strain - by Guillermo del Toro, Chuck Hogan (that really loved and wish to continue to read, not only in the book format, but also the comics and I'm considering checking the tv show too) and The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum (I read half of this one and only managed to finish it with an audiobook)

Since I've been collecting so many Stephen King books, I've picked The Shining, because it's one of the most acclaimed books from h. (after I've also saw the film directed by Kubric).

Finally read Coraline by Neil Gaiman with the amazing and wierd illustrations by Dave McKean. (I've also seen recently saw the film again, they're both amazing!)

Read and was inspired by Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative by Austin Kleon.

I've also read Dark Places by Gillian Flynn (and enjoy it a lot! more than her more acclaimed book).

Series that I've started to read  or continued

I've started Chronicles of Nick Series by Sherrilyn Kenyon - Infinity (audiobook). I'm not sure if I'll continue to read it because it does have some spoilers related with the Dark Hunter Series.

Started again with In Death Series by J.D. Robb (Nora Roberts) Naked in Death (1st book) Glory in Death (2nd book) and Immortal in Death (and the 3rd)
By Nora Roberts I've also read/listened The Witness which surprised me a lot (in a good way).

Started to read the Women's Murder Club Series by James Patterson - 1st to Die and 2nd Chance

I've re-read the first Miss Marple book series Murder at the Vicarage by Agatha Christie and then proceed to read the second one The Body in the Library.

I've also started a new series FBI Thriller by Catherine Coulter, the first one was The Cove (also as Audiobook)

Comics & Graphic Novels

I've started the following comics
- The Fade Out, Vol. 1: Act One by Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips (Illustrations), Elizabeth Breitweiser (Colorist)
- Southern Bastards, Vol. 1: Here Was a Man by Jason Aaron (Writer), Jason Latour (Illustrations)
- Outcast: Volume 1: A Darkness Surrounds Him by Robert Kirkman, Paul Azaceta, Elizabeth Breitweiser (Illustrator)
- Wytches, Vol. 1 by (the amazing) Scott Snyder (Goodreads Author), Jock (Illustrator)

And the Graphic Novels
- Through the Woods by Emily Carroll
This One Summer by Mariko Tamaki, Jillian Tamaki (Illustrator)
Anya's Ghost by Vera Brosgol

As for the following months I'm want to continue these Comics, and some of the series I've started. I might also start other series. I've been collecting some series that I always wanted to read like - The Vampire Chronicles and Lives of the Mayfair Witches by Anne Rice; continue to read more Stephen King; continue to read more short stories by H. P. Lovecraft; and finish The Killing by David Hewson.

What about you? What have you been reading? or What do you want to read next?


The things that divide us, are stronger than the things that unite us.

East of West Vol.1: The Promise (Graphic novel) written by Jonathan Hickman and illustrated by Nick Dragotta 
(When a quote is so appropriate to your life when you read it.)

Books I'm currently reading - March'15

I've always have a big pile of books that I've started to read. Currently I'm reading the following ones:

1 . 2 . 3 . 4

1) Horns by Joe Hill. (horror/paranormal novel) I was so excited about this book and the film. I even started to write one blog post that never saw the light of the day. I made post with a quote from it. And then I never pick it up again. I really don't know what happened. (also mentioned in Books I still want to finish to read this year )

2) The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum. (espionage/crime) This book happened the same. I was super into it. Really enjoying it. And then one day I never pick it again. [I even made two posts with quotes - a mass of contradictions and on the observer separated from the events ]

3) The Strain by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan. (horror/vampires novel) You must be completely fed up of seeing talking about this book, so I'll just say that I have to keep remembering me that it's best reading it during day... just to keep me safe from nightmares. (mentioned in New books for February and Graphic Novel - The Strain vol.1)

4) The Killing by David Hewson. (crime/thriller) I've seen the american version of the TV show, also saw a couple of episodes of the original TV show and now  at last I can read it!

5 . 6 . 7
5) Devil May Cry (Dark Hunter Series nº 7) by Sherrilyn Kenyon. (paranormal novel) When I was on my Dark Hunter Series reading marathon I've started to read this book. And never finish it. Must fix that soon.

6) Infinity (Chronicles of Nick nº1) by Sherrilyn Kenyon (paranormal novel) Companion books of the Dark Hunter Series, but more focused on the charather of Nick Gautier

7) Kingdom Series Collection [Her Mad Hatter; Gerard's Beauty; Red and Her Wolf] by Marie Hall I've read Her Mad Hatter (the first part) in one sitting. It's short and sort of re-telling/romance of Alice in Wonderland. I really enjoy it. The other two are Belle and the Best and Red Ridding Hood re-tellings and I'm looking forward to finish them too.

8. 9 . 10

8) Trees Vol.1 by Warren Willis and Jason Howard (Graphic Novel) an interesting and different take on Alien live. There is intelligent life in our solar system, they just don't recognize us as intelligent or alive.

9) Locke & Key Vol.2 Head Games by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez (Graphic Novel) I'm not the biggest fan of the art of these Graphic Novel series, but the story is very intriguing and strongly inspired by Lovecraft and Stephen King horror stories.

10) The Fade Out Vol.1 by Ed Brubaker and Sean Philips (Graphic Novel) Beautiful graphic novel inspired in Noir era! Set in Hollywood during (or after) 2nd World War. To me it's brilliant, but I'm already a fan of this duo's graphic novels!!

11 . 12 . 13 . 14
11) The Back of the Napkin: Solving Problems and Selling Ideas with Pictures by Dan Roam. (Marketing Book) Another way of think and sell.

12) The Handmade Marketplace:  How to Sell your crafts locally, globally and online by Kari Chapin (Marketing? Book) It's a good resource of information with a lot of collaborations from various sellers and bloggers. It might not be the most up to date book. But is still a good one.

13) Steal like an Artist : 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative by Austin Kleon it's a fun book about how you can research and be a better artist, without over thinking.

14) An Ilustrated Life: Drawing Inspiration from the Private Sketchbooks of Artists, Illustrators and Designers by Danny Gregory It's always fun to sneak peek to other's artist, creators and makers sketchbooks.

15 . 16 . 17 . 18

15) Daily Rituals by Mason Currey. I'm not sure when I will pick this one again. It's interesting seeing the Daily Rituals of other Artists and Creators, but I feel like right now I should focus more on creating my own daily rituals than know the others.

16) Just Enough Research by Erika Hall it's a brilliant book about Research on Design work/projects.

17) On Brand by Wally Olins (work book) it's a great book about how brands work, how they develop to the current stage. I think it's quite appropriate for anyone, but specially for the ones who work with image and brands. I also have The Brand Handbook by the same author. I haven't started to read it yet.

18) Mythologies by Roland Barthes. (work book) This is not the sort of book you read in one sitting. It's something to be read calmly. Roland Barthes was literary theorist, a philosopher and a semiotician.
"Barthes's many monthly contributions that were collected in his Mythologies (1957) frequently interrogated specific cultural materials in order to expose how bourgeois society asserted its values through them. (...) He found semiotics, the study of signs, useful in these interrogations.(...)However, the bourgeoisie relate it to a new signified: the idea of healthy, robust, relaxing experience. Motivations for such manipulations vary, from a desire to sell products to a simple desire to maintain the status quo. " Quote from Wikipedia.

I might have a few more books that I'm currently reading for a long time. But these ones are the ones I kept track on Goodreads. And at least part of them I wish finish reading this year, or at least as soon as possible.

Happy Readings!!

EDIT: do you thing I have a thing for blue books? I know it's my favourite colour but six blue covers out of eighteen are a lot of blue covers!!

Books I still want to finish to read this year (To be read)

This is a list of books I wanted to finish before 2014 end. It didn't work. But I still wanted to share it. Some of them I've already read, or shared about them recently.

Classics and Work (things related with Design and Images)

1) The Pearl by John Steinbeck (book - pt) It's a Classic and such short book that I don't understand why I haven't finish it yet (yes I've tried to read it at least twice)
2) Mythologies by Roland Barthes (book-pt) [More about it in Books I'm Currently Reading].
3) Just Enough Research by Erika Hall (ebook-en) Another book I've started to read and haven't finish yet. It was also the first ebook I've bought.

Horror and Thriller Novels (all of these three red books are also available in movie format)

4) Horns by Joe Hill (ebook)  [More about it in Books I'm Currently Reading]
5) Red Dragon by Thomas Harris (ebook) Since I've found out that the Hannibal Lecter moives are based in novels that I've been really looking forward to read the actuals books.
6) Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk (ebook) it happen the same as the previous book. I hope I manage to read these two this year.

Fantasy (Continue to read two series I've already started)

7) Forever Odd (Odd Thomas Series) by Dean Koontz (ebook) I've only read the first book of this series. I really liked it. It's a little bit different, I don't usually read books about people who can see ghosts or death people. I really liked how the first one was written. Looking forward to keep reading the series.
8) Blood Rites (Dresden Files Series) by Jim Butcher (audiobook) This is the 6th book of the series. I've already read it. I really love this series. The next one is Dead Beat.

Graphic Novels and Comics

9) Habibi by Craig Thompson. I love Craig artwork. So I'm interest in getting into this book. The only "down" is that I like to read comics in one sitting and usually his comics are big a fully packed with details.
10/11)  The Strain vol. 1 and The Strain vol. 2 written by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan, adapted for comic format by David Lapham, Mike Hudoleston and Dan Jackson [More about it in Books I've Read so far this year, New Books for February and Graphic Novel - The Strain vol. 1]

Thriller/Spy and Historic Book (Books I've been a long time to Read and that also are trilogies)

12) The Bourne Identity (Bourne Trilogy) by Robert Ludlum (ebook)  [More about it in Books I'm Currently Reading].
13) Fall of Giants (The Century Trilogy) by Ken Follett (book - pt) I'm not sure if this will be the year I will pick up this book. Besides being a HUGE book, I'm not sure if I will be in the mood for historical fiction. Lately I've been more up to fantasy, adventure and thrillers (as you can see by my list of New Books for February).

Happy Readings!!

Anya's Ghost - Graphic Novel Review

Anya's Ghost by Vera Brosgol
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I absolutely loved it! (And I thought I wasn't going to like it.)
I was surprised by the amazing artwork and the monochromatic tones used during the whole graphic novel.

With that said I didn't think it was a very dark graphic novel. At least not to me.
To me this ended up to be a story about self discovery and self acceptance. Acceptance by Anya of herself and her roots, and also her own acceptance as a singular and peculiar individual. I specially like one of the last words of the book

 "You may look normal like everyone else, but you're not. Not on the inside". 

The ghost part is fun and entertaining, and also how she spends time trying to discover more things about the ghost. But to me, the most important part how Anya's grow up by realising one or two life lessons during the story.

Totally recommend to anyone, either if you're starting reading comics or if already read a ton.

View all my reviews

Books I've read so far this year (16)

For the second year I'm setting a reading goal through my Goodreads.
Last year I've setted a certain goal and when I reach it I change it for more. It happened a couple of times. I ended up to read 57 books last year.
This year I'm starting with 50 books goal. I've already read 16 books, but that's only because I've re-read a few books and read a lot of comics. I've been noticing that my reading pattern changed a lot through out the years. At the moment I feel that I rarely have time to read. So I started to listen to audio books. This way I can preform certain tasks or just draw while listening to any book I want.

With that in mind I've started three different book series.

1) His Dark Materials Trilogy by Philip Pullman that I've started many years ago, but never finished. The first book is The Golden Compass. I have to confess that I've really liked it much more this time than the first time I've read it. You can read my full review here. [I haven't seen it yet, but there is a film inspired in the first book, with the actors Daniel Craig and Nicole Kidman. I don't think I will see the film, at least until I've finished the series.]

2) I started to read the long A Series of Unfortunate Events back in the days they we're launch in Portugal. Probably one decade ago. I've read the two first books and then was never able to find them all available. They are in total 13 books. The first one is The Bad beginning. It was just as I remembered it. I've started the second one two which is called The Reptile Room, but haven't finished it yet. It's written by Lemony Snicket. [there is also a film inspired by these series with the actor Jim Carrie on the role of Count Olaf. I have mixed feelings about the book. This time when I was reading/listening to this book I kept going for the film imagery and I wasn't happy with it. I like to imagine the details and all the quirks by my own head. It was a struggle to forget all about the film]

3) I've delayed starting to read this series for years. Mainly because I thought I wouldn't like it. Which is very weird, because I love thrillers and cops/detectives shows/books, and strong female characters, besides sassy romance. And these books have it all! Besides they are written by one of my favourite romance novels Norah Roberts. These books are set in the future and follow NY detective Eve Dallas. Of course there are few clichés, like the ongoing romance with one of the most mysterious and richest men of (at least) NY. But I really enjoyed the mystery part of the police work. This one is the first book, it's the Naked in Death. There are almost 40 books in this series, and the series it's called In Death... How can someone write 40 books and have in death in all tittles? I don't know how the author does, but it works. I'm looking forward to keep reading these books.

4) The first Graphic Novel/Comic that I've read was The Psycho. What really caught my eye was the amazing art it as. I love it! The story is right up my alley, though it's kind of hard to explain it. You can know more about it in Goodreads.

5) Willow Wonderland, if you're recognizing it from Buffy the vampire slayer TV show, then you're right. I was never a big fan of the Buffy show. I watched it sometimes though. My favourite characters were Willow and Spike. I was very curious about these comics inspired by the show. I wasn't disappointed with the story and with the artwork either.

6) Another comic inspired by another TV show Dollhouse. These comics happen after the events of the TV show, that's why it's called Dollhouse Epitaphs.  I liked the story, but the artwork was a little bit disappointing sometimes. Other than that it would had helped me if remembered a little bit more about the characters and the show, which I didn't. There was no back story, the authors simply assumed that you knew all about Dollhouse.

7) Rat Queens! Oh my GOD, where do I begin? It's worth all the hype I've seen. Awesome artwork! Loved the characters, they quirky personalities. The story! And even the cliffhanger in the end. Can't wait to either pick the next single issues or wait for volume two.

8) Locke & Key - Welcome to Lovecraft. I don't like the first book. At all. I love the concept. The whole story. But I'm not fan of the first book. I have mixed feelings about the inside artwork too. Will see it's a working in progress I guess. (I've read another one from the Locke & Key series, and I had a very different opinion, that's why I think I don't like this one because it's the first book, and there is a of things being build (story, world, background story, characters and so on).

9) The Strain. You already know that I've been obsessing over this book. I'm waiting for the originals to arrive. You can read more about the comics here, and how I'm waiting for the books here.

10) Locke & Key - Guide to the Known Keys - I absolutely LOVED this one. From artwork to the side story. Probably it wasn't suppose to be read before you go further in the series, because in the final part of book there is glossary of the keys with some minor spoilers (but I'm okay with that).

11) Marvel 1602 was a re-read. I love the artwork, it's a different than the usual from Marvel.

12) Van Helsing's Night Off it's hilarious. Little short stories told only in images.

13) Polar Shift by Clive Cussler was a re-read.

14) Murder of the Vicarage (A Miss Marple Mistery) by Agatha Christie was also a re-read

15/16) 20 Ways to Draw a Cat and 20 Ways to Draw a Dress were two cute books with different styles of drawings. They are references for any artist.

Happy Readings!!

New Books for February

So yeah 15 books for 2015 was a fail. We are only in February and I went on a buying spree of books. I blame the bargains on books/authors that I really like.

I recently got really hooked by The Strain comic books. As you might seen a recent post I've made. So I've order the hole triology. The first two books will be second hand (under 4€ each) and the third is new.

The Strain Trilogy by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan

# The Strain
# The Fall
# The Night Eternal

By curiosity I look for Marion Zimmer Bradley books too, when I was looking for the second hand books. She is one of my favourite authors. Last year I finally purchase my own copies of The Mists of Avalon (yes, here in Portugal it's divided in 4 parts - for some weird reason they like to split big books in various parts... in case you don't know they did it also with the Game of Thrones books too)
I ordered the Lady of Avalon, Priestess of Avalon and Ancestors of Avalon (each book was under 4€). Right now I'm missing just the 7th book.

Avalon Series by Marion Zimmer Bradley and Diana L. Paxson

#1 The Mists of Avalon - by Marion Zimmer Bradley (already have)

#2 The Forest House - by Marion Zimmer Bradley (already have)

#3 Lady of Avalon  - by Marion Zimmer Bradley

#4 Priestess of Avalon - by Marion Zimmer Bradley

#5 Ancestors of Avalon - by Diana L. Paxson

#6 Ravens of Avalon - by Diana L. Paxson (already have)

#7 Sword of Avalon by Diana L. Paxson

And I thought I wasn't going to suck in to buying more books. And again I've failed (only one day after the 1st fail). Fortunately I'm not sorry at all.
Again these are all 2nd hand books. (and where big bargains).

I'm sucker for Sherrylin Kenyon books, and this year I want to read different series written by her, instead the one that I usually read which is the Dark Hunter series.

I was intrigued with the BAD Agency series, for what I can tell has no paranormal activity, which very different from what I usually read from her. I love some detective, thriller action so I was on it.
I've ordered the four books of these series.

#1 Bad Attitude by Sherrilyn Kenyon
# 2 Phantom in the Night by Sherrilyn Kenyon and Dianna Love
#3  Whispered Lies by Sherrilyn Kenyon and Dianna Love
#4 Silent Truth by Sherrilyn Kenyon and Dianna Love

I'm big fan of Alex Cross character created by James Patterson. And I was on the hunt of books by him. I found this series called Women's Murder Club (which I actually think was going to be a TV show... I'll be searching for it after I listed the books I bought... And I was right there was a TV show inspired by these books. Between 2007/2008, with only one season, and not that bad actors.Angie Harmon which is main know for the TV show also adapted from books Rizzoli and Isles, Laura Harris, Paula Newsome and Aubrey Dollar).

I come upon a bundle of the first 8 books! in second hand for 1/3 of the price if I bought in full price (even in second hand).

1st to Die by James Patterson
2nd Chance by James Patterson and Andrew Gross
3rd Degree by James Patterson and Andrew Gross
4th of July by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
The 5th Horseman by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
The 6th Target by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
7th Heaven by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
The 8th Confession by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro

the grand total of 18 Books! Oh boy!! But if I divide the total between all the books (including shipping costs) each book cost me around 2,97€, so... no regrets!!

Now I just want them to arrive!

So did everyone thought I was done? Yeah me too.
But still I was tempted for a few more books that have been in my wishlist for many years now.

The Killing trilogy by David Hewson. Since the american version of the TV Show The Killing came out that I've been drooling for these books. This time I've ordered the first and the second, but I'm still thinking if I should also get the third... Yeah I've also ordered the third.

I've always liked type/typography but I don't have many books about it. So I'm starting with this one. I've also been on the hunt for this Paul Arden's book. I've seen been recommend by many fellow designers. Looking forward to read it!

The BIG total is of 23 Books! (15 books for 2015 yeah right... 2 months and 38 books... jeez someone is addicted to buying books). [But if I divide the total between all the books (including shipping costs) each book cost me around 3,57€, so... no regrets!!]

Graphic Novel - The Strain vol. 1

The Strain Volume 1 by David Lapham
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Creepy and Gory covers. Volume 1 has the 1st to the 11th issue of this comic. I started reading it knowing that was about vampires and some sort of pandemic virus. I was also curious because the original book is written by Guillermo del Toro (and Chuck Hogan's - The Strain ). Before finishing the volume 1 I've also saw the first episode of the TV-show/series.

I love the artwork. One issue I have with many comics and graphic novels is beautiful covers and not so pleasing artwork on the inside. But this is one is spot on. The colours and the contrast really help setting the tone of creepiness of the story. The mixture of dark colours really help to deliver a brutal and violent story. Some scenes look like nightmare material!

It all starts with an air-plane full of dead people. Mysterious dead people. Nobody knows why they are dead. Upon this the main character is presented.Dr. Ephraim Goodweather (what a name!) working for the Center for Disease Control.
He is the chief investigator of this operation, but he's life is quite a turmoil. Eph is an ex-alcoholic juggling between his job and family (mainly his son).

In the second issue a coffin is found in the air-plane cargo. There are a few survivors from this mysterious situation whom are released and sent home.
There is this morgue scene where you discover that the death people have tiny and strange marks in their necks, almost invisible to the naked eye. All bodies are drain from blood and, oddly, despite they are death for hours, the bodies are still warm and without rigor mortis. 

Another extremely important character is an old men named Abraham Setrakian. Jew from Romania, Holocaust survivor, owner of a little pawnshop is the only one who knows what is going on and have some hints how to stop this pandemic infection of vampires. (I actually enjoyed a lot the parts about Abraham life, they are scattered through the different issues and give helpful hints about what's going on and how he knows so much about everything).

One of the best and scariest parts is when the death came to life in the morgue. (I actually saw this scene in the first episode of the tv show and sh*t is awesome too!). They come to life and they first urge is to find their love ones... and feed upon them. When they finish feeding on the blood they infect the people. 

By the forth issue of this comics they decide to assume that it's a parasite - in the comics it's not very clear, but in the tv show you can see worms, white worms - the parasites - on the dead/vampires.
In issue 6 you learn that are 7 original vampires called The Ancients. Three are in the old world (Europe), Three in the new (USA - where the action happens) and the 7th is the one whom is Abraham arch-enemy. Is also the only one whom doesn't hide from the humans. These vampires (as usual) don't get a long, that's why they are divided - I suppose. It's not very clear why these vampires don't get a long and white they have a truce. Or even why the fact that this 7th vampire - the master, come to USA will begin a war between vampires. 

It was only possible for this 7th vampire come to USA because there is an economic group called The Stoneheart Group led by Mr Eldritch Palmer that make a deal with the vampire. Mr Eldritch thinks he can control the vampires. However his goals are not very clear.

There are a few questions that are not answered during this volume, that got me questioning what's going on. I will be for sure reading the rest of the comics and also keep an eye on the tv show. I'm already looking for the original trilogy to add to my tbr list.
I totally recommend these comics for anyone who likes scary vampires and horror stories.

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