Happy Valentine’s Day / Book Tag! xoxo

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Woo! Happy Valentine’s Day, luvvies! ❤ ❤ ❤ I’ve decided to participate in the Valentine’s Day Book Tag I’ve been seeing pop up all over WP lately. No one tagged me, but I thought it looked like fun, so let’s have at it!

1.) Standalone book you love

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Hmm . . . I’ve suddenly come to realize that I don’t read very many standalone books. Unless it’s a non-fiction one, of course, but that just felt like it didn’t count when I considered those titles. Animal Farm was probably my favorite assigned reading from school, and it’s just a great book in general.

2.) Dystopian book you love

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This series is just SO good! I’m currently picking away at the third in the series, and it’s been so good right off the bat. I don’t know why I waited so long to read it after completing Golden Son.

3.) A book that you love but no one else talks about

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It’s so fun getting to talk about books with people, but this is one title I have yet to get to discuss with anyone else.

4.) Favorite book couple

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I’m cheating. I’m going with my favorite comic book couple. 😛 There just really aren’t a lot of books where I am 100% invested in the actual couple presented, but I am all about Alana and Marko from Saga.

5.) A book that other people love but you haven’t read yet

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I have seen SO MANY good reviews for this book. It sounds amazing and I feel all the shame for not having read it yet. “SHAME . . . SHAME . . . SHAME” *rings bell* 😛

6.) A book with red on the cover

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7.) A book with pink on the cover

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8.) You were given a box of chocolates. What fictional boyfriend or girlfriend would have given them to you?

Honestly, not a lot of the guys in the books I read really seem like the chocolate-giving sort. I think the sweetest fictional male character I’ve read about recently would be Lazlo Strange from Strange the Dreamer, but I mean, he just seems like a thoughtful and good-hearted guy in general, so I guess we’ll go with him. Although, with his brilliantly imaginative mind, I think he could come up with something wayyyy cooler than chocolates! 😛

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9.) You are single on Valentine’s Day. What book would you read? What TV show would you watch? What movie would you watch?

Pshhh, like I’d have to be single to want to read a book on Valentine’s Day! I don’t really have anything that comes to mind that would be Valentine’s-specific, so we’ll just go with stuff I am reading and would watch today whether it was Valentine’s Day or not.

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This collection features 15 of Edward Gorey’s morbid little works. I’d previously read Gorey’s The Gashlycrumb Tinies, which features 26 ill-fated children, the name of each starting with a different letter of the alphabet, so it has been interesting reading more of his dark and twisted short stories and poems.

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My boyfriend and I have slowly been chiseling away at this Hulu show, Future Man. It’s hilarious, and over the top with its violence, gore, and inappropriate humor. I wish we had more time so we could just binge-watch it to completion!

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I’ve really been wanting to watch this one. With Guillermo del Toro at the helm, how could I not?

10.) All of a sudden you get shot by Cupid’s arrow. What new release will you love?

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There is no doubt in my mind that I will love this book just as much as I have loved Pierce Brown’s other books. ❤

Oh, and since it’s already Valentine’s Day I’d just say consider yourself tagged if you think this looks fun. 🙂 Life has been a complete ball of chaos and madness lately so I waited til now to do this, so have at it if you’d like to be a last minute participant, too. Slackers Unite!! 😀

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Welcome to the Party!

Hello, my fellow bloggers! 🙂

I just wanted to take a quick moment to post about the Now Live: Be Mine Blog Party going on today over at Scale it Simple‘s blog. I didn’t even know blog parties were a thing, but I love the idea behind it.

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In the comment section of the blog party post you’ll find bloggers of all sorts giving small introductions to themselves and their blogs and providing links to a recent or favorite post they have done all day/night during Valentine’s Day.

I love the idea because it creates a friendly social hub for people to check out other blogs they may not have come across on their own, and share their work with others. It’s always great to find new blogs and interact with people with similar interests or posts that interest you in one way or another.

The Batman Adventures: Mad Love Re-Read & Review

“Face it, Harl. You’re a certified nutzo wanted by the law in two dozen states . . . and hopelessly in love with a murderous, psychopathic clown. At what point did my life go looney tunes? How did it happen? Who’s to blame?” — Harley Quinn

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First things first, Happy Valentine’s Day to all of my fellow bloggers out there! ❤

In honor of the holiday I decided to re-read and review an old favorite of mine, The Batman Adventures: Mad Love by Paul Dini and Bruce Timm. Originally published in February of 1994 and set in the continuity of Batman: The Animated Series, Mad Love gives us Harley Quinn’s origin story and follows her as she plans and attempts to carry out the ultimate scheme to impress the Joker and win his affections once and for all.

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I have a lot of love for these characters despite the fact that they both have done some pretty awful things. I’ve always been a fan of the bad guys, which is one reason I think I’ve also always been so into Batman to begin with. I mean, c’mon, dat Rogues Gallery! So, although I love me some villains and reading about all the awful things they do, this does not mean I am pro-messed-up-relationships like that of Harley Quinn and the Joker. Just like I am not pro-destroying-entire-planets, pro-tying-damsels-to-railroad-tracks, or other dastardly things villains do just because I choose to read about them.

Sure, the Joker and Harley Quinn are a famous and well-loved (on-and-off-again) couple in the comic book world, but that does not automatically mean that they are a good couple. Hence why I did not select them for my recent Cute Comic Couple post despite the fact that I love the Joker and I love Harley Quinn. Here’s the thing: I love to read about them, but I’m not going to romanticize an abusive relationship.

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I’ve seen a lot of girls post things about wanting a relationship like the Joker and Harley’s and I can’t help but think that either they don’t know their source material or that I should feel very, very concerned for them. They may be interesting characters to read about, but their relationship is not what any sane person would consider to be “cute”, or even healthy for that matter. Even to this day, the stronger and more independent Harley still struggles with her feelings for the Joker from time to time, but at least she can see how toxic their romance is.

Exhibit A: Her acknowledging how bad things were with the Joker and deciding that no one ever gets to put their hands on her ever again after a scuffle with interstellar bounty hunter, Lobo in the Injustice comics.

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Tell ’em, girl.

I feel like I went off on a little side rant here, so apologies for that, I just felt it needed saying. So, without further adieu, onto the review! 😛

Our story begins with the Joker and Harley doing what they do best: bad guy stuff. With Commissioner Gordon in their grasps and plenty of sharp and pointy objects to play with, the diabolical duo are having one hell of a date night. Ready to inflict some serious pain on the good ol’ commissioner, their plans are shattered by the sudden appearance of Batman, doing what it is he does best: thwarting the Joker’s plans.

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“Damnit, Batsy! Always spoiling my fun. THIS is why we can’t have nice things!”

Needless to say this proves to be quite the mood killer for Mista’ J despite Quinn’s best attempts to get him to “rev up his Harley” vroom vroom! 😉

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Not dealing well with the Joker’s rejection, Harley’s mood shifts from disappointment to anger as she blames Batman for coming between her and her man. This is when we get our big flashback of Harley’s start at Arkham Asylum as the young psychiatrist Dr. Harleen Quinzel who quickly falls for a notorious patient, none other than the Joker himself. While she originally intends to get into the criminal’s head, he winds up turning the tables on her and getting into hers, painting a picture of himself as a victim, and Batman as a self-righteous monster always there to knock him down. She convinces herself that she can help him. That he only needs love and acceptance, the very things that she could give him, to be better.

Her dangerous new romance seems to be cut short though when the Joker escapes the asylum. She finds herself worried sick about him in his absence. It isn’t until a week later that Batman drags back a bleeding and battered Joker, enraging the protective Quinzel and causing her to reach her breaking point.With her love interest wounded and locked back up, Harleen flips the switch to full-blown Harley Quinn, robbing a costume and novelty shop to piece together her trademark jester costume and busting the Joker out of the asylum so they can begin their official reign of chaos on Gotham City.

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Harley’s head is filled with delusional dreams of a future life and family with the Joker, something she knows she will never have as long as Batman is in the picture. She’s convinced herself at this point that Batman is the only thing standing in their way of true domestic bliss. So she makes the decision to take the bat out of the picture for good. I won’t give away the rest of what happens, but I’m sure you can imagine that things do not go for Harley as she would like to think they will.

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All in all, Mad Love is a staple point in the history and development of Harley Quinn’s character. Recognized by IGN Comics as “one Batman book everyone should read”, this one-shot won an Eisner Award for “Best Single Story” in 1994. Even Mark Hamill himself, who has voiced the Joker numerous times in various animations and video games, has named this comic as one of his all-time favorites.

She may have gotten her start as the Joker’s sidekick/girlfriend, but there is no doubt that Harley Quinn has become a force all her own in DC comics over the years.

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Valentine’s Day Fan Art

It’s the weekend before Valentine’s Day so I thought I’d share some of my more lovey-themed doodles/fan art with you guys. Some are older than others so you’ll probably notice some definite changes in style and the varying tools I was using to draw/color them at the time. That’s one of the fun things about drawing, your style is constantly growing/changing as you continue to learn new skills and explore new art styles. 🙂

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Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas, daydreaming about Jack.
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Severus crushing on Lily. “Always.” ❤
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An older one of Harley Quinn, pining for her Puddin’.
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Queen of Hearts fan art from volume 1 of the Tales from Wonderland comic.
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Sheldon and Amy fan art sketch from The Big Bang Theory.

I’m off to do some Valentine’s Day baking now. The plan is chocolate chip muffins and chocolate covered cake balls. 🙂 I hope you guys all have an amazing weekend! ❤

 

Cute Comic Couple

Ah, Valentine’s Day is nearly upon us and love is in the air. And for those of us who don’t feel it, at least there is discounted candy to look forward to on February 15th.

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So for a bit of holiday fun I figured I would take some time to share my thoughts on one of my favorite comic book couples: Saga‘s very own dynamic duo, Alana & Marko.

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Alana, Marko, and their child, Hazel.

Their tale takes the whole star-crossed lovers trope and runs with it in the most awesome way possible: an intergalactic space opera/fantasy that pulls you in from the very beginning and leaves you begging for more. Like, seriously, I have only gotten to read the first volume so far, and I am already fully invested in these two as a couple.

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D’awww! ❤

Alana and Marko’s story begins with war but turns into so much more than that. Despite the hardships of being on the run, raising a newborn, fighting off bounty hunters, and everything in between, these two never lose sight of how much they care for one another and for their child. They do whatever it takes to keep their little family together and alive.

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It’s rare that I so quickly and so fully get behind a couple the way I did with these two, but I couldn’t help myself. Each of them is an enjoyable character in their own right, and together they’re just perfection. Like peanut butter and chocolate. Yeah, poetic, I know. 😛

If you haven’t picked up Saga yet I truly cannot recommend it enough. Every person I’ve encountered that has read volume 1 agrees that it is an instant favorite and that they cannot wait to get their hands on the next volumes. Believe me, you will want to see for yourselves the moving story of these two.

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