Hi! I recently read Critical Role- Vox Machina- Kith &Kin by Marieke Nikamp. I wanted to review the book because I enjoyed it so much.
Star Rating- 5 stars
The characters in this story were two characters I knew from watching Critical Role, but I loved seeing them in a new story. Vex and Vax are both fantastic characters who come to life in this new story. The supporting cast was full of vivid characters that added an additional element to the story. While Vex was my favorite character, I also really enjoyed Vax, Aswin, and Trinket.
A plot is something I need in a Fantasy because I’m one of those Fantasy readers who prefers a story in addition to the world-building. Critical Role: Vox Machia- Kith & Kin had a great story in addition to the world-building. Having a duel timeline for the stories also was fantastic because you got to see Vex and Vax through the years, and see their journeys. The characters and story elements were also interesting across both plots.
I loved the writing of Critical Role: Vox Machina-Kith & Kin. The light-hearted scenes were perfect because they showed Vex & Vax having fun with their friends and exploring the world they lived in. This novel also has heavy scenes, which show that Vex and Vax are human, and they have a rich story, along with being multi-layered as human beings. World Building is something that comes into play in a Fantasy, and Critical Role: Vox Machina -Kith &Kin is the perfect mix of world-building, characters, and story which I loved.
Recommend for and Enjoyment
This is a fantasy novel that I have not seen talked about as much. If you love Fantasy, one that is a little off the beaten path, consider this one. I enjoyed this novel immensely.
If you want to read my opinions on the media I watch, I started a blog for entertainment posts! https://stephtalksentertainment.wordpress.com. This blog will still be here, but I will only use it for bookish posts, and bookish content.
Thank you Netgalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for the E-ARC of Gamer Girls. A few months back, I was in the mood for a new book, so I started browsing Netgalley Read now. I stumbled upon this book and being a gamer as well, I wanted to see what kind of story this was.
Title: Gamer Girls: Gnat vs Spyder
Author: Andrea Towers
Genre: Middle-Grade Contemporary
Expected Publication: January 31st, 2023 by Andrew McMeel Publishing
Cawpile breakdown Cawpile is a book rating system that lets you look at books in a more analytical way. I love it because it adds a little more to ratings and reviews than just a number. I’ll be using it for my book reviews now to look at stories more analytically and share more about why I enjoyed or didn’t enjoy a book.
The characters were why I wanted to read this novel. I enjoyed getting to know them, and they all had unique story to tell. Each of them had their own hobby and passions, but that’s what made the book interesting to me. Together as a friend group, the characters were interesting because they were a mix of personalities. Natalie was my favorite character, but I also really enjoyed Lucy.
Here’s the thing, I kind of guessed the big twist to the story about halfway through, but I still really enjoyed the end of the book. Gamer Girls: Gnat Vs Spyder followed two gamers who compete when they play a game called Alienlord. Alienlord is a game set in space, and it’s a two-player game where one person is the alien, and the other person is the hunter. Both characters took turns doing both roles as the book progresses. Lucy moves next door to Nat. Judging by context clues, it’s clear that Lucy is Spyder. Another plot element to Gamer Girls: Gnat Vs Spyder is the fact that Nat’s sister Dylan is moving out, and how she deals with that. There’s a friendship in this novel that plays a part in the story which was fun.
Middle-Grade a whole is filled with writing that is both light and heavy in tone depending on the scene. Gamer Girls: Gnat Vs Spyder has a similar style of storytelling to the rest of the genre. The fun scenes are told with a light and fun tone. Heavier topics, such as keeping things from friends, and hiding your hobbies and passions, are told with passion and care. Andrea Towers is a writer that I will read more from.
Friendship plays a role in Gamer Girls: Gnat Vs Spyder, and I loved the journey the group went on. The story started with some tension because Nat was keeping things from her friends, and you could tell that she wanted to tell her friends, she just didn’t know how they would react. Once Lucy moves and joins their group, things become a little better because Lucy is a gamer, who is confident about gaming. By the end of the novel, all four girls know about Nat and her gaming, and they all support each other by letting them all know they support them, and they all play a role in their streams.
Enjoyment/ Recommend for
I really enjoyed this book! It was fun and each of the characters had an interesting story. If you enjoy Middle-Grade Novels, or novels about friendships, and growing, similar to The Baby-Sitters Club, you will enjoy this novel as well. I believe that any fan of gaming and Middle-Grade Novels would enjoy this book just based on the vibes of the story.
Actor-author-athlete Terry Crews digs into his childhood in Flint, Michigan, to tell a story of fitting in and finding your place in his showstopping debut middle-grade graphic novel, the start of a series.
“Terry’s Crew is a true delight from beginning to end. It’s sure to provide a much-needed mirror and sliding glass door for countless kids.” —Angie Thomas, author of The Hate U Give
“A delightful, powerful, readable retelling of Terry Crews’s adolescence. Readers young and old will be captivated.” —Sharon M. Draper, author of Out of My Mind
“A must-read for all those kids who allow themselves to dream in a variety of big ways. Bravo!” —Pablo Cartaya, author of The Epic Fail of Arturo Zamora
Young Terry Crews has a Big Dream Plan: He wants to become a MULTIHYPHENATE. That means he wants to be an artist. And a football player. And a musician. And maybe a NASA scientist, too! OK, maybe it’s ambitious, but his parents worked hard so he could go to a new school—Rock City Academy, a prestigious institution (read: rich kids go there) where he’s sure he can make his mark at the talent show. He plans an elaborate performance with his new friends, Rani, a passionate engineer, and Xander, a shy kid with a head like an encyclopedia.
Along the way, Terry’s plan is threatened by his grades, which slip below Mom-and-Dad-approved levels, as well as the schemes of the school’s football star, Rick, who won’t stop until Terry quits the talent show altogether. No matter what challenges he faces, though, Terry knows that he always has his crew to back him up.
Terry’s Crew by Terry Crews review
Rating: 3 stars
Even in a Graphic Novel, I still need compelling characters to enjoy a book. Terry’s Crew featured Terry and his friends, and all of them were amazing. I loved how well fleshed out each character was, even though they were people that Terry grew up with and went to school with. One of my favorite things about the book was how Terry, Rani, and Xander came together for the talent show. Each character in this book went on a journey, even Rick, and I was so excited to see how much they grew at the end of the novel.
One of my favorite parts of this novel was the story. The primary focus is Terry starting a new school, the times he has there, and how it can help him when he grows older. As someone who used to do talent shows in school as well, I related to the talent show section the most, and this was my favorite story element. My other favorite element was Terry finding out who his loyal friends were at his new school.
Writing and Art
Terry’s crew is told with heart, and you can tell how much passion Terry has for the story being told. Sure, it’s mostly inspired by his life, and what happened in his childhood, but it’s told in an interesting way from other books in the genre. Art is very important to a graphic novel, and the art in this book is fantastic. I love how the art worked with the story and enhanced the story. Art Style comes into play when looking at the art of a graphic novel, and the style of art used is one that works well for the story being told.
This book doesn’t have romance, but the novel has a lovely friendship. Terry and Rani meet when Rani is showing Terry his school when he is a new student. Xander meets them a little later in the story, but he’s a welcome member of the trio. Terry, Rani, And Xander support each other when needed, and they also help each other through the heavier topics discussed in the story. Rick is one that starts off as a bully, and he wants Terry to join him in his act for the talent show. By the end of the novel, even Rick is a character that you want to root for.
Recommend for/ Enjoyment
This was an enjoyable read for me, as someone who is trying to read more Middle-Grade Books and is also trying to get into graphic novels more. The story is fun, however, there are also some lessons in the novel that readers young and adults can grow from. I recommend this for people that enjoy the genre, and those that are looking for a fun memoir,
About the Author
Terry Alan Crews (born July 30, 1968) is an American actor and former American football player. He is best known for playing Julius on the UPN/CW sitcom Everybody Hates Chris, Sergeant Terry Jeffords on the NBC comedy Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and for his appearances in Old Spice commercials, as well as films such as Friday After Next, Idiocracy, and The Expendables series. He is a host of America’s Got Talent.
Hi! Jana hosts Top Ten Tuesday @thatartsyreadergirl. This weekly meme was born out of a love of lists and bringing the book blogging community together. Each week, Jana will post a list, and we readers will post our list based on that prompt. We also have the option of doing our own thing if we’re not feeling the topic of the week. I am starting to use the Library more this year through the Libby app, and I wanted to share my favorite reads I’ve read from the Library.
1- Pizza My Heart by Rhiannon Richardson (current read)
2- Growing Pangs by Kathryn Ormsbee (current Read)
Hi! Every year writers across the world join together and write a 50,000-word novel in a month! This year will be my first year back fully in several years, and so I will be going on a bit of a blogging hiatus. I may still do Top Ten Tuesday some weeks, and I want to do a post every Wednesday where I walk about my writing, and how the story is coming along.
I have done National Novel Writing Month for several years but took a break when work and blogging needed more attention, so fiction writing needed to take a back seat. I’ve really missed National Novel Writing Month, so I’m coming back with an all-new story this year. Check out the info before for the title, genre, and a summary
Title: Roll for Love
Genre: New Adult Romance
Synopsis: Camille Roth is a 24-year-old music teacher and needs a date for her sister Hannah’s, wedding. Enter Jess Barrett, a long-time friend, and recent crush. After Jess rolls a Nat 20 and romances Cami’s character in their DND Champaign, the two decide to go on a real date.
The story features: found family/ a friends group, a DND game, queer love, and shenanigans. I’m very excited about this story,and it should be a very fun story for me to write. The idea for this story came to me because I wanted a story that featured DND, but I wanted a little something more than just DND. I look forward to sharing my progress updates with you all, and I hope you enjoy reading them as well.
Hi! I read a lot of books last month, so I thought I would share my books!
Books- How to Succeed in Witchcraft by Aislinn Brophy-5 stars The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern-5 stars Frizzy by Claribel A. Ortega and Rose Bousamra (Illustrations) -5 stars Lore Olympus volume 1 by Rachel Smythe-4.5 Kristy’s Big Idea (The Baby Sitter’s Club Graphic Novel #1) by Raina Telgemeier -4.5 Star Gazing by Jen Wang-5 stars Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson #2) by Rick Riordan-5 stars Terry’s Crew by Terry Crews-4.5 stars Get A Life Chloe Brown by Talia Hilbert-4.5 stars Don’t Hate the Player by Alexis Nedd-5 stars Fairest by Marissa Meyer-4.5 stars
Hello! Jana hosts Top Ten Tuesday @ thatartsyreadergirl. This meme was born out of a love of lists and bringing the book blogging community together. Each week, Jana will post a prompt, and we readers will post our lists. We also have the option of doing our own thing. This week, our topic is a Halloween Freebie. I wanted to have some fun this week, and talk about how my favorite characters would dress if they lived in our world in 2022. As a lover of Critical Roll, I also wanted to characters from that show mixed in.
1- Lizzy Bennett from Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen
I’m not sure why, but I see Lizzy as a Belle from Beauty and the Beast. I think it’s because she is similar to Belle in personality, so I feel like that’s the character she would pick. I see her as the Villager Belle, the one that wears blue.
2- Jane from Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
Jane comes from a more gothic story, but I also feel like she would be friends with Lizzy, and it would be so cute of they were Belle and Snow White together
3- Abby from Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Abby was Wonder Woman during a Halloween party scene, so she would be Wonder Woman again. I think Abby would have a lot of fun as Wonder Woman.
4- Annabeth Chase from Percy Jackson by Rick Riordan
Annabeth from the Percy Jackson series is bold and daring, so I feel like her personality. I think she would be a Zombie Princess with a wild story about how she died.
5- Imogen from Critical Roll Campaign 3
Imogen is a sorcery class in the campaign so, I see her was a witch. I feel like she would be a witch styled like Into the Woods. See the gif below. I feel like she would love this character because she’s different from your traditional witch character.
6- Laudna from Critical Roll Campaign 3
I feel like Laudna would be Elvira. Laudna in the main campaign is a dark character, so I feel like she would absolutely be the mistress of the dark.
7- Fearne from Critical Roll Campaign 3
Fearne is a Faun from the fey wild in the Critical Roll game. Fearne would be a fairy because of her attunement to nature. I feel like she would have fun expressing herself with color and style.
8- Keyleth from Critical Roll Campaign 1 / The Legends of Vox Machina
I’m making my way through Campaign 1 while I watch the Campaign 3 episodes live every week. Keyleth with her affinity for plants and animals would be a more traditional fairy. While Fearne might have fun with style and color of her costume, Keyleth would be someone who wears a more traditional forest fairy costume.
9- Percy from Critical Roll Campaign 1 / The Legends of Vox Machina
Percy would be a vampire because he would already have the items he needed for his costume. I also think he would have fun with his make-up, and his hair for the costume that night.
10- Orym from Critical Roll Campaign 3
Orym is a fighter in Critical Roll. He is caring, so he would be whatever someone in the group needed him to be. Oyrm would be Wolverine from X-Men to have some fun with his costume.
Hi! Jana hosts Top Ten Tuesday @https://www.thatartsyreadergirl.com/. This meme was born out of a love of lists and bringing the book blogging community together. Each week, Jana will post a prompt, and we readers will post our list based on that topic. We also have the option of doing our own thing if we’re not feeling the topic that week. This week our topic is-Favorite Words (This isn’t so much bookish, but I thought it would be fun to share words we love! These could be words that are fun to say, sound funny, mean something great, or make you smile when you read/hear them.). I’m using these as words that will make me want to read a book.
If you’ve been here for a while, you know that I’m a fan of music, and I’ve been singing for a large portion of my life. I love reading about other singers and musicians because I always connect with them. I love seeing how different they are from me, and how music we’re the same because we have music in common.
Theater is a huge part of my life as well, and I just love reading about fellow actors. I feel that as actors, or people who have acted in shows before, have a special connection, and I love seeing how much we all bond, even when we’re just reading about other actors.
Gaming is a new word for me to look for in books because I only recently started gaming. I’m more than just your causal gamer, because I have a number of games in my collection, and I play games for hours at night, but I’m not one of those people who considers gaming a job, and I’m not a part of E-sports team or anything like that. I love reading about gamers because I love seeing how other people play games. Each gamer has a different play style, and I love seeing how much we all game differently. I’m not a streamer, but I love watching and reading about streamers.
I know this might be a lot of readers, but I love reading books about my fellow readers because I love seeing what they’re reading. Each reader in books is passionate about books, and how much they love their favorite books and authors. I love seeing the different tastes in books.
For those that don’t know, I’m also a huge fan of movies, and I love reading about characters who love movies as well. Movies is a very broad word, and I love seeing the different types of movies the characters love.
DND is something that I love. I’m a casual player, but I love seeing what others play, and seeing how they all play DND. I’m more of a watcher, but I want to read more about characters and their DND.
I might not be the biggest Fantasy reader, but I love reading about princesses, princes, and other royalty. I love seeing them get their happy ending and reading about what they all do.
I don’t have that large of a family, so I love reading about families, especially those characters that come from big families. I love seeing all the interactions and personalities interact together.
I love reading about Friendships, and found families. I have a group that I consider a found family, and I get the same the of vibes from my interactions with them as well.
If you’ve been here for a while, you know that I’m a fan of queer novels. I love all the queer characters and their stories.
They filled the Chance to Fly with so many amazing characters, and I just love how much they care about each other. Nat is a delightful main character, and I relate to her the most out of all the characters in the story. Rey is a supporting character, and she is such is a sweet friend to Nat. Hudson is my other favorite character because of how much he supports Nat, and how much he makes her feel a part of the group.
This is another story that is more vibes than a plot for me. I love it because the characters are fantastic and they have such a great time together. The story is about a group of theater kids working together, and making their production of Wicked happen even after losing their performance space. I love this story because it’s a group of theater kids coming together, in a time of need to make sure they can do their show. I related to this element because I could see me and my theater friend doing the same thing if we ever lost our venue when I did theater.
This novel is own voices, and that really shows in the writing. Nat is in a wheelchair, and Ali Stroker treats the main character with care and passion. Stacy Davidowitz adds heart and passion to the characters in the writing as well. They fill the Chance to Fly with light-hearted scenes, where you can tell the group is having fun, and scenes that really talk about the issues and challenges people who are disabled face. This is an element I love in the story because I believe it’s a story that needs to be told in the world. They handled heavier scenes with care, and passion. I love how the writing works well to tell the story, but also how it talks about the issues that need to be addressed. There are text chats in the book filled with username puns, and it brings me so much joy to see the usernames every time I read the book.
One of the best things about this novel is the friendship group. Each member of the group has a unique personality, and they all support each other, even if someone gets the role they wanted in the production. Each member of the friend group has their own strengths, and they each add something to the friend group dynamic, much like a family has different roles and dynamics for each member of the family. At the end of the day, even if there is drama in the group, they can all support each other because their friendship matters more.
Enjoyment/ Recommend for
If you know me, you know how much I love this book. I’ve read this novel twice and loved it, even more, the second time, and I didn’t think that was possible. If you’ve read the Fearless series by Mandy Gonzalez, you may enjoy these books as well. I have not read Drama yet, but based on what I know, if you’ve read that book/ series you would enjoy this as well. If you’re a fan of theater, a former theater kid, or someone who enjoys theater, this would be a book you would enjoy.