Lenni Reviews: “Ajin: Demi-Human” Vol. 12 by Gamon Sakurai

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The set up in the previous volume is followed through as Sato’s plan for The Ministry of Welfare is revealed. And if you’re this deep in the series, I’m sure it’s not spoilers when I say that plan certainly did not include any sort of negotiation. And Izumi gets some really badass time in the spotlight.

Sometimes, I have to wonder if Sato is this overpowered or the plot hobbles his opponents for the sake of the plot. I get that he’s experienced but I feel like someone should have at least wounded him by sheer accident with how many bullets are flying around. Or even considering we’re 12 volumes in; the cannon fodder would be a bit more effective.

And are the human authority figures really gonna keep treating the demi-humans like shit? I mean really? Have they learned nothing? “Hey, these super-powerful beings we brutally experimented on aren’t happy about that and are getting revenge. We should hurt them more!” But that’s me as the reader. Anyway, this volume makes up for the previous with some great action and a fast pace. 4.9 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Ajin: Demi-Human” Vol. 11 by Gamon Sakurai

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In a strange turn of events, The Ministry of Welfare wants to meet with the Ajin they’ve been abusing but of course, Sato has no intention of actually negotiating.

This felt like a setup volume; getting all the chess pieces into place for the actual action to happen later. Sadly, I felt unsatisfied at the end of it. I was able to read this and the next volume back to back but I can’t imagine reading this then knowing you have to wait a month or more for the follow-up and being pleased about it. It wasn’t bad perse but I just don’t think enough happened here to justify the price of admission. Although, I am glad to see Izumi make some moves. 3.5 out of 5.

Lenni Reviews: “Parable of the Sower” by Octavia E. Butler, Damian Duffy, John Jennings

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Lauren Olamina, a young woman with the power of hyper empathy (feeling the pain and pleasure of others) lives in a gated community safe for now from the apocalyptic hellscape outside the walls. A preacher’s daughter, she is raised to believe in strict Baptist teachings, she rejects them in favor of creating her own religion called Earthseed. But when her community falls and her family is killed; she is cast into the wilderness and forced to survive on her own.

For a world basically burning itself out, the color palette is perfect. Lauren is a practical character, very aware of the dangers surrounding her but at the same time, she is so deadpan. When the action amps up, she shows plenty of emotion but in the downtime, she is very reserved. Understandable given she feels other’s pain, she would want to keep in control but it’s not fun to look at for pages on end. In a novel that hits different but when you get art involved, it’s boring to the eye.

Overall, I like the story. I’d actually like to great the novel since the graphic novel does such a good job bringing the world to life. Also, I picked a crappy time to read more dystopian fiction. 3.9 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Levius/est” Vol. 5 by Haruhisa Nakata

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

In his volume we have more Natalia versus Balthus with more interference by the horrid Dr. Clown. There’s amazing action and amazing use of the unique steam-powered tech the fighters use. And I really enjoy Natalia as a character.

But Dr. Clown Jack Pudding needs to be pushed off a bridge. What he pulled with Balthys and his sister is messed up and my priority in this series now is to see him get a fantastical comeuppance. I won’t spoil anything but he seriously needs to get his ass kicked all over their stadium. But still, this series is awesome. Very exciting. 4.5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “No Guns Life” Vol. 6 by Tasuku Karasuma

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

In this volume, we explore the origins of The Extended and Tetsuro gets his memories back and isn’t happy with what he sees.

After some thought, it makes sense why Andy Wachowski – the man behind Extended technology – did what he did. I won’t spoil but at first, I thought it was petty and spiteful but I get it in a twisted sort of way.

The twist with Tetsuro also makes sense and I still find it adorable when Juzo will lose his cool and be shy around women. We get more insight into his time as a soldier and watch him deal with his past. I liked this volume even if the action didn’t quite make sense at some points. I will absolutely have to check out the anime when I can find it 4.9 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Spellbound: A Graphic Memoir” by Bishakh Kumar Som

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

This memoir tells the story of a transgender woman Bishakh, who quits her job to write and create graphic novels. We follow her through her typical day interspersed with flashbacks of her parents and life in college.

I wanted to like this. I wanted to be impressed with Bishakh’s life story, chasing her dream of being a graphic artist and making a living off her art but my ARC copy was so small the font chosen for all the text was PAINFUL to read. Nearly impossible in some parts so I wasn’t able to get the full effect of the story. I may have to revisit this book once I can get my hands on a print copy. I doubt the final product will have that quality.

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Lenni Reviews: “The Farm” by Joanne Ramos

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

Told through different perspectives, this book takes you to Golden Oaks, where women carry surrogate babies for wealthy clients. Every aspect of their lives are controlled to produce the most viable offspring. In desperation, one of the hosts, Jane, as volunteered as a surrogate in order to make the money she needs to give her daughter a better life.

I like how each chapter comes from a different woman’s perspective. You get to hear their exact story and learn about their lives. There is still a disturbing edge to the very idea of the wealthy taking advantage of desperate poor women; particularly immigrants. Despite the inevitable dystopian leanings of such a practice, I did find myself immersed in these stories. Very well done. 4 out of 5.

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Finally Watched It – Challenge Edition: The Woman (2011)

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Every so often in my travels on the internet, I’ll find a list of most disturbing movies that people can’t sit through and I take that as a challenge. I remember way back when I watched “The Human Centipede” because “ZOMG, so shocking!!!11!!” and found it to be a lame poop joke that went on too long and I got bored. Even with “Canibal Holocaust” I thought it was gory and all but hardly ‘walk out of the theater’ offensive and gross. In fact, the only movie to outright disgust me and piss me off was “A Serbian Film” so these walk out of the theatre movies are 2:1 at this point. So, where does this movie stack up?

While there are of course unpleasant things that happen in the movie – like the father is horrible and does what a horrible man would do to a woman he has captive – I didn’t find it hard to watch or super offensive. It was effective at being a horror movie and keeping the tone consistent throughout. The effects were done well, the story was interesting… But I never felt like I needed to take a shower or tap out of the movie early.

To sum up, I don’t get why this was on a most disturbing list unless their bar is much lower than mine.

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