Sprite and the Gardener by Joe Whitt and Rii Abrego
Sprite and the Gardener is an absolutely beautiful and heartwarming tale. This story is about gently trying to find friends in surprising places. Also, helping people out just to see them happy. I thought the art was gorgeous and really tied together with the magic of the story. It was a quick read but still brought me to have several different emotions, including being pleased with the way it all came together in the end.
Aster of Pan by Merwan
Aster the Pan was a unique comic in that, initially, I didn’t care for the art style. As my reading progressed, I realized that the art style fit the storyline pretty perfectly. I enjoyed the way that we got world-building and back story without it being an outright history lesson. The tournament that the people of Pan have to participate in to maintain their independence was a scary round of dodgeball, and I thought that was a unique take on a classic kids game. I do wish there had been more information on Aster and the aftermath, rather than the way it had been wrapped up. Overall this was a really fun book and I’m grateful for the review copy.
Gudetama: Mindfulness for the Lazy by Wook-Jin Clark
I really enjoyed the bit in the work scene, because sometimes that’s actually how it feels reading mindful self-help things. As though they are not aware of office jobs and how they don’t necessarily allow for mindful activity to relieve anxiety.
I also appreciated the explanation of the difference between sympathy and empathy with the humor aspect. Often these words are mixed up in people’s language, and sometimes being aware of the best way to use them is really helpful!
“Sometimes words aren’t enough. It’s the act of showing up that makes a difference.”
The various ways mindfulness can be applied in different circumstances look different for everyone. There is no right or wrong way, as long as it makes you feel better and helps others around you as well. Taking care of yourself is something that can, in turn, help the people around you.
“I like that napping is a form of self-care. I will continue to do so…silently…and without interruption…alone.”
This book is a quick read and would be beneficial to young people, but also many adults. The concepts are manageable and tangible, without feeling too much like you’re being overwhelmed with “shoulds.” Gudetama incorporates humor and self-awareness that not everything will work for everyone and you can only take it one day at a time.
I really enjoyed this and the art was true to the Gudetama style we know and love.
Villainous by Stonie Williams and Jef Sadzinski
While I love morally grey books, this one felt like…nothing really happened? With regards to the art style specifically, it felt as though the characters are given extremely dramatic facial and body expressions that didn’t line up with the actual conversations. Conceptually, this isn’t entirely new. Generally, this means that it requires a level of uniqueness to make it stand out. Unfortunately, Villainous fell flat when it came to providing something new to the anti-hero style genre.
Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for giving me a copy of these comics in exchange for an honest review.