Spawn Origins Collection Volume 2
Issues 7-9, 11-14
Written by Todd McFarlane, Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman and Frank Miller.
Al Simmons, the newest hellspawn, has discovered that the powers granted to him by Malbolgia are limited and non-regenerating. He’s now metering out his use of them and supplementing with weapons from his past as an assassin. His memory is surfacing also. Jason Wynn and his minions are continuing to dispense death as their personal privilege by sending the Youngbloods out for missions in Botswanna.
The artwork was excellent in this volume and there was a large quantity of content compared to other comic works. Three entertainment points out of five. Enjoy!
Proxima: Book 1
Written by Stephen Baxter.
Narrated by Kyle McCarley.
Uri Eden, the name he choose to go by to retain some defense against abuse, wakes up for the second time in his short twenty years from Cryo Sleep. His existence has spanned nearly a hundred and sixty years from what the Solar System has dubbed the Heroic Era, derisively. He wakes up on a kernel driven starship during the first half of the ship’s trek to Proxima Centauri, Nearest star to Sol. He is one of near two hundred undesirables swept up by Peace Keepers to form the first Sydney like colony on a world in another star system.
This is so little of what is contained in this work you can be assured you have not had it spoiled. Some other ingredients range from AI’s, tri-pod alien life, Earth as a two power entity and much more. Baxter is an excellent world builder who hits all the important details including how people handle change. Narration was outstanding in vocal range appropriate to each of the characters giving you more than just the words to form a mind picture of each. Great job.
I’m hooked. Already listening to the sequel, Ultima. Awarding the rare five out of five entertainment units some call stars. Enjoy!
Rising of A Mage
Written by J.M. Fosberg
Anwar is part Giant and apparently gifted with magical leanings. He’s bonded to a healing Priestess who seems to want to do all kinds of services for him. Growing into his powers he forges bonds with Wizards, Kampur’s guard force and…the king.
This was short, entertaining and I made it through to the end even though I think I was reading the first edition. Good job, I give it a three out of five entertainment sword strikes.
City of Golden Shadow: Otherland Book 1
Written by Tad Williams.
Narrated by George Newbern.
Stephen is a South African kid of doing what twelve year olds through thirty year olds do now in their recreational time. He plays MMO games only the rigs are more VR and neural connecting than anything common right now. His sister Irene or Reny tries to get him to cut back on his usage even though she makes her living teach Virtual programming at the Durbin Polytechnic.
On the other side of the planet in an enclave in California, a fourteen year old is trapped in a body that is aging at an accelerated rate. His only road of escape is to live in a virtual world only now he and his friend are trapped in that virtual world.
Beings envisioning themselves as reincarnations of the gods of old are crossing from the Virtual World into the Real World. They’re doing real damage. A handicapped old Air Force guy is waging a war to try and free up the net; and stave off the mental damage a group called the Grail Brotherhood seems to be doing to ten thousand or more teenagers in vegetative state.
Maybe the more gripping thread in this is the story of Paul Jonahs, seemingly killed in the trenches of WW I then swallowed by a steam-punk Giant. Paul is enchanted by a woman who is in a gilded cage with wings, then he meets her again in what appears to be an Edgar Rice Burroughs vision of Mars. All the time he finds himself pursued by nasties including apes with snake heads…yuck.
If I’ve spoiled this for you then you would not have had the patience to enjoy this work of art. This is cyberpunk and it even has its own jargon like the works of William Gibson. The insight into a possible future where our actions and fortunes are controlled because some powerful group of beings can trap our minds on the net is frightening yet well told. World picture here is bleak but there are heroes and the struggle comes across as real. Four out of five Entertainment Units are thus awarded.
Serenity: The Shepherd’s Tale
Created by Joss Whedon, Zack Whedon and Chris Samnee.
Derrial Book grew up poor, jacking stuff to sell and abandoning temporary friends in close escapes. He dodged Police, other criminals and eventually fell in amongst the Browncoats in their planning stage. Setting himself up to become the biggest, most powerful mole in the Alliance until…karma overtook him.
Disowned and abandoned he has hit the floor when he discovers the one calling he couldn’t hear through the noise of his plans. He commits to becoming a Shepherd, a wandering missionary of compassion and belief in a higher purpose. I wish it was told in order rather than a series of flashbacks. It could also have been fleshed out more.
The artwork and storyline are both good but the product is not filled out enough to measure up to other comic volumes on the market. Granting it a three and I hope volume four delivers more content per dollar.