Saturday, January 18, 2014

Joining the Manga/Graphic Novel/Video Game Novel Challenge 2014

Just because I did not do very well in my book challenge undertaking in 2013, it does not mean I am stopping. I am trying again with a new challenge:

I figure this will work for me because I read a lot of graphic novels as well as some mangas. I have read a video game (or just game) novel now and then. The challenge hosts do allow Warhammer books, which do include Warhammer 40,000, so I am hoping I can get some of those counted on the challenge as well. So, here we go.

Basic details from the challenge to keep in mind:

  • "This challenge will run from January 1, 2014 to December 31, 2014. You can sign up at any time."
  • "Any book counts as long as it fits into one of the 3 chosen categories: Manga (all types of comic books are acceptable), Graphic Novels, Video Game Based Novels (Such as books based off of Warhammer, World of Warcraft, HALO, Mass Effect, Dungeons and Dragons, etc)."
  •  "If you are participating in more than one challenge, books are allowed to cross over into this challenge." [Good, because I need all the help I can get]
  • "You can list your books in advance or list them as you read them, the choice is yours." [I will be listing as I go]
 Last year, I read 98 graphic novels. That was a good year. So, to keep it safe, I am setting the following initial goal:

Level 3 Warcraft – Hardcore Player
Read a total of 25 – 35 books. 

The challenge does allow you to level up, so if I get more than 35 books, I will note it accordingly. I may try to add a few more mangas into the mix. I do have a few on my TBR shelf I need to get through.

List of books read for this challenge: 
  1. Scott Lobdell, Red Hood and the Outlaws, Vol. 3: Death of the Family. (review)
  2. Kyle Higgins, NightWing, Vol. 3: Death of the Family. (review)
  3. Brian Wood, Mara. (review)
  4. Jim Butcher and Mark Powers, Jim Butcher's The Dresden Files: Ghoul Goblin (review)
  5. Kenny Byerly,, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: New Animated Adventures, Vol. 1. (review)
  6. Stephen Mooney, Half Past Danger. (review)
  7. Box Brown, Andre the Giant: Life and Legend (review)
  8. Mark Rahner, Dejah Thoris and the Green Men of Mars, Vol. 1 (review). 
  9. Cullen Bunn, Helheim, Vol. 1: The Witch War (review).  
  10. Graham McNeill, Mechanicum. (The Horus Heresy, Book 9; review
  11. Sylvain Cordurie, Sherlock Holmes and the Vampires of London. (review)
  12. Gene Luen Yang, The Shadow Hero. (review)
  13. Chris Roberson, The Shadow, Vol. 3 (review). 
  14. John Lewis,, March, Book One (review).
  15. Gail Simone, Red Sonja, Vol.1: Queen of Plagues (review).
  16. Robert Kirkman, The Walking Dead, Book 9 (Hardcover)(review). 
  17. Joe Harris,, The X-Files, Season 10, Vol. 1 (review).
  18. Neil Gaiman, Signal to Noise (review).
  19. James Swallow, Hammer and Anvil (Sisters of Battle, Book 2; Warhammer 40,000) (review).
  20. Mike Richardson, 47 Ronin (review). 
  21. Mark Waid, The Rocketeer/The Spirit: Pulp Friction (review). 
  22. Simon Oliver, FBP: Federal Bureau of Physics, Vol. 1 (review). 
  23.  Ed Brisson and Johnie Christmas, Sheltered: A Pre-Apocalyptic Tale, Vol. 1 (review). 
  24. Mac Walters, Mass Effect: Foundation, Vol. 1 (review). 
  25. Jai Nitz, Dream Thief, Vol. 1 (review coming soon).
  26. Phil Jimenez,, Transformers: Dark Cybertron, Vol. 1 (review). 
  27. Dan Christensen, Archer Coe (review). 
  28. Michael Uslan, The Shadow/Green Hornet: Dark Knights (review). 
  29. Pat Shand,, Realm Knights (review).
  30. Ales Kot, Zero, Volume 1: An Emergency (review). 
  31. Scott Snyder, American Vampire, Volume 6 (review).
  32. Peter V. Brett, Red Sonja: Unchained (review). 
  33. James Stokoe, Wonton Soup (review). 
  34. Greg Pak,, Batman/Superman, Vol. 1: Cross World (review). 
  35. Paul Dini, Black Canary and Zatanna; Bloodspell
  36. Caitlin Kittredge and Inaki Miranda, Coffin Hill, Vol. 1: Forest of the Night
  37. Chris Roberson and Jonathan Lau, Codename: Action, Volume 1
  38. Kyle Higgins, Nightwing, Volume 4: Second City
  39. Peter Tomasi,, Batman and Robin, Vol. 4: Requiem For Damian
  40. Jeff Kline, Indestructible, Volume 1
  41. Scott Snyder,, Joker: Death of the Family
  42. J. Michael Strackzynski, Superman: Earth One
  43. Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples, Saga, Volume 3.
  44. Max Brooks, The Harlem Hellfighters
  45. Mike Mignola, Hellboy in Hell, Vol. 1: the Descent
  46. Sean Phillips,, The Heart of the Beast
  47. Eric Hobbs, Family Ties: An Alaskan Crime Drama
  48. Paul Allor, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Utrom Empire
  49. Ruth Ashby, The Great American Documents, Volume 1: 1620-1830
  50. Marc Andreyko, The Illegitimates
  51. Jeff Parker,, Batman '66, Volume 1
  52. David Gerrold,, Star Trek: the Manga Ultimate Edition
  53. Grant Morrison, Damian: Son of Batman

Update note at end of the challenge (12/19/2014):

As readers can see above, I completed the original challenge goal comfortably. In fact, I read more books that would fit in the challenge than the ones listed. A challenge for me was not so much reading books for this challenge. It was getting the reviews up in a timely fashion. In fact, this was a common theme for other book reading challenges I undertook this year. They often wanted not just a book count; they would also want you to post reviews (or at least a note) online as proof I guess. My reviewing pace online can vary depending on what I am reading, life happening, so on. Still, we can happily say this was a success. In fact,  I can upgrade the challenge level to the highest level offered:

Level 5 HALO Style – Legendary Player 
Read a total of 45 – 55 books.

So for this challenge, definitely it was a good year. A lot of the reading I did for it came from NetGalley titles. I also read some titles from my local public library. Though the challenge did include manga and some fiction (what the host called video game-based novels), I did not read as much of those, but did get a few in.  I think the main reason is that getting graphic novels and comics via NetGalley was pretty convenient for me in terms of reading. In fact, at times I did have too much too read (something I will discuss in another post).

For the record, I did have some more titles listed originally that I removed from the final list because I did not get the reviews up on time for this update note. For those who may be curious, here are the items that would have gone on the list had I written their reviews on time for this update. To be honest, I have notes on the books in my personal journal, but I have not gotten around to writing them into blog posts:

  • Jimmy Palmiotti,, All Star Western, Volume 1: Guns and Gotham
  • Jimmy Palmiotti,, All Star Western, Volume 2: The War of Lords and Owls
  • Scott Snyder, American Vampire, Volume 4.
  • Osamu Tezuka, Adolf, Volume 1: a Tale of the Twentieth Century
  • Osamu Tezuka, Adolf, Volume 2: an Exile in Japan
  • Osamu Tezuka, Adolf, Volume 3: The Half-Aryan
I will post reviews on these down the road on the blog, so stay tuned. Also, the above and other titles that did not make it into the challenge will be listed in my end of year reading review, so stay tuned to that as well. If the host does the challenge again for 2015, I will certainly join in.

Happy reading. 

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