Sunday, August 18, 2019

Review Roundup, Edition 1

Editor's Note: This is the first of what I hope to be a weekly collection of mini-reviews of music, books, comics, movies, and more that I've enjoyed. Not everything here is new, but it may be new to you, and I hope you check out the work, which can be found via the links included.
Unless indicated, no one has requested a review, but I am open to submissions or suggestions, which can be sent to


Maddy Roop—“Rings”
Boston-based singer-songwriter Maddy Roop's debut album collects three years' worth of work into a powerful volume. A great blend of rock styles, this one is raw, powerful, and shows great potential for future albums.

Poni Capri—Dark Candy
I'm not as deep in the rap genre as some, but I've heard enough to know what I like, and I really like this new EP from London-born, now Atlanta-based Poni Capri. It's an intense, powerful album that touches on her early years, from her time in the world of drugs and gangs to now making her mark in the world of music and modeling. “Rich Sex” is my favorite off this album, and I look forward to what comes next.


Girls Have a Blog
This comedic slice-of-life Webtoon series has been a favorite of mine for some time. It follows Tara and Sara through their journey to find a career as comic creators, but it covers a lot more than that. From hilarious boyfriend encounters to confronting very real depression and emotional obstacles, this one delves deep into the lives of these two young creators. There's something new to discover each time you read it, and odds are I'll jump back in again sometime soon.

Giant Days
This may get a longer review down the road, but I had to include this in the first edition. I found this comic—available through Boom! Studios—almost by accident, but what a happy accident it is! Set in a university in Sheffield, England, this slice-of-life comic is centered on the adventures, hijinks, and pitfalls of best friends Esther, Daisy, and Susan. This comic has a rich, complex story that drew me in from the very beginning.

As of this time, I've read the first 10 trades....twice. That's how great it is. The characters are all so fleshed out and nuanced that it's easy to identify with each and their stories have been a blast to explore. I think the only downside is that someday, it's got to come to a close.


Of Blood and Bone
This is the second volume of the “Chronicles Of The One” series by Nora Roberts. Narrated by Julia Whelan, this follows “Year One,” an apocalyptic tale where a mystical curse called The Doom wipes out one third of the planet's population and ignites an age of magic. The second book focuses on Fallon Swift, known as The One and charged with a task of setting the world right and beating back a fate even worse than The Doom.

Whelan does an absolutely superb job in this audiobook [she also narrated “Year One”]. From the storytelling to the voices of the large cast, the story was a delight to hear, and it's clear that she is both talented and a big fan of Roberts' work.

Music Videos

Genie Santiago—Spirit Party
"Spirit Party" is the first single off of Genie Santiago's upcoming album, and if this song [and the video] are any indication of the final product, there's a lot to look forward to.

The video [shot in black and white, which I loved] looks to be 'a day in the life of Genie.' It begins with her morning meditation, goes to a meeting with a friend, hitting the recording studio, and driving through Boston. Having interviewed Genie before, I've seen her as a fairly open person, and this video reflects that. Nothing is held back, and perspective is that of being along for the journey. The videography by Alex Cole is clear, concise, and well put together, and Mertz does a great job with the production and engineering.

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