📚 Reading 7 Books in One Weekend! || Reading Vlog

[♬ “Skyline” (Instrumental)
by Ikson ♬] [♬ “Skyline” (Instrumental)
by Ikson ♬] Bibliophiles of the internet,
my name’s Adriana and today I’m back to kick off
my reading vlog for #GetGraphic. I’ve had a full day, I’ve been
doing a million and one things, and I’m still trying to just get my
chill on and enjoy some comics. But anyway, the first thing I
read for #GetGraphic was “Crush” by
Svetlana Chmakova. It’s a middle grade all ages
comic about this big, burly kid named Jorge who everyone
assumes is really tough when really he’s just introverted and
deeply cares about his friends and he’s just really nice. So he starts crushing on a
classmate, and once his friends catch on, they start putting
all of these expectations on what should be a deeply
private and personal experience. I love this just as much as
Svetlana’s other books in this series. If you want to read about stories
with amazing friendship dynamics, stories that normalize diversity
and inclusion, stories where friends stick up for each other and
authentically create safe spaces, this series has *all* of that. This story really explores
assumptions, and how we can use those assumptions to our benefit,
but also how assuming things about other people can be hurtful
because it doesn’t take the entire story into account. For example, Jorge uses his size and
the assumptions that people make about him being really tough to
defend other kids who are being bullied or who are unable to say
the things they want to say for fear of being harassed. But people are also quick to
assume bad things about *him*, and that really effects this
developing relationship he has with Jazmine, his crush. This comic is really about
integrity, it’s about loyalty, it’s about doing the right thing
even when it’s tough, and it’s really about cultivating
friendships and spaces that make you feel
good about yourself. I super recommend this comic
to absolutely everyone and I’m pretty sure I’m
gonna give it 5 stars. So obviously, one of the
challenges for #GetGraphic is to read seven works over
the course of the weekend. And to do that, I figured I
should read three things today and then two things for each
of the remaining days. So right now the plan is to do
just that. Before the evening is over, I’m hoping I can get
“Giant Days” volume 8 and volume 2 of “Our Dreams at
Dusk” under my belt. So fingers crossed, and I will check in with y’all
later for another update. [♬ “Skyline” (Instrumental)
by Ikson ♬] It is 7 A.M. on Saturday
morning, and I really just drove my ass to the nearest
ATM so that I could transfer some money so I could buy
these *amazing* art prints from Alex Cho. And I
*shouldn’t* have, but they are gonna be so worth it. And I will show you what
those are. The first is, obviously, Team 7 from “Naruto,”
because I’m trash. And the other is from
“Fire Emblem: Three Houses,” and I surprisingly chose
Claude for this one. I really thought about getting
Dimitri for a second, because he’s actually the leader
of the house I *really* chose when playing the game
through the first time. But, like, something about
Claude just really speaks to me, and I think this print
is so dynamic. So that’s me in a nutshell:
just going out super early in the morning and spending
money I really shouldn’t be spending—money that I
*really* don’t have— to just get some fine
ass art in my life. Today is gonna be *wild*,
because we have a family wedding, which is going to take up
most of the day and there’s a *lot* going on there.
So that’s gonna be a lot. And then I’m also hoping to still
read two things on top of that while also, y’know,
hashtag #livingmylife. So… …I need your prayers
now more than ever. [♬ “Skyline” (Instrumental)
by Ikson ♬] Okay, so I’m back with a
formal update for what I read yesterday. I did meet my
goal of reading three things, and the second thing I
read was volume 2 of “Our Dreams at Dusk”
by Kamatani Yuhki. This is an #ownvoices queer
manga mainly about a high school boy named Tasuku who’s just
coming to terms with his queerness and he’s also volunteering at this
local drop-in center for queer folks. In this volume, at the drop-in
center he meets Misora, who is exploring their gender expression
and gender identity within the safety of the center, but
they’re not ready to necessarily express themself that
way in public. What I like about this volume is
that Tasuku is not taking Misora’s questions and turning it into a
learning experience for himself. But seeing what Misora is
going through does make him question his own evolving
relationship with queerness. And I love that this volume
acknowledges that queer folks don’t automatically have all
the answers about every queer issue in existence. Tasuku is realizing that, as
a cis gay young man, he cannot possibly imagine what is
going through Misora’s mind. He doesn’t know the right things
to say or do to bring Misora a sense of peace or comfort,
because that’s not his experience. The only person who can
decide what’s okay and what’s not okay is Misora, and
Tasuku needs to give them space to figure that out. And that definitely goes both
ways, because Misora is definitely dealing with a lot of really bad
internalized homophobia and transphobia, and they
*absolutely* don’t know what is okay and what’s
not okay to say. There’s also this acknowledgement
that just because you come out or just because you
accept some small part of yourself doesn’t mean you have all
the answers and doesn’t mean you understand *everything*
about yourself, and that’s okay. There’s also a lot of really beautiful
imagery of goldfish, which I think is a really smart metaphor,
because when they’re floating around their bowls, goldfish seem
really content and graceful and free. But then if you zoom out a
bit, they’re still…in a bowl. They’re still, in many ways,
confined and trapped. And with Tasuku still feeling
ashamed and fearful about his own desires, and Misora only
being able to explore themself within a certain space,
I felt that it was a really effective metaphor and image. This volume just spoke to me and hit
me in so many ways I did not expect. It’s deeply evocative and
emotional, and I think I’m definitely gonna
give this one five stars. And to end the evening yesterday,
I read “Giant Days” volume 8. In case you have no idea, this
is a slice-of-life type comic about three best friends in
university who are just trying to make those grades, keep it
together, and just make it out of school in one piece. Strangely, I left this volume
feeling a little bit mixed, a little bit conflicted—
—which is definitely a first. First of all, I should say that
this volume comes with triggers for infidelity and for brief
depictions of premeditated sexual assault from a
professor to a student. It’s that last thing that
really threw me for a loop, because it’s very clear that this
professor is deliberately getting Esther drunk so that he can
prey on her, and at one point he even, like, gropes her breasts.
And *none* of this is ever brought up again or
even addressed. It’s almost posed as, like,
a throw-away moment, and I don’t think that’s okay. The fact that this comic series
is created almost entirely by men is starting to show in
this volume a little bit. And on top of that, it would
be hard to say I “enjoyed” this volume when there’s a lot
of big changes looming on the horizon for these characters,
which means hard choices. And it’s not fun to read
about hard choices. Plus the storytelling and
the pacing in this volume just felt a bit more disjointed
than I’m used to from this series. Then pile on the fact that I don’t
think that all the issues being presented in these characters’
lives are being addressed with the proper amount of
nuance, and that just leaves me waffling in the
middle of the road. I think I’ll continue on with
this series to see if the next volume sort of rights this ship,
but for now I think I have to give this one
three-and-a-half stars. I have a lot going on today.
We have a wedding to go to, which I think is gonna keep
us busy for most of the day. But I do have a small pocket
of time right now where I’m gonna try to read
“Heartstopper” volume 2, and then hopefully volume 1
of “Witch Hat Atelier.” So we’ll see how that goes. [♬ “Skyline” (Instrumental)
by Ikson ♬] If I look completely busted,
it’s because that’s exactly how I feel in this moment. Like I said, we went to my
cousin’s wedding yesterday, and it was a very classy, lovely
evening full of celebrating and dancing, and now ten
hours of sleep later, I’m here to give you
another update. Before we left for the
wedding, I did get to complete “Heartstopper” vol. 2
by Alice Oseman, which was just fantastic. This is a queer comic about
Charlie, who is one of the only openly gay kids at school,
and when the series starts, he thinks he’s in a really good
place because he has this sort-of boyfriend. But said
boyfriend is not exactly kind to him and never wants to be
seen with Charlie in public. Then in class, Charlie is
assigned to sit next to the super nice, ultra-popular rugby
star, Nick, and the two of them really hit it off and
start to connect. This volume does contain
triggers for bullying, harassment, and
homophobic slurs. I said this about volume 1, but
I continue to be so impressed by how Alice Oseman is able
to hit just the right balance of heart-breaking and
heart-warming in every stretch of this comic. I just feel like this comic
really addresses the day-to-day hardships that queer teens
face, especially in school, especially when coming
out is still so fraught, and especially when teens
are still trying to figure out parts of themselves. You definitely see that the
most with Nick in this volume, as he’s realizing his feelings
for Charlie and thinking about how that affects his relationship
with his own identity & sexuality. And he needs that space to
ask himself those questions. And even though it’s never
said, I think there’s definitely undercurrents of wariness on
Charlie’s part, because he’s with Nick, but they’re not able to
be seen together in public, which kind of echoes his past
quote-unquote “relationship.” But through everything he’s
still kind and generous and patient in letting Nick
figure things out for himself, which is really nice. And going back to what
I was saying before: for every day-to-day to hardship, Alice
Oseman gives us moments of day-to-day joys that these
boys experience together, whether it’s holding hands,
or stealing a kiss, or simply saying “I like you,
and I like liking you.” Those are really
special moments. I cried, I laughed, I swooned.
If you’re looking for a really soft and sweet queer comic that
is also honest and realistic, this is it. I gave this
one 5 stars. Then after driving home from
the wedding, I did start volume 1 of “Witch Hat Atelier”
by Shirahama Kamome. And then I finished it this
morning when I woke up, and I was completely blown
away by how much I enjoyed it. This is a fantasy manga series
about Coco, who wants to be a witch more than anything
in the world, but the thing is you can’t become a witch
unless you’re born with magic. When Coco sees a mysterious
travelling magician cast a spell in a way she’s never seen before,
she realizes that maybe it’s easier for common folk to use
magic than she originally thought. However, when she’s testing out
the limits of that magic, she accidently casts a dark spell,
a curse. And the only way for her to break it is to study witchcraft
and find the sigil that will counteract the spell she cast. This is like the atmosphere of
“Howl’s Moving Castle” meets “Little Witch Academia,” which
are two of my favorite things, and the results are just perfect. I don’t quite know how to explain
it, but this manga series just felt so different from any other manga
series I’ve read in the past, even the magical series. It just felt so atmospheric
and completely worlds apart. I love that Coco is so earnest
and so eager to learn everything she can about magic. You
can literally see the wonder swimming in her eyes. But at the same time, she’s
obviously hurting because of the dark magic she unknowingly
unleashed. And part of her is *afraid* of magic because she doesn’t
want to repeat that experience, which is definitely possible as she
enters this completely new world full of things she doesn’t
recognize or know. And yet she’s still able
to keep herself curious and she still wholeheartedly throws
herself into everything she does. It’s just beautiful to witness her
discovering all of this magic, all this knowledge, just really
this completely new way of life. And I think it’s cool to see her
learning that, yes, magic has rules and limits, but learning how to use it
in a way that makes sense for *you* is really its own kind of magic. I love the world described in
this volume, the artwork is absolutely stunning, and this
first volume just sent my heart soaring in so many ways.
I cannot wait to continue on with this series, but this
was also an easy 5 stars. So now I have a couple of things
to do. I have the BookNet Fest liveshow in a little bit, then I
have to read volume 19 of “My Hero Academia,” maybe also
volume 20 because I did acquire that one recently? And then,
of course, I would really like to read “Mooncakes” if
time permits. As always, I’m busy busy busy,
and hopefully I will check in later with a successful update. [♬ “Skyline” (Instrumental)
by Ikson ♬] Okay, so I completed my planned
TBR and I’m back for what will most likely be my final update. So after my brief liveshow appearance,
I sat down to run some sprints, and I finished “Mooncakes”
by Suzanne Walker and Wendy Xu, which I have as a digital arc. This is a queer fantasy story set
in a small town about Nova, who works in her grandmothers’
bookstore and keeps an eye out for any untoward supernatural
occurrences. She hears rumors about a white
wolf in the forest and discovers that it’s none other than her
childhood friend and crush, Tam, and together they start working
to try and learn more about the *real* demon lurking
in the forest. First of all, it’s important to note
that both main characters are Chinese-American and queer.
Tam is a non-binary werewolf and Nova is a hard-of-hearing
witch who wears hearing aids— —and I think is really neat. I think it’s interesting that there’s
so much about these characters that is complicated, that is not
easy for most people to understand. But given the choice, these
characters don’t wish *they* could be different; they wish the
world we live in could be different. The magic in this story is also
really wonderful, because it’s not as concrete and doesn’t
have these hard and fast rules. When Tam and Nova can’t find
answers in their research, they’re free to start exploring
and discovering magical ways they can connect to each other,
and I think it’s cool that they’re invited to basically invent and
discover new kinds of magic. And I like that this story is
centered on this found family in a small town, because it’s
almost like they’re the magical neighborhood watch, just keeping
an eye out and making sure that every day folks don’t
get hurt by magic. There’s also some really compelling
parallels between Nova and Tam, because they both doubt themselves,
and they both think they should be stronger than they are. But together,
they’re learning that their abilities, especially when they *combine*
them, are enough. I feel like this story is about the
characters having each other’s backs, it’s about seeing people for who
they really are, and realizing that there is power in that. I did feel like the main antagonist
and bad guys were kind of like the twirling-mustache caricature-type
villains who didn’t give me as much as I wanted, but overall I
really enjoyed this & I gave it 4 stars. And then I completed volume 19
of “Boku no Hero Academia” or “My Hero Academia”
by Horikoshi Kohei. I won’t say too much about this one,
because it’s pretty deep in the series. But generally, this manga series
is set in a world where pretty much everyone has super powers, or
“quirks,” but our main character was born “quirkless.” One day he runs into the
number one hero and learns that there may be a way for him
to take on a quirk while also attending the training
academy of his dreams. This volume is a much-needed
break after a super intense arc, and it’s all about the school festival
at U.A. and what each different class is planning on doing to take part. It’s so much fun to see all of these
characters in a completely different element and context. Class 1-A decides to do a performance
of live music and dancing, and it’s awesome to see which
characters get matched up to certain instruments or the
different roles they’re gonna play to create this concert experience. At the same time, there’s still hints
of villains waiting to strike on the horizon, and you get to see
as Deku thinks back on this last battle he was in and how he can
use that information to keep growing and evolving his quirk. It was nice to see a lighter side
of these characters and to see how their quirks and personalities lent
themselves to developing this school festival idea, but at the
same time this volume still does progress the series. I don’t think I’m gonna get
to volume 20 today, because I’m just *so* tired. But
I really enjoyed this installment and I think I’m gonna give
it 4-and-a-half stars. So that is a wrap on #GetGraphic.
Thank you so much for watching this reading vlog. If you like this
content and want to support the channel, I also have a Patreon
now, which I will link down below for you peruse if you would like. But I would love to hear from you
if you also took part in #GetGraphic. So meet me in the comments below
and let me know what you read and how your weekend was. But that’s everything I had
for this reading vlog today. Thank you so much for
watching this video. I really hope that you
enjoyed it, and I’ll catch YOU on
the flip-side of the page. Bye! [♫ “You Only Live Once”
(Instrumental) by w.hatano ♫]

15 Replies to “📚 Reading 7 Books in One Weekend! || Reading Vlog

  1. "Because I am trash." 🤣🤣🤣 It's something all we anime fans are, I think.

    Also, I need HEARTSTOPPER in my life immediately. Thanks for co-hosting this readathon, Adriana! It was super fun!

  2. This vlog was so delightful & peaceful! Sad I didn't have energy to participate this round, but I will in the future, even though my life is kinda a graphic readathon

  3. loved your explanation of the goldfish, you had some serious thoughts about that. I'm now really wanting to read that and heartstopper. gosh, i live in a latino household where we didnt outworldly hate lgbtq culture (but we kinda did!!!) because we saw it as "the other". A bit personal, now as a 24 year old adult i'm confused about myself. I want to know more about how to help others and not take it personal by checking in with my own feelings. I guess, hrmm, i just want others to be authentically free.

  4. Let me tell you how many books I've read for the g e t graphic redathon. Zero. Zero books. After being excited and preparing for it, I got sick and spend most of the week sleeping. And then I worked on Saturday and was too tired on Sunday! So at the no I feel s sorry for myself,pfff.

  5. How do you find reading comics and graphic novels in eformat? I’ve just binged Fence on my phone through Scribd. I didn’t hate reading on my phone but didn’t love it.
    Loving Fence tho! So so much!

  6. wow good job on reading so many!! I heard so many good things about mooncakes I need to add that to my TBR. So I had no idea those characters were asian and I'm asian and I love characters that are asian so now I super want to read this book even more and its FANTASY TOO k cool run on sentence. yas.

  7. I used some of my savings for a varsity jacket from All For the Game so I feel you on spending money you shouldn't because I am also trash 😅

  8. You sold me on Crush! Also congrats on such a successful weekend of hosting, reading, and vlogging simultaneously! GOALS.

  9. our local publisher announced the other day that they will release witch hat atelier in russian and i'm so excited! i can't wait to read the book myself!
    ahh i miss the kids of UA, i'm so looking forward to s4 of bnha!

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