Comic Con

San Diego Comic Con 2012 (Sunday) – Report, Pics, Vids, and…Giveaway?

Everything good must come to an end. We didn’t go for costumes on Sunday; it was just too exhausting. We like to use this time to thoroughly explore the exhibit hall, and that we did.  Of course it was my priority to get Gail Carriger’s autograph and this time it worked out!

Gail Carriger, Comic Con, San Diego Comic Con, SDCC, Parasol Protectorate, Soulless

So here I am with an extra signed copy of Soulless and it’s got nowhere to go…or does it? For you guys I think I might just hold a giveaway really soon! Just stay tuned ~_^.

There’s not much to say so I’ll just post a few cool pics.

Someone’s all conned out:

Hello Kitty Chun-Li

It’s morphin’ time!

Speaking of which, the original black ranger should easily be pushing 40, yet he looks practically the same!

And some fun video:

Well Comic Con, it was good to know you! I’ll see you next year!

San Diego Comic Con 2012 (Saturday) – Report, Pics, and Vids

Well, this was definitely the biggest day of the con.  We dressed up Thursday and then took a break on Friday, but for Saturday we decided to go all out once again (primarily thanks to the genius of my best bud, River). While it was a lengthy 5 hour process, it was well worth it.  We ended up making an article cover on Vanity Fair‘s website:

Comic con 2012, SDCC 2012

Here is the whole outfit:

eredar twins world of warcraft, WoW

No, I don’t recognize myself either.  The paint stayed on well, if not too well. It literally felt like a second skin, being somewhat constricting at times. We even tried to avoid laughing! Of course trying NOT to laugh only makes you laugh more…on the inside at least! The paint is pretty resilient!

One of the pluses of having a flashy costume is that you MAY have a shot at getting the attention of some celebs.  And that’s exactly what happened. We initially bumped into Katrina Law, one of the lead actresses on Spartacus. She was so awesome that she actually took a pic with her own camera and posted it to her facebook. She’s awesome!

Comic Con 2012

Next up was Nick Tarabay, also an actor on the show who plays a villain, but he plays it well. He was super nice…and hott ~_^

And Michael McMillian (Reverend Newlin) from True Blood stopped us for a pic. Of course we had to get one too, lol:

I asked him if he wanted a shot with some fang, haha.  He did!

We also managed to make G4.  The actor, John Barrowman, from Torchwood literally was staring me in the face before shooting. He was impressed with all of the costumes.

It was only for a few seconds, but it was a lot better than last year when we didn’t quite make it. You can see my fangs pretty well:

Here was another really cool video from that Saturday:

So yeah, it was an incredible Saturday. One downside to having this kind of costume is that it can really slow you down when it comes to attending events. Many times you’re stopped for pics, so because of that I missed Gail Carriger’s signing.  I was really looking forward to seeing her dress because it was some really cool steampunk outfit. But what can you do!

San Diego Comic Con 2012 (Friday) – Report, Pics, and Vids

While this was a Robert Downey, Jr. impersonator, the real RDJ was there.

So I’ve been holding off on this for a little while, but I guess I should get going on my reports! I would make one big post, but I think I will break them out day by day.

I’ll try not to make it too long, but there is no experience like San Diego Comic Con.  This was my second year and I had just as much fun, but the overall experience felt different.  And it’s for this reason that people come back again and again…if you can survive the badge process of course.

I’ll spare you the details of Thursday since I already wrote about it.  I’ll just move on to Friday:

Just a piece of advice for those of you who would like to go one of these days; become well acquainted with lines.  I’m talking about super long lines (there’s 135,000 people there after all, what do you expect?).  Many people will camp out for days for a major celebrity panel, and one lady even died waiting for the Twilight panel.  As for me, I paid hundreds of dollars per night for a swanky room (in a hotel where the celebs stay; we caught Stan Lee coming out of the elevator), so I damn sure planned to use it every night, and I did. There’s a price to pay for this, however.  I was determined to get into the infamous Hall H this year and I did…after a good 6-7 hour wait.  If you’re willing to sacrifice most of your day for something big, that’s up to you. But I promise there are tons of little things to do as well. You certainly have enough to keep you entertained.

Luckily I was able to get into the Resident Evil and Total Recall panels.  I was SO CLOSE to giving up so that I could make the Spartacus panel, but it all worked out! (more…)

San Diego Comic Con is under way!

Hi guys! So SDCC 2012 is under way and I’m having a good ‘ole time.  Just thought I’d post a couple of pics!

I got to meet Chris Daughtry outside of our hotel yesterday:









We also met the Giorgio Tsoukalos, the host of Ancient Aliens:









Not too bad for a Thursday, lol. So Gail Carriger, author of the Parasol Protectorate series, is also here and I plan to get an autograph! Now begs the question, would any of YOU like to be the lucky recipient of a signed copy of her book?  Decisions Decisions!

Also managed to take a few creepy videos:

Don’t think I could own one of these

Creepy as hell!

Guess who’s going to San Diego Comic Con yet again?! It’s me! W00T

This means tons of coverage on TV series, movies, games, and AUTHORS. I met Kim Harrison and Patricia Briggs last year and we made the news!! That was a lot of fun. Kim won’t be there this year unfortunately, but there is so much to do there with so little time. I had an absolutely fabulous time and I’m looking for this year to be even better!

While last year’s ticketing experience was an absolute 3-hour DISASTER and I only got my tickets out of luck, this year they’ve implemented a new system that had me on my way in 10 minutes.  Of course the whole thing sold out in under 2 hours, but at least it was better organized.

Next up is the hotel lottery.  I won’t even get into the issue last year…okay I totally will. Being the Comic Con virgin that I was, I had no clue about waiting until their hotel lottery, so I tried to be an eager beaver and book a backup room in December with hopes that the significant con discount could be applied later after badge sales (because I sure as hell wasn’t trying to pay the whole unreasonably inflated price). I booked by phone and specifically confirmed with the associate that my room would not be charged right away and I could cancel up until 2 days before the con. I asked her several times and she said “YES”.  One month later, I see a $2,200 charge on my credit card. I’m of course scratching my head and looking at my calendar because I could have SWORN that the con wasn’t for another 6 months! So I called them up and they give me the spiel that when I booked I agreed to paying the full non-refundable rate.  HA!! So getting that straight (because I refused to take that laying down) took up the better half of my January. Moral of the story…book everything online where you can read the fine print and you have written proof >_>.  SDCC 2012 here we come!

If any of you guys plan to go, please keep me posted! I’d love to meet even more of you.

This, my friends, is how you do a graphic novel adaptation

Moon Called (Mercy Thompson Volume 1) by Patricia Briggs

I originally read this comic as an ARC and then decided to purchase it immediately before I even finished it. Since I was reading the series via ebooks, I wanted something for Ms. Briggs to sign for when I meet her at San Diego Comic Con this July. I was going to try to get through the ebooks as fast as I could so that I could then also purchase a paper copy of my favorite installment. After seeing this comic, there’s no longer a need. And even better, it fits in with the theme since it’s about the comics at Comic Con (well, it supposed to be anyway). I’m now super excited so I can spaz to Ms. Briggs in person about how wonderful of a job the artist did. I can already tell this is one of the best. Talk about doing a series justice!

No doubt this graphic novel adaptation accomplishes the most important goal of all; it’s very visually very pleasing to look at! That’s the point of a graphic novel at all, right? I actually enjoyed the comic much more than the actual book. The book comes off as somewhat bland in parts (though the series gets better with every book), but seeing the action come to life on the pages gets my adrenaline pumping. The drawing style is fabulous and not over the top. I love the coloring and shading and spent a few panels simply admiring the images. I feel like it truly captures the Mercy Thompson world. Mercy’s gorgeous, Adam’s sexy, and Sam actually looks much better than I assumed he looked in the books. I thought the artist was very good with expressing the characters’ emotions as well. A few of the transformation scenes were a little awkwardly drawn, but it didn’t detract from my enjoyment.

I like that it’s close to the book. I think that made me read it much faster. Unlike the book, it kicks off with action to draw you in. It was a nice technique to keep it engaging. I felt the pacing was just right. There wasn’t a moment where I was bored and yet it stayed true to the plot.

I always have this trepidation of looking at fictional characters outside of the reading medium. 9 times out of 10 it just doesn’t capture the images I’ve conjured up in my mind. I am so pleased that’s not the case here.

We get a bonus section that’s by a completely different artist. It’s a completely different style that doesn’t portray the dark urban fantasy feel, so I didn’t really connect to it as much. Also, some of the proportions and angles were off. I recall at one point a character was drawn cross-eyed.

It ends with short of a narration of the panels to see how the artist conceptualized the panels. It was pretty cool to see their process, but not really necessary. My biggest enjoyment was in the meat of the story. I wish we could have seen Stefan, Warren, and Kyle in this volume though.

Because these look so good and flow so well, I plan to follow the comics for this series in conjunction with the books, as long as Ms. Amelia Woo continues to illustrate. It’s very rare that I can say I prefer any other medium to the original, but in this case I very much prefer the comic to the novel.

(ARC provided by NetGalley)

There are big changes ahead in Chicagoland

Hard Bitten (Book 4 of the Chicagoland Vampire Series) by Chloe Neill

The highly anticipated 4th novel of the Chicagoland Vampire Series, Hard Bitten, totally changes the game.  This book focused a great deal more on the politics side of things. The vampires have been out, and now the shapeshifters follow. That’s naturally going to be alarming for normal humans, so they have been protesting against all supernaturals–that they know of that least. To complicate matters even further, three women have gone missing after a secret vampire bloodletting soirée turns violent. It’s up to Ethan and Merit to get to the bottom of it because the higher ups (namely the Mayor) don’t plan to stand for it.

She teams up with Jonah, a Red Guard member (from an organization that wants to recruit Merit), and together they discover a new drug that’s out on the streets affecting the vampires. This is the last thing the vampire community needs as it will validate human fears. Merit faces a lot of danger as she digs deeper to discover the root of the problem and who’s causing it. Who can she trust?

I know that a lot of readers are split on how they felt about this book, but it wasn’t the end that lost me. It never had me to begin with. I feel like I’m experiencing a delayed reaction; everything I found irritating this time around has pretty much always been there. So I guess it’s not Neill, it’s me.

I’m really picky about my vampires (as if my screen name wasn’t an obvious indication), so I sort of felt like you could have taken the vampire aspect out of this book and everything would virtually be the same. Ethan doesn’t feel that badass to me. We know he is old and strong, but he never really exudes the maturity I would expect from a supernatural being that’s lived for centuries. He talks the talk, but he just doesn’t have that swagger. I realize my opinion probably goes against the grain, but I’m being honest.

And of course Merit and Ethan’s relationship was a bit confusing, if not annoying. In the previous book they’re together, then he breaks it off until the end where I thought that they reconciled. Turns out that wasn’t quite the case in this book and it’s Merit that has the problem. She obviously loves him, and he realized his mistake, so what’s the big deal? Just be together and make that one less complication to deal with since they have plenty of them. I prefer Morgan anyway (at least from the first book) because I found their interactions fun and sexy, but I digress.

There were times that Merit came off as a dormitory RA rather than a sentinel for me. The action sequences are few and far in-between and it took too long to get to the point. The Cadogan setting with everybody living the dorm life is just a bit ridiculous to me now. They’re adults, some even over 100 years old. Am I supposed to believe that they’re content with 4 tiny walls as their residence for years on end? I couldn’t WAIT to move into a decent suite in college and that was after two years. I’m younger than Merit and not far removed from college myself.

I tend to like when series have an end in sight and now I’m hearing that this one will be ongoing. I don’t want to be stuck with another Hollows (though now we know when it will end), or even worse, Anita Blake. This book is way too light to really be categorized as either since it’s borderline young-adult. With that said, I still found a lot of enjoyment in the first book. It’s just that its sequels haven’t been able to recapture that same magic for me, which could be due in part to my desire for the style to evolve and mature as Merit supposedly is. It’s kind of like how I find the premise of the Vampire Diaries show so ridiculous; the cast is in their 20s-30s and still try to pass off as high schoolers, especially Damon’s character who frequents their school functions. Creeper much?

I am pretty indifferent about reading the next book, and this one leaves off definitely making you wonder what’s going to happen next, so that’s a sign that this series is no longer for me. I can imagine it will be agony for its fans. I wish this series well, and while I’m likely to at least read general spoilers about the next book, I’ll be stopping here on Merit’s journey.

So many series, so little time!

Hello, fellow Paranormal and Urban Fantasy fans!  I figure I will share a little history about myself.  For the past 6 years I’ve been an avid fan of The Hollows series by Kim Harrison.  Aside from catching up on all of the Anita Blake series, I didn’t really follow much else.

All of that changed this past January when I purchased a Kindle.  So far I have read 22 new books.  If it’s good enough, I will devour it.  Needless to say, my love for reading has been renewed and I’m excited to have a broadened my horizons a bit.  Based on this blog’s title, it’s pretty easy to tell that I like vampires.  Since branching out to other series, I can safely say you won’t see reviews for only vampire series.  I love other series, but after a while I do feel the need to read a good ‘ole vampire story.  And no, I did not discover how great vampires were until Twilight (though I don’t consider them as actual vampires; you need fangs, sorry!).   With that said, I’ve been a fan long before this craze and will be a fan long after it fades.

The plan for me will be to post all of my reviews–past and present–for related series I have read.  You can expect a majority of them to center on adult Urban Fantasy and Paranormal series more so than the Young Adult genre; however, I did read quite a few Young Adult series as a teen, so I may include those in my blog for nostalgia.  I may also review other genre and media including tv series, movies, manga, and games.  I may even review products on occasion.

Over the next few months, I have a few goals including:

  • re-designing this blog
  • reading and reviewing series, both new and old
  • preparing for San Diego Comic Con this July

And maybe not in that order, haha.  You can imagine that my schedule will get pretty hectic.  For Comic Con alone I will be spending a good deal of time working on creating my costumes (thank goodness I’m collaborating with my friend, and she’ll be doing most of the tough stuff).  On top of that, I would like to meet several authors who will be there that may ring a bell to you:

  • Kim Harrison
  • Chloe Neill
  • Patricia Briggs
  • Christopher Moore

While I have not read the works of the latter two, by the time of the con that won’t be the case.  Here’s hoping they won’t mind my crazy costumes!  I hope to provide any coverage I can for those of you who cannot make it, and maybe even meet up with those of you who will be there!

Decisions, decisions, what should be my first blog topic? Of course, the Kindle! Stay tuned!

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