Posts from the ‘Graphic-Novels’ Category

2017: January wrap-up

January 2017 wrap-up

Wow, I’m experimenting new ways of reading and reviewing, and it worked marvels for me this past month!

New ways of reading?

  • I said goodbye to a multiplicity of reading challenges, mostly for the sake of wasting less time connecting my reviews to many other web pages

  • Like many other book bloggers, I decided to focus on my TBR

  • I’m thrilled to be in my 2nd year of  The Classics Club

  • Even more strict with review requests, book tours and egalleys, I try to leave room for “wild range reading“, meaning being able to grab a book that catches my eye at the library, instead of saying, Oh, I would love to read this book now, but I have so many scheduled to review for 3 months, I have to wait

New ways of reviewing?

  • Focusing on what I enjoy finding in the reviews by other book bloggers, and what I pay attention to, I have streamlined my reviews

  • No more official synopsis, mine is enough

  • No more details and picture of the author, unless the review is for a book tour

  • Minimum details on publisher, date, etc at the end of my review, with social media links only if the book was received from the publisher/author

  • When reading ebooks, I’m experimenting leaving my ereader wifi on and taking notes and copying and pasting notes on my Evernote, ans then write my review from that.
    Instead of highlighting, then copying most of that on paper, then summarizing it in a review!
    An accident propelled me to try that new formula: for some reason, all the passages I had highlighted in an ebook I had just finished reading disappeared on my kindle. With a bit of research, I realized the memory for highlights is limited, so as I was starting to make highlights in a new book, looks like highlights in the one I had just finished reading disappeared. Sounds like it was a happy fault.

End result:

  • a very very enjoyable month, with A LOT read (compared to my usual stats)

  • it feels so so good to check off books that have been on my physical or digital shelves FOR EVER

  • at the same time, I was thrilled to be able to read books that caught my eye on the moment

  • and A LOT reviewed, so much more than usual. I do plan to keep it this way

So here is what I read in January:

12  books:
10 in print
with 2,386 pages, that is: 76.9 pages/day
+ 2 audiobooks
with 13H31, that is: 26 mn/day

4 in literary fiction:

  1. The Great and the Good, by Michel Déon
  2. The Screwtape Letters, by C. S. Lewis – audio
  3. Everything I Never Told You, by Celeste Ng – audio
  4. Moderato Cantabile, by Marguerite Duras

4 in mystery:

  1. Two Days Gone, by Randall Silvis
  2. The Rare Earth Exchange, by Bernard Besson – ebook
  3. The Woman in Cabin 10, by Ruth Ware
  4. Under the Channel, by Gilles Pétel – ebook

2 in nonfiction:

  1. The World Between Two Covers, by Ann Morgan
  2. Unseen City, by Nathanael Johnson

2 in historical fiction:

  1. The Shadow of the Cross, by Dmitry Yakhovsky – ebook, graphic novel
  2. Death Comes for the Archbishop, by Willa Cather – ebook


My favorites in January


The World Between Two Covers  unseen-city

 Reading Challenges recap

Classics Club: 15/50 (until end of 2018)
Back to the Classics Challenge: 3/12
Mount TBR: 9/48
Where Are You Reading?: 21/50 – to be finished in ??

Total of books read in 2017 = 12/100

Number of books added to my TBR in January = 27

Blog recap

Most popular book review in January

The World Between Two Coversclick on the cover to access my review.

Most popular post last month
– non book review –


Book blog that brought me
most traffic this past month

The Classics Club

please go visit

Top commenters of the month

Inspired by Becca at I’m Lost in Books!
and her Blogger Shout-Outs feature

= 1 point per month for the top 3.
The one who has the most points at the end of the year will receive a gift!
NB: just congratulating winners of giveaways does not count as a real comment 😉

1: Karen at Booker Talk

1: Lucy at The Fictional 100 

1: Kristyn at Reading to Unwind

Blog milestones

1,560 posts
over 4,000 subscribers
over 129,00 hits

Plans for February

  • Readalong with Book Bloggers International: Born a Crime, by Trevor Noah
  • Excited to be starting another major classic
  • Just started a major audiobook program!
  • And reading a book for a 2nd book club I joined – this time with my Church
  • More reviews!


Come back tomorrow
to see what I plan to read in February!

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How was YOUR month of  January?

Month in Review

Kathryn at The Book Date
has created a Month In Review meme
I’ll now be linking my monthly recap posts
Thanks Kathryn, great idea!




Book Review: The Shadow of the Cross


The Shadow of the Cross
Part 1: Imprisonment

Again and again, the Cathars attract the attention of various authors. I have reviewed several books related to them here. This time, it’s a very short graphic novel, the first part of The Shadow of the Cross.

The 34-page books is mostly illustrations. It has one page of introductory narrative and a couple of pages of short dialogs.
After the siege of Montségur in 1243, a small group of Cathars managed to escape to a nearby village, until they were finally discovered. An innocent young man does not understand why a young woman is tortured. So he…. well, you have to guess or read the book.

I was disappointed that the book was so short. Even if the book is published in parts, I think it should at least have 50 pages, as most are illustrations.
BUT, those are wonderful watercolors! The artist is really gifted with colors.
There’s a bit of everything, including illuminations style for the first pages.
There’s also a fabulous sense of movement.
From colors, to faces, to landscape, to architecture, as an artist myself, I REALLY found the art excellent. I kept reopening the book to look at them, not for the story itself.

One thing seems odd to me: the style of the speech bubbles seems too modern and too oversimplified. It does not fit the high quality and sophistication of the paintings on which they are presented. I think something as simple as the choice of font would do the trick.
Also, the cover does not give justice to the beauty of the book.

I actually did a spotlight on the book at the beginning of December. I invite you to go back to it to learn more about the gifted artist, to watch an interview he did for Words And Peace, and find links to his art, etc.

VERDICT: A super short but gorgeous graphic historical novel on an important page of the Cathars history in the south of France.

 Rating system  Rating system  Rating system


In full compliance with FTC Guidelines,
I received this ebook free of charge from the publisher.
I was in no way compensated for this post as a reviewer, and the thoughts are my own.

This book counted for this Reading Challenge



The top 10 Books to read in January 2017

Here are

The top 10 books I plan to read
in January!

 Click on the covers to know more


   the-great-and-the-good  The World Between Two Covers 

    the-typikon-decoded  highland-storm

The Great and The Good
= for review, by a famous French author who just died last week
The World Between Two Covers
= fascinating, on world literature
The Typikon Decoded
= a very detailed and historical presentation
of the Orthodox Typikon
Highland Storm
= the latest book
in the series I’m currently translating into French 


     two-days-gone   shadow-of-the-cross-cover

the-woman-in-cabin-10    moderato-cantabile

Two Days Gone
= received at BEA
The Shadow of the Cross
= beautifully illustrated historical graphic novel
The Woman in Cabin 10
= finally checked this out at my library
Moderato Cantabile (in French)


screwtape-letters   everything-i-never-told-you

The Screwtape Letters
= for The Classics Club.
Everything I Never Told You
= on my shelf, but I found a good audio version, it seems

In 2017, I plan to follow somewhat this pattern every month:

A: 1 TBR classic
B: 1 TBR French
C: 1 TBR other
D: 1 TBR digital
E: 1 library free range:
that is, a book that begs me to take it home,
when I see it on the shelf

F: 1 netgalley
G: 1 other (new/tour/challenge)
(if needed, 1 more from TBR




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