several very different books to talk about, Saleena

I was intrigued at the concept of this book, plus Garth Ennis is a known quantity (so many of his books are amazing), so I thought I would give it a try.  First of all (because I don't know who is reading this), this is NOT a little kids book, lots of violence and some sexual situations; think R rating if it were a movie.  Nonetheless, it reminded me of what I wanted the movie Peppermint (starring Jennifer Garner) to be (but it wasn't).  This is a lady who truly leads 2 lives; she is a homemaker by day and by night, an assassin.  She has trained to be an assassin in order to take vengeance on the family who murdered her father (which coincidentally is also her family; her father was a mob boss and his brothers have taken over).  I think Ennis did his usual bangup job of letting you get to know the characters a bit at a time; and he made sure that the situation was messy, because no one is perfect and honestly....how DO you turn off being an assassin when you're done?  How do you go back?  This is not a Happily Ever After book, but an interesting one with a page turning story and characters that stick in your head.  As long as you can handle the violence, you will enjoy the story.


I was intrigued to read the official account of the 47 Ronin, because the Japanese movie (same name) is something I remember vaguely from Sun movies with my father; and the story is such a part of cinema history that I figured reading it in comic format would be interesting.  And it was.  Unfortunately, as is the case, the fictional accounts were a bit more ....well, fascinating; however, it was good to be able to put the story into context. 
For those unfamiliar with the basics; in feudal Japan, a good and loyal man was put to death and his retainers became the property of the man who murdered him (well, technically he led the rigged trial that called for him to commit seppuku, ritual suicide).  The retainers all went into hiding, dishonoring their name and becoming rogue samurai until the found all those who murdered their lord; then they too committed seppuku after clearing the good name of their Lord. 




Almost American Girl is a biographical story of Robin Ha.  It follows her journey to the US from South Korea, her life adjusting to American culture, her difficulties and struggles and ultimately her triumph.  I really enjoyed this book, Ha has a great artistic eye, and I loved her illustrations; and her story is told with all the frustrations and misjudgements of being a teen and with side notes about the information she found out later put into context.

I think this is a good story to read for new immigrants, and for those who have never had to learn a whole new culture; as it will give some insights into that struggle.





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