TWO NEW BOOKS ABOUT BATMAN AND THE GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY

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Batman and The Guardians of the Galaxy Have you ever wondered who would win in a fight between Batman and The Guardians of the Galaxy? No? No you haven't? Okay then. Fair enough. Me neither. Anyway, I would rather spend my time focusing on their more literary and creative counterparts, which you can clearly see in the following two diverse books, recently released. One of them is more adult orientated, where as the other one is far more dotty by design.





Confessions of a Caped Crusader
Confessions of a Caped Crusader

Publisher: Irma's Place Productions LLC
Price:
$19.99
Format: Paperback
Page Count: 220
Size: 177x254mm
Age Range: 21 and over
Synopsis: Written by D. F. Lawrence and illustrated by Towfic Kassis, 'Confessions of a Caped Crusader' is an unflinching book about a flawed hero who has inspired some of today’s greatest pop culture icons. The general story basically evolves around a caped hero who decides to take on a group of his most deadliest adversary's, who've recently escaped from prison. And if that wasn't bad enough, worst still, he also gets poisoned by an unseen foe and only has a few days left to find the cure.

This series of events has been set in motion and will force the masked avenger to confront his inner most demons, coming to terms with his own mortality as a man.




Pros:
  • Lawrence's dialogue reminded me of the terse and fractured prose written by Dashiell Hammett, author of 'The Maltese Falcon'. To me, this husky style of writing has the ability to aide a tale unravel one page at a time, keeping in mind that on a conceptual level this book is a re-imagined pulp story-line for the modern era. 
  • Talking about this book being pulp, more or less I found that Towfic's sullen, bold, yet dynamic visuals, really did complement Laurence's style of story. Despite certain images being a bit more comic book inspired, rather than pulp inspired, most of these monochromatic etchings gave this piece a lot more substance than I first thought.
  • I did like the way certain characters names were used throughout the telling of this story. For instance, the 'Alfred character' is called 'The Old Man', whilst Robyn (not to be mistaken for a certain kid wonder), is in fact 'The Playboy's' buxom and blonde secretary. Robert, on the other hand, is the name given to the author of 'the Caped Crusader's' stories, and I'm fairly positive he's an obvious nod to the Batman co-creator, Bob 'Robert' Kane.
  • I did enjoy following the contrast between 'The Playboy' and his 'alter-ego'. It was as though one part of him was a sex-starved narcissist, out to get whatever he can,  where as the other part of him appeared to be a considerate nutter, ready to kick ass.
  • If you can look past some of the colorful language used in this book, I'm sure you will be able to find that this is a very cleverly written piece chock full of references related to pop culture and the comic book scene. Even though this could possibly date it in the future, at the same time if you get the joke, you'd love this book even more for it.
  • Without giving too much away, the moral to this tale is a nice one to be told -- You can't take everything at face value.  
Cons:
  • Basically this book is a spoof of the comic book genre, so personally I would have preferred to have seen more of Towfic's illustrations in it, just to overemphasize this point. 
  • On occasion the dialogue is overtly too sexual and overtly too obtuse, and even though I haven't got anything against this, sometimes too much is just that... too much.
  • I wasn't too keen on the pacing of the overall story-line. Sometimes certain scenes played out too quickly, while at other times certain scenes played out too long, indirectly making the plot slightly sluggish here and there.

Marvel's Guardians Of The Galaxy 1000 Dot-to-Dot Book
Marvel's Guardians Of The Galaxy 1000 Dot-to-Dot Book

Publisher: Ilex Press
Price: $10.39
Format:
Paperback
Page Count: 48
Size: 257x359mm
Age Range: 5 and over
Synopsis: If you're a fan of the Guardians of the Galaxy, from either the comic books or the movies, then why don't you pick up a new collection of amazing puzzle games based on these interstellar heroes, a collection created by Thomas Pavitte? There are 20 complex puzzle games to complete, with each one consisting of at least 1000 dots and including an epic match up with over 1500 dots! You can also tear out the perforated pages to enjoy connecting the dots with your friends, or you can relax and unwind by coloring in a completed puzzle, before framing it on your wall.

So come on, lets join forces with Rocket Racoon, Groot, Star-Lord, plus the rest of the team, by bringing to life the Guardians and their dotty foes.




Pros:
  • Some of the final pieces are really breathtaking to look at, and I'm sure they will give you a certain level of pride upon completion.
  • The more effort you put into this book the more enjoyment you'd get out of it, and to me, that's the type of book this is.
  • All in all there are twenty characters to complete, and to some that may be too many, whereas to others that may be too few. Personally, I'm somewhere in between with this point. As much as I would have loved to have finished more, I personally think twenty is a good number, considering the price. 
  • I would suggest that you read the introduction at the start of this book because the information on it is very helpful, particularly if this is your first time filling in a dot-to-dot book of this caliber.
Cons:
  • You need to have good vision to follow the dots from line to line, mainly because of the amount of detail involved in each picture.
  • The book is fairly big and you may have some difficulty housing it on a conventional bookcase.
  • It would have been nice if each image was complemented by some trivia or a bit of information about it. 


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