Once again it’s time for the weekly Sunday Brunch with ZA Maxfield! This week, we have one awesome friend joining us! Please welcome Anne Barwell!
This week’s question is: “What’s your guilty pleasure?”
***BIG NEWS*** From now on, instead of offering a weekly prize, ZAM will be giving out a $20.00 Amazon gift card so readers can use it for the ebook (or other Amazon purchase) of their choice once a month to anyone who has commented on her blog that month. All you have to do is comment below for your chance to win!
Last month’s winner is Carissa! Congrats! You should be receiving an email from me shortly.
Without further ado, let’s hear from Anne!
Thanks for hosting me today, and for asking the question: “What’s your guilty pleasure?”
My guilty pleasure is that I love to read graphic novels. Luckily for me the library buys them semi-regularly so I don’t have to buy everything I want to read. Graphic novels are very expensive here in New Zealand so I have to source mine overseas. Thanks to the library, I’ve been able to read several series, but for my own collection I’ve limited myself to favourite characters.
Originally I read mainly DC titles. I’m a huge Bat family fan, and in particular follow the characters of Robin, Red Robin, and Nightwing. Yes, there’s a commonality between those—Red Robin and Nightwing were both Robins before leaving the ‘nest’ and getting their own titles. Red Robin (Tim Drake) is now a part of the Teen Titans team, and Nightwing (Dick Grayson) is now working out of costume in a new title called Grayson.
I’d also read a few Marvel comics over the years but a couple of years ago a friend introduced me to The Young Avengers, and in particular Wiccan (Billy Kaplan) and Hulking (Teddy Altman). Not only do these guys, and their teammates, have cool adventures and kick bad guy butt, but Wiccan and Hulking are partners in more than just one way. They’re boyfriends. The latest series also featured Kid Loki and some great jokes using Twitter, Instagram and other social media. I’m sad the series has finished, for now, and want more.
So why my love for graphic novels? As well as good storylines, great characters who have to juggle everyday life with their superhero secret identities, there is the amazing artwork. With the nature of the media, artwork can make or break the storyline. Sadly some have great stories but the artwork lets them down, and vice versa. So far I’ve scored with my favourite titles, and the balance is perfect.
Another other reason for my love for graphic novels, and in particular superhero titles, is illustrated nicely by this excerpt from Shades of Sepia:
Ben unlocked his front door, closing it behind them once they were both inside. “I haven’t had a chance to finish that Young Avengers graphic novel Blair sent me. I can do that while you’re working.” He grinned. “Forge had a flip through the Nightwing one I sent Blair before it went. He looked through this one too when I put it down to refill my coffee.”
Simon laughed. “If you’re trying to convert him to comics, it’s going to take a bit more than that.” He took off his coat and hung it by the door, and placed his briefcase on the coffee table by the couch.
“A bit more than that, huh?” Ben hung his jacket up beside Simon’s coat. “I saw you looking through those pictures of Billy and Teddy kissing.” He put his arms around Simon and nuzzled the side of his neck. “I felt your reaction too.”
“I might be persuaded to read your comics if I was sufficiently motivated, I suppose,” Simon admitted. He moaned softly when Ben bit down gently. The thought of Ben dressed in one of those superhero outfits was very appealing.
“You suppose?” Ben’s breath was hot against Simon’s ear. “I could picture you as Batman, you know. I think you’d be really hot.”
“Just because I’m a vampire doesn’t mean I have to be a bat, Ben.”
“He’s the one who hangs out with Nightwing.”
“Oh.” Simon swallowed. He’d seen the comic with that costume too. “Oh God.” He growled low in his throat, grabbed Ben’s hand, and pulled him toward the bedroom. To hell with the work he needed to do. It could wait.
Buy Links for Shades of Sepia: Dreamspinner Press
And here’s a little blurb/teaser:
A serial killer stalks the streets of Flint, Ohio. The victims are always found in pairs, one human and one vampire.
Simon Hawthorne has been a vampire for nearly a hundred years, and he has never seen anything like it. Neither have the other supernaturals he works with to keep the streets safe for both their kind and the humans.
One meeting with Simon finds Ben Leyton falling for a man he knows is keeping secrets, but he can’t ignore the growing attraction between them. A recent arrival in Flint, Ben finds it very different from his native New Zealand, but something about Simon makes Ben feel as though he’s found a new home.
After a close friend falls victim to the killer, Simon is torn between revealing his true nature to Ben, and walking away to avoid the reaction he fears. But with the body count rising and the murders becoming more frequent, either, or both of them, could be the killer’s next target.
~ * ~ * ~
Thank you to Anne Barwell for joining us this week!