Review: Shuri Volume One: Search for Black Panther by Nnedi Okorafor, Jordie Bellaire and Leonardo Romero

Black Panther is one of the best solo Marvel movies. Fight me. Wakanda forever and if Okoye punched me I would thank her for it. So when one of my favourite SFF authors was wriitng about T’challa’s genius sister on top of it, you bet I was on board. But, this wasn’t great.

The world fell in love with her in Marvel’s Black Panther. Now, T’Challa’s techno-genius sister launches her own adventures — written by best-selling Afrofuturist author Nnedi Okorafor and drawn by Eisner Award-nominated artist Leonardo Romero! T’Challa has disappeared, and everyone is looking at the next in line for the throne. Wakanda expects Shuri to take on the mantle of Black Panther once more and lead their great nation — but she’s happiest in a lab, surrounded by her own inventions. She’d rather be testing gauntlets than throwing them down! So it’s time for Shuri to go rescue her brother yet again — with a little help from Storm, Rocket Raccoon and Groot, of course! But when her outer-space adventure puts the entire cultural history of her continent at risk from an energy-sapping alien threat, can Shuri and Iron Man save Africa?

Okay hear me out when I say it may have been my own expectations that led me to not enjoying this book so much. Shuri reads even better on the page as she did on the screen, the presence of other Marvel characters such as Storm was excellent and the art was perfect. I still somehow felt a little left down by this somehow.

This is my first time reading any Black Panther/Wakanda comics and I specifically wanted to start here since I have really enjoyed Okorafor’s SFF novels and novellas so that definitely made me more inclined to start here. You can definitely start here if you have very little starter knowledge outside of who Shuri is or even a passing knowledge from the films. The world itself felt very real and that combined with the art, it really gives Wakanda an even greater sense of scale. However it did feel that all the world-building was very fleeting, like you would see the place and boom. Next panel.

Something I did enjoy most of all were the characters. Shuri is the leader of this story but we do get to see more characters I wish we had gotten to see a little more of, Storm and Okoye for one. A few other familiar characters that Shuri interacts with really well like Groot and Rocket of Guardians fame. I love Shuri a lot, the version of her is great as, if not better than, the version of her from the movie. I think she is very realistic and very strong in her resolve of no. She won’t be the Black Panther again. I do think she could have done with more of an external conflict though outside of being made ‘do the thing’. Her internal struggles with taking up the mantle again (she died in all fairness the first time) are all totally believable with real struggle. But other than she being the ‘princess’ and ‘the genius’, she faced very little outer challenge.

The biggest plus and the biggest minus here was the art vs the story. The art being some of the strongest elements here along with Shuri’s characterization. This is very much a story pitched for the younger/teenage audience for Marvel and that is great since through out there are further references to other Black Panther series the reader can find. The vibrancy of the world, the clothes and just how much more technologically advanced Wakanda is are all made the brighter by the art. However as with all comics, no art can carry a weak story. The story never focuses for long on any one plot point and by the end, the story goes in the direction it was going in the first place.

All in all this was a promising beginning to what could have been a very strong series but it fell down in a lot of places. I really struggled to review this but mostly since I feel very meh about the entire book. I am however definitely going to continue to read Nnedi Okorafor’s work and more Black Panther comics so it’s not all bad. Thanks for checking out this review! Happy reading all!

★★.5/5

Sunday Shorts: 3 Mini Reviews (24.11.19)

Welcome to a new segment on my blog! Short and Shorter is going to be a selection of 3 works of short fiction that I do small quick reviews of so I can discuss them with everyone. I’m going to be including graphic novels some times in here too but I will still continue to review them as standalone works.


At first glance, Phil Pendleton and his son Adam are just an ordinary father and son, no different from any other. They take walks in the park together, visit county fairs, museums, and zoos, and eat together overlooking the lake. Some might say the father is a little too accommodating given the lack of discipline when the child loses his temper in public. Some might say he spoils his son by allowing him to set his own bedtimes and eat candy whenever he wants. Some might say that such leniency is starting to take its toll on the father, given how his health has declined. What no one knows is that Phil is a prisoner, and that up until a few weeks ago and a chance encounter at a grocery store, he had never seen the child before in his life
  • Title: Sour Candy
  • Author: Kealan Patrick Burke
  • Genre: Contemporary Horror

    Mt first time reading Kealan Patrick Burke and wow. Just wow. This is a novella that explores the horrors of sudden parenthood. I read this one morning in bed when my boyfriend went to work and I was blown away by the writing. The sheer creepiness of the story and this child who pulls as full Midwich Cuckoo and shows up makes for a great read. There is also some mild body horror with visceral descriptions of sour candy.

    ★★★★★/5
The coat. It was elegant. It was beautiful. It was so close that he could have reached out and touched it.

And it was unquestionably his.
  • Title: How the Marquis got His Coat Back
  • Author: Neil Gaiman
  • Genre: Fantasy

    I read this directly after finishing Neverwhere. This was a nice way to slowly exit the world after completing the novel and avoid a book hangover. The Marquis de Carabas is my favourite character from the book so it was nice to know he was up to his old tricks. I do think it was a good follow up to Neverwhere but does suffer from the 1.5 book syndrome where it leaves you with more questions than answers. Still I would recommend reading directly after finishing Neverwhere.

    /5
THE SANDMAN: ENDLESS NIGHTS will be a delight to fans of Gaiman’s work and newcomers to the graphic novel. Whether haunting, bittersweet, erotic or nightmarish, the seven stories in this book – one for each of the Endless siblings – reveal strange secrets and surprising truths. Each story is illustrated by some of the greatest comic artists from around the world.
  • Title: The Sandman: Endless Nights
  • Authors: Neil Gaiman, Glen Fabry, Milo Manara, Miguelanxo Prado, Frank Quitely, P. Craig Russell, Bill Sienkiewicz and Barron Storey
  • Genre: Graphic novel, fantasy, horror

    I love the Sandman series very much. So much I have a Sandman tattoo. So this year I reread the entire main series and this is the first volume after the conclusion of the last volume. This is short stories that follow each of the Endless and is illustrated by 7 different artists. The stories were great but the art left me down in places. Especially Manara’s since his art has always made me feel a bit…. ick. But still overall, good read and great to go back to that world.

    /5

So that’s it! This was nice to rattle off some smaller reviews of shorter works. Do you like short reviews? Do you think this is a handy way to talk about recent reads? Please tell me below! That’s all for this week and until next time happy reading!

July wrap Up

Welcome to my first wrap up! Well it was a good reading month overall, off to a slower start but still a good amount for such a busy month! In total I read 8 books in July (‘Godsgrave’ by Jay Kristoff not pictured) and the break down was this;

  • A Closed and Common Orbit- Becky Chambers ★★★★/5
  • Wild Magic- Tamora Pierce ★★★.5/5
  • Brown Girl in the Ring- Nalo Hopkinson ★★★★/5
  • Binti- Nnedi Okorafor ★★★★/5
  • Monstess: Awakening- Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda
  • American Gods- Neil Gaiman (Reread on audio) ★★★★★/5
  • Dusk or Dark or Dawn or Day- Seanan Mcguire ★★★★★/5
  • Godsgrave- Jay Kristoff (audio) ★★★★★/5

Honestly in terms of rating I have never had such a good reading month, the lowest is 3.5 and I like to think that the reason for this is I know my tastes better than ever. I listened to 2 audio books both over 15 hours in one month since I was so busy with work ‘American Gods’ is my favourite book of all time and I have never read it on audio. I listened to the authors preferred text and a full cast production which I highly recommend. ‘Godsgrave’ totally floored me. I don’t think any sequel has ever left me so shook and utterly gobsmacked.

Funnily some of my shorter reads were the biggest stand outs, such as Dusk or Dark or Dawn or Day by Seanan Mcguire. I like to read different formats and lengths of books so one, my terrible eyes get a bit of a break and two, it is easier to get more reading done overall.

To conclude, not a hugely long post. I have more planned to put up this week now I have some work stuff finally out of the way. I have one I am very excited to write up at last so keep an eye out!