Book Reviews

Book Review: Gamora and Nebula: Sisters In Arms by Mackenzi Lee

The second book in the hit series from New York Times best-selling author Mackenzi Lee!

This three-book series explores the untapped potential and duality of heroism of popular characters in the Marvel Universe. The first book in the series, Loki: Where Mischief Lies, was an instant New York Times best seller and received two starred reviews!

The relationship between teenage adopted sisters Gamora and Nebula is as volatile as ever. When they end up on a deteriorating planet being mined for its valuable resources, the two sisters are faced with a series of events that force them to explore the source of their rivalry-and where their loyalty truly lies. This action-packed yet sincere story will tug on the heartstrings of anyone who has ever had to learn how deeply weird and changeable trust can be.

Title: Gamora & Nebula: Sisters In Arms
Author: Mackenzi Lee
Genre: science-fiction, superheros
Format: digital ARC
Publisher: Disney Publishing
Date Published: June 1st 2021
Rating: 3//5 Owls

Honestly I was hesitant to start this book because I felt rather indifferent about Loki: Where Mischief Lies, but I absolutely LOVE Nebula and really wanted a story more about her.

One thing I still can’t figure out with these books though is if it takes place in the comic book world, the MCU, or a third alternative storyline. There’s some elements of both and it’s hard to place exactly where this story takes place within the grander marvel universe.

The book starts rather slow, with a recent incident making Gamora and Nebula at odds, and the Grandmaster putting two higher beings against each other in a game to win a fabulous prize, with Gamora and Nebula being the two beings champions.

Usually I’m not a big fan of info dumping in books, but I’m this case there was almost NO prior information to the story. The reader is supposed to know the players and they’re general story, and accept the vague mystery of the Grandmaster’s game. It was slightly off putting because even though I know a lot about Gamora, Nebula, and Thanos, I don’t know THIS version of them, and I would have liked more.

(Random note, Nebula is said to have short hair in this story and the cover depicts her as bald and it bothered me a lot more than it should have)

Now one character who is present in this story is Lady Death, and once again her character is not well explained at the beginning. Gamora and Nebula are aware of her presence at Thanos’ side, but it doesn’t seem like everyone is. Is she somehow his lover? His confidant? What role does she play? It’s never explained or given a real purpose and I HATED IT.

Then we have the characterization of Nebula and Gamora. This was really interesting to me because it’s quite different than the dynamic that’s become well known because of the MCU films. Gamora is still the favorite daughter, but she is a loyal and obedient daughter, while Nebula is the one who questions the dynamic and what Thanos wants.

I really enjoyed seeing Nebula in a more vulnerable role, and get a glimpse of how she becomes the cold and ruthless version of herself.

The relationship between the sisters is always so enjoyable to read about, and I loved seeing a new relationship between them. They constantly switch between allies and enemies and it was so fun to read and see which way their loyalties would go at any given point.

Once this story got to the climax, the tone of the story shifted a great deal and was suddenly action packed and quick moving. There were secrets revealed, betrayals, surprise unbetrayals (what do you call a reverse betrayal?), and answers to a lot of the questions I had until this point.

Overall I enjoyed this story, but it’s far from being a favorite. The pacing was off, and it took so long to explain some aspects of what was going on that I was rather confused for the first half and didn’t really enjoy reading it. This also isn’t a book you can read if you don’t have a basic understand of Gamora and Nebula, either through the comics or the MCU. There’s not enough backstory into who they are, and new marvel fans will be left rather confused.

I recommend this book for anyone looking for a fun, quick superhero/villain read, but don’t expect too much substance or continuity with other lore.

Gamora and Nebula: Sisters in Arms is on sale TODAY, so if you’re interested make sure to go grab your copy!

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