The Cute Girl Network
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The Cute Girl Network

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3.51 of 5 stars 3.51  ·  rating details  ·  252 ratings  ·  85 reviews
Jane's new in town.When she wipes out on her skateboard right in front of Jack's food cart, she finds herself agreeing to go on a date with him. Jane's psyched that her love life is taking a turn for the friskier, but it turns out that Jack has a spotty romantic history, to put it mildly. Cue the Cute Girl Network— a phone tree information-pooling group of local single wom...more
Paperback, 192 pages
Published November 12th 2013 by First Second
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First Second Books
Nov 13, 2013 First Second Books marked it as first-second-publications
I really like this book.

One of the reasons that's the case is because while comics is absolutely full of action-adventure and fantasy and outer space, one of the things that it has much less of is books for adult women set in a contemporary and realistic setting.

(That's one of the whole reasons for the Bechdel test!)

THE CUTE GIRL NETWORK is awesome that way because it's full of adult women, and they're all pretty great, even the Evil!Harriet (who turns out to be just trying to look after her fri...more
Pınar Alsaç
Thanks to NetGalley for giving me the opportunity to read this book.

"The Cute Girl Network" is an interesting book. For me, it didn't make much sense in the first 2/3 of the book, I thought "Why would anyone create a graphic novel with no subject?" But when I finished it, I realized that at the end it all fits together, like the pieces of a puzzle.

Mainly, it's about a relationship that anyone might have at any point of his/her life. For the girl, the girlfriends say that the boy is not worth it...more
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
In Jane Austen’s Persuasion, Anne Elliot allows her friends and family to talk her out of an imprudent marriage to the poor Frederick Wentworth, even though she loves him, and then spends her life regretting that decision. Oddly enough, the graphic novel The Cute Girl Network reminds me a bit of Persuasion. Reed and Means tackle the difficulties of modern dating and the question of how important the opinions of others are in dating choices.

Read the full review at A Reader of Fictions.
Tara Anderson
Of the First Second books I've read, this is the first that seems like it's really meant for an older audience. Not adults, per se, but I would place it in the New Adult category. Jane and Jack both seem to have the kinds of jobs and lifestyles that point to them being in their 20's and still figuring life out a bit. Both have roommates and very little money to spend on dates, so they have to be creative about spending time together. Who knew that stealing products from old vending machines coul...more
Booknut
The Cute Girl Network is a testament to modern day love stories. A graphic novel with a chick-lit twist, it provides a romantic comedy that will touch both the heart and the funny bone!

Although the storyline can tend to become stagnant at times, it's very hard not to like the two main protagonists, Jane and Jack. Their relationship - from the jokes, stumbling, stuttering and the awkwardness to the locked gazes and sweet smiles - is cheesy...and yet weirdly satisfying. Despite its somewhat juveni...more
Dana
I didn't love this.

I like the art style, and who can resist that cover? But the story itself was...it was okay. Just okay. Middle of the road for me. I had a very hard time telling how old everyone was supposed to be. We have Jane, our female protagonist living with roommates and seems to be financially independent. But then she jokes around about having a burrito baby after ingesting the food, and then saying "when you come out you're gonna be so smelly!" What adult does this?

To add in more co...more
Michelle
It's like "MEH: The comic book" for me. The plot is weak and the characters are unlikeable. I love unlikeable characters and some anti-heroes, but these 20-somethings are boring. Jane is supposed to be quirky but it just seems pointlessly immature. Jack is supposed to be goofy, but he actually seems like there's something wrong with him mentally. The exes and friends all seem needlessly bitter. Also, the roommates/bookclub was confusing because their names were doled out very slowly in the book...more
Steve
At its core, it's a cute, charming little love story that is as much about honesty as it is about the touted "following your heart, not listening to what others say." Say what you will about (main character) Jack - yes, he's a huge screwup, a "layabout," with a minimum-wage job and basically no drive or ambition... but he's never dishonest, even about his most glaring faults. It's rare (and nice) to have a love story that skips past all the "Oh, I messed up, I'm going to hide it. Oh she found ou...more
sj
I kind of (totally) hate the name of this comic, and my four stars are only mine (I really don't know that it would resonate much with anyone else), but the story told here is much like mine with my husband (and that has a mostly-happily-ever-after, so...).

It's cute.

Girl moves to town, meets silly and sweet boy that doesn't treat her like an accessory to boost his cred, enjoys dating him, but finds out that he's got a gaggle of angry exes who think he screwed them over. Said angry exes are all p...more
Jess
Source: Netgalley for review

Graphic Novels in black and white is popular this days and possibly necessary to keep comics in budget. A lot of black and white comics are hitting the shelves and quite frankly they are doing an excellent job. As I have said plenty of times in this blog, colors are not a necessity to enhance good stories. The cute girl network follows the blank and white trend of comics with good entertaining stories.

Jane and Jack are the MCs of this urban story. They find themselves...more
Emilia P
I was fairly glowing by the time I finished this -- it does a really great job of capturing how dopey, kooky, secretly dull people can have really nice relationships. Even if they do like to sleep till noon or are perpetually clumsy. Even if they love working at the soup cart. Even if they've messed up in relationships in the past! Wild! I also liked how it captured the way girls can be jerks about dictating the rules of relationships without thought to how much they care for their partner, and...more
Tessa
although I loved the variety of body shapes & use of fashion to distinguish character, the plot was heavy handed and in the end not much was at stake. though that was also a good part of the book as well- that the protag had a voice and (eventually) spoke up for herself. but I think that realistically she would have done so sooner.
Jennifer Leigh
Ooooh wow, what a story! It was kind of hard for me to decide who the audience is for this story--I am actually leaning toward a new-adult graphic novel. And I say that because this story centers around Jane making decisions for herself vs listening to the Network.

This is a story about giving people a chance to show you who they are, even when there is a line of people waiting to tell you.

I found this novel cute and easy to read, and the illustrations allowed for character personality to shine...more
Nick Fagerlund
A super-cute and competent rom-com with delicious art. Recommended!

The focus on confronting your significant other’s past invites a few parallels with Scott Pilgrim, but it’s certainly its own beast.

It’s tough to talk about POV in comics, so instead I’ll say that the… I dunno, gaze, or filter over perception, is largely Jane’s in this book, and in a lot of ways we see Jack the way she sees him. (This is fuzzy theory at best, but stay with me.) Which means he grows way beyond the common trope of...more
Joanie
I was bored and decided to flip through this because the cover looked cute. The premise of it sounded simple enough, and I liked the designs and illustrations, so I gave it a go.

Pretty disappointed. I thought there was potential here but these two characters ended up being rather bland. The meet-cute was cute, yes, but I'd say everything went downhill after the first date. I can see how they're comfortable with each other and the relationship can certainly work, but Jack seemed so much of a doof...more
Nicholas Karpuk
The Cute Girl Network is a part of the helpful group of stories that reminds us that when it comes to relationships, our friends are usually idiots.

Most relationship advice is either terrible or obvious, making them both equally worthless. Yes, your friends care about you, but in no way does that suggest that they know the nature of what you really need from a relationship, or whether that person really is bad for you.

The Cute Girl Network addresses that, with a town that has an interpersonal ne...more
Lisa Jenn Bigelow
"With Jack, I could spend all day with him and never get bored or annoyed. Do you know how rare that is? Most people I want to push down the stairs after twenty minutes."

A charming and hilarious ode to the particularity and peculiarity of falling in love.
Becky
Skater girl Jane falls (literally) for Soup Dude (literally...that's the name of his food cart) Jack, but as soon as her roommate's friend Harriet finds out, she activates the Network: a city-wide network of girls who have banded together in the name of sharing info about guys they've dated, in the hopes of saving other girls from repeating their mistakes. Jack, as many girls share with Jane, is a huge mistake. The problem is, Jane doesn't agree.

This was delightful, with many comic moments. I t...more
Barbara
When Jane moves to Brookport, she's eager to soak up the flavors and experiences of her new home. She and Jack meet in adorable fashion near the soup truck where he works. The attraction is mutual, and they begin to spend time with each other as often as possible. Jane's a skateboarder and must deal with sexist attitudes at work and when she's on her board. Jack is not exactly filled with lofty ambitions and has had more than one unsuccessful relationship. When it turns out that Jack once dated...more
Dana Davis-avants
Jane is a great female skateboarder who is new in town and works at the local skateboard shop. Jack works at a local food cart that sells soup. Jane and Jack first encounter on another when Jane wipes out on her skateboard in front of Jack’s food cart and he asks her out for a date. Since Jack makes minimum wage, they find fun free activities for their date. Once her roommates find out about her date, they introduce her to “The Cute Girl Network” which consist of twenty something females. The ne...more
Samantha
Boy meets girl and everybody they know (including some they don't) try to find reasons why their relationship is doomed to fail. Jane, a skater girl, is clued into a secret network of young women who share information about eligible bachelors that live in the city to save great girls from wasting time with losers.

Through the Cute Girl Network, Jane is introduced to a number of Jack's ex-girlfriends who all have horror stories about his forgetful and dumb behavior. Armed with the knowledge that J...more
Michelle
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
MB
Very fun! It was so nice to read a graphic novel that where female characters did not only exist to sex up the male ones.

Why are these so rare? (Or maybe my seeking skills are just pathetic???)

Jessica
This graphic novel gets four stars for two very simple reasons:

1) The illustrative work in this book is adorable, and fits with the story just perfectly.
2) It's about real relationships between both friends and couples. Which is refreshing!

Jane is a bundle of hilarity and opinions. She's a skater girl at heart, and totally pissed about the fact that she isn't taken seriously in the hobby that she loves. Girls are only there to look pretty, right? They love sparkles, and ponies, and want to have...more
Karen
I want a sequel all about Wendy and her documentary. That was some complex imaginative play those kids had going on with their Barbies.
Sarah
I enjoyed the humor and the story of Jane and Jack, but there's a hipster element to this story (it takes place in a fictional hybrid of Portland and Brooklyn) that annoyed me quite a bit--especially since it's tinged with that hipster sexism that pretends it doesn't exist that permeates hipster empires like Portland (where I live).

The best part of this graphic novel is by far the skateboarding element--it nailed the way girl skaters are extremely badass and yet still alienated by skate culture...more
Angie
This book is totally awesome! The parody on the Twilight series alone is worth the price of admission. And there's some great social commentary subtly hidden throughout the book that you can either jump into for book discussion time, or just completely gloss over as you enjoy the antics of the two main characters and the awesome skater scenes.

Topics I would discuss (over wine) in no particular order:

* Is it okay to use social networks to dig up dirt on people?
* How long must a person "do time" f...more
Laura
This is a fun graphic novel with heart for college age or those in their twenties (too much strong language and sexual content even for high schoolers). The cute girl network was created by young women who wanted to make sure anyone dating their ex-boyfriends had complete information on what went wrong and why no one should ever date them. Main character and bad-ass skater girl Jane meets Jack and there's instant connection and chemistry between them. But will all of the dirt passed on via the n...more
Dani Chakra
Although I have some mixed feelings about this one, I rather enjoyed its cheesy yet charming story. First, let's go through the positives.

Number one, it features a ballsy feminist protagonist named Jane who defies gender stereotypes by being both a skater girl and a tomboy. Not only does she blur the lines between typical gender roles, but the boy she's after, Jack, does as well. His personality is skewed more towards the shy, ditzy, simple-minded side. The two of them create a refreshing dynami...more
Angie
I really liked this graphic novel, but there was one thing that bothered me and made me think: The Cute Girl Network. Are there really such shallow women out there? Are they really so stupid about relationships? So the Cute Girl Network works like this: All across the faux town of Brookport, in this comic, hundreds of girls have created a network to inform each other, and new members, of all the men they have dated. Met a new guy? The CGN recommends meeting with at least three of his exes to get...more
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MK Reed is a cartoonist currently living in Brooklyn, NY. Her book “Americus,” drawn by Jonathan Hill, is currently being serialized at SaveApathea.com.

She also is a contributor to The Beat and Publisher’s Weekly.
More about M.K. Reed...
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