Okay, so I don't follow the blog religiously like some people do, but I've seen a lot of the comics floating around online (especially the gifs), and from what I've seen, there isn't a whole lot of fresh material. Like The Oatmeal's graphic novels, this features loads of rehashing from the website they were taken from.
But it's Pusheen. Pusheen the fat little kitty that has stolen hearts from all over the world. How can you resist? I can definitely see the appeal of having a solid book to hold in your hot little hand. The pink backgrounds, with Pusheens and candies, the Comic Sans font, and the rounded pastel drawings are just so cute.
I guess this is just one of those books that people buy as a conversation starter or a gag gift. It would make a great coffee table book for a dorm or old-fashioned sitting room that needs a bit of a modern touch.
I'm not sure if I would buy this book for retail price, but if I saw it used? Oh yeah, you betcha.
Now, if Ms. Belton released a book of all-new and never-before-seen Pusheen art? I'd be all over that like jelly bean toes on a Pusheen paw.
You know how Good Housekeeping and Redbook both have sections, like, 20 Id...moreYou can read more of my reviews, faster, at my blog, The Armchair Librarian.
You know how Good Housekeeping and Redbook both have sections, like, 20 Ideas to Transform Your House for Fall for Under $50, or something like that? This book is pretty much just like that.
...And that isn't necessarily a good thing.
Maybe it's because I don't live in the Midwest, but I found a lot of these decorating ideas tacky. The hunting lodge living room, for example, with the plaid armchairs that looked like they'd been made from old flannel shirts - so not me. Especially when you mix prints! No, no, no, no, no. And mounting animal heads on the wall is just plain tacky. One house also had these hideous mugs made to look like the Kings of England. They were the kind of stuff nightmares were made of. I also wasn't too keen on the flower wreaths. They looked like something you would have to make as a class project in elementary school, and quite messy.
I think for people trying to make their house look expensive on a small budget, this guide might be useful. The photography was lovely and some of the decor was quite nice, but as a whole, I don't think I would make this my refurnishing bible. Another thing I noticed was how inconvenient (and even unsafe!) some of the decor was from an ergonomic perspective.
1. One house had a bench built into the wall of the foyer. About two feet above the bench were a row of coat hooks. Not only would the bench keep the coats from draping, causing them to bunch up on the seat and wrinkle, but it is a hazard for people sitting on the bench to get nasty bruises and cuts.
2. Another house had a little kitchenette built into one wall. They had a rail for hanging shirts over the stove, and the curtains of the window were literally right next to the oven. If that doesn't scream fire hazard, I don't know what does. (And why would you hang shirts over the stove? To dry them? Why not use the dryer?)
3. The third bedroom had a chandelier hanging over the bed. This isn't quite as bad as the two former issues, but it still is a potential hazard. I wouldn't want a heavy construct of glass and metal and electrical wires dangling over my head. It's like a ticking pendulum.
Maybe this book just wasn't to my taste, though I think people should also consider safety when refurbishing, refurnishing, and remodeling their homes.
This is pretty typical YA. It's got the shiny cover, the uncomfortably obn...moreYou can read more of my reviews, faster, at my blog, The Armchair Librarian.
This is pretty typical YA. It's got the shiny cover, the uncomfortably obnoxious and self-centered teenager, and the Sarah Dessen-esque title.
Normally I don't like books like these, which are all wrapped up in teen drama, but Sometimes Never, Sometimes Always brought something new to the table.
The main character, Cassandra, is the middle child. She has the perfect perky younger sister her parents love to dote on, and the older brother with a secret - that he's gay - who the parents indulge despite the fact that he is distancing himself from the church.
Oh, yeah, they belong to this freaky deaky fundamentalist religious group, the kind that preaches fire and brimstone, and thinks that fantasy books contain a one-way ticket to hell, not Hogwarts.
Cassandra doesn't really have much to identify with, so one day when her brother gives her money to buy herself a present rather than picking up one for her personally she decides to get a pack of Tarot cards. She also starts a blog called Divinia Starr, where she tells the fortunes of the people who visit her blog.
But things quickly get out of hand and soon Cassandra is forced to own up to the reckless powers of prophecy that also got her namesake in trouble.
I really, really, really did not like Cassandra's character at all. She is a selfish bitch, and not even a particularly likable one. Her insecurities and low-self-esteem make for a constant whine fest. But the reason this book gets three stars and not, say, a two or a one is because there is some actual character development. And also because this development isn't forced for dramatic effect but comes at a natural pace.
The supporting cast is better, in my opinion. Drew was an interesting character. I loved Eric, her older brother, his boyfriend, Gavin, and Darin, the love interest. Kayla was also a good character, and Britney was interesting too. Her revelation at the end made me wish I'd gotten to know her character better in the book.
I wouldn't read this again and I'm not sure if I would read another book by this author, but I think Sometimes Never, Sometimes Always brings up a lot of really valid points that teenagers ought to consider in this information age. With everything so anonymous, it can be difficult to remember that there are real flesh-and-blood people reading the words that you type on the screen.
What a delightful little slice-of-life this was! I was expecting something...moreYou can read more of my reviews, faster, at my blog, The Armchair Librarian.
What a delightful little slice-of-life this was! I was expecting something light and fun from the charming artwork on the cover. Something about the Questionable Content-esque hipster couple on the front really appealed to me.But this graphic-novel was quite a bit more sophisticated than I expected!
Bad Houses takes place in a small town in Oregon called Failin. Anne lives with her mother, a hoarder who works in a nursing home. Anne likes taking pictures of secret or forgotten places. She likes peering into the lives of strangers, but also respects that privacy and intimacy too. Lewis works with his mom to do estate sales, which is how he meets Anne. Her deepness intrigues him, and he goes to her website and discovers her passion for secret places, and ends up going to her hangouts in the hopes of finding her.
As the story progresses, we learn more about the characters, and the way their lives and the lives of those around them intersect. There were some surprising connections between them, and I liked the way the book made me think. This is basically a new-adult story told in graphic-novel format, with deep and real characters, with idiosyncrasies and quirks that you might be able to pinpoint in yourself and those in your acquaintance.
Also, can I just say that I loved the focus on estate sales and thrift shops? I love buying things used. You find some truly amazing vintage pieces. And because other living breathing people owned those objects, it's almost as if they transferred some of their soul into them. You know? That's one of the reasons I love buying my books used (apart from the fact that they're, like, super cheap). Sometimes you find train tickets or concert tickets or business cards or even letters in the pages of the book, and those things kind of tell a story of their own too. It's kind of amazing, and I agree with Anne, that those things should be discarded, because keeping them is just too personal.
Anyway, this was a really great story. It was different, unique, and heartfelt, and I really appreciated the visceral honesty of the storytelling. I would definitely read more by these graphic-novelists.
This was pretty amazing. So basically our protagonist is a college-age boy...moreYou can read more of my reviews, faster, at my blog, The Armchair Librarian.
This was pretty amazing. So basically our protagonist is a college-age boy named Andy Go living in an alien zoo. He signed a contract with the Praxians, where all he has to do is just sit in his habitat and act normally. For this, he gets $250,000/year.
Andy is an artist, and his keeper, Dash (pictured on the cover) is fascinated by his drawings. This is because all forms of art have been banned in her culture for centuries. Can't say anymore that without spoiling things, but it's pretty fascinating and makes for some great philosophical elements in what is otherwise a light (but not too light) science-fiction graphic novel.
Even though this is apparently book #2 in the series I caught up with the plot pretty quickly. The art style wasn't necessarily to my tastes, but it worked for the storyline and I really enjoyed all the characters and how they came alive. The dialogue was really funny and that was unfortunate because I was reading this late last night when my family was asleep, and I kept giggling at Andy's silliness, and his interactions with his next-door neighbor, Mo.
I'd recommend this book to people who are fans of the science-fiction genre, or who are in college (or in their last years of high school) and looking for stories about their age-groups that aren't just slices of life.
Star Cursed by Jessica Spotswood Let's start with the usual disclaimers, shall we? Yes, I received a copy of this book to review, and even though I to...moreStar Cursed by Jessica Spotswood Let's start with the usual disclaimers, shall we? Yes, I received a copy of this book to review, and even though I took my sweet time getting to it (fail), this is an honest review and nobody bribed me or threatened me or anything (unless you count the book itself a bribe).I haven't read book one of the Cahill Witch Chronicles, so I definitely had some catching up to do. Luckily, the author is really good at recapping past events. The premise kind of reminds me of a cross between The Golden Compass(religion vs. magic/nature), The Handmaid's Tale (man vs. womyn), and Harry Potter (abra-fucking-cadabra, bitches! We're going to wizard school!).If you think this sounds like an awesome combination, that's because it is. The book is narrated by Cate Cahill who may or may not be the oracle this prophecy is prophesying about. Or, on the other hand, it might just be one of her two younger sisters, Mara and Tess.The year is 1897 (and it took me forever to figure this out, and I spent ages trying to decide whether this was a historical fantasy and post-apocalyptic science-fiction-fantasy novel, so you're welcome) and the Brotherhood, an anti-magic misogynistic religious group, are going on witch hunts, book-burning sprees, you name it. They are sort of allied with the Sisterhood, except not really - because the sisters are all WITCHES!Star Cursed is one giant rollercoaster ride of emotions, super sekrit missions, intrigue, relationships, and character development. It's hard to make a well-rounded character with a heavy dose of flaws likable, but I think Spotswood did a great job with this. Even when I wanted to smack Cate, I still understood where she was coming from. Her relationship with Maura, the ambitious younger sister, was something I could especially relate to. Not all authors can portray the sister dynamic well. Spotswood must have sisters. :)Oh my god - and that ending. Ouch. Ouch right in the bleeding feels.Now I need books #1 and #3, A.S.A.P.4 out of 5 stars!(less)