Mini Book Reviews: Fowl Language – The Struggle Is Real / Heart and Brain – Body Language / How to Be Perfectly Unhappy / Lady Stuff – Secrets to Being a Woman

LOOK WHOSE FINALLY WRITING SOME BOOK REVIEWS!

Between school (5 AP classes are NOT conducive to reading), and college apps (NEVER ENDING but IMPORTANT), I haven’t had time to read.

But these are all super quick, funny, light little cartoon-graphic novel reads. I’m trying to get into reading more again, I swear.

I read all of these towards the end of September.

These are all books I read via receiving e-arcs from Netgalley. And this is my honest review.


Fowl Language: The Struggle Is Real

by Brian Gordon

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Official Synopsis:
The Internet sensation, Fowl Language Comics, is back with its second book, Fowl Language: The Struggle Is Real, the perfect parenting humor book for anyone who liked Toddlers Are A**holes!

“This Guy’s Comics Hilariously Sum Up the Truth About Being a Parent.”

—Buzzfeed
He’s back, and he’s totally got parenting figured out this time. KIDDING.

It’s another collection of Fowl Language comics, ripped from the headlines of this author’s actual friggin’ life.

You’ll laugh. You’ll cry. You’ll swear. It’s almost exactly like a day of parenting, except without the annoying little people.

Paperback, 128 pages
Expected publication: October 10th 2017 by Andrews McMeel Publishing
Star Rating:
4 Stars
Review:
I really like the art of this one, its really well done, and I like the whole Duck thing – it makes it funnier. I’m not a parent (obviously) and it will probably be funnier to you if you are, but I have lots of cousins and a much younger sister – so I felt I could relate to it.
I enjoyed it.

Heart and Brain: Body Language: An Awkward Yeti Collection

by The Awkward Yeti, Nick Seluk

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Official Synopsis:
From the New York Times bestselling creator of the hugely popular Awkward Yeti comics comes the third collection in his Heart and Brain series.

Heart and Brain: Body Language continues the adventures of the loveably conflicted sentimental Heart and rational Brain, as well as other bodily inhabitants like Gallbladder, Muscle, and Tongue.

Warm-hearted and laugh-out-loud funny, these comics bring our inner struggles to vibrant, humorous life.

Paperback, 144 pages
Expected publication: October 3rd 2017 by Andrews McMeel Publishing
Star Rating:
5 Stars
Review:
Of all of these, this one is probably my favorite. I read the Heart and Brain comics online ALL THE TIME. And I relate to it so much most of the time. This book is a really nice collection – I hadn’t seen most of them online before. And its really funny, with really nice art.
I REALLY recommend it!

How to Be Perfectly Unhappy

by Matthew Inman, The Oatmeal

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Official Synopsis:
Matthew Inman—Eisner Award-winning creator of The Oatmealand #1 New York Times bestselling author of How to Tell If Your Cat Is Plotting to Kill You—serves yet another helping of thoughtful hilarity in this charming, illustrated gift book for anyone who is irked by the question: “Are you happy?”

In How To Be Perfectly Unhappy, Inman explores the surprising benefits of forgetting about “happiness,” and embracing instead the meaningful activities that keep us busy and interested and fascinated.

Hardcover, 48 pages
Expected publication: October 31st 2017 by Andrews McMeel Publishing
Star Rating:
4 Stars
Review:
This book is SUPER short, but it has possibly the best art of all of these. Its super pretty. This one isn’t funny like the others, its raw and honest and I felt I could really connect with it.
Check it out!

Lady Stuff: Secrets to Being a Woman

by Loryn Brantz

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Official Synopsis:
A collection of Loryn Brantz’s vibrant and relatable Jellybean Comics about her everyday experiences as a lady 

Home manicure tips, awkward seduction techniques, scoping out the snack table, and—most important—prioritizing naps: Lady Stuff reveals these womanly secrets and more. In sections like “Grooming and Habitat Maintenance,” “Mating Habits,” and others, these brightly colored, adorable comics find the humor in the awkwardness of simply existing.

Like the work of Sarah Andersen, Gemma Correll, and Allie Brosh, Loryn Brantz’s Jellybean Comics are accessible and funny; lighthearted takes on the author’s everyday experiences and struggles being a woman.

Paperback, 128 pages
Expected publication: September 26th 2017 by Andrews McMeel Publishing
Star Rating:
4 Stars
Review:
I love this funny-comic-cartoons. This particular book, I had seen a lot of the cartoons inside on Buzzfeed and stuff, but it was really enjoyable to read through this book. Its short – it took me about 20 minutes to get through. The artwork is really nice, its funny, and its really relatable. (Save for one cartoon that was more cringe-y than funny…)
I recommend it!

Have you read any of these?

Do you agree with my thoughts? Disagree?

Are you planning on reading any of these books?

 

Let me know what you think!

 

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Comic Book Review: Super Sons, Volume 1 – When I Grow Up

Super Sons, Volume 1: When I Grow Up

by Peter J. Tomasi, Jorge Jimenez
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I received an e-arc from Netgalley in exchange for my honest review.
Official Synopsis:

A part of DC Universe Rebirth!

Superboy (aka Jonathan Kent) and Robin (aka Damian Wayne) make their super hero duo debut in this all-new series SUPER SONS, part of DC Rebirth.

This debut series looks at the lives of Robin and Superboy and their destiny to follow in their fathers’ footsteps, while we meet a new villain whose ascension parallels the boys’ own understanding of their powers-except that he believes it’s his right to rule over every being on the planet!

 

Chronology:
Collects SUPER SONS #1-5
Original Release Date:
Paperback, 132 pages
Expected publication: October 17th 2017 by DC Comics
Read:
September 2017
Star Rating:
4.5 Stars
Review:
Let me preface this by saying I haven’t really read any DC comics before – I’m more into Marvel – and I definitely haven’t read any rebirth or stories with Super Boy or Damian Wayne (Though of course I know the basics of the characters).
Since this is Vol. 1 of Super Sons, you don’t need to know much more than the basics of “who are Superman and Batman” and “Ok they have kids”.
The boys act a mix of their real age and far older (superheroes after all) – their banter and snarking at each other is hilarious. They can’t seem to get along – but they legitimately seem to want to help each other. Its a really fun introduction.
While Lex Luthor shows up at some point, as do Superman and Batman, Super Boy (AKA Jon Kent) and Robin (AKA Damien Wayne) are the main heroes, with Kid Amazo as the villain. I’d never heard of Kid Amazo before – but he’s an interesting villain, and I liked th story.
The art was REALLY well done. And I’m looking forward to Vol. 2 in March.

Netgalley Review: Lies We Tell Our Kids

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I received an e-arc of this book from Netgalley and this is my honest review.

Original Release Date:

Feb. 20th 2018

Date I Read The Book:

May 2017

My Star Rating:

3 Stars

Official Summary:

From acclaimed artist Brett Wagner comes a book about the tall tales that parents tell their kids in the hopes of getting them to do something—eat, sleep, apologize to their sibling, or learn to do something the right way. Fun, heartfelt, and a little bit weird, Lies We Tell Our Kids exposes the not-so-great generational parenting tactic of lying to your child for the greater good!

Brett Wagner is a Pittsburgh-based illustrator and filmmaker with a penchant for puns and visual anomalies. A generalist by trade, he works mostly in commercial video production, while his short narrative film All Raccoons Are Bandits has been screened internationally. When not on set, he spends most of his time with a box full of Copic markers drawing colorful creatures for himself and others.

My Review: (Vague Spoilers)

This book was essentially…fine. A few pages made me giggle. The illustrations were really well done. But it just sort of fell flat for me. I’ve never heard of any of the “lies” show cased – and I’ve heard some weird ones – save for 3 or 4. A lot weren’t even particularly funny or sensical. It wasn’t the worst thing or anything like that, but I didn’t particularly care for it.

Check out:

 Netgalley Review: I Love You With All My Butt

and

Netgalley Review: United States of Absurdity – Untold Stories From American History

NetGalley Review: Breaking Up Is Hard To Do (But You Could Have Done It Better)

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I received an e-arc of this book from netgalley and this is my honest review.

Original Release Date:

January 10th 2017

Date I Read The Book:

March 2017

My Star Rating:

3 Stars

Official Summary:

Anonymous break up stories from men and women, old and young, serious and silly and the cartoons that inspired them. Author and artist Hilary Campbell turns the painful into the hilarious, validating emotions from forgotten middle school tragedies to relationships that ended only hours ago.

Hilary Fitzgerald Campbell is an award-winning documentary filmmaker and cartoonist. Her films have won top prizes at Slamdance, SF IndieFest, and more. She was the co-illustrator of Jessica Bennett’s critically acclaimed Feminist Fight Club.Breaking Up Is Hard To Do, But You Could’ve Done Better is her first book of cartoons.

My Review: (Vague Spoilers)

I read through this book in about 30 minutes after finishing an essay in class and was waiting for everyone else to finish.

It was enjoyable enough, a short, pretty funny read.

The illustrations are well done and the funniest part of the book.

But several of the submissions feel flat, or were too similar to be repetitively funny. Others were very funny, but with the writing styles and lengths inconsistent, and all the stories being straight, probably unedited submissions from others, it felt like you should get more from a book you buy.

It was pretty funny, and I enjoyed it, but it wasn’t the best.

Discussion: On DNF Books And Reviews

DNF stands for “Did Not Finish” – an acronym you’ve probably heard around the book blogging community before.


People DNF books all the time, for all sorts of reasons.

Because they just weren’t liking the book.
Because they were bored.
Because they took a particular issue with the book (problematic /trope they dislike etc.).

Everyone has their own policy on this and I can’t speak for everyone.


I personally dislike DNFing books – it feels dishonest to pass judgement if I didn’t see it through.

I have only DNFed a handful of books. Generally because the content made me physically uncomfortable (like Nerdy and the Dirty) or I am extremely bored / disengaged / hitting a reading slump because of a book. Especially recently with my growing TBR.
Usually, if I put a book down, it’s with the intention of coming back later.


But why?
Why feel guilty about not enjoying a book and doing without it?
Book reviews are often subjective – what I enjoy or don’t enjoy may influence those of similar opinions – but it isn’t the end all be all of a books worth or who may enjoy it even if I don’t.


Recently my views of DNFing has changed. I think it’s okay. We read because our enjoy it, why continue if it becomes a chore. But we should explain ourselves.
Why did we DNF a book?
Something objective or something  subjective in its influence?
Could others potentially like it?
And definitely don’t bash a book you couldn’t finish – that I do see as unfair.


What do you think?

Do you agree with me?

What do you think of DNF books?

Netgalley Review: The Wendy Project

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I received an e-arc of this book from netgalley and this is my honest review.

Original Release Date:

July 18th 2017

Date I Read The Book:

May 2017

My Star Rating:

4 Stars

Official Summary:

 

16-year-old Wendy Davies crashes her car into a lake on a late summer night in New England with her two younger brothers in the backseat. When she wakes in the hospital, she is told that her youngest brother, Michael, is dead. Wendy — a once rational teenager – shocks her family by insisting that Michael is alive and in the custody of a mysterious flying boy. Placed in a new school, Wendy negotiates fantasy and reality as students and adults around her resemble characters from Neverland. Given a sketchbook by her therapist, Wendy starts to draw. But is The Wendy Project merely her safe space, or a portal between worlds?

My Review: 

Retellings are beyond popular – and I am a particular fan of them. Some involve the fantasy world colliding with the real world (as in Alice in Wonderland retellings where in she is psychotic – or at least perceived as psychotic). Peter Pan in particular is popular for retellings. It is also popular for theories – one prevalent one being that the lost boys are all dead and Peter is their guardian angel.

The Wendy Project plays into these ideas. We follow Wendy’s point of view through her journal/sketchbook after a devastating accident where-in her brother dies – though Wendy believes him alive, and that he has simply been taken away. We see her coping with this lose and these ideas – both her high school life and ideas of Neverland in her art, colors used to differentiate reality and fantasy, and we are generally left as unsure as Wendy is.

It is well written, and the artwork is gorgeous. I particularly liked the interspersing of Peter Pan quotes from JM Barrie.

My only issue is that its quite short – and so didn’t go into the depth that it had the potential to, and feels quite abrupt at the end.

But overall, I really enjoyed it.

 

Netgalley Review: Man Vs. Child – One Dad’s Guide to the Weirdness of Parenting

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I received an e-arc of this book from netgalley and this is my honest review.


Original Release Date:

May 9th, 2017

Date I Read The Book:

May 2017

My Star Rating:

5 Stars


Official Summary:

Moms have hundreds of parenting advice books willing to tackle the more cringe-inducing questions of parenthood. But what about books for the other half of the equation: the dads? Man vs. Child is a funny, fresh take on the parenting guide, written from the dad’s perspective.

Author and popular Upright Citizens Brigade performer Doug Moe knows first-time fathers are as worried about being terrible at their new terrifying jobs as new moms are. But while most modern fathering guides center on men’s oafish parental failings, Man vs. Child forgoes condescension in favor of fresh and irreverent wit. This guide for first-time dads tackles funny but important questions, like how to be a good dad without becoming a BabyBjörn-wearing tool in the process, or what to do if your child loves your iPad more than they love you. From caring for a newborn to dealing with a kid on the verge of adolescence, author Doug Moe breaks fatherhood down into survival lessons like “Time to Decide About God” and quizzes that ask dads to reflect on hilarious parenting questions like “Is My Child Too Annoying for This Restaurant?”

Chapters include:
-Newborn: Keeping This Weird Thing Alive Awhile, Even As It Tries to Kill You
-Your Interesting Baby, Maybe the Most Interesting Baby Ever
-Man v Toddler: Does Your Toddler Want to Kill You?
-Now That My Kid Doesn’t Need Me, What Is My Life Worth?

Balancing relatable humor with heartfelt advice, Man vs. Child will appeal to any dad looking for both laughs and real guidance from a man who has had—and survived—these experiences himself. A perfect Father’s Day gift or present for a first-time dad!


My Review: 

Don’t even ask why I, a 17 year old girl with no plans to have children for – at least – a decade, has requested, read and now, reviewed a parenting book. I have a bad habit of requesting random things on Netgalley on a whim when bored.

That being said, I found this pretty funny and well written.

Man vs. Child makes no secret what it is a humor book about parenting but not really meant to offer concrete advice. There is no – or at least, very little – in the way of “scientifically this is how you care for a child” but rather a funny commentary on becoming a dad and being a stay-at-home dad raising your child. Its light-hearted, quick, and while not particularly informative, witty, well written and entertaining.

Make of that what you will when deciding to read it.

DNF Books – Mini Reviews #1

Every book blogger has DNF’d a book at least once.

I personally, don’t like doing it, especially for reviews copies. I feel I owe myself and the person who sent me the book to finish it because I decide I dislike it.

But, with an ever growing TBR pile, I just don’t have time for books I’m not into.

I might revisit these one day, if I’m ever bored and decide to give it another chance. But these are just little explanations onto why I DNF’d some books. This in no way passes objective judgement, I’m sure others might love them, they just aren’t for me.


I requested and was approved for all these books from Netgalley. Because they are review copies, I tried to stick it out, but I couldn’t. I opinions are not changed because they are review copies. I may or may not revisit any in the future. But at the moment, I have no intention of finishing them at the moment.


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A Filthy Habit by Fergus Linnane

From both the title and the cover, I assumed this would be a book of FUNNY short stories.

It wasn’t. Its just a collection of short stories from an author I hadn’t heard of before. I read the first story and a half, was entirely uninterested, and barely remember what I read now. It is more literary fiction / adult fiction than anything, two genres I don’t really enjoy.

Others have given it good reviews, and it has a really great rating on Goodreads, so if you like short stories of those genres you may like it, it just wan’t for me.

It wasn’t bad at all, I just wasn’t into it. Maybe one day in college I’ll get back to it? But for right now, its a DNF.


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The Nerdy and the Dirty by B.T. Gottfred

My reason for DNFing this one are simple: it made me uncomfortable.

While I have no problems with sex or discussions of it in books, its a natural thing, it was too much in this book, especially for a YA novel.

Of the 5% (and really, I skipped pages at a time thats how awkward they were – not in a character story sense, in a me sense – if that makes sense) I got through, I think at least 3% was discussions of/thinking of sex and masterbation. And the views of sex were very “stereotypical teen” written by someone obviously not a teen.

While I did like the writing style and the humor, and I thought the characters had great potential, I couldn’t get past the awkwardness. I did like the sex wasn’t portrayed as something only the boys like, as is often in teen fiction, but honestly? It was too much, the other plot points revolved around dating entirely, and it made me uncomfortable and a little nauseas. I might read something else by this author.

If sex in book doesn’t both you, and you like YA romances (in dual POV), then you’ll like this. It does after all have pretty good reviews and rating. It just wasn’t for me.


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Boy To The World by Eileen Walls

I didn’t have any particular issue with this one. I just…didn’t click with it.

I read a couple chapters, and was entirely un-engrossed. Already what I read has been forgotten. It was slow going, we hadn’t hit any plot yet. The humor wasn’t my style, and it fell flat for me. I couldn’t bring myself to care about any of the characters.

And I thought, why am I wasting me time?

I’m sure there are others who’d like this, you can relate more to the protagonist, you have a similar style of humor where they’d enjoy it. It has decent reviews and rating on Goodreads, its just not for me.


I think, overall, the main issue here is that I over-request on Netgalley.

I request on a whim too much, and it leads to an ever growing TBR that stresses me out.

I’m stopped requesting for know, until I get it under control, and I’m getting there. But its a big reason behind the lack of time I have to push through books.

But, that I think is another discussion. Why do me make ourselves push through?

 

 

 

Netgalley Review: The Shape of Ideas

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I received an e-arc of this book from netgalley and this is my honest review.

Original Release Date:

April 18th, 2017

Date I Read The Book:

May 2017

My Star Rating:

4 Stars

Official Summary:

What does an idea look like? And where do they come from? Grant Snider’s illustrations will motivate you to explore these questions, inspire you to come up with your own answers and, like all Gordian knots, prompt even more questions. Whether you are a professional artist or designer, a student pursuing a creative career, a person of faith, someone who likes walks on the beach, or a dreamer who sits on the front porch contemplating life, this collection of one- and two-page comics will provide insight into the joys and frustrations of creativity, inspiration, and process—no matter your age or creative background.

My Review: (Vague Spoilers)

This is a little graphic novel type book on creativity from the perspective of an artist. Its pretty clever, using different ideas, stereotypes, etc. of art to convey a message. The artwork is really well done with a pretty distinct style that I enjoyed. Some sections were more enjoyable than others, but if you enjoy art or other creative end overs, it may be worth checking out. Its quick to get through and it made me smile.

Blog Tour: The Dragon Orb – Review

The Dragon Orb tour banner

The Dragon Orb (The Alaris Chronicles #1)
by Mike Shelton
Genre: YA Fantasy
Release Date: March 1st 2017

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Summary from Goodreads:

The fate of a kingdom rests on the shoulders of three young wizards who couldn’t be more different.

Bakari is a brilliant scholar wizard who’s more at home in a library than a battlefield. Alli is a beautiful young battle wizard whose grace in battle is both enchanting and deadly. Roland is a counselor wizard with a seemingly limitless depth of untapped power — and the ego to match it.

As the magical barrier protecting the kingdom of Alaris from dangerous outsiders begins to fail, and a fomenting rebellion threatens to divide the country in a civil war, the three wizards are thrust into the middle of a power struggle.

When the barrier comes down, the truth comes out. Was everything they were taught about their kingdom based on a lie? Will they all choose to fight on the same side, or end up enemies in the battle over who should rule Alaris?

Add to Goodreads


The Alaris Chronicles Praise:

The first book of the Alaris Chronicles series brings a refreshing take on magic and politics in fantasy. The world feels very much alive as the wizards take on their new challenges, struggling with their personal demons as much as those of the land they are expected to protect. For people wanting a fantasy kingdom-based read that is more sorcery than swords with a depth of intrigue that goes well beyond blood and debauchery, The Dragon Orb is a solid new entry in the genre.” –Self-Publishing Review

The Dragon Orb is full of magic and adventure, and a way for younger readers to get a peek into the world of politics. The book is a strange combination of a Dungeons and Dragons adventure with Game of Thrones, but with kids as the movers and shakers of the story — and with a PG rating. It is a very easy read, a page turner. I love the fact that the protagonists of this story come in all colors, shapes and sizes, and that our leads are not your usual all-white characters. As mentioned before, the world our characters inhabit borrows from already established fantasy folklore; from Lord of the Rings to the Wheel of Time series. The biggest innovation on these series by Mr. Shelton is the inclusion of how politics work (hence the Game of Thrones reference), but accessible for a younger audience.” –  Erika Grediaga for Readers’ Favorite

“Dragon Rider is packed with action, adventure and a well-thought fantasy world. In a sort of collage of a wide variety of fantasy literature, from Lord of the Rings to The Wheel of Time, Mike Shelton goes into the ugliness of power and politics in a very interesting way, creating this type of introductory and age-appropriate version of Game of Thrones for kids. I think any tween or teen, from age ten on, would love to immerse themselves in this world of treason and power, where children are the ones who hold everyone in check.” – Readers’ Favorite


About the Author

Author

Mike was born in California and has lived in multiple states from the west coast to the east coast. He cannot remember a time when he wasn’t reading a book. At school, home, on vacation, at work at lunch time, and yes even a few pages in the car (at times when he just couldn’t put that great book down). Though he has read all sorts of genres he has always been drawn to fantasy. It is his way of escaping to a simpler time filled with magic, wonders and heroics of young men and women.

Other than reading, Mike has always enjoyed the outdoors. From the beaches in Southern California to the warm waters of North Carolina. From the waterfalls in the Northwest to the Rocky Mountains in Utah. Mike has appreciated the beauty that God provides for us. He also enjoys hiking, discovering nature, playing a little basketball or volleyball, and most recently disc golf. He has a lovely wife who has always supported him, and three beautiful children who have been the center of his life.

Mike began writing stories in elementary school and moved on to larger novels in his early adult years. He has worked in corporate finance for most of his career. That, along with spending time with his wonderful family and obligations at church has made it difficult to find the time to truly dedicate to writing. In the last few years as his children have become older he has returned to doing what he truly enjoys – writing!

Author Links:

WebsiteGoodreadsTwitterFacebookAmazonInstagram


Blog Tour Organized by:

YA Bound Book Tours

Giveaway: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/9e540ef9369/


4 stars

Review:

I was sent a e-copy of the book for the tour and this is my honest review.

I LOVE dragons and that, especially, was the reason I wanted to review this book.

The Dragon Orb is the first in a new fantasy series, and it was pretty fantastic.

Great magic, well paced action, and well rounded and relatable characters.

A bit slow and/or cliche in places but over all, a good read. If you like dragons, wizards, and fantasy, its worth checking out.


Blog Tour Schedule –

June 12th

June 13th

June 14th

June 15th

June 16th