Tag Archives: 4 Stars

Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss

green eggs ham seussRating: ★★★★

Reading Green Eggs and Ham to stubborn children is definitely a preferred alternative to torture. Introducing new foods to the very young can be a gruelling task, for parent and child alike. Seuss teaches that ‘new’ doesn’t automatically mean you’ll hate it. In that respect it kind of reminds me of The Croods with the ‘Anything new is bad’ ethos also being turned on its head.

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Alex + Ada, Vol. 1 by Jonathan Luna

Alex + Ada, Vol 1 by Jonathan LunaRating: ★★★★

“I will gladly do anything you ask as long as it does not harm humans, animals, or property. I will avoid putting myself in danger unless it is to protect you or by your command. The Tanaka logo on my wrist is the only physical indication that I am an android and I am required by law to keep it exposed at all times. I am not allowed to handle legal tender or helm a vehicle, so please keep that in mind if you send me out on errands. I am in your hands, now. Please take good care of me.”

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Feral Sins (The Phoenix Pack #1) by Suzanne Wright

feral sins suzanne wright phoenix pack Rating: 4 stars

“Just give me a second. Attempting to give a fuck…Attempting harder to give a fuck…Sorry, there was an error; fuck not given.”

PMDD was bringing me down when I remembered Lei recommended Feral Sins to me last year as a pick-me-up. I didn’t own it then, but I snapped up a £1 deal on Amazon a few months ago. After finally reading it, I can understand the hype surrounding this self-published book. It definitely made me feel better.

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TV: Belgium’s Cordon a modern adaption of Albert Camus’s The Plague echoes Ebola crisis

Cordon cast

“Cordon sanitaire” is a sanitary cordon used to confine the infected with a highly contagious and deadly disease to a specific area, quarantining them away from the general population until everyone inside either dies or survives, allowing the disease to die out. This technique has been around for centuries. Photos are available recording how the cordon was implemented in Honolulu’s Chinatown in an outbreak of bubonic plague in 1889. In August 2014 cordons were used in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia – the African countries most affected by Ebola.

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Ask Graham by Graham Norton, and the reader with a bodice-ripping addiction

Ask Graham NortonRating: 3 stars

Bluntly telling it like it is as only gay comedian, chat show host and now agony uncle Graham Norton can, with wit and wisdom. Ask Graham is a collection of letters and responses from Norton’s column in the very middle class and conservative Daily Telegraph. If you’re looking for a gentle agony aunt who sensitively guides you to the solutions to life’s problems without judgement, turn back now. Not that he is ever mean to the genuinely vulnerable; he saves his mocking for the clearly stupid and those who’ve made diamond encrusted mountains out of simple, mundane molehills.

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Through the Woods by Emily Carroll

Through the Woods by Emily Carroll Rating: 4 stars

Of all of the gothic horror graphic novel fairy tales in this collection, Carroll’s unnerving take on Bluebeard A Lady’s Hands Are Cold blew me away. It’s the most complete and satisfying of the bunch. Gorgeous, vivid illustrations and lyrical yet elegantly simple prose. And the goriest story of them all while the others thrive mostly on what you cannot see.

There was a girl
& there was a man
And there was the girl’s father
who said, “you will marry this man.”

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Fun Home: a family tragicomic by Alison Bechdel

Fun Home a tragicomic Alison BechdelRating: 

An erudite, self-aware feminist memoir, in graphic novel form, examining a lesbian’s childhood relationship with her parents – especially her closeted gay father. Fun Home is chock full of psychoanalysis, literary criticism and commentary on gender, sexuality and suicide. You may recognise the author’s name from her Bechdel Test, which ‘asks if a work of fiction features at least two women who talk to each other about something other than a man’ to indicate gender bias (Wikipedia).

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Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh

Hyperbole and a Half Allie Brosh

Rating: 

Other than the seriously offensive smell of Hyperbole and Half‘s pages (I think it’s all that colourful ink) and that odd yellow triangle on the top of Brosh’s cartoon head (what is that, anyway? A hat, a blonde ponytail?), this is a self-aware blog-to-book memoir describing some of the absurdities and poignancy of everyday life.

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I Had a Black Dog: His Name Was Depression by Matthew Johnstone

I Had a Black Dog Matthew Johnstone depression

Rating: 

Winston Churchill’s black dog euphemism for depression is given form by author and illustrator Matthew Johnstone. He skillfully reveals his personal navigation through the seven hells of depression to the light at the end of the very long tunnel. As Churchill once said, “if you’re going through hell, keep going.” Johnstone sought treatment, told his family and friends and learned how to control the dreaded beast so he could finally enjoy life again.

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Hansel & Gretel by Neil Gaiman

Hansel Gretel Neil Gaiman Lorenzo MattottiRating: 

Having liked The Sleeper and the Spindle, I assumed I’d enjoy another reworked fairy tale by him.

Be warned, Gaiman doesn’t really rework Hansel and Gretel like he did with Sleeping Beauty, he just enlarges on it, adding minor changes along the way. Oddly I enjoyed this story more than any other by Gaiman, which probably tells you more about how much I like, or dislike, his work than anything else.

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