A School for Brides by Patrice Kindl
Two weeks ago, I read Kindl's first book set in the little Yorkshire town of Lesser Hoo, Keeping the Castle. This book is set roughly a year later and, while not a direct sequel and certainly able to be read on its own, there's definitely something delightful about exploring new characters while also getting a peak at what's been happening with the heroes of the previous book. School for Brides introduces a whole mess of new characters (it is a girl's school, after all) and I was honestly impressed at Kindl's ability to create characters that were so distinct that, despite the sheer number of them, it was easy to follow each of their individual stories and recognize their personalities. The number of plots to follow somehow never become convoluted and it all wraps up into a very funny, very lovely read. The perfect thing to curl up with before bed.
Unabrow: Misadventures of a Late Bloomer by Una LaMarche
I'm not one for autobiographies that are simply life stories and I don't think I've ever read any big tell alls about celebrities but autobio books that are short essays written by people I feel like I want to be friends with? Sign me up. And that's what I felt on every level with LaMarche's book. From different fascinations in childhood to the pitfalls of marriage and childcare, every essay is both witty (sometimes laugh out loud funny) and relatable. Even when she's talking about things I don't have personal experience with, it felt like I was hearing an anecdote from a friend over coffee. I couldn't stop giggling during 'Death Becomes Me' and her essay about the changes your body goes through as you grow had me cringing and laughing in equal amounts. I really loved this book and when my mother noticed me reading it the other day, she asked if she could read it after I was done so it's now in her TBR pile.
Writer: Josua Williamson Artists: Goran Sudzuma (Vol 1), Davide Gianfelice (Vol 2)
I am a sucker for ghosts. I love any ghost story and am keen to read pretty much anything where they are a key feature. As such, the idea of a series where ghosts were the thread that tied the stories together seemed up my alley. And, to be honest, the plot line of at least the first arc is totally something I'm interested in (let's break into this haunted house and steal a ghost!) but what was really hard to swallow was how horribly sophomoric and uncomfortable the writing was. At first, I thought that perhaps Williamson was trying to make the lead, Jackson Winters, a horrible person that you were rooting against. I know that I was hoping that he died by the end. But at one point, after a truly cringe-inducing three panel erection joke, I actually flipped to the front of the book to see if any women at all were involved in the making of this comic and, surprise!, not a one. And with every page that I turned, it was even harder to swallow. It was a struggle as I really did want to know what would happen but I hated the characters. Sudzuka's art fit the mood of the comic, his backgrounds and demon faces especially being great, and I appreciated his page composition. Gianfelice I loved even more, his thicker lines and much more stylized look that made choking down the godawful writing ("Boss, let me kidnap this man and bring him to you and if he is not Jackson Winters, I will let you cut off my cock. And you know how much I love my cock.") a little easier. I will definitely track down more of Gianfelice. But will I read anymore Ghosted? Ahahahahaha. No.