Alphabetical Index of Other Book Reviews

Confessions of a Hater

Caprice Crane has written several light novels for women (a genre often dismissively called “chick lit”), including Forget About It and Family Affair. I tried a couple of her previous books, and although the premises were intriguing, I didn’t care enough about the characters or what happened to finish any of them. Confessions of a Hater was different. It’s a Young Adult book, to start, with the classic plot of “geek girl finds way to be popular at a new […]

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They’ll Never Put That on the Air

I’ve always found stories of media censorship and attempted restraint interesting, because what offends people can be so arbitrary (and sometimes silly). This “oral history of taboo-breaking TV comedy” (as the subtitle has it) by Allan Neuwirth presents a collection of concerns over some of the best TV shows of all time, as told by the creators and executives involved. The opening chapter of They’ll Never Put That on the Air serves as a brief history of the sitcom, including […]

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Crockett Johnson and Ruth Krauss: How an Unlikely Couple Found Love, Dodged the FBI, and Transformed Children’s Literature

Catchy subtitle, isn’t it? Unfortunately, the book doesn’t quite live up to two-thirds of it. It’s a great picture of the life Ruth Krauss (noted children’s book author) and Crockett Johnson (Harold and the Purple Crayon, Barnaby) had together, but the FBI bit turns out to be some files due to the couple’s politics, and the last part isn’t explained fully enough for someone not already familiar with the field. However, as the first biography of either of them, it’s […]

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I Found the Fake Geek Girl… 24 Years Ago

You’ve likely seen at least some mention of the idiotic idea of the fake geek girl, since responses have been going on around the internet since the summer. Although I thought this was merely fanboy paranoia, I just found a classic example of the type. Let me back up. I’m still unpacking the various boxes of books arising from our move in August. (When you have over a dozen bookcases and need more to hold all the volumes, it’s not […]

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Yes, Let’s

written by Galen Goodwin Longstreth; art by Maris Wicks In this wonderful picture book, each page is a complete illustration, with a rhyming caption over top describing how this large family — parents, four kids, large dog — decides to spend a day in the country, hiking in the woods, having a picnic, swimming in the river. It’s a terrific paean to enjoying the outdoors and being part of such a family. The art is amazing, too, with such active […]

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Archvillain

Friend of the Blog Barry Lyga (The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl) is launching a new young adult novel series with Archvillain, out this month from Scholastic. It’s the story of Kyle, who was setting up to play a prank the night the weird meteor shower gave him superpowers. Now, Kyle’s bored in school, because his new intelligence has put him miles ahead of everyone, and his former status as most popular kid in school has been usurped […]

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The Amazing Mackerel Pudding Plan

I stumbled across The Amazing Mackerel Pudding Plan the other day, and I had a blast reading it. (If you’re a fan of books by James Lileks, you will too.) Wendy McClure found a bunch of Weight Watchers diet recipe cards from the 1970s and has republished the pictures, complete with snarky commentary, especially when it comes to the props they surrounded the food with. The book is now out of print, but never fear, you can read the website. […]

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