Oddball: A Sarah’s Scribbles Collection

Oddball: A Sarah’s Scribbles Collection is the fourth book — after Adulthood Is a Myth, Big Mushy Happy Lump, and Herding Cats — for these autobio/observational webcomics by Sarah Andersen. It was my favorite yet, perhaps because I’d already seen some of the comics online and loved them. I’m a particular fan of how Andersen captures fandom behavior in ways I’ve seen. She’s also very good at showing cats (which are from hell) and introverted behavior (and yet friendship). I […]

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Scenes From Isolation

Cathy Guisewite is back cartooning! Scenes From Isolation is a collection of single-panel cartoons she originally put on Instagram capturing frustrations and annoyances during pandemic quarantine. As with any book of this type, some of the recurring themes, particularly the compulsive baking and germophobia, I didn’t relate to at all. Some of the other images, though — especially unhealthy eating, too much online shopping, and having trouble focusing — perfectly captured my feelings. Readers of her previous comic strip, Cathy, […]

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Unicorn Famous

Unicorn Famous is the thirteenth book in the series, collecting the ongoing Phoebe and Her Unicorn comic strip by Dana Simpson. I was surprised to see that it opens with a lengthy sequence about being able to be what you want when you grow up, even if that thing is a unicorn. Of course, they’re magical creatures, so maybe that makes sense, but to a human reader, it’s encouraging, reminding us that we have options and choices. It’s all handled […]

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Virtual Unicorn Experience

The latest Phoebe and Her Unicorn collection from Dana Simpson, Virtual Unicorn Experience, is as fresh and funny and entertaining as any of the previous. It’s the twelfth book in the series, so that’s a pretty impressive track record. Since the unicorn Marigold is a magical creature, her sometimes use of spells makes for entertaining visuals, but the realistic elements of this strip are where it excels. In Virtual Unicorn Experience, the friendship between Marigold and the odd but admirable […]

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Oh No

I love this webcomic, even though I had no idea it was actually called Webcomic Name or that the author was Alex Norris. Calling the book Oh No was smart, as that’s how most people know it, since that’s the punchline to every three-panel installment. I think we all can sympathize with the pink “disappointed blob” that features in it, and seeing so many resigned “oh no”s in a row created in me a kind of bemused resignation. Although I […]

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The Unicorn Whisperer

What can I say about more Phoebe and Her Unicorn books other than the strip is still funny?! (I last recommended Unicorn Bowling last summer, and I was behind in reading them then.) The idea is simple — Phoebe is an oddball kid who has a real, live, magical unicorn for a friend. Her parents and a couple of her classmates know about Marigold (the unicorn). Their different perspectives make for all kinds of humorous moments, whether it’s Phoebe reacting […]

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Unicorn Bowling

Unicorn Bowling is the ninth in the Phoebe and Her Unicorn series. (I’m behind; there have been two more books out since this one: The Unicorn Whisperer and Camping with Unicorns.) Most collect the comic strips; a couple are original, longer stories, but this isn’t one of them. That means this book is 170 or so pages of everyday witticisms, with a continuing theme following through at most four or five strips. It’s welcome light entertainment, particularly given how fresh […]

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Phoebe and Her Unicorn in Unicorn Theater

The eighth book in the imaginative series by Dana Simpson about a girl and her unicorn best friend is also the second original graphic novel (after Phoebe and Her Unicorn in the Magic Storm; the others reprint comic strips), making it a never-before-seen longer story. In Unicorn Theater, Phoebe is headed to drama camp. The unicorn Marigold accompanies her but is distracted by a visit from her sister, making Phoebe jealous and a little lonely. All of her other friends […]

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