Book Review: Ripley’s Believe It or Not

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Ripley’s Believe It or Not

*This review may contain spoilers pertaining to some content found in Ripley’s Believe It or Not, though it is minimal spoilage*

I am thus far finding Ripley’s Believe It or Not, the graphic novel, intriguing. It is different than other novels, of the graphic variety, that I have followed because it contains more than one story within its pages. I am one of the lucky NetGalley members who was approved to read this book pre-publication, and therefore, it was a free / no cost to me read. However, if I were to have purchased this, the multitude of stories has a more bang for the buck feel to it.

I think that the text is appropriate for most ages; profanity is implied with symbols @$! However, I would not give this to a small child but mid – late teens would be an appropriate audience, I think. (Keep in mind, I don’t have my own children. So, for all I know, I just became the bad aunt for giving someone’s kid a book they shouldn’t be reading). Some of the images are graphic (heeyyyooooo). For example, in the second story, the main character, Phineas Gage, gets a railroad spike through the left side his brain and face due to an explosion gone awry. Though the image is not what I would consider gory, it may still be disturbing to a young audience.

One of my favorite aspects of this novel is the use of color. In particular, I think that the illustrator did a wonderful job giving each story its own color scheme.

Overall, I most enjoyed the tidbits of history I learned from reading this entertaining piece of work, most of which I was entirely unaware. I rate this one a 3.5 – 4. Ripley’s Believe It or Not was colorful, interesting, and enlightening.

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Book Review: My Squirrel Days

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My Squirrel Days

I wanted to like this book, and I continue to want to like My Squirrel Days, but I just . . . don’t. I cannot quite place my finger on why I am not enjoying this one. I am beyond disappointed because I quite enjoyed Ellie Kemper as Erin on The Office (one of two of my go-to shows to watch over and over and over again, the other being Seinfeld).

I find that Ellie Kemper and I have quite a bit in common personality wise, particularly in my description of myself as “probably annoyingly enthusiastic” featured on most of my profiles (swap-bot, WordPress, etc.). We also have some food / hanger issues. However, one quality I do not share with Kemper – loudness. I think this is part of why I am not quite liking the Audible version of this book, and I love, love, LOVE me some memoirs read by their authors – they are the books that I tend to gravitate to when selecting an audiobook. To be blunt, Kemper’s narration is just straight up annoying the f&*$ out of me, seriously.

I have no doubt Ellie Kemper is attempting to be delightfully endearing, but it’s an epic fail – she’s obnoxious. I’m sad to say, I don’t think I like HER as much as I like her AS other people. Erin – delightful. Kimmy – tolerable … actual Ellie Kemper- meh.

MEH :-/

Book Review: Girl, Wash Your Face

My 2019 (Goodreads) reading goal is 67 books.  Between the 1st of January and today, I’ve finished 10 books via a combination of reading and listening.  I have written several reviews on GR that I have yet to post in my blog.  If you follow my blog, I apologize in advance for the multiple email notifications you are about to endure indicating that I have posted new content.

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Girl, Wash Your Face: Stop Believing the Lies About Who You Are So You Can Become Who You Were Meant to Be

I am cognizant that the intention of this book is to uplift and empower women, buttttttttttttt it felt more like a platform for Ms. Hollis to spew her greatness. Furthermore, there’s an underlying implication that the reader is sucking at life but just unaware of their inevitable suckage.

Girl, dismount from that high horse and shimmy on down that pedestal.

Are there a few aspects that I can relate to? Yes. I too am overworked, over tired, facing the daily grind can be a struggle, I’m riddled with stress and anxiety, and I’m not a perfect Christian. What I cannot relate to – the need to tout my perception of my own greatness. If you want to build women up, you encourage them – simple as that. You don’t rain shiznit on others’ parade because their goal isn’t buying a $1000.00 purse. Some of us feel like we’ve “made it” if we pay ALL of our bills on time in one month. Granted, I am certain that this result was entirely unintentional. I know for certain that Rachel did not sit down and ponder, “How can I make people feel really poorly about the life they already think is great, even though by my standard of living, it’s mundane and utterly ordinary and therefore, it’s wrong and baaaaadddd?”

I’m not saying that Rachel should not be proud of her accomplishments, she clearly has many under her belt – yay for you and good for you, seriously. What I’m saying is . . . don’t shove your successes down others’ throats and disguise this assault as uplifting, motivating, and inspiring. Having a successful business, writing books, and speaking keynote are all wonderful, but some people are rocking at life if they just make it through the day without giving someone a good ol’ throat punch, and that is OKay too.

*At first, I thought that perhaps my interpretation of this book is based on my own insecurities and deemed failures – this is what Rachel Hollis would have you believe, for if you don’t like what the book contains, it’s obviously on YOU and YOUR perception – it couldn’t possibly be because of her and her tone, but I digress. Like I was writing . . . originally, I thought that my dislike of the book was solely on me, but in reading copious GR reviews just now, I’m NOT the only one who was rubbed the wrong way.

I think something that Ms. Hollis should tuck under her cap and practice is BE HUMBLE.

 

 

Book Review: Dracula

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Dracula

As per usual, I am seemingly in the minority re: my thoughts and opinions. It would seem that the books that are overall the most beloved, those are the ones I myself do not love. I am so disappointed because I wanted so much to adore Bram Stoker’s Dracula, and I just . . . don’t.

My hang ups:
-For a book titled Dracula, there is very little about Dracula.
-The narration
-Miss Lucy, what makes you so delightful that three men are chasing after you, huh?

Granted, perhaps some of my dislike for this title can be attributed to the narration. I did partake in the Audible version, and I more than likely should have read this one to myself. I find that unless it’s a memoir being read by the author, I tend to loathe female narration. I know that the Audible version has been touted as having an “all star cast,” but I found the characters of Lucy and Mina to be just absolutely over the top.

With only two hours left until this book can be officially ticked off my to-read list, I am confident that my rating will remain at a firm 3-stars. In reading others’ reviews, thoughts, and questions, I stumbled upon this, “Am I the only one who thought the ending of this book was the literary form of coitus interruptus? I thought the book was wonderful until the end and then it lost me.” User’s name is Rachel, but I’m not sure if I can link her profile or questions here. So, Rachel, if you’re reading this, I’m quoting you; credit has been given where it is due (:

Anyways, back to my point. My reasoning for sharing Rachel’s pertinent, Dracula related question is . . . I obviously have nothing to look forward to in the end. I am basically finishing Dracula because I’m 13.5 hours in, and there is just no turning back.

Book Review: The Escape Room

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The Escape Room

I like to leave some feedback midway through a reading of a book, and I do so for a variety of reasons. The first reason being to let the author know that I am indeed reading their work as I tend to be a slow reader. Second, I like to gauge where I myself am at as far as liking or disliking a book; this allows me to decipher when a book either goes south or takes a turn for the better. Finally, it allows me to make my notes and share my thoughts without forgetting them.

So far, I like The Escape Room. Manhattan is my favorite place to travel to, and I find myself intrigued by the stereotypical Wall Street types. This story has allowed me to live inside their world, if only briefly and with a stretch of the imagination. I do not know the validity or extent of corporate greed in NYC so I do not know if the facts and figures tossed around in this book are accurate, but what is unfolding now, midway through the book, is the moral conflict and dilemma of one of the main characters.

I have found a few typographical errors, mainly extra letters or missing spaces, within the text. For example, “off” instead of “of.” Ultimately, very minor mistakes that have no true influence on the story itself.

This is the first of Goldin’s books that I have read, and at this point, at the time of this writing, I would consider reading her other work. This story has a wonderful back and forth between what is currently happening, during the firm’s escape room exercise, and the groundwork which is established by a visit to a previous time. The alternating of past and present is obvious, and there has been zero confusion between the then and now, which, in many tales, becomes muddled between current tense and flashback scenes. Goldin has written The Escape Room in a way that makes it nearly impossible to put the book down; I find myself wanting to read ‘just one more’ chapter to get closer to the moment when the past and present merge.

In summary, so far, SO very good!

01/08 – I have finished the book, and my review has not changed. It’s a clever work, and I found myself completely and utterly absorbed in The Escape Room, longing to know what’s going to happen next. Again, some minor typographical errors that have little impact on the story itself.

Book Review: Unicornucopia: The Little Book of Unicorns

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Unicornucopia: The Little Book of Unicorns

I’m giving this book 3 stars because I “liked it.” This book can be summarized as cute, borderline adorable. I learned a lot of interesting tidbits that, though I consider myself somewhat knowledgeable regarding unicorns, I did not know. The art is bright and happy. The section(s) with unicorn crafts and unicorn recipes may be useful in my craft and swapping endeavors. What I did not love about this book was the section on unicorn worship. I think that an altar for the sake of the worship of a unicorn for wealth, health, and / or happiness is a bit excessive. Will I re-read this book? Probably. Did I enjoy it? Yes, I sure did. However, I didn’t love it enough to give it a 4 or 5 star rating. Again, it’s cute, educational, but some aspects are a bit over the top.

Book Review: Norse Mythology

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Book Review: Norse Mythology

I bought this book, and shortly after reading the first few pages, I knew it was going to be in my best interest to invest in the Audible version. I was quite fortunate that Neil Gaiman narrates his own work – what a treat! I will be perusing what other works he narrates because his narration is nothing short of phenomenal. I generally listen to Audible during my commute to and from work, about forty-five minutes each way, but that just wasn’t enough some days. I couldn’t get enough of Gaiman’s narration!

The reason I went from the physical book to the narrated version was because I was spending a lot of time looking up proper pronunciation of names and places. When I need to consistently divert my attention from my reading, I lose part of the enjoyment. I much prefer to crack open a book and lose myself in it. If you already have familiarity with mythology or have no trouble with deciphering the correct names of people and locations, then by all means, you will likely enjoy the printed book.

I have never been one to engage in much reading revolving around mythology. Honestly, the only reason I picked up Norse Mythology is because it was written by Neil Gaiman. With that being said, even though mythology is not my favorite topic, I thoroughly enjoyed this work.