Thursday, May 26, 2016

shorts SHORT Review: Zombie in Love 2 +1

Zombie in Love 2 +1
by Kelly DiPucchio and Scott Campbell
Book Design by Sonia Chaghatzbanian
Published by Atheneum Books For Young Readers
An imprint of Simon and Schuster

If there's one thing I can say about my entertainment this year, it's that I enjoy the mind of Kelly DiPucchio. I like to wander around my local library (or book store) and find books that sound interesting or have themes that seem stimulating. One book I've been eyeing since it came out was Zombie in Love (2011), though I didn't realize that it was the second book (2014, it seems my watch stopped), but at the time I thought it was the third book. This is the sequel to the first book (Review over here if you missed it), though if you do the math on the title it equals 3, it bothers me, though at the same time I understand its implication, so it's cute… still bothers me, I don't like the number 3. That's a personal issue that I'll be struggling with when I'm in my thirties, especially 33… Anyhow the cover is very fun and shows our main cast and their emotions toward each other. That's something I love about Children's Illustrated Novels, they're a bit more straight forward on the cover. They give you expectations of what to come, rather than a minimalist's interpretation of what's the most important thing in the book. It's refreshing to have a cover that implied the interior and has a bit of the plot ready for you before you've even got a thumb between the pages.

The book picks up around where the last book leaves off. It's natural for two people to wanna make a family, though this was maybe the most interesting way of having one. It feels like the classic story, the stork came and dropped off your kid, then books it out of there before you can ever change your mind. Though there he is, in a crate outside their house -- tomb, as they happily greet the infant into their lives with open arms. Literally they had no problem with the baby being in a crate, in afternoon Sun, and on their doorstep. Mind you to them it was the middle of the night. Also the implication the birth mother wants this baby dead, since the couple are Zombies, is very strong and traumatic. (I wrote my thoughts below the cut, since this is a topic that needs to be talked about)

I love the new design of the main characters, yes they're a bit trimmer, though I think this comes more with the artist being comfortable with the characters than they we overweight. Still with a relationship sometimes getting fit is easier with someone else. It doesn't have to be your spouse, though a person that you get along with and be able to enjoy their company is a plus while at the gym or jogging around town. In general this was a wonderful telling of how an unexpected and unorthodox family brought up a child.

Tea Steeping with a box full of nuts,
mostly filled with her best friend and neighbor Oona Kulte,
her Uncle Professor Steeping,
and the mischievous imagination of Gom.

The color palette is primarily cool colors, blue and green, though with the addition of red to pop and hold shapes. Extreme closeups are again my favorite thing, again the joke is having their toothless faces taking up a whole page, even the baby gets in on the gag. The visual gags have increased and become an unforgettable piece to the book, beautifully funny and wonderfully incorporated into the Children's Illustrated Novel. Though the best part is the final spread with the extreme closeup of the whole family, it's sweet and wonderfully depicted, also the framed picture after it on the table got me in the heart too.

If you like books that take on the contemporary idea of family and illustrations that compliment the book, cover to cover. Then you've met a fun Children's Illustrated Novel that will be on your self, and with hope this series will continue. Kelly Dipucchio has a fantastic talent for writing dark comedy romance and Scott Campbell has charm and skill on each hand. This is a great team, I hope to see more in the future from both creative parties.

I trust you enjoyed the inspection, thank you for reading.
Support the creator, check out your local library and peruse the book.
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Keep well and Stay well.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

My Dead Girlfriend

My Dead Girlfriend
by Eric Wight
Editor Julie Taylor
Art Director Anne Marie Horne
Published by Tokyopop

There's certain things combined that don't mix, though one thing at first glance that wouldn't couple well together, is Horror and Romance. Though that's where you'd be wrong, horror films, books, and art have a bit of intimacy. Horror is where we take what's safe and make it horrible, stressful, and have us second guess mundane tasks. Romance is very similar, it's a task that's not something one should feel pressure, though there's an internal fear while preforming with the shared event. Then you add in a little high school and now there's nothing, but stress over everything because literally everything is changing and the world around you will take you from your hometown and send you off on a new path. Though that's what Eric Wight wants you to feel, the struggle of being with family, the horrors of having your first love, the emptiness of losing that person, and the impending reaper following you, waiting for that next trip up to collect on your misfortune. Something important to remember in life is that things change from person to person, life to life, generation to generation, but that's what living does. We take paths that are different for each of us, either because of race, birth, or location. Though this is why I enjoy this graphic novel. It's from a place that doesn't exist and the characters involved can't be recreated, also the events that take place are impossible, but everything is parallel to reality. This today is all common place with paranormal romance being a genre and taking on all forms of mythology that were to keep youth safe. Fraying from the blazed trail and out of these polluted waters this is an interesting take on the supernatural and a glance into relationships that want to bring positive emotions and ideas to the dating pools. Join us as we take a dip into the world of the macabre and into the olden time as we relive moments from the past and engage the plot of the present.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

shorts SHORT Review: Everyone Loves Bacon

Written by Kelly DiPucchio
Illustrated by Eric Wight
Published by Farrar Straus Books for Young Readers
Parent publisher Macmillan

Collectively we all love Bacon, you, me, pork, turkey, soy, duck, bacon is amazing. It's cured meat that makes the start of a day worth living. Though that's my way of living, a little hemp milk and a little belly fat burning in a frying pan, perfuming the kitchen with a beautiful wakeup call from pieces of a beast. Anyhow while on the subject of living things, let's talk about anthropomorphic beings, specifically located in a 24-hour diner. In this Children's Illustrated Novel food has gained life and Bacon has elevated to it's rightful place. This isn't the first time we've reviewed a series by Kelly DiPucchio (Zombie in Love review), though this is the life and times of Bacon, let's take this pilgrimage, so grab your own candied fare nub and enjoy!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Frankie Pickle

Written and Illustrated by Eric Wight
Published by Simon & Schuster books for Young Readers
Cover Design by Eric Wight and Lizzy Bromley

In my long history of comics and cartoons, animation and film, illustrations and illustrators I've only just heard of Eric Wight in 2016, though I've grown up with his designs and influence since 1999. In 2010 Eric Wight put out an amazing series called Frankie Pickle a children's series of mixed media writing. It's like when a film puts live action and animation within the same flick, though this is illustration, writing, and comics all combined in a casserole of delicious wit. As you can tell I've become a fan of Eric Wight and his work through the years, I've also found out that he's an alumni of SVA (School of Visual Arts) too. I'm not bias based on his history, I'm bias on his skill and style. Eric Wight is a talented storyteller and an accomplished cartoonist, so join us on this adventure into his work and mind. First on this journey is Frankie Pickle, a young boy with an amazing family.