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review 2017-09-12 01:57
Fowl Language: The Struggle is Real by Brian Gordon
Fowl Language: The Struggle Is Real - Brian Gordon

Genre:  Humor / Parenting / Parody / Animals

 

Year Published: 2017


Year Read:  8/12/2017 

Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC 

Series: Fowl Language #2

Source: eARC (NetGalley)

 

Fowl

I would like to thank NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

Introduction: 

A couple of years ago, I had read a graphic novel called “Tales from the Crib” which was written by Henrik Drescher and it detailed the struggles of parenting in a humorous way. Several years later, I came across this interesting new graphic novel that I received from NetGalley called “Fowl Language: The Struggle is Real” which is by Brian Gordon and it also details the struggles of being a parent in a humorous way and I enjoyed this graphic novel as much as I enjoyed “Tales from the Crib!” 

What is this story about? 

This graphic novel is basically about the main character, who is a male fowl, trying to deal with his two children and the graphic novel goes into the ups and downs of being a parent such as; trying to get some peace and quiet while the kids are gone, trying to find other adults to talk to after spending so much time with your own children and trying to get your child to go to sleep. Also, this graphic novel shows that despite all the craziness that you are put through when dealing with your children, you still love them in the end!

What I loved about this story: 

Brian Gordon’s writing: Oh my gosh! I still cannot stop laughing after reading this graphic novel! Brian Gordon has done a fantastic job at writing this graphic novel as I really enjoyed the harsh trials of being a parent being shown in a humorous and satirical way! I loved seeing the scenes where the father duck is trying so hard to deal with his children, while trying to get some peace and quiet, whenever his kids are away as it does hit home for many parents who have to cope with dealing with their children’s demands. But at the same time, this graphic novel shows the struggles that parents have to go through with their children in such a hilarious way that I cannot help but laugh at the father duck’s misfortune at dealing with his kids! Probably two of my most favorite moments in this graphic novel was one where the father duck is imagining a parody for the TV series “24” by titling it “21” and the joke here is that the father duck has to find a TV program that his kids would sit down and watch so he can have time to do the chores around the house (luckily, the program that the kids are watching is ninety minutes long, giving him even more time to do his chores). The other moment I enjoyed was the one where the father duck is trying to explain to his kids about what a record player and a CD is since the kids are only familiar with YouTube and it reminded me of the few times where I try to explain to some little kids about what a CD player is since some of them grew up listening to music on an iPhone or through YouTube.

Brian Gordon’s artwork: Brian Gordon’s artwork is both cute and hilarious to look at as are all the ducks in this graphic novel are drawn in a cute squat style and I especially loved the images of the father duck having wide popped out eyes whenever he gets shocked or annoyed by his kids’ hijinks. The simplistic style of the artwork also brings out the humor in the situations that the characters get into as the highlight of the artwork is seeing the ducks’ reactions to whatever hilarious situations they all get into.

Fowl

What made me feel uncomfortable about this story: 

For anyone who does not like strong language, there is some usage of the “f” and “s” words respectively and some readers might be taken aback by the coarse language clashing with the cute artwork displayed in this graphic novel.

Final Thoughts: 

Overall, “Fowl Language: The Struggle is Real” is a hilarious read for adults who are parents or are becoming parents and want to find a book that pokes fun at the tough trials of parenting! I am definitely going to be reading the rest of this series pretty soon!

Review is also on: Rabbit Ears Book Blog

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review 2017-09-12 01:50
Swimmy by Leo Lionni
Swimmy - Leo Lionni

Title:  Swimmy

Author:  Leo Lionni

Genre:  Animals / Drama / Family / Danger


Year Published: 1963


Year Read:  2010

Publisher:  Alfred A. Knopf

Source:  Library

Content Rating:  Ages 5+ (Some Scary Scenes and Death of a Family Member)

 

 

Swimmy

I have have heard works from Dr. Seuss, Maurice Sendak, Marc Brown and David Wiesner, but I have finally stumbled upon some works that came from my childhood a long time ago and those works consist of Leo Lionni! “Swimmy” is a Caldecott Honor book by Leo Lionni and it is about how an unusual little fish named Swimmy, who survives a giant fish attack, tries to find another family to live with. “Swimmy” may have an intense scene with the big fish that might frighten small children, but I am pretty sure that most children will easily enjoy this book!

Once there lived a happy school of small fish who were all red except for one fish was black and his name was Swimmy. One terrible day however, a huge tuna fish came by and swallowed up all of the red fish except for Swimmy who had escape from the huge tuna. Swimmy, now the sole survivor of a tuna attack, then swims around in the deep watery world by himself in order to find a new family to be in.

Will Swimmy find a new family?

Read this book to find out!
 


Never have I read a children's book that has both effective drawings and a heartwarming story at the same time as Leo Lionni has made this book! Leo Lionni has done an excellent job at both illustrating and writing this book as it details the adventures of a unique black fish named Swimmy. Leo Lionni's illustrations might look a little bit simplistic, however, they are extremely effective and colorful, especially of the images of the underwater world where it seems that Leo Lionni took a piece of sponge and patted the background with the painted sponge, which really brings out the creativity of the images of the underwater world. The image that truly stood out the most for me was the image of Swimmy himself as he is shown to be the only black fish among a group of red fishes, who merely look like red outlines of fish. Leo Lionni has certainly made this book extremely intense yet heartwarming at the same time as I have felt sympathy for Swimmy after he lost his family to a tuna fish and I can understand how many children and adults will also sympathize with Swimmy's predicament, especially if they lost loved ones to an accident.

Swimmy

Parents should know that at the beginning of this book, Swimmy's family is eaten by a giant tuna fish and that might be too upsetting for smaller children to handle. On a side note, this scene strongly reminds me of a scene in “Finding Nemo” where Marlon's family except Nemo is also eaten by a huge fish and how Marlon has to cope with protecting his only son from anymore danger. Parents might want to discuss about death of a family member with their children before they read them this book.

Overall, “Swimmy” is a highly emotional and heartwarming book for children who have also lost their family members and how they can still find love among friends and other family members. I personally would recommend this book to anyone who loves Leo Lionni's works and learning about what it takes to be a true family. I would recommend this book to children ages five and up since the scene where the big fish eats all the other fish might scare smaller children.

Review is also on: Rabbit Ears Book Blog

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review 2017-09-12 01:05
The Grouchy Ladybug by Eric Carle
The Grouchy Ladybug - Eric Carle

Title:  The Grouchy Ladybug

Author:  Eric Carle

Genre:  Animals / Bullying / Children's / Humor


Year Published: 1977


Year Read:  2010

Publisher:  HarperCollins Publishers

Source:  Library

Content Rating:  Ages 4+  (Bullying)

 

 

Ladybug

After I had read “The Very Hungry Caterpillar,” I really wanted to read more books by Eric Carle. “The Grouchy Ladybug” is definitely no exception in reading some of Eric Carle’s great works! “The Grouchy Ladybug” is a book by Eric Carle and it is about how a grouchy ladybug tries to pick a fight with the other animals no matter how large they are. “The Grouchy Ladybug” is truly one of the most hilarious books about the consequences of bullying that every child will definitely enjoy!

The book starts off with a friendly ladybug seeing some aphids on a leaf and wanted to have them for breakfast but then a grouchy ladybug comes in and refused to share the aphids with the friendly ladybug and challenged the friendly ladybug to a fight. When the friendly ladybug agreed to the challenged, the grouchy ladybug suddenly back down and it goes to find a much larger animal to fight with. After the grouchy ladybug meets up with a praying mantis, a sparrow, a skunk and other animals, it finally meets up with the biggest animal of all…

What animal does the grouchy ladybug meet up with the end?

Read the book to find out!
 


Seriously, this is one creative and hilarious book from the great mind of Eric Carle and both the story and the illustrations contribute greatly to this cautionary tale about bullying. Eric Carle makes this story extremely as the grouchy ladybug is shown as your average bully as he bullies the other animals into trying to fight with it and I loved the way that the grouchy ladybug encounters one large animal and then moves on to a larger animal than the last and what was so hilarious about this was how the grouchy ladybug always stated whenever it meets an animal larger than itself:

“Oh, you’re not big enough!” 

And that statement always makes me laugh because I always wondered about why the ladybug would want to pick a fight with someone who is much bigger than it is. It was also hilarious that the moment that the ladybug notices the larger animal’s special ability to defend itself, such as the skunk using its stink and the sparrow having a sharp beak, the grouchy ladybug just immediately runs off to find another animal. Eric Carle’s illustrations are simply beautiful and creative as the images are extremely colorful and keep the story running smoothly. The images that really stood out the most for me were the images of the grouchy ladybug itself as it always has a grouchy look on its face and looks so small when it flies up against the larger animals. My most favorite part of this book was whenever the grouchy ladybug meets the larger animals, the pages are sort of cut up to indicate each animal the ladybug passes and the larger the animal is, the longer the pages are. I also loved the way that there are clocks displayed at the top of the pages of each animal the ladybug meets as it indicates the time that the ladybug shows up to meet up with the animals.

Overall, “The Grouchy Ladybug” is a truly hilarious book that teaches a thing or two about the consequences of being a bully and any child who is a huge fan of Eric Carle’s will definitely get a kick out of this book. I would recommend this book to children ages four and up since there is nothing inappropriate in this book.

Review is also on: Rabbit Ears Book Blog

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review 2017-09-02 12:37
A Ferret Named Phil by William Reimer
A Ferret Named Phil - William Reimer

Genre:  Australia / Bullying / Animals / Trickery / Friendship


Year Published: 2015


Year Read:  2017

Publisher: Liberty Road Publishing

Source:  eARC (Author)

 

 

Ferret

I would like to thank the author William Reimer for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

For years, bullying has been a major concern in many schools and there would be discussions about how children can handle being bullied in school in a nonviolent way. Well, when the author William Reimer gave me a copy of his children’s book called “A Ferret Named Phil” which deals with bullying, of course I was extremely interested in checking this book out since I wanted to read more books that dealt with bullying and how the characters deal with it and this book was definitely a pleasant surprise for me!

One day, a ferret named Phil wanted to take his friend Jane out for a picnic by the lake. Unfortunately, there was a scary hawk named Hugo who was always bullying Phil and the hawk suddenly decided to show up at Phil and Jane’s picnic to bully Phil once more. Phil tried to stand up to Hugo, but Hugo ended up knocking Phil and Jane’s picnic into the lake and kidnaps Jane to teach Phil a lesson.

Can Phil save Jane from Hugo?

Read this book to find out!
 


Wow! William Reimer did a fantastic job at writing this book as it details the ugliness of bullying and how one must defend themselves against bullying. I loved the way that William Reimer made this book both intense and uplifting as I was interested in seeing how Phil would stand up to Hugo, while also being shocked at the extremes that Hugo is willing to go with his bullying which includes kidnapping Jane just to teach Phil a lesson. I also loved the fact that Phil never uses violence to stand up to Hugo as he relies on his wit to deal with Hugo, which sends a positive message about how violence never solves a bullying problem and that you should use your wits to deal with bullying. James Moore’s artwork is truly gorgeous to look at as all the animal characters look realistic and I loved the watercolor illustrations as they give the artwork a luscious and beautiful feel. Probably my favorite artwork in this book are the illustrations of both Phil and Hugo themselves as Phil looks like an adorable ferret with a green scarf around his neck, which makes him look unique; while Hugo is terrifying to look at as he towers over both Phil and Jane and has red eyes which makes him look menacing. 

Ferret

Parents should know that there are some intense scenes in this book, especially regarding the bullying that Phil and Jane went through. Probably the scene that would scare some children the most would be the scene where Hugo kidnaps Jane as they might worry about whether or not Jane is going to make it through this ordeal. Parents might want to discuss with their children about bullying and how it has negative consequences on people and how they should handle it.

Overall, “A Ferret Named Phil” is a fantastic book about dealing with bullying and learning to stand up for yourself when being bullied. I would recommend this book to children ages five and up since the intense scenes would scare some smaller children. 

Review is also on: Rabbit Ears Book Blog

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review 2017-09-02 12:17
Garfield Gets in a Pickle by Jim Davis
Garfield Gets in a Pickle: His 54th Book - Jim Davis

Genre:  Humor / Animals / Relationships 

 

Year Published:  2012

 

Year Read: 7/7/2017

 

Series:  Garfield #54

Publisher: Ballantine Books 

Source:  Library

 

Introduction: 

I admit that when I saw another “Garfield” comic on my library shelf, I could not help myself and I ended up getting another “Garfield” comic called “Garfield Gets in a Pickle” and it is just as hilarious and witty as the previous “Garfield” comics I had read!

What is this story about? 

In this collection, we are introduced to more adventures of Garfield, his dim-witted sidekick Odie, his goofy owner Jon and his level-headed girlfriend Liz and the foursome get into hilarious adventures such as Jon and Liz going out on dinner dates, Garfield’s dealings with the mice and Garfield’s dealings with the spiders!

What I loved about this story: 

Jim Davis’ writing: Jim Davis’ writing continues to be as witty and hilarious as the previous volumes and even though Garfield and his family are still in the same situations we usually see them in (Garfield dealing the mice and spiders, Jon and Liz going out on dates, Garfield picking on Odie), the writing continues to be entertaining to read and I still enjoy seeing these adventures that Garfield, Jon, Odie and Liz continue to get into! I also loved the fact that Liz is usually the voice of reason to Jon’s bizarre mannerisms and Garfield still continues to snark about Jon and Odie’s buffoonery as it is great seeing these two sane characters trying to deal with the humorous chaos going on around them. 

Jim Davis’ artwork: Jim Davis’ artwork is still as creative and humorous as it has always been and I loved the humorous way that Jim Davis draws these characters as they all have huge bulging eyes that greatly reflects the humorous nature of this series!

Final Thoughts: 

Overall, “Garfield Gets in a Pickle” is another brilliant collection of “Garfield” strips that fans of the “Garfield” series will greatly enjoy!

Review is also on: Rabbit Ears Book Blog

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