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review 2015-09-12 15:58
"Cute" = "Puke"
The Cute Girl Network - M.K. Reed,Greg Means,Joe Flood

First, just need to get this off my chest.  I hate cute.  I hate the word carelessly tossed out at any girl who happens to have very common attributes, such as long hair, being under 5'6'', having a face.  So from the get-go I was on the fence about this graphic.  I really don't care for that title.

 

The Cute Girl Network is about a hopeless idiot, who has made mistakes in his dating life, being targeted by a group of unhappy exes, brought together by "The Network."  Which is basically all the girls in the city getting together and gathering all the worst stories about potential boyfriends so they can continue to vent about crap that happened to them.  Sounds fun (barf).

 

When Jane's roommates find out she's dating Jack the network step in to inform her of her mistake, urging her to 'dump his ass.'  Jane is taken, wearing a ridiculous tiara so that everyone would recognize her as the girl of the moment, to visit Jack's exes and listen as they air all his dirty laundry.

 

In the end, Jane decides that she's an adult and can make her own decisions about life.  Good for her.  

 

I did kind of wonder about the title still, though.  By calling it the "Cute" girl network are they saying that girls who are not cute aren't allowed to complain or be warned about jerks?  They're on their own?  Only the physically attractive are allowed to be picky?

 

Whatever.  Lost points on that one for sure.

 

Both men and women show off the range of human vanity, stupidity and general jerkness.  Then Jane schools peeps on how women can skateboard and do whatever else they want to do despite the enormous hindrance of their gender.  Things got a bit preachy for my taste.

 

Also, despite being published only a few years ago the whole thing seemed incredibly dated to me.

 

I did enjoy the art, obviously influenced by Bill Watterson.  It's in the shoes.

 

Note: I may not put up any reviews for the next couple weeks since I'm on a trip. Yay!

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review 2015-04-17 18:15
The Cute Girl Network - M.K. Reed,Greg Means,Joe Flood

I am glad I found this one (and at a bargain price), it was a really great book, though there were a few things I didn't like.

I loved Jane, she was kick-ass and I loved how she tried to get girls to be accepted more in the guy-centred skate world. At times she took it a bit far, at times she was a bit too aggressive, but mostly I liked her and what she tried to do. I hope that she will succeed.
I loved her with Jack, how she cared about him, how she was just as silly and weird as Jack. They make a great match, though I wonder how long they will be together.
I would have loved some more information/background story on Jane, now it felt all a bit empty. I might have missed something, but did she go to college or something else after high school? Why did she start to skateboard? Did she participate in competitions? Why is she living with a roommate? I am just curious to see more off this character named Jane, and while the book does answer some stuff, it leaves a lot to the imagination. Maybe the author thought it wouldn't really fit the story to give more background on Jane. After all the story focusses mostly on her and Jack's relationship, the Cute Girl Network and skateboarding.

Jack was ok, I guess. I found him a bit too boring, plain and at times icky and stupid. I could also see he had a sweet and caring side, but mostly I was just shaking my head at the guy. He didn't do much with his life, seemingly happy with just selling soup and sleeping/lazing on the couch a lot. Not to mention his disgusting ways of doing stuff. Stuffing a cellphone in your underwear and then sniff it when you get it out? Ewwww.

The Cute Girl Network was nice, but I also think that while it helps out, it is also harmful and might do more damage than good. And I can imagine the girls are trying to protect each other, but I would also have liked to see that they can accept it (truly) when a girl says: "Thanks for the advice, but I still want to try." Now it felt all pushy, like she had to hear all the horrific stories, had to hear all about the bad things, barely giving her a choice in the matter.

I also have to give an extra mention to the bookclub thing that was going on in the story. It was really fun, and I loved the discussions they held.

The story was fun and I liked seeing how Jane and Jack got closer and closer to each other.

The illustrations were pretty decent, I really liked the style, but at times the different eyes (and how they changed depending on the expression) on everyone annoyed me a bit. I loved the big 1 page illustration that each chapter brought with them. So many details!

All in all, I would recommend this book. It is a fun book, though I wouldn't recommend it for under 16/17 years. There are some sexual references and even one scene with sex (though you don't see a lot, just stripping of clothes and some nakedness).

Review first posted at http://twirlingbookprincess.com/

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review 2014-07-05 03:59
Graphic Novel Review of Cute Girl Network
The Cute Girl Network - M.K. Reed,Greg Means,Joe Flood

The art is cute and there are some shining moments in the novel.  If you’re looking for some pro-girl fiction, I would recommend this one. It does have its charms, and it raises some questions about modern dating habits and how social media (in this case, text messages) has changed the field.

Source: great-imaginations.com/2014/03/graphic-novel-review-the-cute-girl-network-by-greg-means-mk-reed-joe-flood
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review 2014-04-08 15:42
The Cute Girl Network
The Cute Girl Network - M.K. Reed,Greg Means,Joe Flood

This graphic novel gets four stars for two very simple reasons:

 

1) The illustrative work in this book is adorable, and fits with the story just perfectly.

2) It's about real relationships between both friends and couples. Which is refreshing!

 

Jane is a bundle of hilarity and opinions. She's a skater girl at heart, and totally pissed about the fact that she isn't taken seriously in the hobby that she loves. Girls are only there to look pretty, right? They love sparkles, and ponies, and want to have a million babies with sexy, smoldering vampyre boyfriends... right? Never say any of that to Jane, unless you're willing to fend off the scathing, wholly intelligent remarks that will come flying out of her mouth. I love this girl.

 

Jack is a messy, funny, sweetheart who just so happens to be a layabout as well. His current job is working at a soup cart which, as he puts it, is the best job ever because you always get free soup! He's so darn adorable. His whole persona screams "I don't quite have my shit together yet, but I'm honest and sweet". Jack is just too much fun to follow.

 

Put these two together, and you have fun and kooky banter for days. I loved how this graphic novel doesn't shy away from the fact that we're all major dorks sometimes. Yes, sometimes we say stupid things when we're nervous. Yes, we are all flawed in some way but there's always someone to compliment those flaws. Jane and Jack aren't a "perfect couple" persay, but they definitely fit together like a puzzle.

 

Hilariously, my favorite part of this whole story was the titular group "The Cute Girl Network". A network of women who are ready and willing to dish all the hateful gossip on a guy to any girl who might want to date him. I don't want to spoil, but watching Jane deal with this was so much fun! I couldn't get enough of the fact that these characters point out so many things that are fundamentally wrong with the way people think "good boyfriends" should act. *wipes a tear* Love it.

 

This is getting lengthy, so I'll quit typing. Suffice it to say that this was a fun, dysfunctional look into how two people can fit together so perfectly, flaws and all. I adored it.

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review 2014-03-18 02:04
Graphic Novel Review: The Cute Girl Network by Greg Means, MK Reed, Joe Flood
The Cute Girl Network - M.K. Reed,Greg Means,Joe Flood
Review: Kara was kind enough to send me this one when I read her review. After reading the description, I was highly interested in reading this graphic novel.  
 
I won't say that it was bad, because there are some awesome scenes with Jane and how she handles the constant sexual harassment and sexism she faces each day.  The art is cute, and the Twilight parody included in the novel is worth picking up this read. 
 
I won't say it was outstanding, either.  Most of the people in the novel are downright unlikeable. The Cute Girl Network does everything in their power to shut out guys they deem unworthy. That is an awfully huge responsibility to take on.  Harriet, Jane's main contact, downright bullies her and becomes very extreme to keep Jane from dating Jack, the male "cute" boy of the story. I really do not understand how Jane kept from lashing out at her. The bottom line is: you cannot force someone to do something. You give them what they need to know and let them make their own decision. Harriet's goal for CGN is to reign supreme over everyone's love life and transform into the know-it-all love guru. She's so full of herself, and it is a huge hit against the mission of the Cute Girl Network. Personally, I took that the network was set up to educate girls and keep them safe, not to bully and harass those who go against their wishes. What about the other side of the story, as well? This is slighting touched upon when Jane talks to Jake, but it seems that it is very one sided. Girls are not perfect. Girls make mistakes as well. The novel tries to place the blame of bad relationships solely on the boys, when it is 50/50. 
 
With that out of the way, the males in the novel are not model material in any way. Jack's roommate is a sexist ass who, if true to life, will eventually go to prison on sexual assault charges. The men treat Jane like a set of tits with no brain. And Jack.....oh, Jack. While I defended him in the sentence above, there is nothing redeeming about his character.  When he does get to tell Jane about his side of the story with some of the rumors out of the CGN, it does nothing to help clear his name. There are socially awkward people, and there are people who are too self involved to give a damn about others. I never would have dated Jack, and he gained no points with me when he responded to the accusations of the other girls in the network. For crying out loud, who seriously blathers about their sex life to someone's mother?! I want to keep this as spoiler free as possible, but how he treated the other girls he dated really made him appear to be a scumbag. He can't hold down a job and he's lazy and a slob. While he seems charming, these qualities bleed over into his love life as well.  Not long-term boyfriend material right there. 
 
Jane seems to be the only character I liked in the novel.  She stands up to her harassers with style and flare. As a girl in a male-dominated hobby, she faces the constant onslaught of sexist views. Time and time again, she has to defend herself from others who see her as a "poser" or a fake. She's unapologetic and she has a good head on her shoulders.  The strongest parts of the story was when the novel focused solely on Jane and her daily ordeals with the male mentality towards skater girls.  
 
The art is cute and there are some shining moments in the novel.  If you're looking for some pro-girl fiction, I would recommend this one. It does have its charms, and it raises some questions about modern dating habits and how social media (in this case, text messages) has changed the field.
Source: www.great-imaginations.com/2014/03/graphic-novel-review-cute-girl-network.html
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