Review: Far Out Fairy Tales by Louise Simonson, Otis Frampton, Benjamin Harper, Joey Comeau, and Sean Tulien. A+

Graphic Novel time! Not just one but five full colour space-age stories based on classic fairy tales, it’s out on Friday!

First up: Ninja-rella by Joey Comeau illustrated by Omar Lozano.
Ninja-rella immediately reminded me a lot of Rey from the new Star Wars film, this is 100% not a bad thing! And Fairy Godninja is exactly what any kid would want for a tiny flying helper. The plot follows the original tale quite closely so you don’t need telling about that but know that added ninja was a fantastic idea.
The art is beautiful, very clean lines and cartoony without being overly fake-people looking.

Second: Red Riding hood, Superhero written & illustrated by Otis Frampton.
I’m in looove with the onomatopoeia used in this story, a lot of comics have whoosh etc but using “Rumble, Gurgle” to imply a tummy ache caused by laser eyes is just genius. And let’s be honest, Red Riding Hood as a super here is a damn sight more exciting than a girl getting eaten by her grandmother.

Thirdly: Super Billy Goats Gruff by Sean Tulien; illustrated by Fernandó Cano.
Favourite line: “Big Gruff was not a smart goat. He was, in fact, a very dumb goat. He would eat just about anything.” That serves as a warning to you all, never eat something that looks like it’s straight out of Super Mario Bros. The art in this is pastel-y and cute, the three goats embark on a quest for food and all is resolved in the end. With a boss fight to end all boss fights, of course.

Fourth: Snow White & the Seven Robots by Louise Simonson; illustrated by Jimena Sánchez.
Of course the mirror is a satellite, Hal9000 would be proud. Doc is her BFF not one of the 7 dwarf robots, they don’t appear to have names but overall a cute little retelling. The art is cutesy and the plot more similar than any of the others really. Though genetically engineered aline Snow White is a little far fetched it certainly fits with the exile she’s sent into.

Finally: Hansel & Gretel & Zombies by Benjamin Harper; illustrated by Fernandó Cano.
Hansel & Gretel ARE zombies and they’re hungry, so they get made up to look alive, that’s really all you need to know. It was great, I love zombie stories and how needs to burn a witch to ashes when you can just turn her into zombie like you? The art in this really makes it, Gretel has her brain exposed through the back of her head!

Overall this is a great collection of updated fairy tales that any kid would enjoy as a week’s worth of bedtime stories. I especially enjoy the short explanation of the original tales after each story, gives a nice background for those who may not know that the . These comics have really made me want to check out Charles Perrault’s versions of the stories as I’m only really familiar with the Brothers’ Grimm versions (& by extension the Philip Pullman copy on my shelf).

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Review: Not if I See You First by Eric Lindstrom. B+

Have you ever just picked up a book and known you had to read it? Even not knowing what it’s about? That’s what happened to me with this book, so thank you again Netgalley!

My husbthing often describes a book’s ease relating to rowing up a river, on a scale of 1 to treacle this was a solid calm few hours, easy to get through and very much making you to want more and more. It’s hard to say more about this book, it was very enjoyable and I just ate it up. As you may notice by the braille spots on the cover, Not if I See You First is about a teen who’s blind. Not blind from birth but due to a freak accident, she reminds me a lot of a couple of my friends who are blind, oft described as two of the least disabled disabled people ever, nothing phases her at all. It’s nice to see a book about a disability that isn’t about disability, it’s becoming so much more an incidental part of the plot than the the point of the story.

Parker Grant is the star of the show, she doesn’t take crap from anyone, can run like a lion is behind her and is quite put together. Well, that’s what she’s trying for but internally is suffering from the loss of her father. She’s got everything going on that all teens do, throw in an ex-boyfriend with baggage, the hot new guy and a girl who ends up being her running buddy who clearly has something going for that ex. Add on top the tragedy she’s still reeling from and living with a family that just don’t get you it’s every teen’s nightmare. Having a star chart for days you don’t cry isn’t healthy but it takes more to get over something like a parent’s death than not crying. But she’s got a trio of great friends, both new and old to help her though. It’s all handled with as much aplomb as any author should and you fall in love with all the characters as soon as they turn up on the page. I’m glad it ended the way it did, the plot couldn’t been drawn out more but it really didn’t need to be.

This review is pants, sorry. Just go read the book, it was awesome! B+

Review: The Right Bite by Jackie Lynch

This book is exactly what every busy person needs. It’s got a little bit of everything you need to have a nutritious day; from breakfast, through lunch even to the pub in the evening.  Along with some handy tips at the start describing what types of food we are actually eating and what they mean.

Following on each section has a page into to it and there comes the recipes; but not really recipes you’re not instructed on how to make croissants or salmon nigri but more usefully there’s nutritional info on popular quick fixes for every meal. Additionally on each page where you’d expect the method in a traditional cook book there is in depth reasoning behind why each food is good and what help it can give you to be a healthier person.

As well there is also useful and thought out extras spotted around, did you know brown rice is high in magnesium or that skipping breakfast can make you chemically more likely to eat more at lunch & dinner?

Overall what else can you say about a nutritional guidebook? It definitely makes me want to get better about what I take to work for lunch as well as making em think more about what I put into my body in general. If you’re the sort of person to be sat at your desk with a Pot Noodle this is for you.