Review: Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosch

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hyperbole and a halfTitle: Hyperbole and a Half
Author:
Allie Brosch
Genre:
Humour
Source:
Purchased (Paperback)

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This is a book I wrote. Because I wrote it, I had to figure out what to put on the back cover to explain what it is. I tried to write a long, third-person summary that would imply how great the book is and also sound vaguely authoritative–like maybe someone who isn’t me wrote it–but I soon discovered that I’m not sneaky enough to pull it off convincingly. So I decided to just make a list of things that are in the book:

Pictures
Words
Stories about things that happened to me
Stories about things that happened to other people because of me
Eight billion dollars*
Stories about dogs
The secret to eternal happiness*

*These are lies. Perhaps I have underestimated my sneakiness!

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First things first, I need to talk about how I got this book. Not because it’s a really interesting story, but because it all kind of pissed me off. I am a HUGE buyer of books at my local Wal-Mart. I would stop there JUST to buy the books. I didn’t even need any of the books I was buying but the fact that they sold books for 40% off was a huge selling point for me.

So the husband and I go to the Wal-Mart to buy a gift and I go to the books (naturally) and see this one. I saw it over on Sarah’s blog at Sarah Says Read and thought it would be a fun read. I picked it up and the husband says, “What? $21.00 for a book? Are you serious? That’s way too expensive for a book!” I told him not to worry, the books were always 40% off – even though I didn’t see the normal signage for this promotion.

Nope. NO 40% off for me. Apparently they had done away with that promotion.

Suck it Wal-Mart.

I’m sure you’re waiting for me to say that I didn’t actually buy the book, that I decided to stick it to the man and put it back on the shelf at the register, but nope. I’m weak. The book came home with us that day.

While I sat and snickered as I read it, the husband keeps looking my way saying, “If you’re going to read it that fast, we can always go and return it when you’re done. Are you really going to read it again?”

Little did he know that when I finished the book, I could totally see myself reading it again – well, maybe not the whole thing, but bits and pieces. I’m a complete sucker when it comes to anything about dogs, especially funny stories that have me looking at mine saying, “Yup. This is totally you.” Like the one story in the book about the author, Allie, seeing whether or not her dog (the simple dog) was smart. The husband and I did ALL of those tests on our own first dog when we got him. He was definitely smarter than the simple dog, but it was funny to look back.

There’s also a great story about a goose – nay, a killer goose – who had broke into Allie’s house (wait – can a goose break into a house?) and attacked. That one was HILARIOUS and I loved how the author actually tacked on some stills of footage she took of the episode, since it’s easy to think, “Oh, you’re just making that up.”

Of course, then I think back to when the husband and I were on a paddleboat at the local zoo and we got a little too close to a goose. Those things HISS. They’re pretty mean. I could totally relate to the story. Don’t get too close to geese. They WILL attack. Really. They’re right up there with sharks.

Not only is this book full of true stories from Allie’s life, but there are also drawings. They reminded me of The Oatmeal drawings and really added to a lot of the stories. I’m not sure what it is about drawings that are so terribly done that make me laugh, but they were FUNNY. The book’s stories were also broken up by colour, which I really liked. It just made for a really pretty book – if you’re into gazing at the edge of a book at the closed pages. It was like a rainbow, I’m telling you.

This book might not be for everyone and it might not be a book to read all in one sitting. A story here and there works well. If you like humour, want something fast to read, and something that’s unique, then read this book. I’ll be sure to check out the author’s blog, Hyperbole and a Half, now. She’s got me hooked!

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Review: T-Rex Trying by Hugh Murphy

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t-rex tryingTitle: T-Rex Trying
Author:
Hugh Murphy
Genre:
Humour
Source:
Library (Hardcover)

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Poor T-Rex. It’s hard to be the Lizard King when you can’t even change a light bulb.

Drawn from Hugh Murphy’s wildly popular Tumblr feed of the same name, T-Rex Trying depicts the stubby-armed tyrant in a range of hilarious—yet pathos-inducing—activities that we humans take for granted. Murphy’s 100 drawings include:

T-Rex Trying to Paint His House
T-Rex Trying to Use a Drive-Through ATM
T-Rex Trying to Apply Sunscreen
T-Rex Trying to Break Into a Vending Machine
T-Rex Trying to Ask for a New Roll of Toilet Paper from the Next Stall

Looks like the ancient beast isn’t so tough after all.

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Oh my goodness. When I think of the T-Rex, I immediatley think of two things:

1. Jurassic Park (seriously, one of my favourite movies EVER), and
2. That meme that goes around about if you’re having a bad day, to just imagine a T-Rex making the bed.

Of all the prehistoric creatures we’ve heard of, I think the T-Rex has to be the most famous — and probably my favourite. Mostly because he can be very scary, but very funny at the same time. You know, with those small arms and all.

Hugh Murphy made such a great book with T-Rex Trying. It’s hilarious and sweet and I couldn’t help but feel sorry for the T-Rex’s lack of motor skills with his short arms and obvious large to-do list. It’s a very small book, but full of over 100 drawings of the T-Rex trying to do an assortment of things that are just impossible for his weird body shape to accomplish.

If you love the T-Rex, this is a must-read book — really, I’d love to have a copy of my shelf to flip through on a bad day. Not all the drawings are overly funny, but I’m sure everyone will find a handful or more that they’ll love.

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Review: The Secret of the Fortune Wookiee (Origami Yoda, #3) by Tom Angleberger

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the secret of the fortune wookieTitle: The Secret of the Fortune Wookiee
Author: Tom Angleberger
Series: Origami Yoda, #3
Date(s) read: February 16, 2013
Genre: Middle Grade Humour
Source: Library (Hardcover)

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IS IT POSSIBLE TO HAVE A CASE FILE WITHOUT ORIGAMI YODA?

With Dwight suspended, McQuarrie Middle School is missing its most famous attendee: origami Yoda. And no Yoda means no case file mystery to solve. But just as Tommy wonders if he’ll ever find anything interesting to write about again, something BIG happens. Something BIG and HAIRY. It’s a Fortune Wookiee, a paper fortune teller in the form of Chewbacca. Sara brings it to school as a gift from Dwight, and it seems to give advice that’s just as good as Yoda’s. Mysterious it is!

Tommy, Kellen, and Harvey are on the case. and when their classmates start having strange “Dwight Sightings” (sightings of Dwight in which he is Yoda-less and acting WAY too normal), the boys have TWO mysteries to solve. The closer they get, the more possible it seems that origami Yoda will be back…

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This was such a great end to a series I have come to really enjoy! I wouldn’t say that I’m the biggest Star Wars fan, but I have seen the movies and liked them, so I felt like I was good and prepared when it came to trying this series. I just didn’t expect it to be as much fun as it was!

I loved how we had the same cast of characters for this story and how they’re all missing Dwight — who was the weird kid in the first book, eventually growing to be somewhat of a friend of everyone else, despite his weird ways.  Continue reading