eARC Graphic Novel Review: Fangs by Sarah Andersen

Goodreads: Fangs
Publish date: 01 September 2020
Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing
Genre: Graphic Novel
Panda Rating:

A love story between a vampire and a werewolf by the creator of the enormously popular Sarah’s Scribbles comics.

Vamp is three hundred years old but in all that time, she has never met her match. This all changes one night in a bar when she meets a charming werewolf. FANGS chronicles the humor, sweetness, and awkwardness of meeting someone perfectly suited to you but also vastly different

I’m a big fan of the many Sarah’s Scribbles comics that I’ve seen online although I’ve never actually read through or purchased one of her books, and after reading Fangs I’m really questioning why! This was such a cute/weird/sweet love story between a vampire and a werewolf that had me laughing out loud and ‘awwing’ constantly. Talk about them feel good feels!

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Pillow Thoughts III: Mending the Mind by Courtney Peppernell – #ARC #BookReview

Goodreads: Pillow Thoughts III: Mending the Mind
Publish Date: 06 August 2019
Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing
Genre: Poetry
Panda Rating:

In a voice that is inclusive and open to all, Courtney Peppernell presents a tribute to her readers in the third installment of her bestselling Pillow Thoughts series.
A beautifully raw and poignant collection of poetry and prose, Pillow Thoughts III continues the series from poet Courtney Peppernell. Fix yourself a warm drink and settle into Peppernell’s words as she pens a tribute to her readers who are bravely continuing their journey from hurt to healing.

I didn’t know that Peppernell was coming out with another Pillow Thoughts book, but when I saw that the title was “mending the mind” I knew I had to read it. I love a good book of poetry and prose that I can connect with and I’ve done that with Pillow Thoughts I & II, although I connected most with Pillow Thoughts I. I still enjoyed this read though. Peppernell’s poetry/prose is simple yet effective in reaching into the hearts and minds of her readers to either give a gentle nudge or hug. There is an undercurrent of hope that runs through the words and ties them together in this book. That said, I do wish that I felt more connected to the work in this book, but there was a lot here that I felt was a little ‘recycled’ and nothing that I hadn’t heard of before.

As always though, when Peppernell speaks a thought that resonates with me, it gets me hard, and right in the heart! I teared up reading the chapter on “if your mind needs repairing” and I felt hopeful reading “if your mind needs inspiration”. I’ve been struggling a lot with my mental health over the last few months and reading some of these passages really got to me. They were a small reminder to keep going and to believe and trust that I’m much stronger than I think I am; especially for making it this far in life when every single day is a struggle.

“There is nothing beautiful
about wishing
you’d never been born
There’s nothing poetic
about believing
you are a burden
There is nothing sadder
than thinking
you’re ruining the lives
of the people you love
But there is nothing
stronger than you
I am in awe of the way you live
even with all these dark thoughts
You are brave in the way
you begin again each day”

Probably my favorite part of this book is still the illustration of the jellyfish; which is me, and you, and us. I wish that the illustrations weren’t only shown at the start of each new section, but used throughout the book! Overall, even though this didn’t end up being a favorite, I’m still glad that I read it.

Thanks to NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for the e-ARC in exchange for an honest review. This book is now available for purchase! Have you read any of Courtney Peppernell’s Pillow Thoughts? What do you think? Let’s chat in the comments!

Between You and These Bones by F.D. Soul – #ARC #BookReview

Goodreads: Between You and these Bones
Publish Date: 14 May 2019
Genre: Poetry
Rating: ★★½☆☆☆

First of all, this cover and the title are simply beautiful. They are what made me pick up this collection in the first place because this is my first encounter with F.D. Soul, so I wasn’t sure what to expect with this book.

I wanted so much to love this poetry collection but I didn’t connect with the majority of the work. I’m not a heavy reader of poetry, I dabble here and there, so I don’t know if that was the cause of most of the words flying over my head. I did connect to some of them though; there were poems or certain lines in poems that would jump out at me and make me think “wow, this is so beautiful” and then I’d wish that I felt that way about the whole collection. Most of the ones that I connected with related to their experience of discovering love, finding home, and dealing with dark moments and fighting “that battle” (mental health, depression). I wished there was more that I connected to! The illustrations were beautiful and although there weren’t that many, I thought they illustrated the poems they were made for so well. While reading I was thinking that I could see these illustrations being made into tattoos because they’re not unlike ones I’ve already seen inked on skin. I could totally see myself getting one!

I don’t doubt that there will be many people out there who love these poems and feel connected to many of them. For me, this was a nice introduction to F.D. Soul’s work, and although I didn’t connect with many of them, I would still be curious to see what else they’ve made. I’ll definitely be checking out their social sites (@featherdownsoul).

Thanks to NetGalley, the author and Andrews McMeel Publishing for this free copy in exchange for an honest review. Are you a big fan of poetry? This collection comes out 14 May 2019, so be on the lookout if you’re curious!