My Ratings of Books without having to read an in depth analysis. Updated throughout the month. Ratings go from 1 to 5 kittens with hamsters being used for half ratings, because no one wants to think about half a kitten.
UnSweetined by Jodie Sweetin with Jon Warech – Four Out of Five Kittens and a Hamster. As far as celeb memoirs go, this is cream of the crop. It is written in a very clear and simple tone, which makes it a very fast read. I finished it one day. It is very focused and doesn’t jump from topic to topic. The book is completely focused on Sweetin’s battles with drug addiction, and all the trials and tribulations she’s been through while living with and trying to overcome this disease. It’s not bogged down by apologies and it’s not condescending. It also has those mentions of other Full House celebs that fans live for, but is done in a respectful, not gossiping, nature. For fans of celeb bios and fans of Jodie Sweetin, I would suggest. The half point off would only be because when you’re done reading the book, there’s not a great feeling that you’ve gained a lot from it.
Batman: Knightfall (Vol. 1) – Four Out of Five Kittens and a Hamster. It’s very obvious why this book has been considered a classic Batman tale. It features all of Batman’s major villains that were created up to the point of the comics release (meaning, it features the Joker, but not Harley Quinn, as she had not been introduced as a mainstream comic villian yet). It focuses on Bane and his backstory. It’s a really great read with great graphics. Does not feature any major romantic subplot. The half point off would only be because about half way through the story some of the conflicts felt a little repetitive and the story line felt a bit slow. This was quickly fixed within a few issues though, and speed definitely picked back up for a strong finish.
Ms. Marvel: No Normal (Vol. 1) – One out of Five Kittens. Okay, this might seem harsh, but you know those types of books where from the first page you already have a bad feeling about this? That is how I felt about Ms. Marvel. It felt like a very cliched viewpoint at growing up Muslim in the states, which I was disappointed by since the author is Muslim herself. I was hoping once her powers came into play, it would save the story, but it didn’t. I found the way it manifested rushed and not thought through, and overall, it seemed a little confusing and jumbled. No clear vision. The only saving grace is that the images are gorgeous and overall effective.
Ms. Marvel: Generation Why (Vol. 2) – Four out of Five Kittens. I was really indifferent about reading this volume after how disappointing the first volume of Ms. Marvel was. I was genuinely surprised at how much I liked it. Basically every issue I had with the first volume was generally resolved in this one. It was focused and moved in a clear and captivating direction, Kamala was charming instead of whiny, and a lot of those questions I had about her origin were cleared up. I would say, if you are willing to give the new Ms. Marvel a chance after reading the first volume, it does get A LOT better.
Ms. Marvel: Crushed (Vol. 3) – Five out of Five Kittens. I really like this volume, and now that I see what G. Willow Wilson is capable of writing, I REALLY like Ms. Marvel. This volume two standalone issues (one a Valentine’s Day issue, and the other a crossover with S.H.I.E.L.D), those did not contribute to my rating at all. I wasn’t really feeling them. However, I put my feelings for those aside after reading the main plot encompassed by Ms. Marvel 13-15. It went more into the concept of Inhumans, and it expressed views and plot lines that had to do with sexism and extremism, which I appreciated greatly.
To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han – No kittens. I did not enjoy this book to the point that I could not finish reading it. The writing style was choppy and immature compared to the narrator’s supposed age and it felt like the book was going absolutely no where. There were so many pointless details and I found myself constantly asking myself, why I am reading this, how do these scenes all connect. I just couldn’t do it.
Exoneree Diaries: The Fight for Innocence, Independence and Identity by Alison Flowers- Four out of Five Kittens. In terms of an academic read to learn more about the issues that face exonerees, this isn’t great. There are no statistics, and not really an attempt to look at the bigger picture in the text. I did really appreciate this, however, because it is obvious the author picked the individual stories she did to demonstrate definite issues exonerees have, and wrote it in an accessible way, so a reader could easily draw conclusions based on the texts and understand, even just slightly more, the issues that might face exonerees that they may have never even considered. Definitely a worthwhile read.
Zappy I’m Not by Peter Brav – Three out of Five Kittens and a Hamster. This was a strange comedy. Despite it being an imagined memoir by a dog, this is definitely a novel for adults. Basic premise, raunchy 60 yr old Queens electrician dies and is reincarnated into a dog belonging to a rich family. The beginning was really slow, and I feel like the raunchiness of the dog’s personality did bother me a bit, since comedy isn’t my normal flow, but by half way through when the true action started (an attempted murder plot, an attempt to get the girl and the dough type stuff) it definitely did get a lot better. Overall, it was okay. Not great, but not bad.