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Review: Pusheen the Cat's Guide to Everything by Claire Belton

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When I discovered that Pusheen, the cute feline star of many, many webcomics had her own book, I just had to read it. Featuring Pusheen and her feline family (Storm, Pip, Sunflower and Biscuit,) and, of course a certain sloth, this volume is cuteness overload. It follows the same four frame format of the webcomics, each one designed to inspire a giggle or an aww.  This was an enjoyable enough read. It's fun and suitable for all ages--in fact while it's not marketed specifically to children, I think kids will have more fun than some adults with this one. I did find that it worked best just to read a few of the comics at a time, as it felt a bit too sweet and overdone at times.  Fun and friendly, an ideal read for fans of Pusheen.

Review: Consent Laid Bare by Chantel Contos

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Consent Laid Bare is important reading. It is also not terribly comfortable reading as it takes a look at the politics of sexual consent. How is it in a supposedly enlightened era that consent is such a difficult topic?  Contos argues that despite women having achieved equality in so many ways, when it comes to sexuality we are still subjected to an outdated social model, where men's pleasure is considered more important than a woman's humanity. She looks at how women's sexuality has been co-opted by the porn industry and the problems that come with that--especially when teenage boys are accessing porn and assuming that any violent or degrading acts depicted are pleasurable.  As I said at the start of my review, this is not comfortable reading. Many things are uncomfortable, though the points raised are relevant. And while I might not agree with everything the author says (and nor do I have to,) I think she raises an important issue. The chapter at the end, titled Dear Boy

Review: Green Dot by Madeline Gray

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Green Dot is a book about a young woman reaching that time, that point in her mid-twenties, when she starts to feel insecure about her choices and her place in the world. And then comes along Arthur an older man and suddenly, she finds herself attracted to the ordinariness and security that his life brings. The only catch is that Arthur is married and taking advantage of her, and even Hera herself knows that this so-called romance is doomed to fail. And yet, she cannot give him up, and finds herself trying to change so that he will love her. This was a sadly relatable story of insecurity, infatuation and false promises. This would definitely make for an excellent cautionary tale for young women. Madeline Grey's depiction of Arthur's manipulations are spot on, in particular the way he never tells the whole truth. That said, I did not get as much out of this book as I had hoped--for me, it was the wrong book at the wrong time. I found myself infuriated with the main character on

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Review: Little Miss Busy Surviving Motherhood by Roger Hargreaves

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I have been enjoying the Mr Men/Little Miss series for grown ups so much that even though I do not have children, I couldn't resist borrowing this particular volume when I found at at my local library. Full of the series trademark savage humour this volume turns its attention towards Little Miss Busy, who is, in fact, quite busy looking after her three children and being made to feel like an imperfect mother at every turn, whether it is through making costumes for school, her mother-in-law (none other than Little Miss Splendid,) or the annoyingly goody-goody and annoyingly perfect mother of twins, Little Miss Sunshine. Eventually thanks to some good advice and the discovery that others may not be doing quite as well as they pretend to be, Little Miss Busy finds a solution to her problems. This was fun, funny and relatable on one very surprising level. The Little Miss Sunshine subplot almost perfectly mirrors a family (which included identical twins) that I knew for a time during my

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Review: Karen's Sleepover (Baby-Sitters Little Sister Graphix 8) by Katy Farina and Ann M Martin

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The top selling Baby-Sitters Little Sister graphix series is back with another excellent adaption. This time Katy Farina turns her attention to one of the classic titles of the series, Karen's Sleepover. And Little Sister fans know what that means. We meet the graphic novel version of Pamela Harding, who becomes a big part of the original Little Sister series and the eventual spin-off The Kids in Miss Coleman's Class. (I wonder if they will ever get a graphic novel adaption?) This one begins with Karen realising that she has never had a sleepover with her friends, though her beloved older stepsister Kristy has them at the 'Big House' with her friends. Karen decides to rectify this important matter. Fortunately her father and stepmother agree to this and Karen soon starts making plans, including mailing out invitations. What could possibly go wrong? Two things. First, everyone receives their invitations except for Karen's neighbour and bestie, Nancy. This leads to