It’s official, another month of The Bookly Club is complete, and the reviews are up! We hope you’ll take a look at each of our reviews, but either way here’s a snap shot of our thoughts on Hyperbole and a Half…
Which story was your favorite? Why?
KC: I think my fav was the story of Allie’s visit to the oral surgeon when she was 12. As someone who had many a tooth pulled, and who had a rare reaction to novocaine once or twice, I can relate. I think that’s what makes this such a great read, there’s some calamity that everyone can relate to in some way. And it’s good to laugh at those moments in life.
KD: Full disclosure…I didn’t get to read all of this one. Although I totally plan on finishing! The first story “Warning Signs” really got me. After leading a childhood of being a total weirdo (another full disclosure – I’m still a total spaz), I loved this. “What is your favorite dog?…Please write back.” So wonderful.
KS: Hands down “The God of Cake.” I found myself laughing out loud multiple times. I have a SEVERE sweet tooth and lack total self control when it comes to sweets – I even remember hiding Little Debbie snack cakes in my room as a kid (yikes!). So yes, I think I would follow in her footsteps and chase that delicious cake until it was mine… eat the entire thing… and then immediately regret it.
KH: It’s hard to pick a favorite, but I think mine might be “The Hot Sauce Debacle.” I just thought it was hilarious and I really felt bad for her! Plus, there was a hilarious line in the story that perfectly summed up willpower in children vs. willpower in adults: “But he was an adult who possessed other skills that he could fall back on in the event of defeat, and that made him weak.” HA!
Which story did you relate to the most?
KS: Oh gosh, lots! But I think “Motivation” had me nodding my head the most. I’m a procrastinator by nature (hey, I do my best work under pressure!) and have had some of those very same debates with myself.
KC: So many of them, but I especially could relate to her story about motivation when she just walks by that Blockbuster DVD for days and never returns it. I may or may not have a pile of clothes that need folding that just sit, and sit and stare at me mocking my lack of motivation. I really need to fold those clothes.
KH: Even as a full grown “adult,” I still relate so much to “This Is Why I’ll Never Be An Adult.” I still find that I reward myself for doing things I should do by procrastinating on other things I should do. It is in fact sometimes just too much work to “do all the things.”
What did you think of the format?
KC: It’s definitely unlike anything I’ve ever read. But I liked the format! It made for a VERY fast read. I can’t say it’s a format/style I’d read again in the near future… but if I’m wanting a break for the usual, I’d definitely try another graphic novel.
KD: I have the attention span of a squirrel. The bright colors and graphic patterns and minimal words sucked me in. Even with that, I didn’t finish the book. Allie Brosh would be so proud of me.
KH: Loved it! So engaging, easy to read, and entertaining.
KS: It was the first book I’d read like this, and for the most part I really liked it. The short stories and illustrations made it easily digestible and something you could pick up when you only had a few minutes. I think the one thing that made it hard for me was because there wasn’t a plot, nothing you needed to find out, I wasn’t always drawn to picking it up and settling in with it like I am with novels.
Have you ever read a graphic novel/comic book before?
KC: I have read comic books before… courtesy of my nerdtastic husband. But I think Hyperbole and a Half was kind of a style of its own. Which I liked.
KD: I have read Maus by Art Spiegelman which is a graphic interpretation of the author’s interviews with his father about his experience as a Polish Holocaust survivor – an intensely emotional read. After the drawings, the similarities between these two end. While so difference, I find it an engaging change of pace. You alway imagine how scenarios play out when reading books. It is kind of fun to see exactly how the author wants you to see it.
KH: No, this was my first. After reading this, I would say I am not more inclined to read another, though it definitely has to be the right book. I don’t think I’m ready to make a habit of it!
KS: Nope! I’d definitely read another like it, though, as long as it was something I could still relate to.
What were your feelings about the author after reading this?
KC: I really think she did a great job telling some tough stories. And it was so great how transparent and self-deprecating she was. But maybe I’m partial to that kind of humor. Overall the stories she told and the creative way in which she told them gave me a lot of respect for her. And I heard she’s currently MIA because she’s writing her second book… with all original content. Can’t wait to read the next one!
KH: KC, I hope you’re right – I love her! I wrote about my long-time love of her in my review. I think she is so self-aware, honest, and self-deprecating, as you said KC. It’s right up my alley.
KD: “If you can’t laugh at yourself, life is going to seem a whole lot longer than you’d like.” I kept thinking about that quote from Garden State when reading this. I think many people, in our generation in particular, have a proclivity to believe their life experiences are unique and far too varied to be part of a shared global experience. It is so refreshing to read the words of Gen Y’er who didn’t fall pray to such thoughts, especially one who can reflect back, even on the tough parts, with a bit of whimsy.
KS: I hope you’re right, too, KC! Allie’s humor is right up my alley so I’d love to see her write something else. I found the way she dealt with both light-hearted and difficult topics to be very endearing and relatable. Even though some of the things she talked about were tough subjects, I still found myself laughing. Having a sense of humor goes a long way in tough times..