Review: The (Other) F Word: A Celebration of the Fat and Fierce

Title: The (Other) F Word: A Celebration of the Fat and Fierce
Author: Angie Manfredi (editor)
Genre: Young Adult, Nonfiction
Publisher: Abrams Kids
Source: Publisher
Format: Paperback
Release Date: September 24, 2019
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

The definitive collection of art, poetry, and prose, celebrating fat acceptance 

Chubby. Curvy. Fluffy. Plus-size. Thick. Fat. The time has come for fat people to tell their own stories. The (Other) F Word combines personal essays, prose, poetry, fashion tips, and art to create a relatable and attractive guide about body image and body positivity. This YA crossover anthology is meant for people of all sizes who desire to be seen and heard in a culture consumed by a narrow definition of beauty. By combining the talents of renowned fat YA and middle-grade authors, as well as fat influencers and creators, The (Other) F Word offers teen readers and activists of all ages a guide for navigating our world with confidence and courage.

Review:

I absolutely loved this book!

Often when I read collections of essays or stories by a variety of authors, I like a few of the pieces but not all of them. I loved every essay and piece of work in this collection. I could relate to most of them, and I learned new things from the ones I couldn’t relate to.

This collection is so important. It isn’t just for fat readers. Everyone can benefit from reading this book, because it gives a glimpse into the lives of fat people. Being fat is treated as even worse than other traits. When sexist and racist jokes aren’t allowed in mainstream media today, fat jokes still remain. This may be because people think you can change your weight easier than you can change your skin colour or gender. However, this is not always the case.

I’m so glad that I had the opportunity to read this book. It really means a lot to me! I would have loved to have read it when I was a fat teenager. I hope this book gets the recognition it deserves!

Thank you Abrams Kids for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Here We Are: Feminism for the Real World by Kelly Jensen (editor)

Have you read The (Other) F Word? What did you think of it?

P.S. Stay tuned for a special giveaway related to this book coming soon!

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Review: I’ll Be There For You: The One about Friends

Title: I’ll Be There For You: The One about Friends
Author: Kelsey Miller
Genre: Non-Fiction
Publisher: Hanover Square Press
Source: Purchased
Format: Hardcover
Release Date: October 23, 2018
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

This definitive retrospective of Friends incorporates interviews, history and behind-the-scenes anecdotes to offer a critical analysis of how a sitcom about six twentysomethings changed television forever

When Friends debuted in 1994, no one expected it to become a mainstay of NBC’s Must See TV lineup, let alone a global phenomenon. In the years since, Friends has gone through many phases of cultural relevancy, from prime-time hit to 90s novelty item to certified classic. Ross, Rachel, Monica, Chandler, Joey, and Phoebe have entered the pantheon of great television characters, and millions of people around the globe continue to tune in or stream their stories every day.

I‘ll Be There for You is the definitive retrospective of Friends, exploring all aspects of the show from its unlikely origins to the elusive reasons why we still watch it. Journalist and pop culture expert Kelsey Miller relives the show’s most iconic moments, analyzes the ways in which Friends is occasionally problematic and examines the many trends it inspired, from the rise of coffee-shop culture to Friendsgivings to the ultimate 90s haircut, the Rachel.

Weaving incisive commentary, revelatory interviews and behind-the-scenes anecdotes involving high-profile guest stars, I’ll Be There for You is the most comprehensive take on Friends, and the ultimate book for fans everywhere. 

Review:

I loved this book!

I’ve been a fan of friends for as long as I can remember. I always had to be home from my dance classes on time on Thursday nights so I could watch the new episodes. It was a huge part of my life, and it’s still a comforting show to watch.

This book had so many fun facts of the show, including how the actors were cast. I loved all of these little anecdotes.

I don’t read a lot of non-fiction, but I’m so glad I read this book. I flew through it, because it was so entertaining. I highly recommend this book for fans of the show!

What to read next:

Big Girl: How I Gave Up Dieting and Got a Life by Kelsey Miller

Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud: The Rise and Reign of the Unruly Woman by Anne Helen Petersen

Have you read I’ll Be There For You: The One about Friends? What did you think of it?

Review: David Bowie

Title: David Bowie
Author: Maria Isabel Sanchez Vegara
Genre: Children’s, Non-Fiction
Publisher: Frances Lincoln Children’s Books
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: ebook
Release Date: May 7, 2019
Rating: ★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

New in the critically acclaimed Little People, BIG DREAMS series, discover the life of David Bowie, the starman who dazzled audiences with his music. As a child, young David had a head full of songs and ideas. He was inspired by the pop and mod scenes in Britain to pick up the saxophone. After earning his stripes in some of the coolest bands in London, David splashed onto the solo scene. His songwriting talent and musical skill made him one of rock and roll’s all-time greatest artists. This moving book features stylish and quirky illustrations and extra facts at the back, including a biographical timeline with historical photos and a detailed profile of the musician’s life. Little People, BIG DREAMS is a bestselling series of books and educational games that explore the lives of outstanding people, from designers and artists to scientists and activists. All of them achieved incredible things, yet each began life as a child with a dream. This empowering series offers inspiring messages to children of all ages, in a range of formats. The board books are told in simple sentences, perfect for reading aloud to babies and toddlers. The hardback versions present expanded stories for beginning readers. Boxed gift sets allow you to collect a selection of the books by theme. Paper dolls, learning cards, matching games and other fun learning tools provide even more ways to make the lives of these role models accessible to children. Inspire the next generation of outstanding people who will change the world with Little People, BIG DREAMS!

Review:

I haven’t read any books in this series, but this one was very cute.

This series is great for young kids to learn about important historical figures. This book is about David Bowie and how he became a rock star.

David Bowie was an interesting man. I think his music and costumes would appeal to kids, so this book is a great way to introduce kids to David Bowie.

Thank you Lincoln Children’s Books for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Muhammad Ali by Maria Isabel Sanchez Vegara

Mahatma Gandhi by Maria Isabel Sanchez Vegara

Have you read David Bowie? What did you think of it?

Review: Work It, Girl: Boss the Bestseller List Like J.K. Rowling

Title: Work It, Girl: Boss the Bestseller List Like J.K. Rowling
Author: Caroline Moss, Sinem Erkas (illustrator)
Genre: Children’s, Nonfiction
Publisher: Lincoln Children’s Books
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: March 5, 2019
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

In this new series for aspiring future girl #bosses, discover the life of JK Rowling, the famous author. Be inspired by her remarkable story, and learn 10 key lessons from her life and work. Featuring inspiring quotes and mantras, this is a book for all girls wanting to forge their own career path. 

Review:

I’ve always been a huge fan of J.K. Rowling. I have fond memories of reading the first Harry Potter books with my dad when they first came out.

Her life story is a huge inspiration to me, as a writer. I was familiar with a lot of her story, but I still found this book fascinating. Jo created her own success by working hard at what she enjoyed doing. She wrote when she had time, including while her daughter was napping. She continued to work hard even after she became successful. She also never forgot her humble beginnings, by giving back to those in need.

The books in this series are beautiful. I love the creative graphics. The images look like they are created with layered pieces of paper. There are many pages just made up of just pictures, with short quotes from J.K. Rowling.

I love this series! There are currently two books, one about Oprah Winfrey and the other about J.K. Rowling. I can’t wait to see what other inspirational women are featured in this series.

What to read next:

Work It, Girl: Run the Show Like CEO Oprah Winfrey by Caroline Moss, Sinem Erkas (illustrator)

Who Is J.K. Rowling? by Pam Pollack, Meg Belviso

Have you read Work It, Girl: Boss the Bestseller List Like J.K. Rowling? What did you think of it?

Review: Work it, Girl: Run the Show Like CEO Oprah Winfrey

Title: Work it, Girl: Run the Show Like CEO Oprah Winfrey
Author: Caroline Moss, Sinem Erkas (illustrator)
Genre: Children’s, Nonfiction
Publisher: Lincoln Children’s Books
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: March 5, 2019
Rating: ★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

A new series of empowering biographies featuring modern women.

When Oprah Winfrey was a little girl, she watched her grandma hang clothes out on the line. Oprah adored her grandma, but she knew in that moment her life would be different… And she was right. 

Discover how Oprah became a billionaire CEO and media mogul in this true story of her life. Then, learn 10 key lessons from her work you can apply to your own life. Featuring inspiring quotes and mantras, this is a book for all kids wanting to forge their own career path.

Review:

I didn’t know much about Oprah’s life before reading this book. She came from very humble beginnings. She had to live with her grandmother as a child, and they didn’t have much. Her mother didn’t care for her the way she should. She was discriminated against because of her race, including not being able to sleep in the same building as her family because her skin was too dark. Oprah made the most of her opportunities in school to become a very successful business woman.

I loved the art in this book. Each illustration looks like pieces of paper cut out and layered to make a picture. There are some parts where different materials are used, such as ribbon to create Oprah’s hair. One of my favourite pictures had a VCR tape with the tape coming out of the plastic to create an image of Oprah. This was such a creative way to illustrate the book!

This book is for kids, so it has simple language. It talks about the hardships that Oprah had to go through to get to where she is today, so it doesn’t talk down to the young reader. There was a list of further reading at the back, though I don’t think some books should have been included because they are too mature for children reading this book. It had a parental advisory next to the book titles, but I don’t think they should have been included. My copy is an ARC, so this may have been changed in the final copy.

I loved this book. I’ll be reading the other book in this series soon, which is about J.K. Rowling.

What to read next:

Work it, Girl: Boss the Bestseller List Like J.K. Rowling by Caroline Moss and Sinem Erkas (illustrator)

Have you read Work it, Girl: Run the Show Like CEO Oprah Winfrey? What did you think of it?

Review: Rick Mercer Final Report

Title: Rick Mercer Final Report
Author: Rick Mercer
Genre: Non-Fiction
Publisher: Doubleday Canada
Source: Publisher
Format: Hardcover
Release Date: November 6, 2018
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

Canada’s pre-eminent satirical commentator brings down the curtain on his hugely successful show in this instant #1 national bestseller. 

Rick Mercer can always be relied on to provoke a strong reaction–but what he said one fall day in 2017 truly shocked the nation. In a rant posted on social media, the great Canadian satirist announced loud and clear that the current, 15th season of the Rick Mercer Report–the nation’s best-watched and best-loved comedy show–would be the last. After more than 250 episodes, 250 rants and countless miles spent travelling the length and breadth of Canada to do everything from bungee jumping with Rick Hansen to whale watching with Measha Brueggergosman, it was time to move on. What he will do next is still unknown, and Canada eagerly awaits future developments. But meanwhile, we have this book to keep us going.

This volume brings together never-before-published rants from the last five seasons of the show, plus a selection of the very best rants from earlier years. And throughout the book, in a series of brilliant new essays, Rick shares his hilarious, moving and at times hair-raising memories from the past fifteen years. Remember when he and Jann Arden travelled by helicopter to a terrifying bat cave in a mountain? No–because that trip went so horribly wrong it never made it to the screen. Pierre Berton–what was really in that joint he rolled? (It wasn’t oregano.) What catastrophe took place in Norman Jewison’s bathroom? And can the show still go on when your director in charge is delirious from an allergic reaction? (Yes.) All this and more is revealed by Rick in some of his sharpest and funniest writing yet.

Review:

I was so excited about this book! I’ve loved watching Rick Mercer on TV since I was a kid. He’s hilarious!

This book collects his best rants from his show. He has a segment on The Mercer Report where he does a 90 second rant about something. It can be about anything from politics to celebrities to how people drive. I loved reading the rants. I have heard many of them on TV but they’re so great to read. They are short, with each one only about about a page long, so it is easy to flip through this book.

There are also some personal stories from Rick about filming the show included in the book. I love these kinds of behind-the-scenes stories about him and the show. It really makes you feel like you were part of the show.

I loved this book! It’s a must-read for fans of Rick Mercer!

What to read next:

A Nation Worth Ranting About by Rick Mercer

Rick Mercer Report: The Book by Rick Mercer

Have you read Rick Mercer Final Report? What did you think of it?

Review: Son of a Critch: A Childish Newfoundland Memoir

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Title: Son of a Critch: A Newfoundland Memoir
Author: Mark Critch
Genre: Non-Fiction, Memoir
Publisher: Penguin Random House Canada
Source: Publisher
Release Date: October 2, 2018
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

A heartfelt and outrageously funny memoir about Newfoundland, family, and being the weirdest kid in school

What could be better than growing up in the 1980s? How about growing up in 1980s Newfoundland, which as Mark Critch will tell you, was more like the 1960s. Critch takes us to where it all began in this tremendously funny and warm look back on his formative years. A “recovering Catholic,” he recalls his many misadventures growing up on the outskirts of a small town. And when your radio-star dad is the talk of the town, and your mom can’t stop talking at all, life at home is always entertaining.

Best known as the “roving reporter” for CBC’s This Hour Has 22 Minutes, Mark Critch has photo-bombed Justin Trudeau, interviewed Great Big Sea’s Alan Doyle (while impersonating Alan Doyle), offered Pamela Anderson a million dollars to stop acting, and crashed White House briefings. But in this hilarious debut, we learn that Critch has been causing trouble his whole life. Son of a Critch will have you longing for life in Canada’s most unique province–even if you’ve never been there–and marvelling at how one person’s childhood could be so ridiculously funny.

Review:

My favourite comedians are all from Newfoundland: Jonny Harris, Rick Mercer, and, of course, Mark Critch. I was so excited to learn that Mark Critch had written a book, and I knew I had to read it!

Mark Critch is one of the funniest men on TV. The segment on his show, This Hour Has 22 Minutes, that I enjoyed the most was based on the news story of the boy who went up in a homemade hot air balloon a few years ago. The actual news story ended up being a hoax. Mark did a parody of this story, which was a baby in a grocery bag that blew into a tree. I still burst out laughing thinking about that sketch! I became a lifelong fan of Mark Critch. (Here’s the link to the clip on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AE1CW7-bFv8)

If you love 22 Minutes, you will love Son of a Critch! This book was hilarious! Mark’s storytelling from the show was evident in this book. I learned some of the history of Newfoundland from his stories. I loved the stories and I could hear my own relatives from Bishop’s Falls, Newfoundland in this book.

I loved this book! I recommend it to anyone who needs a good laugh!

What to read next:

  • Canada by Mike Myers

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  • Rick Mercer Report: The Book by Rick Mercer

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Have you read Son of a Critch: A Childish Newfoundland Memoir? What did you think of it?