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Monday Book Review — What’s New on My Nightstand: “Ship It,” by Britta Lundin; “The Christmasaurus,” by Tom Fletcher & Shane Devries; “Star Wars Most Wanted,” by Rae Carson

October 8th, 2018

Good Life

Summer 2018

Summer 2018

(Photos by Nancy Ellen Row Rawley)

“Ship it,” by Britta Lundin (Freeform Books, 2018, 375 pages, $17.99). First of all – the cover of this book. Let us just pause a moment and adore it. Claire and Tess, “Demon Heart” fangirls at large, grace the jacket of Britta Lundin’s novel about fan fic, Comic Cons and teen lust and love. (Lundin is a screenwriter for the CW show “Riverdale,” and you may know her from her comic books.) I will give her a shout-out now cuz she’s from the Oregon coast, attended Reed College *and* the University of Texas at Austin, where she earned her MFA in Film Production. (Nice!) Now she lives with her wife in Los Angeles, which I’m sure is great? But not the Oregon coast.

More on the cover – beautifully illustrated comic art is hiding under the dust jacket. It’s worth the price of admission just to have this comic, I’m just saying.

On to the book: It’s sexy, it’s funny, it’s tortured and beautiful. Basically these are all of my favorite things, so win, win, win and win. Claire is a queer, questioning, quirky and awesome teenager who writes fan fiction about a show called “Demon Heart.” Smokey and Forest star. It’s clear to mostly everyone – except Forest – that the pair are gay. Forest has fits because they’re not! Chaos ensues! And Claire meets a girl, Tess, on the Comic Con tour.

This book is long overdue.

“Star Wars Most Wanted,” by Rae Carson (Disney/Lucasfilm Press, 2018, 348 pages, $17.99). In keeping with today’s theme of art… Why do Star Wars books not contain more art? Sure, the picture books do. (See “Are you Scared, Darth Vader?” which is kind of one of my favorite picture books in the universe.)

But the chapter books? They need art, and they mostly do not have it. Even a few small pieces would be good.

OK, there, I’ve put in my two cents. Now, it’s time for holiday shopping, and please put “Star Wars Most Wanted” and the Darth Vader picture book at the top of your list. You’ll find someone who loves them, for sure, and it’s always good to have some extra gifts on hand, no? Perhaps wrap up a few tins of those Pirouette cookies, too. The chocolate hazelnut ones are nice, and you can re-use the tins for markers or colored pencils.

Rae Carson’s book, which has a cool cover by illustrator Florian Nicolle, tells the tale of Han and Qi’Ra, before “Solo: A Star Wars Story.” Lady Proxima, the Scrumrats, the White Worms gang, sewers and intrigue, pirates and missions… Go for it.

“Christmasaurus,” by Tom Fletcher, illustrated by Shane Devries (Random House, 2018, ages 8-12, 371 pages, $13.99) is just a cool-sweet little book and finally! Art!

Thank you. Good art, too. Fun art. Also, cool typefaces and REALLY BIG PRINT and really fun graphics.

The book itself is a sweet combo of dinosaurs, Christmas and humans. It reminds me of the “Land Before Time” series, and oh man, we loved those movies for years at our house. “The Christmasaurus” has the same sweetness, bittersweetness, and magical storytelling that “Land Before Time” does. Add this one to the holiday list, too.

Bon appetit, babies!

WM

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