Introverts rejoice! The self-proclaimed “awkward” Issa Rae is utterly charming and just as hilarious on the pages of The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl as she is in her comedy YouTube videos (they won a Shorty Award for Best Web Show in 2012). Looking around popular entertainment and not seeing a “respectable reflection” of herself, Issa Rae prepared to take on the world, one “misadventure” at a time. Each humorous essay takes readers to a moment in her life that helped her hone her voice as a writer and performing artist. It’s easy to laugh along with her during her growing pains: youthful forays onto online chat rooms, learning to love her “nap-tural” hair, her dancing abilities (or lack thereof), her love of men, her love affair with food, and so much more.
Look ahead to Insecure, the new HBO show co-created by (and starring) Issa Rae set to air in October 2016.
Are you a young princess with ambitions to become a fierce warrior? If so, you’re in for a treat because Kate Beaton has comically captured such a struggle in her children’s book The Princess and the Pony. Adult readers may be familiar with Kate Beaton’s distinctly quirky drawing style and sense of humor from her webcomic series Hark! A Vagrant. Beaton adapted one of her original characters, a dumpy pony, to delight a younger audience as well.
Princess Pinecone is the protagonist of our story. She is the youngest warrior in a kingdom of warriors and is desperate to prove her fortitude in battle (though battling in Princess Pinecone’s kingdom seems to consist mostly of spitballs and general scuffles). All Princess Pinecone really needs to succeed in battle is a horse—one big, strong, and ready to charge! As her birthday approaches, the princess figures that this birthday will be the one where she finally gets a horse instead of yet another cozy sweater.
She thought wrong.
Instead of the stallion she so desires, Princess Pinecone receives a pony. Not just any pony—one decidedly stout, stumpy, and above all, adorable! How can Princess Pinecone strike fear in the hearts of the other warriors with such a pony? Still, the princess graciously accepts her gift (even though his eyes point in different directions!) and tries to make the best of the situation. Pinecone tries to train her pony for battle, but it proves difficult to try and turn a chubby pony into a fierce warhorse.
When the day of the battle finally arrives, Pinecone and her pony enter into battle– and surprise everyone with a secret weapon. Goofy illustrations will make younger readers giggle while adults will enjoy the nonsensical, deadpan humor.
If you liked The Princess and the Pony, look for Kate Beaton’s latest children’s book, King Baby!
Reviewed by: Anique A.