Thursday, June 30, 2022

Book Love by Debbie Tung

I'm usually not a fan of the log-line format, but sometimes I read a book that is really obviously "this one book I read recently" mixed with "this other book I read recently." I'd still probably avoid saying so, unless it was clear that was the author's intention, and not just random stuff I'm reading into it.

Today is one of those days. I just read a short, pleasant, inoffensive book of comics about books, Book Love, all from Debbie Tung, whose Happily Ever After & Everything In Between I hit back in winter. And Book Love, as a "aren't reading and physical books and bookstores and libraries and curling up to read just totally awesome" book, will be a lot like similar books - such as Grant Snider's I Will Judge You by Your Bookshelves, which I also read toward the end of winter.

So, yeah: this is like A + B. Because it's on the same topic as B by the author of A. Not a huge stretch, I admit.

As I understand it, Tung started out making comics online. Those comics tended to run to some specific themes - like her relationship with the guy she married, or books, or being an introvert - and all of those themes became books collecting her comics. (Having been in the sausage factory myself, I know I'm hugely simplifying: I bet she created almost as many new comics for each book as she reprinted, for example.)

This was the second one; it came before Happily Ever After but after Quiet Girl in a Noisy World, in 2019.

And it is a whole bunch of comics, mostly four square panels to a small-format page, about how awesome books are. If you're my age, you can probably predict every beat, ever bit of joy, every wonderful thing Tung celebrates. That's not bad; it just shows that Book Love is in a particular genre - and it's a lovely, positive, warm & fuzzy entry in that genre, which has and will make a lot of people happy to read it.

I am not quite this uncritically "books are kewl" in my own life - partially because I'm not uncritical about anything and partially because I used to do books for a living. But even a grump like me can enjoy a sweet, fun book like this, so unless you are substantially grumpier than I am, I assume you will enjoy it, too.

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