What is Caitlin reading? June 15 2018

It's been six months since I did one of these (I'm the WORST) so I'm gonna try to keep this short and sweet to motivate myself to get back into the habit.  Also, I do manage to consistently post pictures of what I'm reading on Instagram, so feel free to follow me there, too.

There's a couple things that I really enjoyed lately that I want to highlight, though:

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  • The Girl from the Other Side: Siúil, A Rún Vol 1-4 by Nagabe.  This is a manga that's a bit hard to describe.  It's not horror, really.  It feels very small and intimate, and it's got some of the best creature designs I've ever seen in my life.  I need someone to make me a mask so I can cosplay as Teacher.
  • Animus by Antoine Revoy.  This one is another one of those not-quite-horror stories about kids and fear and trauma.  It's really interesting and one of those books that's really beautiful even though (perhaps because) the characters are drawn...ugly?  Not monstrous, but features are pinched and exaggerated in odd ways.  I feel a way about the fact that a non-Japanese person wrote a horror story about Japanese children.
  • Spectacle by Megan Rose Gedris.  Mystery! Circus folk!  Murder!  Gedris is really good at what she does, and a lot of themes from her previous work in terms of outsider status and belonging translate really well in Spectacle, her first YA effort.  It's charming and emotional and gentle without being coy or cloying.
  • The Highest House by Mike Carey and Peter Gross.  I love Mike Carey's work, that's not new.  But The Highest House reminds me so much of the YA high fantasy I read when I was a kid and it makes me so happy.  It's Tamora Pierce and Mercedes Lackey, unflinching but kind and the worldbuiding is really rich.  I hate the size of the book, it's dumb and weird.
  • Manfried the Man by Caitlin Major and Kelly Bastow.  FUCKING CUTE.  The basic idea is that cats are people sized and do people things, but humans are cat sized and do cat things! It's adorable.  But it's also really emotional and sweet and introspective in a way I didn't expect, because I assumed it was just going to be a gag comic.  Perfect read for people with pets.
  • My Boyfriend is a Bear by Pamela Ribon and Cat Farris.  Another ridiculously cute book, and one of my best of 2018 so far books.  It's just so sweet, both to the protagonist and to people who've ever felt like she does, sick of dating (and men), sick of other people's expectations, and just wanting to be in a relationship that makes her happy.  Came for the gag, stayed for the emotional intimacy.
  • Rice Boy by Evan Dahm.  It's a little meandering, but this book is sort of the definition of "it's about the journey."  The characters and world building are fascinating, the art feels deceptively simple, and Dahm is honestly just a fucking master at what he does.  One of my best of 2018 so far books.

I love comics, everybody.  I'm also reading I Was Born For This, which is a sweet YA book from the same creator behind the Heartstopper webcomic I love, and it's making me very happy.