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Book Review: Everything is Awful and You’re a Terrible Person

Everything is Awful and You’re a Terrible Person

Daniel Zomparelli, 204 pgs, Arsenal Pulp Press, arsenalpulp.com, $15.95

Why ghost someone when you could date a ghost instead? In “Ghosts Can Be Boyfriends Too” — the opening story of Daniel Zomparelli’s debut collection of interconnected short stories — Jared, a twenty-something gay man, forms a triad with his boyfriend, Derek, and the ghost of Derek’s previous boyfriend. Though on the nose, the story is a terrifically executed exploration of the metaphor of ghosting and how we’re haunted by those who leave us. Like this first story, Zomparelli’s collection, Everything is Awful and You’re a Terrible Person, is that rare combination of critical, humorous, hopeful, and cynical.

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Zine Review: Prince

Prince

Art zine, Jenn Steffey, 8 pgs, jennsteffey.com, jenn@jennsteffey.com

Sources say that Prince, the late rock/pop/funk superstar, stood either 5’2” or 5’3”, depending on his haircut and posture. His height was arguably the only thing in his life in short supply and also a semi-grim harbinger of this pint-sized eponymous zine. It’s a zine about Prince, and as such, it features several drawings of Prince. Period. It folds into many parts, it’s colourful, and it even fits into a mid-sized pocket with room to spare. Inside, you’ll find some drawings of The Purple One from various points throughout his career. In some, he looks glum. In others, he’s shredding on the guitar.

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Excerpts: Prince zine

Jenn Steffey’s zine, Prince, is full of life, colour, music and celebration.

Here are some excerpt pages, and click here for our review.

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Zine Review + Excerpt: Mushroomsss

Mushroomsss

Art zine, Nattee, 8 pgs, @iamnattee, $3

I ran into Nattee at Zine Dream and picked up a few of their zines, attracted by the colourful washi tape binding and the playful linework. Mushroomsss is what you would expect it to be: studies of various fungi, from morels to button caps to ones that look particularly magical!

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Zine Review + Excerpt: Camgirl

Camgirl

Art zine, Josephine Norman, johzephine.com

Some topics are easily dismissed as controversial and cause folks to speak endlessly about them, even when they don’t understand what they’re talking about. Josephine Norman brilliantly subverts this tendency with her tidy, deceptively simple, and beautifully designed zine entitled Camgirl. In it, she illustrates to the reader the life of a camgirl in hardly any words. She simply defines a camgirl as “a girl who does virtual peep shows for a living, often described as a cross between live porn and a call girl,” and then allows her clients to convey the rest. The digital messages between them and herself are printed throughout the tiny folded zine, overlaid with gorgeous drawings of her body. Wrapped in a frosted vellum, this work is at once sophisticated and charming as hell.

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Podcast: Freedom To Read

Read and Distribute is back with an all-new episode that is talking about censorship, graphic novels, and the upcoming Freedom To Read week.

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