Casper and Romeo

Piece inspired by the awesome Casper and Romeo– be sure to follow this dynamic duo on Instagram to see their adventures! I just love these two.

Piece info: Completed on Procreate with round and acryllic brush, and a whole lot of blending. Lettering with calligraphy brush.

Inspired by ‘A Million Things’ by Emily Spurr

I’ll be blunt. A Million Things by Emily Spurr will break your heart. But know the following: even as you lie on your kitchen floor shattered and ugly crying into a dish towel after reading this remarkable book, you will be better for it. We all need a reminder that we aren’t alone, even if we are lonely. To know that animals are just like any other family member worthy of respect and care, that parents can hurt and leave us, and that judging neighbors harshly can prevent us from forming the most meaningful of relationships.

I waited for this to come out on Audible because I was hesitant to read it, and knew I’d stop picking it up if I had a hard copy. I knew it would hit too close to home. Mentally ill mom. Check. Becoming an adult when you aren’t even a teenager yet. Check. Being left alone way too young. Check. Having your closest family member be a pet. Check. Based on those similarities alone, I didn’t think I could get through this given the heavy subject matter. But I found it was actually good for me to read something that shows the complicated upbringing of a girl, because I haven’t seen much of that or felt any connection with a female protagonist in this way. And y’all know I read a lot. We have so many coming of age stories about boys (Catcher in the Rye, Lord of the Flies). And if the story Is about a girl, it’s always about how her heart is broken over a boy, or she has an eating disorder, or how she’s in love with her middle aged teacher. This here is no YA book. This was more like Room, where the perspective of a vulnerable but resilient child going through very adult trauma tells their story. We need more books like this, about children with imperfect parents, and how they survive the unimaginable. Know that this is a hard read, but a good one. Content warnings include suicide, hoarding, and mental illness, and child and animal physical injury.

Big spoiler: I clearly loved the book so I feel like I need to explain my rating. The reason I gave this four stars instead of five was because of the graphic part involving the description of Splinter’s injuries at the end. It actually made me feel a bit sick. It didn’t add anything to the story and was overkill. I didn’t think the same was true for the way Rae must cover up the smell of her mother’s corpse, as that served a purpose in showing the reader how she was trying to maintain appearances and save the only home she’d ever known.

Rating: 4/5 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Dream Cast: 🎥 🍿

Rae: McKenna Grace

Lettie: Dianne Weist

Mom: Isla Fisher

Oscar: Iain Armitage

‘Nightbitch’

Drawing I did of Nightbitch looking at her Nightbitch reflection

When I heard there was a book coming out about a woman who thinks she’s turning into a dog, I knew it would be disturbing. And clearly, that makes it a must read.

Nightbitch, a debut from Rachel Yoder, is the story of a stay-at-home mom living in the middle of the country who starts experiencing physical and emotional manifestations of “canine”. A former artist who worked in a museum, she is struggling with home life and doesn’t fit in with the other SAHM’s who seem to be reveling in motherhood. One day she notices that she’s getting hairier and her canines are sharpening. So begins the journey of the unnamed lady who is concerned that she’s transforming into a dog. Her husband, never home due to travel and work, laughs her concerns off. Her rambunctious two year old son adds to her stress, and plays along with her new canine fixation. To call our solitary protagonist an unreliable narrator is an understatement. Is she really turning into a dog, or is she crazy? Is this a fable? Or was this performance art the whole time and a trick on the reader? You’ll have to read to find out. And while you do, you’ll get some insight into how unrealistic expectations impact women, who must have perfect bodies and be perfect mothers, all while holding down a job. And if they don’t do all the above, they are made to feel like failures or like they owe their husbands and the world something. How feminism was supposed to be about choice and equality, but instead added responsibility to women who are now expected to do it all, or risk criticism. Because the unequal expectations never really went away, men still get paid more, and women still do most of the daily chores.

This is a black comedy that was violent, gross, hilarious, disturbing. and majorly f*cked. There were parts where I actually stopped and gasped “ew” and “wtf” out loud. That being said, I enjoyed it immensely and strongly recommend.

The movie rights to this were picked up by Annapurna Pictures in 2020 before the book was even published. Amy Adams has already signed on so I won’t do a dream cast for this post.