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May 02, 2008



Great in-depth review. I really enjoyed reading it. Thanks.


As a librarian, I'm suspicious of this book... [I agree with everything you say about its surface message (like, that moms who decide to undergo cosmetic surgery, need their child's approval on some level, guilt-relief, confidence reinforcement, etc.) AND about The Swan!]--I just suspect that it's so cheaply done, that it was done to prompt a media feed ["look at this unbelievable book!...can you believe this exists? ...this is horrible!...society is so screwed up!"] that would prompt sales whether from those sincerely interested in the substance ("look! this represents me, finally...") or [more likely, in my opinion] those acting on the purchasing-in-irony tendency ("look! this is SO unbelievable!" "omg, I've GOT to buy this, to show it to everyone--it's unbelievable!") ...I've seen a tiny buzz around this title--and none of it has been positive--but there's that 'no publicity is bad publicity' rule, right? It's gotten way more buzz than any other small-press unknown author/illustrator book I can think of.

Just look at the illustration style of the cover: no hyper-body-attentive-plastic-surgery-user that I can imagine would want to look like that--or have her daughter look like that. [excuse the intended irony here, but] they are both a bit too fat for 2008. and their hair is awful. they also look stupid. and the technicolor-pink-and-sparkles look is almost maing fun of itself. ugh--and on a serious-not-ironic note, the drawing style & printing is just SO low-quality. I would bet that this was intended for a tiny burst of purchase (for novelty/irony impulsive buyers)--and no more--no matter how many "doctors" are explaining it and backing it up/no matter how the author defends it as contemporarily relevant.

I imagine they've (they=author/illus./publisher/marketing) achieved their short-sighted goal--and it's a problem that's related to, but distinct from, the superficial issue of women-and-body in society....and we've fed it.

I love your blog. & hi to lyn (former student :) )

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