Yes, you’ve thought about reading a book. Maybe you even downloaded the Kindle app to your phone. But then you thought, “None of these big grown up books have pictures. What a bummer. Oh, never mind.”
But, wait! Don’t give up! Shoshanah Marohn’s books have pictures! Even the adult ones. And they aren’t naughty pictures, either. Just nice pictures.
What’s more, while Shoshanah went off partying for the big weekend, I, Crazy Hanahshosh, have highjacked this site and her Amazon publishing account, and all of her kindle books are free this weekend! So you can just download and read! Friday, Saturday, and Sunday!
Because, that’s how I, Crazy Hanahshosh roll. The books for free are:
“It’s like Jack Kerouac meets a nicer, more whimsical Hunter S. Thompson…” -Chris Wagoner
Eighteen-year-old Shoshanah travels across the country by Greyhound bus, with only her Grace Kelly coat and her Elements of Style book to protect her. Original art work adds to this eccentric tale of travel on the cheap in 1993. Both terrifying and hilarious, this ill-conceived road trip is doomed from the start. It’s funny because it’s 99% true.
It’s Paris like you’ve never seen it- ugly, unromantic, and hilarious.
Pure as newly driven snow, three teenaged girls arrive in Paris, with little money and a large passion for art (especially art where lots of people die gruesome and terrible deaths). Immediately, they are constantly propositioned by men. Everywhere. Anything they do, men ask to have sex with them. They don’t say hello or how are you, they just ask to have sex with them. Why do the French men like them so much? What is wrong with these people who won’t let you walk ten feet without asking to have sex with you? Will the three of them even survive the trip? Sketch drawings of every Frenchman who approached them complete the hysterical telling of this ill-fated tale.
and one children’s book:
Take a fantastical journey to the grocery store in this intriguing picture book! Murgatroyd Buttercups is a unique girl with a unique way of doing things. Follow her on grocery day, as she sling shots her way into Simple Town, where things aren’t quite the way you might expect them to be. Children and adults of all ages will enjoy this book. Reading level is about third grade, but with all the pictures, it would be a good one to read out loud to younger children. The book is 86 pages long, but still small enough to fit in a large sock.
Enjoy the reading! I’m going back to sleep with my tiger.
So far I’ve got:
- William Shakespeare
- Christopher Marlowe
- Walt Whitman
- Allen Ginsberg
- Shel Silverstein
- Alfred Lord Tennyson
- Henry David Thoreau
- Rabindranath Tagore
- Dante Gabriel Rossetti
- D.H. Lawrence
- Luís Vaz de Camóes
- Jim Morrison
- Robert Browning
And a recommendation to read this (formerly) obscure book:
All of this is, of course, for Birds in Beards 2: Dead Poets Edition, a new coloring book for adults. (No matter how great I make it, I don’t think I could ever make it cooler looking than Poets Ranked by Beard Weight.)
Is there a dead poet whom you would like to see drawn with a bird in his beard? If so, it is time now to leave his name in the comments section.
My cousin Greg took his own life a few days ago. If I made a list of one hundred people I knew, ranking from “most likely to commit suicide” to “least likely,” Greg would have been about 97. He was so comfortable with himself. He had a great (if wicked) sense of humor. He had a loud and bizarre laugh. He was one of a kind.
His friends called him “Dallass,” but I never did. Partly because I first met him when he was five and I was ten, at a family picnic. He ran up to me and screamed, “I’M GREGORY PAUL TICKERHOOF!” and ran away before I could answer him. So, I always called him Greg. He just called me, “Cuz.” Which was fine.
My favorite memory of him was just a few years ago, when I killed two raccoons on our farm. (The raccoons were killing our turkeys.) I skinned the raccoons, because I felt bad for killing them, and I didn’t want their pelts to go to waste. It was terrible, and I did not tan the hides well. At all. I visited Greg in his trailer in Western Pennsylvania, and I just mentioned the raccoon skins in passing, telling him how terrible I was at tanning hides. Greg was like,
“I’d like those ‘coon skins, Cuz! Send them to me!”
“Are you sure? I’m not kidding when I say I’m bad at tanning.”
“Oh, yeah! Send them!”
I drove home, and by the time I got back to Wisconsin, he had already messaged me three times about sending the raccoon skins. So, I mailed them to him. The skins weren’t really tanned; they were just dried with salt. Also, they didn’t have much hair on them, because I had killed them in summer, which is the wrong season to hunt for hides. I sent them to Greg anyway, thinking that once he saw the state they were in, he would just throw them away.
A week later, I got a Facebook notification that Greg had tagged me in a picture.
He had tacked those two coon skins onto his trailer wall, in the living room. He used thumb tacks to put them up on the dark paneling. It was this grainy, awful picture, and he had tagged me as one of the raccoon skins. I was MORTIFIED. There it was, for all the world to see, my trailer park roots. But I couldn’t untag myself, because Greg was so clearly excited, and he wrote something really nice with the picture, like,
“Just got the coon skins! Luv you, cuz!”
Or something equally nice.
I just had to make peace with the fact that my hipster friends would know my true roots.
As far as I know, he kept the raccoon skins on his wall.
I just tried to find the picture on Facebook of the raccoon skins, but finding a picture from five years ago on Facebook was impossible. I did find this video of him.
Ladies and gentlemen, there have been great explorers. There was Merriweather Lewis, exploring the great American West. There was Vasco de Gama, sailing the world. And then there was Dallass Gregory Paul Tickerhoof, finding where the crick ends (also known as, “Christmas in July Trailer Park Special”):
Rest in Peace, Cuz.
No, I didn’t spell “autism” wrong. I’m talking about artism. If you relate to any of this list, you are most likely on the artistic spectrum.
Ten Signs You Might Be Artistic:
- You make art. Or you write, or you do music, or you act, or you see your life is some sort of strange performance art.
- You don’t understand people who want to learn the thing you do. (Because it’s not something you want to do, it’s just something you do do. If you are going to do the thing, if you were meant to do the thing, you do do the thing. It’s a compulsion.)
- You’re a mess. Literally. Artistic people are often messy.
- You wondered (and still kind of wonder) if Donald Trump ran for president as some sort of long form performance art, and he’s just as surprised as you are that he is now president. (Because you always assume that, in any situation, someone is doing some sort of long form performance art.)
- Incompetent artists really bother you, especially the ones who do the same thing you do. And most especially when they are successful with the masses! That’s just a knife in the heart.
- When people say, “you’re so creative!” it’s really annoying, isn’t it? What do you do with a comment like that? How could anyone be alive without being creative in some way?
- You feel badly if you don’t make art or do that creative thing you do. You start to go crazy without it.
- Your art is not something you need people to compliment you over. It is gratifying unto itself.
- When people give you really simple, clear instructions, you don’t believe that anything can be simple and clear, and you read elaborate (and untrue) messages into the clear, normal instructions. And it makes life so hard. So very, very hard.
- You see beauty everywhere.
What’s your irrational fear? This is mine.
This one is for Valette.
I read and reread the past four Tufa books very carefully, looking for things that would create beautiful scenes in a coloring book. (I drew The Tufa Coloring Book.) So, I was relieved recently to crack open Alex Bledsoe’s latest book, Gather Her Round, and just, you know. Read it.
Having read the previous four so closely further enriched my reading experience of the fifth. I knew what to expect, and when I found it, it was comfortable and cozy. And then when the unexpected happened, that made it all the more exciting.
Gather Her Round has all of the elements which made me love the other Tufa novels:
– The magical forest as a setting.
– The strong female characters.
– The songs.
– The tribal rituals elevated to a higher level of intelligence.
– The outsider discovering the Tufa for the first time.
– Rednecks as real, relatable people.
– The clash between the two Tufa groups.
– Riding the night winds!
All that, and more, of course. Gather Her Round most notably also has a mythical beast, really more of a horror story type beast, but written without excessive gore. We don’t know if the wild boar is a normal pig escaped from a farm, or something conjured by a haint, or if it’s, as the fortune teller says, “mostly real,” but not entirely. Perhaps the Night Winds conjured it? The mystery of the whole thing kept me reading. And then there was also the guilt of not really killing someone, and not really not killing someone. It made for a good story, well told.
Oh, and it’s a story within a story, one of my favorite things! (cue Julie Andrews) The whole tale is told by a Tufa keeping everyone on the edge of their seats at a storytelling event.