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Hugs and Misses: 30 Postcards of Awkward…
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Hugs and Misses: 30 Postcards of Awkward Romance

by Wilhelm Staehle

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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Wilhelm (pseudonym of Will) Staehle's silhouette artwork is described by Quirk Books as sarcastic and by Staehle as macabre. The comics really are best described as cute and punny. There's little of the sarcasm of Anne Taintor or even of the millennial snark of those ubiquitous someecards, both of which poke fun at social conformity and misplaced nostalgia for a past that never was.

Staehle tries to do this, but his comedy is gentler, less overt. A waiter asks a woman, "Dining alone again tonite [sic], Miss?" That's the problem with dating the Invisible Man. Maid Marian: "Would you like to make out?" Robin Hood: "Sherwood." A disgruntled bat rates its blind date experience as "never again."

Staehle is more successful at social commentary in his other collection, Stars and Swipes, but there's nothing in it that equals Gary Larsen's aged Lone Ranger. Nobel Peace Prize winner Teddy Roosevelt is surrounded by big game he's shot. Patrick Henry proclaims, "Give me liberty, or give me DEATH!" His friend pipes up, "Just liberty for me!" The 'B' in Susan B. Anthony "stands for badass." George III doesn't view the colonies as a threat because "sequels are rarely better than the original."

Staehle's work is quirky, but it sometimes is too insistent that it means something. The concept is better when it's viewed as a gag. Both Hugs and Misses and Stars and Swipes are well-made, stocking stuffer-sized gift books. These are fun, pretty postcards, and there are chuckles to be had.

NB: This review originally was entered on LT on 11/21/14 and was reentered, without edits, on 8/16/16. ( )
  LibraryPerilous | Aug 16, 2016 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I received this through the early reviewers contest. This is a very cute and funny book. It is made up of postcards with various classical paintings on them and then silhouettes cut out of different shapes placed over them with cute and funny sayings. All based on romance. You can keep it as a book or cut out the cards to actually mail. This is the second book like this I received by this author, Wilhelm Staehle, and I found this one cuter and funnier than the last although I can't really say why. ( )
  hredwards | Oct 25, 2015 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Not only did I get Hugs and Misses, which by itself is wonderful, I also received Stars and Swipes. Both postcard books are gorgeous and hilarious! I love the pictures and humor, how they're set up to look serious and artistic, but then also funny zingers. I had to look at them with my family because I found myself saying repeatedly, "Read this one! And this one!". I don't know if I'll ever bring myself to using one as an actual postcard, I want to keep them all to myself. I will definitely be keeping tabs on Wilhelm Staehle to see what else he has in store! ( )
  book_in_hand | Dec 5, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Stars & Swipes (Postcards of Awkward Americana) came packaged for review along with Hugs & Misses (Postcards of Awkward Romance). Both are beautifully packaged postcards, enveloped in a self-closing box. The cards themselves are heavy duty, shiny on the art side and matte on the writing side, with the enclosed instructions: Select card, Add postage, Locate postbox. I used to buy exactly collections like this of paintings when I'd visit museum gift shops.

My consumption of postcards has decreased of late, with the advent of email & texting. More's the pity, as I believe we all need to maintain our handwriting skills.

Staehle has maintained his skills, that's for sure. I've never seen such intricate and inventive silhouettes. Inverted, so to speak, as they are white against a darker often landscape-y background, the better to letter the jokes in. The artwork is glorious, the jokes have a wider range of quality, from the wordplay (two deer in a wood, caption: Deerly Beloved; a unicycle & a bicycle, caption: Bi-curious) to the reaches (three dogs & a teapot, caption: the Boston (Terrier) Tea Party or the cutout of the Liberty Bell, caption: Please set your ringtone to silent. Corny, with puns, some slightly salacious.

Oh, and if not in the mail, they can also be greeting cards or enclosures with gifts, for those whose humor is compatible. Thank you for the chance to see these. Will visit his website more. ( )
  ReneeGKC | Nov 27, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Staehle's art work uses white silhouettes of the character speaking, which creates a blank space to fill in with the words, so you have a card titled "Victorian Girls Gone Wild" that is a silhouette of two modestly dressed girls showing their ankles.
The humor ranges from clever stuff that you'd like to tear out and mail, to puns. ( )
  mstrust | Nov 25, 2014 |
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