Isn’t It Beautiful? by Jeffrey J. Manley
This is one hefty pile oâ€™ strips for six bucks. Itâ€™s essentially one year of Manley Days (1/17-05 to 12/31/05) and having these all in one place does the whole thing a world of good. I wasnâ€™t completely sold on it after the first mini collection (if thatâ€™s what youâ€™d call it) but I am now. Yes, it does get a bit schmaltzy at times, or possibly Iâ€™m just too damned cynical and itâ€™s really heartwarming. Either way, he really hits his stride somewhere towards the middle of the book and it just flies from there. My previous grammatical bitches are completely gone, and the only problem with the book aesthetically are the occasional smudged pages, but thatâ€™s rare and itâ€™s a printing problem, not Jeffreyâ€™s fault. If you bought the previous book this one does contain all of those strips, so there are repeats here, but I think itâ€™s smart to have a whole year clumped together like this. A big part of it is dealing with a pregnant wife and new baby, and this diary strip is different from most others in that Jeffrey isnâ€™t even in some of the strips, as he devotes plenty of time to his wife and kids. He obviously dotes on them, or at least doesnâ€™t show us most of the bad stuff if heâ€™s really a horrible father/husband although, having met him a few times, he sure hides that evil side well in person too. His website or the previous book will give you a taste of the strips if youâ€™re not sure of it, but if you are sure this is a pretty good way to spend an hour or so on a lazy afternoon.