worrier's guide to lifeI love webcomics, but I have a horrid problem with keeping up with them on a daily basis. I’ll go a few weeks giving them all of my attention and then completely get distracted by something else. This binge-and-ignore pattern is on a self-repeating cycle, so when I realize that there is a print BOOK of a webcomic or a comic that I can only find online, I get really excited! I’ll actually be able to read all of it!

The Worrier’s Guide to Life is my latest online-comic-to-print discovery that can be found in the nonfiction 800s section. Gemma Correll, the author and illustrator, has a website that highlights her sketches, lets us see into her studio where she creates all of her magic drawings, and my favorite part: she even illustrated whole days of her life and posted them! (If you’re looking to stay up-to-date with Correll’s life and drawings, she’s moved almost exclusively to her Tumblr page where she posts things she finds funny and also where she will be doing events! Yay!)

The Worrier’s Guide to Life is a collection of illustrations that Correll has put together highlighting the daily struggles of any and every over-thinker. They’re all so relatable! If you’re on social media a lot, like I am, you may even notice that some of her illustrations have been posted all over Facebook and Tumblr. She covers anything and everything you could possibly over-think about: health, fashion, food, love, traveling, holidays, modern problems, and there’s even an extra special section for all those grown-up worries we find ourselves obsessing about. One of my favorite parts of this book is that Gemma creates lists of advice and information about life to help us all feel better by showing us that things could always be worse. Lists of “Reward Stickers for Grown-Ups”, some non-committal Valentine’s cards if you’re just not sure about the relationship that you are in, and a new list of what the different kind of flowers you could be receiving or giving really mean! Check out this book to laugh about all the crazy advice Gemma has gathered for you in one tiny package.

introverts in loveFinding love is difficult for anyone, especially for those of us who would rather stay home where it’s quiet than go out to bars and shows to meet up with people. Sophia Dembling has chosen to address this issue in her book, Introverts in Love: The Quiet Way to Happily Ever After.

Dembling says that she wrote this book as a way to provide introverts a list of things to think about as they try to find their happily after. The items she discusses in this book as meant to be a buffet of information: pick and choose what applies to you because not everything she writes is going to apply to every introvert. Dembling discusses the mistakes introverts can make in relationships, as well as providing some solutions for those mistakes. She also talks about why some introverts seek other introverts to spend their lives with, while others are instead drawn to extroverts. Dembling continuously reiterates that this is a book for introverts and that extroverts will most likely find themselves underrepresented here since extroverts are the ones that usually do not have trouble representing themselves in the dating scene.

The inclusion of interviews from introverts from a wide variety of backgrounds will provide other introverts, like myself, with the necessary confidence to discuss how we need solitude in relationships, to articulate how we handle conflict differently than our boisterous counterparts, and to hopefully help us describe our feelings on socializing versus staying home.

Interested in learning more about what makes introverts tick? Check out Dembling’s first book about introverts, The Introvert’s Way: Living a Quiet Life in a Noisy World, which maps as a general guide to life as an introvert.

grace's guideGrace’s Guide: The Art of Pretending to be a Grown-Up is a guide for anyone and everyone who needs help in any situation (broad description, but hang on, I promise it will make sense). The author of this book is Grace Helbig, the host of it’sGrace, a YouTube vlog(video+blog) where Grace enthralls viewers with everything from quirky food recipes, teaching people how to fall down in public, to even taking a good hard look at how the President chooses to dress himself. She might also be familiar to you as a guest star on Hannah Hart’s vlog, My Drunk Kitchen (check out Hannah’s book, My Drunk Kitchen).

In Grace’s Guide: The Art of Pretending to be a Grown-Up, Grace talks her readers through the little tips that she wished someone would have told her when she was in college, dealing with anxiety, trying to be a good party guest, making adult friends, and dealing with all the aspects of friend and significant-other relationships. Some of her advice ranges from the quirky (don’t get stuck with the pet at the party), the painful (make peace with the idea of failing when asking someone out – realize it might happen, then get over it!), and the helpful (get out of the house and be around other humans after a break-up). This book is broken up into multiple sections about a variety of different scenarios that people who are trying to be grown-ups will face on a daily basis. In addition to her advice, Grace imparts “Mom’s Words of Wisdom,” handy acronyms for you to remember the advice she just gave you, and even little worksheets for you to fill out.

Grace tackles difficult topics that need to be talked about in such a fun and entertaining manner that readers don’t even realize that she’s actually helping.

Tara Parker-Pope decided to gather all the science and research about marriage and relationships into one book. Her impetus was the failure of her own marriage; she wanted to know if she could have done anything  to prevent her divorce.

This self-help book is unusual in that the author isn’t spinning conjecture; her “advice” is all based on research. Some of the most interesting studies were about arguments; turns out the subject matter and frequency is less important than the level of scorn.  She also warns that the first three minutes of an argument are critical. The outcome can be less damaging, the more open and less explosive you are.

For Better is full of practical advice about how differences in financial style, child rearing and household chores affect a relationship.

Often, commonly held wisdom was not found to be the case in real life. Very useful for long-married and newly married couples.

Let’s face it.  What most graduates want (and get) is money.  Hard, cold cash.  Not microwaves, techno gadgets or pillows for the dorm, but dollars with which they can select their own microwaves, techno gadgets and pillows for the dorm.

Still, if you’re looking for something a little more meaningful or sentimental, there’s plenty of inspirational, faith-based guides available.  Rick Warren’s The Purpose Driven Life comes to mind.  It’s subtitle is, “What on Earth am I Here for?” so it’s appropriate for any age group, not just graduates.

If you’d rather pick a more secular title, something that has credible advice, but with a short enough format that most teens will still actually read it, try Maria Shriver’s And One More thing Before You Go.  It’s only 61 pages long and has 10 quick chapters, including these topics:

  • Learn from your mistakes
  • Have a little gratitude
  • Keep a childlike quality

Interestingly enough, it ends with advice from teenage girls to their moms.  Hmmm, perhaps that’s really the intended audience all along!

A final suggestion is What I Know: Uncommon Wisdom and Universal Truths from 10-year olds and 100-year olds. by Roger Emerson Fishman.  This small, square gift book has lots of photos and could be enjoyed by both young and old.