Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Hipster Puppies / by Christopher R. Weingarten

You may not be able to judge a book by its cover, but you can sure sell one. Likely the case with more than a few titles like this one. The "author" of this pictorial isn't quite as exploitative as he seems and his real jokes are actually better than his photo captions. A music critic and author out of Brooklyn whose work has appeared in The Village Voice among other things, Weingarten is something of an authority on certain things hipster. His blog chronicles some of his more in-depth work of observing pop culture, mainly the incorporation of the canine species into the world of hipsterdom. The intro might actually his best bit, "Welcome to Hipster Puppies, the inaugural recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for Snarky Animal-based Captions, Toilet-Tank Division... Traditionally, the people of my era use this time to rapidly flip throught the pages and mutter indignantly about how they could have just as easily written this [expletive].". Most of the dogs featured aren't actually puppies. But that wouldn't have been such a drawback if the pictures and especially the captions were better, or at least funnier. Then the book could have really taken off at the level of so many of its ilk like Snog: A Puppy's Guide to Love (636.700222 HALE) or Best Friends Forever (779.25 HALE), both by author Rachel Hale whose similar photo books are tremendously popular. The dogs, all of them personal pets from Weingarten's friends, aren't especially well-adorned enough to be really eye-catching and the cartoonish, Far Side-esque captions don't reach quite the appeal-level needed. But everyone should have their own opinion which is why books like this are always worth a browse through. (636.700222 WEINGART)

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