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REVIEW: I Hate You, Please Die #1

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REVIEW: I Hate You, Please Die #1

4.02/5.0 Stars
Rating if the Book Were a Movie: R

Creative Team:

Writer: Garrett Gunn
Artist: Malia Ewart
Letters: Dave Lentz
Editor: Christina Blanch
Publisher: Four Color Fiends

Ratings:

Story: 4.1 Stars
Artwork: 3.7 Stars
Cover Artwork: 3.8 Stars
Dialogue: 4.3 Stars
Mechanics: 4.2 Stars
Editing: 4.0 Stars 

About the Book:

I Hate You, Please Die #1 introduces us to a high school student named Gabe Kempis. Gabe is constantly being bullied at school.He isn’t one of the cool kids. He isn’t a jock. Gabe’s the kid that  spends lunch in the cafeteria with his token friend or two playing deck building tabletop games. Life at home isn’t much better for him. Gabe’s mother is abusive and has unrealistic expectations.

One day Gabe reaches his tipping point and kills himself. Instead of the afterlife, Gabe finds himself right where he was. The difference being that he has a visitor. Lucifer offers to make a deal: Gabe’s soul in exchange for anything that he wants. Gabe decides what he wants and takes the deal. The next morning he wakes up thinking he had the strangest dream. Life at school will never be the same.

Reader’s Notes:

High school bullying has been an issue for decades. Some parents have the mindset that the teachers should be better at monitoring the school grounds. Teachers can’t be everywhere or hear everything.

I have a son that was subjected to bullying at school. There were no teachers in the hallway he was repeatedly hit, kicked, and tripped in. The bullies had the wherewithal to know exactly where the blind spot for the cameras in that hallway was. When my son reported what was happening, the principal said that because they couldn’t see it on camera, it clearly wasn’t happening.

What’s worse is when the bully’s parents know it is happening and choose to do nothing. They’re of the opinion that they were picked on in high school and turned out just fine. If you’re okay with your kid verbally abusing and physically assaulting another student, clearly you’re not fine.

I loved how Mr. Gunn did not pull any punches in I Hate You, Please Die #1. He gives the reader a front row seat to the hellish existence some high school students live. He shows how even if teachers see what is happening all they do is put an end to that round of it.

If a teacher is aware that something is happening they must be more proactive about stepping in to permanently put a stop to things. Otherwise the bullying gets progressively worse until it’s to the point where something boils over.

The individual being picked on elects to choose violence. Be it in the form of self harm or severe harm to the bully, it will be over. This is part of why some teens take their own lives or, even worse, go on a shooting spree at school.

No matter what kids want to talk about, parents must listen. They must do this without judgment. The topic may not matter to you; but it does to that child. If your kid doesn’t believe that they can talk to you about little things, they certainly won’t come to you about big things.

If your child is being bullied they can get help by texting HOME to 741741.

You can reach the suicide hotline by calling or texting 988.

I enjoyed this cover. With the bold red lettering and terrific artwork it stands out in the crowd. It makes you take a second look, which creates intrigue. At that point people are going to want to see what the book is about.

The interior artwork looks like a collection of animation cells. It’s perfect for some of the jokes we see along the way. Given the graphic nature of this book, I am grateful that this is the artistic style we’re getting this content in. There are some things we don’t need a vivid picture of.

As a geek on a budget I believe I Hate You, Please Die is a must read for anyone that is a parent of teens or preteen children. There are teachable moments that can make an impact on everyone’s lives.

You can get your copy of I Hate You, Please Die #1 and the second installment at:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/fourcolorfiends/i-hate-you-please-die-2

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I grew up loving all things geek. I started reading and collecting comics when I was 8. My personal collection has roughly 8,000 books in it. When I’m not doing something geek-related I love spending time with my amazing wife and kids, gaming, and working on cross stitch projects.

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