Book Review: “Something New: Tales From a Makeshift Bride”

In between bottles, story time, and laundry I juggle a lot of projects. Picking up a book in the middle of the day while the baby naps is not realistic, but both my husband and I find the time to read just before bed. No matter how late it is when we finally make it up to bed, we pick up our respective books for a few minutes. So when a new Mom friend recommended a graphic novel about wedding planning it jumped to the top of my reading list.

“Something New: Tales From a Makeshift Bride” by Lucy Knisley

“Something New: Tales From a Makeshift Bride” by Lucy Knisley is a graphic novel about falling in love, and planning (and/or making) a wedding. I had never read a graphic novel before and a graphic novel about wedding planning is probably an unlikely choice for a first. There’s no biologically altered superhero, and no villain. But like some of my favorite comic books it does have a love story.

In fact, Lucy and John’s love story was what I loved most about “Something New”. It’s the origin story; how the wedding came to be. Lucy’s honest account of her own, modest love story included details that paralleled my own love story. My husband and I met online, as did Lucy and John. Lucy’s account of online dating is remarkable similar to my own: Navigating back-to-back dates, awkward goodbyes, surprisingly effective profile pictures and a sense of pride that this all happened in the days before Tinder. (Yay!)

My Match.com profile pic from 2011, or how I first wooed Steve.

Lucy and her now husband also had differing opinions on starting (or in my case expanding) a family something my husband and I also went through. Her account of their Conversation (capital ‘C’ much appreciated) and everything surrounding it was a surprising comfort to me.

Fast-forwarding from first date to the proposal, Lucy’s recap of planning, making, and organizing her wedding is a breath of fresh air. Whether you are years into your marriage, newly engaged or a wedding guest in the midst of “wedding season” her whimsical illustrations and down-to-earth storytelling will keep you smiling. Maybe you will laugh out loud, as I did, at her account of the Midwest’s transition from Winter to Spring, or, maybe find yourself thinking out loud, “I can’t decide if making neckties from scratch is genius or crazy…”

It’s important to remember, and this book does a great job in reminding us, that wedding planning is a rollercoaster of emotions. Not only for the bride and groom but for both families too. If your team, tribe or squad is supportive and understanding you’ll be smiling at the end of the ride, just like Lucy. In reading “Something New” it was nice to be reminded of who went along for the ride with us as my husband and I planned our wedding.

To those of you thinking of reading before or during the process of planning of a wedding, I say: Do it! Lucy’s observations on all the crazy will keep you grounded, or give you an amazing idea for escort cards.