cover image Awards for Good Boys: Tales of Dating, Double Standards, and Doom

Awards for Good Boys: Tales of Dating, Double Standards, and Doom

Shelby Lorman. Penguin, $16 trade paper (208p) ISBN 978-0-14-313431-2

This pithy extension of comedian Lorman’s Instagram account combines illustrations with essays to comment on dating and living among the “good boys”—a label Lorman uses to refer to “the praise we heap on men for meeting the barest of minimums, for avoiding being the Out-right Worst.” Her simple line drawings depict medals and trophies inscribed with such accolades as “Isn’t openly threatened by your competence” and “Interrupts you to make it clear he’s still listening.” These are accompanied by Lorman’s signature wide-mouth faces, mostly of men, but occasionally of women as well, whose exclamations feed into this concept of “goodboydom” (“It’s up to us goodboys to tell other people just how good we are!”). While Lorman’s illustrations take center stage, the written vignettes add personal background that her fans will appreciate: the time a first date disappeared without a word within minutes of meeting her (she thought he had ducked back inside the coffee shop to “take a nervous poop”), and the time she and a group of friends were catcalled, yet she was “respectfully spared” when one of the harassers pointed at her and said, “oh... not you.” Lorman’s Instagram followers will enjoy her commentary on the more subtle side of misogyny. [em](June) [/em]