Cover Image: Unplugged and Unpopular

Unplugged and Unpopular

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Member Reviews

I received a digital ARC via Netgalley from the publisher though all thoughts are my own.

This is the story of a teenager named Erin who spends much of her time on a screen just as most of the people around her do and really wants to fit in with the popular crowd though always seems to be on the edge. When she gets a possible chance, she jumps at it by helping a classmate cheat on a test and as a result, gets in trouble for it by the teacher and her parents are understandable upset.

Grounded from any electronics at home by her parents, Erin starts to notice some weird things such as fuzzy creatures going around her town and people disappearing, including her Grandma who was alive just last week but her parents insist that she died some years back,

Determined to get to the bottom of the mystery, find out why people are disappearing and why she's remembering having a brother though she's pretty sure she's an only kid, will lead to quite the interesting discovery. With the help of an unlikely set of elderly Library twins, her Grandma (who really isn't dead) and a group of other elderly people who aren't interested in having their faces in screens, Erin will find herself on a crazy adventure and will meet aliens who have a sinister reason for being on Earth.

This was full of mystery, humor, unlikely heroes, an adorable cast of elderly people and the importance of believing in yourself. It was so much fun to read this book and I'm so glad that I got a chance to. I highly recommend checking this out which reads fairly quickly and what's not to love about elders being part of the hero group?!
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Short and sweet. Young middle schoolers will identify with the main character.  The tech savvy kids will get the storyline and this cute comic right away.
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Cute art style and a plot that I really can see my sisters really enjoying!
The plot eye-catching as well as funny! I can see kids liking it
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I unfortunately was unable to read this book before it was archived. But I look forward to grabbing a copy.
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I unfortunately was unable to read this book before it was archived. But I look forward to grabbing a copy.
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In this book, we follow Erin who ends up being grounded and gets all her technology confiscated. She then starts to realise that strange creatures are trying to take over the Earth .

Although I was not the target audience for this book, I absolutely enjoyed it.
I loved the colours and the art style of the comic. The plot is easy to follow and can be enjoyed by everyone, no matter how old you are.
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What’s a kid to do when the ‘rents (parents) place you on punishment and take away ALL of your tech devices?! No phone. No tablet. No computer. How ever will you survive in this day and age with no technology? No social media. Erin has an assignment due for school which requires research. What do her parents suggest? The library. However, there are strange things afoot in town and in the library, and Erin is able to see this because she is no longer tied to the digital world. Erin, along with the librarians, and a few others set out to right the wrongs and save the town…and maybe the world.
The graphics are well done and colorful. The characters are fun and easy to root for, and the story line is appealing. It will definitely capture the attention of tween readers. I can’t wait to see if there will be s sequel to this one. Thank you to NetGalley, the author and publisher for the opportunity to review this book.
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Thank you to Netgalley and publisher for release of this review copy!


Our main character is living in a world taken over by technology and popularity but when not fitting in is an option and you are sent to detention and you have everything taken away from you so you and you don't have the social media world to entertain you - there are thing in the library that will always fill your world. Who knows, even aliens may live there!!!! SO much fun!
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I'm not the audience for this. Don't get me wrong: I like middle-grade books. But they have to be done well. This is insulting to the reader's intelligence... especially if the reader is over five years old.

Erin is a typical tween. She's fixated on her phone all day, every day. When a popular girl asks her to help her cheat, they get caught. Erin's parents take away her phone privileges. Unplugged from the world, she discovers a plot involving aliens who are trying to take over the world using mind-control technology broadcast through people's devices.

Now, that doesn't sound so bad in theory... but in practice, it's all wrong. The aliens look like purple terriers, speak perfect English, and are kind of stupid (even though they claim to be super smart). Apparently, humans are the strongest beings in the universe (oh, really?) as well as the least intelligent (uh huh...) so the aliens want to create a human-alien hybrid that's both super strong and super smart so they can take over everything. That's literally their only goal: conquest. (But if they think humans are the strongest and dumbest beings in existence, then I'd question their own intelligence.)

The copy I read was really rough, but I still got the gist. Young people are misguided, technology is evil, and old-people are overlooked gems who are going to save the world. In fact, the world was literally saved by one of the old people (and not the main character) in the most laughably convenient way possible (she literally walked into a room and found the villain and the means for defeating it sitting out in the open; I mean, who needs an epic struggle?). To make matters worse, the character actually comments, "Well, this is convenient." Uh... you think?

I think what I find the most disturbing is that the ridiculous plot seems like it would appeal to kids who are around 5 or 6. But they're not the ones who need to hear the message to put their phones down (I hope). What kid wants to read about their grandparents saving the world? Erin does little in that respect; she's more of a foil than a main character. And yet, she takes all the credit in the end.

This just didn't work for me. I'm not sure it would work even if the plot weren't so ridiculous. The message is too heavy-handed and the tone is a bit preachy. I don't think tech-obsessed kids are going to love this... no matter how much their tech-weary parents (and grandparents) might want them to.
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Thank you NetGalley for providing me an uncorrected proof/copy of this graphic novel in exchange for an honest review!

First off, when reviewing graphic novels, I usually talk about the art style first. I must admit this one is not really my favorite art style compared to others I've read, but it still is pretty okay, and colorful. I guess the style suits the story really well as we get to see some action, and we have a young MC (Erin), in which her world can be portrayed best in colorful environment.

As for the plot, it was actually a weird plot, although I don't know if that's a good thing or not. The story is so crazy weird that I couldn't help but crack a smile. I'm not a huge fan of the MC as I couldn't relate to her personality - she purposely ignores her grandma, and is not a very kind to whatever-her-friends-name-is. I also felt like this book wanted to talk about a lot of things - popularity, friendship, school, family, technology, old people, aliens - that it felt squeezed between the pages.  There were so many elements that it kind of felt unnecessary at some point. I usually feel this way with graphic novels as, obviously, there would be less pages and less chances to tell a story as compared to a novel.
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This was a great graphic novel about technology taking over our world.

In this story, Erin gets grounded, and has all of her electronic devices taken away. She can’t use her phone, computer, or even TV. She was already unpopular at school, so this just made her social life even worse. However, since she wasn’t plugged into the devices, she discovered that aliens were actually brainwashing and abducting humans through their phones. It turned out to be a good thing that she had a break from her devices.

Erin works with her grandmother and two elderly men to save Earth from the aliens. The police wouldn’t listen to the old people because they thought they were crazy. They also wouldn’t listen to Erin because she was young. This shows that even though someone may be young or old, you shouldn’t dismiss what they’re saying because it could be important.

I loved this graphic novel!

Thank you Oni Press for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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Thos is a cute middle grade graphic novel. The main character is likeable,(and surprise has two parents) as are the other characters.  There does seem to be a bit of old people phobia. But all in all, a cute book.
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I liked the premise of this cute graphic novel aimed at tweenagers. The beginning was very relatable. Popularity is important when you are at this age, and being unpopular is seen as the end of the world. So I could understand Erin’s desire to get into the good books of Wendy, the most popular girl at Erin’s school. When Erin gets busted for helping Wendy to cheat, her parents ground her and ban the use of all electronic devices. Again, very relatable. The rest of the story is fun with a clear message: there is more to life than our phones and tablets, and we need to unplug ourselves from time to time to make sure we control our lives, and not our devices.
The artwork is fun and quirky, with bright bold colours that add to the overall effect.
Thank you to NetGalley and Oni Press for the review copy provided in exchange for an honest opinion.
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A decent concept if a bit goofy. The plot makes a kind of internal sense, It's just sort of sloppy. THe plot is loose, making a couple of logical leaps. The characters are not especially well developed. And the message is especially heavy-handed.
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A digital graphic comic.

It’s aimed at Tweens but it does seem a bit on the daft side at times.
However the concept is acceptable because we have this girl who so much wants to be liked and accepted. But, she gets herself into trouble at school.

The results of that is for her parents to remove all her devices.

That surely in this day and age would peeve any child off.

But she discovers a whole bunch of things since not being able to use her technology devices!

Fun, entertaining and I can see Tweens enjoying this.
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'Unplugged and Unpopular' by Mat Heagerty with illustrations by Tintin Pantoja and Mike Amante is a graphic novel aimed at tweens showing how staring at screens might be evil.

Erin Song lives in a very connected world.  She wants to be popular, so she makes a bad choice.  That leads her parents to ban her from devices, but she discovers something insidious happening around her.  When she tries to tell her friends and family, they won't believe her.  Who can she get to help stop this plot?

I like the idea of this story, but I felt disappointed in the execution.  The plot deals with our addiction to devices, but the people who are not addicted seem to be weird and build kind of dumb solutions.  The art worked ok for the story and I liked it quite a bit. 

I received a review copy of this graphic novel from Oni Press and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you for allowing me to review this ebook.
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A great modern graphic novel about the power of technology and how dependent humans are.

Perfect for younger generations to learn about the dangers of letting technology consume us.
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It felt a little bit rushed, but I really enjoyed the concept. I adored the cool art and it was a fun ride all in all.
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My thanks to Oni Press for a digital edition via NetGalley of ‘Unplugged and Unpopular’ written by Mat Heagerty and illustrated by Tintin Pantoja and Mike Amante in exchange for an honest review.

Teenager Erin Song is perpetually glued to her phone. She’s not popular at school but longs to be. When she is pressured by a popular student to help them cheat on a test, she gets caught. Her parents ground her for a month. Erin moodily complains that her parents don’t remember what it’s like to be young; so they decide that she can experience what it was like for them. So no devices, no internet for a month. 

Erin is already unpopular and now is unplugged!

She discovers that a group of furry purple aliens have invaded Los Angeles and have been using electronic devices to brainwash people into not seeing them as well as forgetting the people that they have abducted.

So Erin along with her grandmother and two old gents who run the local library have to find a way to stop them.

This was such a fun premise and I was delighted by the SF storyline. The artwork is colourful and playful. Its message about the value of taking time away from the Internet and the importance of family is a timely one.

I feel that it will have appeal for its target audience of 10-14 year olds though I am sure any age might enjoy it for its quirky humour.
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Despite the first page, where books were disparaged (part of the plot, I know, but it still irked), this book ended up being quite cute and had a rather powerful, if sometimes subtle, message.  The obvious message, look up from your screen devices once in a while to see the reality of the world around you.  The subtle one?  Older people ROCK and shouldn't be ignored just because they are old.  Old doesn't mean useless or stupid.  Honestly, I think that message is just as important, if not more so, than the don't become dependent on your screens.  

I really enjoyed the bright colors and the artwork and the storyline was important, but gotten across in a fun and not so serious it bores way.  This is the first in what appears to be a series and I would definitely like to read the next one when it comes out.  It has a middle/young high school vibe, with popularity being so important to the main character and the violence is somewhat silly, so I would say appropriate for younger readers on up.  

3.5 stars, rounded up to 4, because it grew on me and was cute, silly and serious all at the same time.  Ironically, I'm posting my review into the interwebs, where it will be read on screened devices, but the book is available in book form, so there is that!

My thanks to NetGalley and Oni Press for an eARC copy of this book to read and review.
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