If you read my previous blog you’ll know my expectations for receiving the latest issue of Little White Lies was approaching fever pitch, so it was with much pleasure that I found a plain brown envelope on the coffee table upon my arrival home yesterday.
For you see, within it, was the very first issue of Little White Lies that I have ever read – a somewhat strange thought when you consider I’ve just subscribed to it. It was with a mixed feeling of “Oh God, this better be good, I’ve just subscribed” and “It WILL be good” that I opened up the envelope and had my first perusal of the tome.
The first casual flick-through, something I perform on every magazine, assaulted my eyes with visions of loveliness – illustrations, carefully thought out page design and beautiful photographs that I couldn’t wait to explore with more depth. Sadly, I had to cook the tea (isn’t it rubbish when boring stuff like domesticity gets in the way?) and Flashforward (yes, guilty pleasure alert) was starting later… so I reserved it for my train journeys today.
And my my, what fun I had. I read the first third of the mag on my way into work, and was actually looking forward to the train journey back so I could read more – looking forward to commuter sardines rarely happens so much. And what’s more at the end of my journey, I was pretty displeased that I didn’t have a few minutes more with the mag.
So to be succint, and save this blog from a descent into ramblings beyond comprehension, here’s a list of things I liked (and not so much – to be fair) about Little White Lies.
Stuff I liked:
– As previously mentioned, it’s so fantastic to see a magazine that’s been put together by a group of people who so very clearly love what they’re doing and care what we the reader think. This is more like a piece of art than a magazine.
– Illustrations instead of photographs – obviously I love photography, and this mag isn’t short, but it’s nice to see a bit of a mix-up.
– This is like 3 different magazines all in one – you have the in-depthy articles, reviews and then a back bit that’s even printed on different paper, but they all come together too.
– Clearly the theme this month is Spike Jonze in honour of Where the Wild Things Are – the mag managed to string together a bunch of articles stemming from the same theme but isn’t too sycophantic (I particularly enjoyed the feature on advertising agency Mother).
– The three tier rating system is much more comprehensive than the “this is a generalised impression boiled down into a star rating” I’m so used to seeing from the big guys.
Stuff that I didn’t like quite so much:
– What with it being so arty, in some places it can wander into that territory of slightly quirky for quirky’s sake – although not too often to become annoying (see Dazed and Confused et al).
– Some of the fonts were just too hard for my eyes – took me a good few minutes to decipher the different “chapter”(sections, basically) headings, and one in particular was unreadable.
– And to be extremely picky, one of the biggest adverts in the mag is for new film Bright Star – which all over it is plastered praise from other film outlets and magazines – yet their own review is a paltry 1 out of 5. I know that this magazine, not being backed by the behemoth publishing houses needs every penny it can get in advertising revenue, but it would have been icing on the cake to see adverts that reflected the mag’s stance.
To sum up, I will use the rating method of Little White Lies itself:
Anticipation: What with THAT cover, all the good stuff I’d heard, previously reading Huck and the amazingness of the controller of their Twitter account: 5
Enjoyment: Mostly good stuff, not perfect everywhere, but as close as any magazine I’ve read has come to in a good while: 4
In Retrospect: This is a mag that I’ll be keeping on my shelf for a long time, perhaps perusing if I want to feel warm inside by looking at lovely pictures: 5
Not bad eh, this mag is seriously putting Vanity Fair at risk of being ousted as my favourite magazine – pretty good going for a first time read, here’s to the next issue – Roll on December 19.