I wish I had the words to describe what Kate Beaton's humor is like. It's sort of absurd, highly unexpected and laced with an undertone of trying to teach you things (I know, right?) But trying to actually encapsulate why it's so hilarious to someone who hasn't read it before is an impossible task. You pretty much have to grab one of your favorite strips and hold it out to them and be like "This. This is why it's awesome."
And since it's so hard to describe the humor, it's pretty much impossible for me to explain why this is a hard 5-star book for me, other than that I find the humor to be actually laugh out loud funny and delve into things I didn't think of. From her jaded, cigarette-smoking Wonder Woman to historical figures hoping the people they hate will kill one another to the Strong Female Characters, explaining the strips doesn't sound like it should be funny.
But OMG. So funny.
All of Hark! A Vagrant is online I believe, so if you're not sure if it's for you, you might want to head over to her site and read a few strips. You'll know very quickly if her humor works for you, and if it does, I cannot recommend her books enough.
Unfortunately, there's not a lot to review. it's a gag a day style series, without an overarching plot, so I can't talk about characters or plot or anything. I CAN say if you have visual difficulties or if English isn't a fluent reading language for you, her hand-lettering MAY make reading the dialogue difficult. Just something to be warned about.
But basically - I love this book. I think everyone should at least give Kate Beaton a try if they like comedy, or history, or the arts, and especially all three at once.