In this memoir, fifteen year old Maggie recounts a summer at Camp Bellflower for Girls where she develops feelings for Erin; who is not only older than her, but a counselor.
While touching, this book really shines because it has so many more likable characters than what I normally see in a graphic memoir. Maggie has decent friends despite being in a pretty religious camp. Sure, there is still some homophobia but on the whole, she manages to have a good summer without getting picked on for being a lesbian.
If you can tell from the cover, the art is VERY simple. Everything is soft and simple to contrast the pretty complicated feelings going on. If I had a complaint, it would be it seems almost TOO soft. The book flutters by without much lasting impact.
Or maybe I’m just reading too many of these things, I dunno. 3.7 out of 5.
*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.
Matteo returns home after spending three years milling about with his boyfriend in Milan. With no job, no money, and little prospects, Matteo has no choice but to live in the same house as his grandmother, three aunts, and his very pregnant cousin. After fleeing this town feeling it was too small, especially after coming out, Matteo slowly rebuilds his connections to his family and discovers there is so much more to be appreciated about where he came from and where he could go in the future.
Watching Matteo reconnect with his family – for good or ill – is a bittersweet and beautifully drawn and written story. The strong lines of the art style make every page pop and the range of characters gives a wide breadth of experience; from the aimless wanderer to the estranged father trying to reconnect. You really get a sense of Matteo coming to terms not only with his family but with growing up in general. This book is a good tug at the heartstrings and I give this book a 4 out of 5.