Thursday, March 28, 2013

Drama, drama, drama

Normally, I don't read a lot of graphic novels. I've never really gotten the hang of manga (Although I can respect the mass appeal of it). That back-to-front thing is just weird to me. And I tend to favor text over pictures because I like to paint my own images of characters, settings, etc. It's an imagination thing. You understand. But I absolutely loved Raina Telgemeier's Smile, the true story of the author's recovery from an accident in which she lost some permanent teeth and delt with seemingly endless surgeries and drama. It was funny, it was cringeworthy, it was heartbreaking (Seriously! Kids can be so cruel to people who are different), and the drawing style just rocks. To date, Smile is one of the best graphic-format books I've read.

So imagine my excitement when the author released a second graphic just a few weeks ago! I checked it out and found Drama to be just as good as Smile. It's the story of 7th grade theater buff, Callie, and her first fumbling foray into the world of boys and crushes. After her first kiss ends in disaster (the guy totally doesn't like her back), Callie is devistated. Then she meets twins Jessie and Justin, who, at her prompting, become involved with the school's theater production of Moon Over Mississippi, of which Callie is a member of the stage crew. Callie is absolutely smitten with her new friends-who-are-boys. But the road to romance is never easy--especially in middle school!

Drama is believable and funny and possesses the sweet innocence of first love and first crushes (there's nothing heavier than kisses). Combine this with a whole heaping of teen angst, friend drama, family drama, and stage drama, and you've got another winning book from Raini Telgemeier. Oxford doesn't yet own Drama, but if it sounds good, we'll be happy to request it for you from another library. --AJB

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