Graphic Novel Reviews #1

Be Everything at Once: Tales of a Cartoonist Lady Person
by Dami Lee

Paperback, 160 pages
Published August 7th 2018 by Chronicle Books
Source: Raincoast Books

Dami Lee’s debut collects memoir-ish comic strips about a woman trying to figure out where she fits. Lee documents her experiences as a Korean in America for the first time, trying to navigate a foreign culture and language. Flipping it about, she also writes and draws about trying to adapt to Korea again once she and her parents return. Her realization that she is too American for Korea and too Korean for America has her in a quandry and make her easy to relate to as I believe many of us find ourselves in a liminal space, not belonging to the culture of our birth or to the culture we currently live in.

I did not like the collection as much as I hoped I would simply because the humour didn’t really work for me. The strips were a bit too simplistic in tone and execution. There is a lot of room for growth and I feel like Lee is an artist to keep an eye on as she grows and collects experiences that will affect the richness of her art and writing.

 

Woman World
by Aminder Dhaliwal

Paperback, 256 pages
Published September 11th 2018 by Drawn and Quarterly
Source: Raincoast Books

Woman World was sent to me entirely by chance but as soon as I read the back, I knew it was meant for me. The story focuses on a future where men have died out. They are extinct. The only ones left are women.

Dhaliwal takes on serious topics with humour and wit. The irreverence underlines the profundity of her observations at times and simply makes you laugh out loud at others. The graphic novel looks at feminism and the female body in interesting ways. What is most wonderful is the way Dhaliwal writes the multiple ways of being female when you are not being pushed into too narrow boxes.

Plus, did I mention, the book is funny? I feel like this is a title people need to pick up and experience for themselves. No matter who you are, some part of it is going to appeal to you.

Microreview: Three picturebooks with children and grandparents

Microreview: Three picturebooks with children and grandparents

Three awesome picturebooks with a central child-grandparent relationship: Hana Hashimoto, Sixth Violin by Chieri Uegaki and Qin Leng Hana’s visit to Ojichan in the summer had been full of his beautiful violin music. Hana’s beloved grandfather had long ago been Second Violin in an orchestra in Kyoto, and at home, Hana is determined to play […]

Antigonick by Sophocles; translated by Anne Carson; illustrated by Bianca Stone

Antigonick by Sophocles; translated by Anne Carson; illustrated by Bianca Stone

Anne Carson and Bianca Stone’s Antigonick, from the play by Sophocles (Antigone, of the Oedipus triptych). Where to begin? If you read only one classical Greek play in your life, let this be it. Carson’s translation is a whirlwind, both a terror and a delight to behold. It will sway you to fall in love with poetry […]

Asian Heritage Month Display 2018

Asian Heritage Month Display 2018

We’ve got a display area  in the children’s section of our library that we switch up every month to showcase different items in our collection. Since May is Asian Heritage Month here in Canada, we’ve been filling our display with books by Asian authors and illustrators from around the world. In no particular order, here […]

Announcing: A Good Day for Ducks!

Announcing: A Good Day for Ducks!

More happy news! Jane’s second picturebook, A Good Day for Ducks, will be released on September 21, 2018. Like Wild One, A Good Day for Ducks is illustrated by Noel Tuazon and published by Pajama Press. You can find a sneak peek of A Good Day for Ducks on Jane’s instagram, @raincitylibrarian. We can’t wait until September. Congratulations, […]

Rereading: The Deadly Dance by Cora Taylor

Rereading: The Deadly Dance by Cora Taylor

At some point in my childhood I read Cora Taylor’s The Deadly Dance. Having finally (re)discovered what the book I remembered was actually called (I remembered: bull dance. time travel. Crete. eating disorder. a scene by the hotel pool. an earthquake. an escape. a scene at the airport with her (reincarnated?) disabled crush and a very […]

Announcing: Congratulations to Nafiza!

Announcing: Congratulations to Nafiza!

Congratulations to Nafiza! Nafiza’s debut novel, The Candle and the Flame, has been acquired by Scholastic. Mark your calendars: this gem is coming out in 2019. The photo, taken from Publishers Weekly’s Rights Report for the week of April 9, reads: Lisa Sandell at Scholastic has acquired Nafiza Azad’s debut, The Candle and the Flame. Set in […]

Dragonfly Song by Wendy Orr

Dragonfly Song by Wendy Orr

The whispers say it’s not true that the Lady’s firstborn died at birth. They say it’s worse–the baby was born with an extra thumb dangling from each wrist. If she’s not perfect, she can never follow in her mother’s footsteps. On a tiny Mediterranean island during the Bronze Age, Aissa is not supposed to exist. […]