Portugal – Cyril Pedrosa

Image result for portugal cyril pedrosaPortugal by Cyril Pedrosa

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Distributor
Publication Date: December 1st, 2017
Publisher: NBM Publishing
Recommended Age: 13+
Pacing: Slow
Genres & Themes: Graphic Novel, Culture, Family History


From the author of the acclaimed Equinoxes comes a return to roots that serves as spiritual renewal. Comics artist Simon Muchat is stuck. Suffering writer’s block, uninspired, vegetating as a school art teacher, he is losing direction and his taste for life, until one day he is invited to appear at a comics convention in Portugal, the country his family came from and which he hadn’t seen since his childhood. The experience proves cathartic. Even though he is not Portuguese himself and is a foreigner there, so many elements are familiar to him. Meeting its lively citizens, full of the zest for life, his distant yet welcoming family bringing back fond early memories, all prove reinvigorating, the breath of fresh air he so badly needed. Continue reading

A Year Without Mom

24694116A Year Without Mom by Dasha Tolstikova

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: Publisher
First Published: October 1st, 2015
Publisher: Groundwood Books
Recommended Age: 8+
Pacing: Fast
Genres & Themes: Middle Grade, Graphic Novel, Memoir, Family, Growing Up


It is the early 1990s in Moscow, and political change is in the air. But Dasha is more worried about her own challenges as she negotiates family, friendships and school without her mother. Just as she begins to find her own feet, she gets word that she is to join her mother in America — a place that seems impossibly far from everything and everyone she loves. Continue reading

A Semi-Definitive List of Worst Nightmares

32969999A Semi-Definitive List of Worst Nightmares by Krystal Sutherland

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Publisher
First Published: September 5th, 2017
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons BFYR
Recommended Age: 12+
Pacing: Normal
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Family History, Contemporary, Mental Illness, Romance


Esther thinks she has it all figured out, until she’s reunited with an old elementary school classmate—and first crush—Jonah Smallwood. The encounter leaves her stranded at a bus stop and swindled out of her phone, all her cash, a Fruit Roll-Up she’d been saving, and her list—not to mention her dignity. But the theft is also the beginning of an unexpected friendship between the two, one that sends the pair on a journey of self-discovery as they try to break the curse that’s consumed Esther’s family. Together they face their greatest fears, one debilitating phobia at a time, only to discover the one fear they hadn’t counted on: love. Continue reading