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Cover Image of The Opposite House by Helen Oyeyemi published by Anchor
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Manga That Rocks

abstract: Graphic novels are not just for kids. Manga is the Japanese version of this popular phenomenon and a Canadian duo by the name of Mariko Tamaki and Jillian Tamaki has joined forces to produce a work of art that blends poignantly funny text with award-winning graphics. SKIM (published by Groundwood Books, June 2009) has already been hailed by the NYT, Kirkus Reviews, Publishers Weekly, Quill & Quire and Slate as a winner. The titular character, Skim, is being compared to Holden Caulfiel as, "a clear social commentator on adult and adolescent behaviour whose ironic observations on social hypocrisy ring sharp and true. The artwork has, "a swooping, gorgeous pen line expressive, vibrant and precise all at once," say the journals. We took a look and couldn't agree more. If you've never tried graphic novels, this should be your first taste. If you want to understand the gestalt of the current generation, this should help you get a handle. If you're looking for looking for something to open the barriers of discussion with your teenager, what can I say, get this book. Listen to the podcast interview here (about a minute in after the musical intro).


September 05, 2009



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