Friedman, Aimee & Christine Norrie. Breaking Up.

NY: Scholastic, 2007.

This is a graphic novel about high school kids, undoubtedly aimed at high school kids, which is fine. But it doesn’t quite work. The focus is on four third-year girls at an arts magnet, each one of whom is (naturally) completely different from the other three. One is essentially a slut and the dominant personality, one is the shy hugger-peacemaker, one is being driven crazy by straitlaced parents, and the fourth, the narrator, is interested in a guy no one else approves of.

They’ve been best buddies since about 3rd Grade, but they’ve all begun to change, mostly because of boys, and not necessarily for the better. So what happens when social pressures collide with personal needs and desires? Can it cause you to break up with your friends? And what do you owe them, anyway? The problem is, the tone of the story, while not really preachy, is simply bland. Moreover, I suspect an awful lot of early-teen readers — because that’s the audience — aren’t actually going to sympathize much with any of this group. The art, frankly, is simply and barely adequate, with nothing to differentiate it from a hundred other books. Friedman and Norrie are both very experienced, and they can do much better than this.

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Published in: on 5 August 2017 at 7:24 am  Leave a Comment  
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