Graphic Novel Review – Skim


AUTHOR: Mariko Tamaki, Jillian Tamaki [illustrator]
PAGES: 140
PUBLISHED: Feburary 28th 2008
PUBLISHER: Groundwood Books
GENRE: Young Adult, Graphic Novel, GLBT, Realistic Fiction, Canada
Rating - 5 Bird


Written by cousins Mariko and Jillian Tamaki this novel is set in the early 90’s in an all girl’s school in Toronto, Canada. Kimberly Keiko Cameron (aptly named “skim”) is a chubby, goth kid who goes through many emotions that young adults can relate to. When one of her classmates commits suicide and the whole school goes into mourning, Skim is secretly falling in love. Topics revolve around depression, suicide, falling love, heartbreak, sexuality, cliques, and experiences we’ve all had as confused teenagers just finding our footing in the world.

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I LOVE this graphic novel. My cousin bought it for me for Christmas a few years ago (he went to ACAD with Jillian Tamaki, small world). It is something I probably wouldn’t have picked up for myself but I’m so glad he gave it to me, its one of my favorite graphic novels! I love the illustration style and story line. Skim is very relate-able, it reminded me of my own self-discoveries in high school when I was trying to figure out who I was and what I loved. The plot wasn’t too crazy, there was suicide and a teacher-student relationship, but overall it was just step-by-step life, which stayed true to how I perceived high school.

And then the art is just beautiful. It has clean, strong lines and great use of white space. Jillian conveys emotion with the simple movement, it is subtle but very effective.

Overall I really enjoyed this and I am excited to see what else the cousins can come out with! I am looking forward to read their 2012 graphic novel (You) Set Me On Fire.


Book Review – Bitten by Kelley Armstrong


TITLE: Bitten (Women of the Otherworld #1)
AUTHOR: Kelley Armstrong
PAGES:  422 pages
PUBLISHER: Vintage Canada
GENRE: Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Romance, Shapeshifters (Werewolves)

MY RATING: 5/5 birds

Rating - 5 Bird

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This is the first novel in the Women of the Otherworld series. The story begins when Elena, the first werewolf in a generation, is trying to adjust to life without her pack. She was betrayed by her soul-mate Clay and tries to hide as a normal human when she meets Phillip, whom she lives with. Philip wants to marry Elena but she is hiding half of her life from him. To make matters worse Clay comes back looking for Elena and wants to bring her back to the pack which tears Elena’s two worlds apart.

I love Kelley Armstrong. I read her Darkest Powers series first and absolutely loved it. Even though it had some flaws, I could tell she was an excellent writer and I sought out the Darkness Rising series after. Again, I was amazed by her writing skills, relate-able characters and interesting plots. I am very excited for The Calling to come out! I also love a Canadian author that actually sets their novels Canada as well, not just some fictional town in the US or in typical Seattle.

I don’t know why it took me so long to get into the Women of the Otherworld series but now that I have read Bitten I am (dare I say it) smitten? haha but honestly, this book was everything I expected from Kelley and more. I already have Stolen sitting in my pile of library books, just waiting in line to be read, and I cannot wait to dive into this series!

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View all my other reviews on goodreads!