Friday, February 20, 2015

This One Summer by Jillian and Mariko Tamaki

Things are inexplicably different this summer for Rose's family on their annual beach vacation: Mama's not herself and won't even go into the water, and eventually their fighting drives Dad to go back home to work for a few days rather than stay.

Rose and her "summer cottage friend" Windy (a slightly younger girl whose family always rents a neighboring bungalow) hang out, watch horror movies, and spy on the local kids who loiter at the one-and-only store.

It's a book about that awkward time when you're too old for baby games and not old enough to really understand what's going on around you. Even though she thinks she knows, Rose doesn't really understand why her parents are fighting. Also, the things she overhears from the local kids lead her to imagine a whole drama that's going on there - which she may or may not be right about, also. Despite the year-and-a-half age discrepancy, Windy may actually have a better understanding of the summer's many plot threads.

This wonderfully inked graphic novel was highly lauded this awards season, and I can see why. It's the kind of story that sticks with you and would be a fantastic book discussion title.

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