Rummanah Aasi
 Smile by Raina Telgemeier is a graphic novel that I recommend to many people who are either hesitant in reading a graphic novel or who are looking for a graphic novel for their child or younger sibling. I find Telgemeier's work is both visually appealing with it's large, colorful panels with clear dialogue as well as contains subjects that are very easy to relate to. Her latest graphic novel, Sisters, continues Telgemeier's trademark and is equally enjoyable as Smile. Many thanks to Scholastic and Netgalley for the advanced reader's copy of this book.


Description: Raina can't wait to be a big sister. But once Amara is born, things aren't quite how she expected them to be. Amara is cute, but she's also a cranky, grouchy baby, and mostly prefers to play by herself. Their relationship doesn't improve much over the years, but when a baby brother enters the picture and later, something doesn't seem right between their parents, they realize they must figure out how to get along. They are sisters, after all.

Review: Telgemeier has delivered another hit with a must-read follow-up to her graphic memoir Smile that is funny, poignant, and utterly relatable for anyone with siblings. This realistic graphic memoir tells the story of Raina; her sister, Amara; and her brother, Will, as they take a road trip with their mother from California to Colorado to join a family reunion. The focus as you may already know just from the graphic novel's title is on the mercurial relationship between Raina and Amara. Raina is embarking her teen years, longing to find a her own crew of friends and people who understand her. Amara is the precocious younger sister who is just as artistically talented as Raina. Amara is tuned in to the present, observant of her surroundings and is irritated by Raina's self-centered point of view.
    The author's narrative style is fresh and sharp, and the combination of well-paced and well-placed flashbacks pull the plot together, moving the story forward and helping readers understand the characters' point of view. I really like the use of colors on the pages that makes it easy to tell if a flashback or the present. Telgemeier captures the uneasiness of preadolescence in an effortless and uncanny way and turns tough subjects, such as parental marriage problems, into experiences with which readers can identify. These are all thing that make Telgemeier's graphic novels so easy to read and enjoyed by a wide variety of readers. Not only does the story relay the road trip's hijinks, but it also touches on what happens with the advent of a new sibling and what it means to be truly sisters. I'm already a big fan of Telgemeier and I always look forward to her next release.

Rating: 4 stars

Words of Caution: None. Recommended for Grades 4 and up.


If you like this book try: Chiggers by Hope Larson
2 Responses
  1. Sounds like a perfect book for young kids! Thanks for the rec!


  2. I picked this up and leafed through it at the bookstore last week. It looks like a cute read and I love the idea of a road trip. I also noticed it was up as one of the books of the year on GR, I am definitely going to have to check this series out.


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