torachan: (Default)
Travis ([personal profile] torachan) wrote2009-06-06 10:54 pm

Book 31: Skim by Mariko and Jillian Tamaki

Title: Skim
Author/Illustrator: Mariko Tamaki (author), Jillian Tamaki (illustrator)
Number of Pages: 144 pages
Book Number/Goal: 31/75 for 2009
My Rating: 5/5

It's 1993 and Kimberly Keiko Cameron, aka Skim, is in grade 10 at a Catholic girls' school. She is: Wiccan, biracial (Japanese-Canadian/white), sort of an outcast, overweight, falling in love with her English teacher, Ms. Archer.

I really loved this. It's so...ordinary. It's not a message book, even though there are lots of things (being Asian, homophobia, being queer, bullying, teen suicide, rumors, divorce, being overweight) that could be turned into big Issues to Teach a Lesson, but they're not. They're just part of what happens. That's part of what makes this feel like a story about teens rather than a story particularly for teens (though it's not inappropriate for teens by any means).

I really love the art, too. The style is obviously Japanese-influenced...but not manga-influenced. Instead, it immediately calls to mind traditional Japanese paintings (check out the cover here), which makes for a rather unique comic style and one I really enjoyed.

[identity profile] 2009-06-07 10:05 am (UTC)(link)
That book looks really, really, really good.
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[identity profile] 2009-06-07 10:16 am (UTC)(link)
It is! You should definitely look out for it. I think you'd like it. :) (I would offer you my copy, but I already offered it to someone else. XD)

[identity profile] 2009-06-07 10:22 am (UTC)(link)
I'm not surprised it's already been claimed, going by your review and the one you linked to.

[identity profile] 2009-06-07 10:37 am (UTC)(link)
Success! It's on Amazon here! :D
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[identity profile] 2009-06-07 10:38 am (UTC)(link)
Woot! :D