An engaging entry point to the lives of significant women.

WONDERFUL WOMEN OF THE WORLD

A visually lively survey of some wonderful, changemaking women of the world.

Based on a feature that ran in Wonder Woman comic books in the mid-20th century, this anthology collects short biographical comics of women who have had a positive impact on the world. These sketches are organized into five sections: Strength, Compassion, Justice, Truth, and Equality. Among the 24 subjects are those whose influence has shaped science, politics, social reforms, entertainment, sports, and more. Figures likely familiar to readers, such as Beyoncé, Malala Yousafzai, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, share the pages with remarkable lesser-known women like Teara Fraser (Métis), the CEO of Indigenous- and woman-owned Iskwew Airlines, and Nigerian scientist and climate change activist Francisca Nneka Okeke. The authors and illustrators likewise include a broad array of voices, including popular and beloved voices such as Danielle Paige, Traci Sorell, Kami Garcia, and Marieke Nijkamp. Narratively and artistically, the stories vary in style but are united by the overarching theme. While the biographies are short—each section opens with a single-page introduction to a woman who exemplifies the thematic trait, followed by more in-depth profiles of six to eight pages each—the book serves as a compelling introduction to many real Wonder Women around the globe, and the celebratory, galvanizing tone will inspire further research and action. Subjects and creators alike range widely in race, ethnicity, nationality, sexuality, and gender identity.

An engaging entry point to the lives of significant women. (contributor biographies) (Graphic nonfiction. 12-18)

Pub Date: Sept. 28, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-77950-378-7

Page Count: 200

Publisher: DC

Review Posted Online: Oct. 21, 2021

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Small but mighty necessary reading.

THE NEW QUEER CONSCIENCE

From the Pocket Change Collective series

A miniature manifesto for radical queer acceptance that weaves together the personal and political.

Eli, a cis gay white Jewish man, uses his own identities and experiences to frame and acknowledge his perspective. In the prologue, Eli compares the global Jewish community to the global queer community, noting, “We don’t always get it right, but the importance of showing up for other Jews has been carved into the DNA of what it means to be Jewish. It is my dream that queer people develop the same ideology—what I like to call a Global Queer Conscience.” He details his own isolating experiences as a queer adolescent in an Orthodox Jewish community and reflects on how he and so many others would have benefitted from a robust and supportive queer community. The rest of the book outlines 10 principles based on the belief that an expectation of mutual care and concern across various other dimensions of identity can be integrated into queer community values. Eli’s prose is clear, straightforward, and powerful. While he makes some choices that may be divisive—for example, using the initialism LGBTQIAA+ which includes “ally”—he always makes clear those are his personal choices and that the language is ever evolving.

Small but mighty necessary reading. (resources) (Nonfiction. 14-18)

Pub Date: June 2, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-593-09368-9

Page Count: 64

Publisher: Penguin Workshop

Review Posted Online: March 29, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2020

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Best enjoyed by preexisting fans of the author.

CONTINUUM

From the Pocket Change Collective series

Deaf, trans artist Man meditates on his journey and identity in this brief memoir.

Growing up in conservative central Pennsylvania was tough for the 21-year-old Deaf, genderqueer, pansexual, and biracial (Chinese/White Jewish) author. He describes his gender and sexual identity, his experiences of racism and ableism, and his desire to use his visibility as a YouTube personality, model, and actor to help other young people like him. He is open and vulnerable throughout, even choosing to reveal his birth name. Man shares his experiences of becoming deaf as a small child and at times feeling ostracized from the Deaf community but not how he arrived at his current Deaf identity. His description of his gender-identity development occasionally slips into a well-worn pink-and-blue binary. The text is accompanied and transcended by the author’s own intriguing, expressionistic line drawings. However, Man ultimately falls short of truly insightful reflection or analysis, offering a mostly surface-level account of his life that will likely not be compelling to readers who are not already fans. While his visibility and success as someone whose life represents multiple marginalized identities are valuable in themselves, this heartfelt personal chronicle would have benefited from deeper introspection.

Best enjoyed by preexisting fans of the author. (Memoir. 12-18)

Pub Date: June 1, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-593-22348-2

Page Count: 64

Publisher: Penguin Workshop

Review Posted Online: March 25, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2021

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