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SKIM by Mariko Tamaki

SKIM

By Mariko Tamaki (Author) , Jillian Tamaki (Illustrator)

Age Range: 14 & up

Pub Date: March 1st, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-88899-753-1
Publisher: Groundwood

A quietly moving graphic novel explores a teen girl’s experience with friends, suicide, cliques and love. Both overweight and of mixed ethnicities, Kimberly Keiko Cameron—also known as “Skim” because “she’s not”—is slowly moving through high school with her best friend Lisa. Both sharply witty and incisive, the two girls dabble in various forms of self-expression and exploration, like dressing with Gothic flair and trying Wicca. The two girls come to an impasse when Lisa gets an unexpected chance to join the popular clique. Coupled with her tumultuous friendship, Skim also harbors a crush on a female teacher, which leads her to begin to question herself and her desires. Long, languid lines portray Skim’s turmoil and angst with pitch-perfect resonance and show how, for teens, time seems to be so drawn out. While Tamaki’s faces are sometimes unsettling, the reader has the distinct impression that they should be uncomfortable. Recommend this to fans of Daniel Clowes’s Ghost World, who have been waiting for another graphic novel of teen angst and suburban ennui. (Graphic novel. YA)