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January 7, 2016

Graphic Novel Review: This One Summer by Mariko Tamaki & Jillian Tamaki

Published May 6th 2014 by First Second
Every summer, Rose goes with her mom and dad to a lake house in Awago Beach. It's their getaway, their refuge. Rosie's friend Windy is always there, too, like the little sister she never had. But this summer is different. Rose's mom and dad won't stop fighting, and when Rose and Windy seek a distraction from the drama, they find themselves with a whole new set of problems. It's a summer of secrets and sorrow and growing up, and it's a good thing Rose and Windy have each other.
In This One Summer two stellar creators redefine the teen graphic novel. Cousins Mariko and Jillian Tamaki, the team behind Skim, have collaborated on this gorgeous, heartbreaking, and ultimately hopeful story about a girl on the cusp of her teen age—a story of renewal and revelation.
This One Summer is a coming-of-age graphic novel, it's the story of Rose, who always goes with her parents to Awago Beach, where they spend summer. It used to be a great place, where she could play with her friend Windy. But this summers everything changes when her parents fight and Rose, being only a adolescent, doesn't know how to deal with it.

First  I must say I loved the way it was illustrated. The monochromatic illustrations made it easier for me to feel like I was at Awago Beach. Also, the characters were so rich! It's not easy to find a novel with non-stereotypical and well developed characters, but in this novel not only we can get to deeply know Rose, but also the secondary characters. Each one had an opportunity to explain their feelings and in the end it made this story very realistic.

I wasn't sure what to expect of This One Summer, specially after reading things as 'redefine the teen graphic novel'. I'm not an expert, but I can see that this novel is special. It gets into you, you can see Rose suffering, being angry, curious...essentially growing up just in front of you, and in a way that makes you devour this novel in just one sitting.

More about this book at Goodreads, Amazon, The Book Depository.


  1. I have been quite interested in this book for a long long time now. I just don't know why I haven't taken the time to pick it up and read it. Especially since I really really enjoy graphic novels. Going to put it on hold right now.

  2. If the cover is any indication, the inside should be beautiful! Sounds like an interesting story, too.