Mariko Tamaki

Book - 2023

"Spring Break, 2009: Five days, three friends, and one big city. Over the course of a much-anticipated trip to New York, an unexpected fling blossoms between casual acquaintances and throws a long-term friendship off-balance. Emotional tensions vibrate wildly against the resplendently illustrated backdrop of the city, capturing a spontaneous queer romance in all of its fledgling glory. Slick attention to the details of a bustling, intimidating metropolis are softened with a palette of muted pastels, as though seen through the eyes of first-time travelers. The awe, wonder, and occasional stumble along the way come to life with stunning accuracy."--Amazon.

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Location Call Number   Status
2nd Floor Comics New GRAPHIC NOVEL/Tamaki (NEW SHELF) Due Jun 10, 2024
Travel comics
Coming-of-age comics
Graphic novels
[Montreal, Canada] : Drawn & Quarterly 2023.
Main Author
Mariko Tamaki (author)
Other Authors
Jillian Tamaki, 1980- (author)
First edition
Item Description
Chiefly illustrations.
Physical Description
433 pages : color illustrations ; 21 cm
Contents unavailable.
Review by Booklist Review

The premise seems simple--childhood friends Dani and Zoe, along with Dani's brash, confident new friend Fiona, visit New York City during their first spring break from college in Canada--but as you might expect in a book by Jillian and Mariko Tamaki, there's a stunning, nuanced depth of emotional growth and transformation in these pages. Dani and Zoe have been planning this trip for ages, but Fiona's cynical attitude about tourism causes tension. As Zoe and Fiona get closer during the trip, the ways Dani and Zoe have changed in their time apart are thrown into sharp relief. Jillian's captivating artwork, highlighted in soft tones of peach and blue, perfectly pauses on small yet meaningful moments, but it really shines in the swirling, hypnotic splash pages, in which time collapses as characters pop in and out of overlapping images of art, science exhibits, tour groups, park paths, buildings, and more, beautifully evoking the feeling of being overwhelmed by the sheer volume of things to see in a city. Mariko's masterful dialogue, meanwhile, demonstrates how seemingly casual conversation can be utterly cutting among young adults trying to figure out who they are. The Tamakis' keen understanding of how friendships shift and change is at the heart of many of their books together, but it's at its heartachingly vivid best here. Absolutely superb.

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

The Tamaki cousins (This One Summer), winners of Eisner and Caldecott awards, reunite for a shrewd and wistful coming-of-age story that may be their best work yet. Set over the course of a few days in 2009, the adventure follows three Canadian college students spending their spring break in New York City. Zoe and Dani have been good friends for years but attend separate universities; they're joined by Fiona, an art major who lives in Dani's dorm. The trio share a room at a hostel, eat greasy pizza, down shots at a dive bar, and take in the Met. But as Zoe, who is queer, flirts with free-spirited Fiona, fissures between the three friends form and slowly widen. For all the big emotions laid bare in the narrative, and all its wonderfully rendered teenage dialogue riddled with pseudo-profundities, the script (by Mariko) plays out subtle and naturalistically spare. Readers, especially ones who've already come of age, will recognize the life-changing shifts and signals even when the characters don't. Art (by Jillian) augments the mood via the scale of Manhattan--its museums and Uniqlo stores are rendered gargantuan compared to the girls, a visual metaphor for their youth. It's all brushed in alternating hues of almost-gold and melancholy blue, the nostalgic palette of an old Polaroid shot. Playful yet plaintive, this is an elegant study of young women caught between the comforts of the past and the promise of what comes next. Agents: (for Jillian Tamaki) Steven Malk, Writers House; (for Mariko Tamaki) Charlotte Sheedy, Charlotte Sheedy Literary Agency. (Sept.)

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by Library Journal Review

Award-winning creators (and cousins) Jillian Tamaki (Boundless) and Mariko Tamaki (Batman: Detective Comics) reunite for their first collaboration since 2014's Eisner, Ignatz, and Caldecott prizewinner This One Summer. The story is set in 2009 and concerns three young women from Canada visiting NYC over spring break. Zoe and Dani are childhood friends who fear they're drifting apart since attending different colleges. They hope that exploring New York together will reestablish their bond; a reasonable expectation, but complicated by the presence of Dani's new friend Fiona, a stylish force of nature with whom Zoe quickly becomes romantically entangled. A tender examination ensues of young adults unsure whether to forget the past in order to navigate an uncertain future. Rather than being bogged down in pensive navel-gazing or melodrama, the novel emphasizes the exhilaration of youth; how exhilarating it is to be young, to be in love, to explore new places and aspects of yourself, and to experience each emotion, good or bad, so very intensely. VERDICT An elegantly illustrated, immersive tale that isn't so much about discovering yourself as it is about embracing who you have been and may one day be.

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Review by Kirkus Book Review

In this adult debut from the Eisner Award--winning Tamaki cousins, a spring break trip to New York City gets messy for three young Canadian women. In 2009, first-year university students Zee, Dani, and Fiona meet up at Newark Airport to commence a five-day adventure. Zee and Dani are childhood friends who grew up in North York; Fiona is a newer friend and classmate of Dani's from the fine arts program at Concordia, while Zee is studying life science at Queen's University in Ontario. Zee and Dani are thrilled to reunite and explore the city, while Fiona is self-assured to the point of being standoffish, decrying anything touristy such as Times Square and quick to offer forceful opinions (she skewers the Metropolitan Museum of Art as "a real monument to Western imperialism"). An attraction blossoms between feminine Fiona and androgynous Zee, beginning with subtle touches and stolen kisses while their trio is out sightseeing before culminating in more. Zee and Fiona's budding closeness, though fraught in its own ways, leaves Dani feeling hurt and alienated, and the splintered dynamics threaten to compromise not only their trip, but also friendships old and new. This graphic novel presents a tightly focused story about the difficulty of competing loyalties and the anxieties of entering young adulthood and facing the possibility of growing apart from people you care about. Jillian Tamaki's illustrations, rendered in peach, gray, light blue, and black, vividly capture the characters' emotions and the wondrous clutter of the city landscape; double-page spreads meld reality with visual embellishment to depict especially potent experiences, from witnessing the scale of the giant blue whale at the American Museum of Natural History to the exhilaration of exploring queer crushes. Readers looking to indulge nostalgia about being a tourist in New York, from staying in a hostel to comparing the merits of different slices of pizza, will find much to enjoy; so will readers of stories about coming into one's own in adulthood, with all of the myriad joys and stumbles that entails. A visually and narratively appealing work of coming-of-age fiction. Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.