Garvey's choice The graphic novel

Nikki Grimes

Book - 2023

"Award-winning author Nikki Grimes's beloved novel in verse Garvey's Choice is now a graphic novel, imaginatively and dramatically illustrated by Little Shaq artist Theodore Taylor III"--

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Subjects
Genres
Comics (Graphic works)
Graphic novels
Domestic comics
Coming-of-age comics
Published
New York : Wordsong, an imprint of Astra Books for Young Readers [2023]
Language
English
Main Author
Nikki Grimes (author, -)
Other Authors
Theodore Taylor (illustrator)
Edition
First edition
Physical Description
141 pages : color illustrations ; 24 cm
Audience
Ages 9-12.
Grades 4-6.
ISBN
9781662660023
9781662660085
Contents unavailable.
Review by School Library Journal Review

Gr 4--9--Garvey wants to connect with his father, but feels as though his dad can't accept him for who he is; Dad wants Garvey to be an athlete like his sister, Angela. But Garvey, who is Black, loves astronomy and chess; he escapes into science fiction to make himself feel better. Garvey's dad and sister criticize his eating habits, adding to insecurities he feels as a result of bullying at school related to his weight. His best friend Joe, who is also Black, is caring and supportive; a new friend, Manny, who has albinism, helps Garvey learn to ignore bullying and "crank up the inside volume." Joe encourages Garvey to try out for chorus; singing boosts his confidence and gives him a way to connect with his dad, who used to be in a band. Some of Grimes's original tanka poems have been adjusted, but the novel in verse adapts beautifully to the graphic novel format, and Taylor's art emphasizes the imaginative, poignant, painful, and joyful aspects in turn. Starry night sky illustrations, with characters outlined in white, are striking. Taylor often shows Garvey regarding himself in a mirror, and readers can see how Garvey's feelings about his appearance change throughout. VERDICT This format will attract new readers to a poetic, powerful story of growth. Highly recommended.--Jenny Arch

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Horn Book Review

"Why can't he put those books down, play football or basketball?" Garvey's father wants to turn him into an athlete, like his sister Angie, but Garvey would rather get lost in a book, listen to music, or dream about galaxies. In addition to pressure at home, he faces endless taunting at school for his weight. When Garvey meets the "skim-milk boy" Manny, who has albinism, he asks how Manny stands the teasing. "I look strange. No changing that. / Is there more to me? / Sure. Kids yell 'albino boy.' / I don't turn around. / Choose the name you answer to. / No one can do that but you." Per Grimes's author's note, this graphic-novel adaptation leaves two-thirds of the original book's (Garvey's Choice, rev. 9/16) tanka poems intact, with only small changes to the rest of them. The verses are given a new visual life with excellent page designs and clever illustrations, including the closing spread showing Garvey singing into a mic and his father playing the guitar, with floating musical notes uniting them in song. An unusually effective use of the graphic-novel format to bring poetry alive. (c) Copyright 2023. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review

Grimes' acclaimed novel in verse sees new life in comics format. Garvey, an imaginative young Black boy, loves reading SF and stargazing, but his father would rather he play sports. Feeling unheard, he copes by overeating and is mocked for his weight at school. But through new friendships and a passion for music, Garvey forges a path to self-confidence and finds a way to connect with his father. Grimes' tanka poems, kept mostly intact with minor edits and some changes to their order, pair nicely with Taylor's straightforward illustrations, bringing to life Garvey's story of newfound self-possession. The energetic illustrations playfully depict his rocky journey toward a truer version of himself, providing levity at times but never shortchanging the most poignant moments. The poem "Stars" offers a breezy portrayal of Garvey's extraterrestrial fantasies: "Stars on my ceiling / Wink at me when the full moon / comes for a visit." In "Shadow," the magnitude of his feelings about body image and his emotional eating becomes clear, with Garvey looming above his comparatively tiny family: "Whenever I stand near that's / how it feels. They're all so small." These charming, reflective poems are an ideal match for Taylor's endearing first graphic novel endeavor. An adaptation that expands the world of a captivating, much-loved character. (note on tanka) (Graphic fiction. 9-12) Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.