Why I Love to Read
Have you ever read a graphic novel? You really should try one. I read my first one during last year’s Banned Book Week. I wanted to read some completely different so I chose The Color of Earth and it was amazing. In my uneducated mind, I thought graphic novels were more like comic books. Man, was I wrong! I loved every page and I couldn’t put it down.
The Color of Earth completely opened me up to a whole new book world. Another great discovery is First Second Books, a graphic novels publisher located in New York. First Second published Color of Earth plus so many others. Graphic novels come in so many different genres, from memoirs to historical fiction to kids lit. I love looking through their catalog to find a new treasure.
The reason I love graphic novels so much is that it gives so much texture and richness to a story. In my mind, this is what is going on in the author’s mind. It’s his/her vision of the characters and story. It helps me visualize the appearance of a character and the tone of the story. There are many times while I’m reading that I get overcome and feel totally immersed in the book. It’s a great feeling. Sometimes I can get bogged down in an overly wordy book. However, when I pick up a graphic novel, I can very easily get lost in the illustrations.
My eight year old has also found the pleasure of reading a graphic novel. Before she read one, she had a hard time finding anything she really wanted to read. I think she would get overwhelmed with chapter books. She needed something that stimulated her mind visually. Finally, she discovered Bad Kitty, Bone, Baby Mouse and Lunch Lady. She loves them and plows right through them.
I’m not saying that all I’m going to read now are graphic novels. For me, it is a nice change from the more traditional novel. Most graphic novels are a pretty quick read and sometimes I really need that. I think the other side of my brain needs that visual stimulation.
Here is a list of graphic novels that I love:
- The Color of Earth by Kim Dong Hwa
- The Color of Water by Kim Dong Hwa
- The Color of Heaven by Kim Dong Hwa
- Relish by Lucy Knisley
- French Milk by Lucy Knisley
- Templar by Jordan Mechner, LeUyen Pham & Alex Puvilland
French Milk by Lucy Knisley
Published by Touchstone Books (Simon and Schuster)
Published in 2007
Purchased paperback from Amazon
A place where young Americans can seek poetic magic in the winding streets of a beautiful city. The museums, the cafs, the parks. An artist like Lucy can really enjoy Paris in January. If only she can stop griping at her mother. This comic journal details a mother and daughters month-long stay in a small apartment in the fifth arrondissement. Lucy is grappling with the onslaught of adulthood. Her mother faces fifty. They are both dealing with their shifting relationship. All the while, they navigate Paris with halting French and dog-eared guidebook.
About a month ago I read Relish by Lucy Knisley and instantly became a huge fan of her work. After I read Relish I had to get her earlier, French Milk; and I’m so glad I did. Lucy has a way of telling her life experiences with a sharp wit that you just want to know more about her life. You can completely empathize with her.
The entire book is about her trip to Paris with her mom. When I was twenty-two, my mom and I went to Europe. We had such a great time. But, at the same time, we had those mother/daughter spats and so did Lucy and her mother. This book brought back such great memories for me. The mom/daughter bonding is something that you will treasure forever. Lucy is hardly ever critical of her mom which I find rather refreshing. They had such a great time in Paris. I thought that Lucy really illustrated how close her mother and her really are.
Another thing I really loved was how Lucy was able to show her angst on her soon to be graduation from college. I rememeber when I was twenty-two and trying to figure what I was supposed to do with my life. Her depressive fits were fitting for her time in life. To me, every college-graduate feels the uncertainty after graduating from college. It’s scary and depressing.
I loved Lucy’s Paris. It was all about food and art. She is a milk and foie gras affionado. She loved the milk in Paris so much that she named her book for it and I totally get it. I remember when I was in Paris and I thought the vegetables never tasted better. It’s probably all the nasty preservatives Americans use. But the food DOES taste better in Paris! Most of her memories centers around food. She documents most of her meals during her trip. I loved that her most favorite meals were at their apartment. Lucy and her mom have such a great bond over food.
Lucy’s illustrations are fun and fairly simple. I liked how she attempted to portray some classic pieces of art. I found it really amusing.
French Milk is a fun graphic memoir about a twenty-two year women coming age in Paris with her mom. It is funny and sweet. I highly recommend it!
The Book Blogger Hop was originally created by Jennifer from Crazy-For-Books in March 2010 and ended December 31, 2012.
Q: You’re going on a long train ride. What books will you bring to read?
A: Luckily for me I have a big fat Kindle and I can load it up! I would look at my current TBR list and see what’s next. Currently, I’m reading The Dovekeepers by Alice Hoffman so I would take that for sure. Next I would take The Painted Girls by Cathy Marie Buchanan, The Midwife’s Tale by Sam Thomas, French Milk by Lucy Knisley, and The Promise by Kate Worth. Those should keep by occupied for the trip.