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Michelle’s Pick of the Week: A Career in Books

A Career in Books, written and illustrated by Kate Gavino, might feel both fresh and familiar to anyone who enjoys watching The Bold Type. Three Asian American women graduate from college and secure jobs in the publishing industry. Shirin, Silvia, and Nina share a tiny apartment, nicknamed “the hallway,” in New York City. We follow the women during their early twenties as they navigate their office jobs and strike up a friendship with an older neighbor, Veronica.

Nina, a natural leader and networking pro, is the first to land a job. Soon after, Shirin lands a job at a small academic publisher. Silvia secures a position at a wealthy independent press. Our three residents of “the hallway” must each overcome hurdles and detours while discovering who they want to be. Shirin grapples with not wanting to work in an office. Silvia dreams of being a writer. Nina doesn’t want to get married. But then, what will she do besides work?

Veronica Vo was a Booker prize winning author long ago. After the win, Veronica wrote a string of novels that went unpublished. The women rediscover Veronica’s work and use their connections to convince 92-year-old Veronica that her time is now. Each protagonist has her own layered relationship with Veronica that adds richness to their journeys.

The book is illustrated with black and white drawings with four panels per page. Each new chapter features a full-page illustration and a clever name. This formatting prevents the graphic novel form appearing overwhelming. However, the illustrations are text heavy. This full-length comic book will be an easy introduction to readers who have not yet ventured into the world of graphic novels and manga.

This endearing fictional comic book may appeal to readers “coming of age” at any age, no matter if that means 18 or 93. Each chapter has at least one great line and even when the plot “slumps” readers will continue on for the friendships.

Categories: Books and More

Tags: Books and More

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