Mariko Tamaki

Sandman to Hark! A Vagrant: the best comics of the decade

Thank you to Sam Thielman ( @samthielman ) for this survey.

Old names and ambitious first-timers produced great graphic novels on everything from teen friendship and time travel to horrifying murder mysteries

This One Summer by Jillian Tamaki and Mariko Tamaki

This One Summer“Crunch, crunch, crunch, crunch, crunch.”  The sound of a man’s feet as he carries a girl up the front path to a house. It’s Rose’s father, maybe some years earlier carrying her to their holiday home in Awago Beach. Rose is now in her early teens and in This One Summer the first thing she does when they arrive is run over to see her friend Windy.  The two girls have spent many summers playing, and they are now beginning to grow out of childish games and to put their toes into the adult world.  They watch the older young people who hang out at the general store and at the same time scare themselves with 70’s horror films.  The films are too much for them, they hide under blankets, but they can’t hide from the more terrifying arguments that Rose’s parents are having nor can they seem to escape the tensions amongst the older teens.  Jillian Tamaki’s drawings, printed with dark blue lines, are at times beautiful full page spreads, and at other times bring out the awkwardness of growing up and family discomforts and teen tensions.  Jillian’s cousin Mariko’s script is on the money from beginning to end.  I hadn’t read Skim before finding this book, but I will do that as soon as I can.  Joyful and moving.  Our store shelved it in the adult and the teen section and it sits well in both places. Published by :01 First Second Books.

Jillian Tamaki

Mariko Tamaki