Who wouldn't die to have a chance to be good --really good-- at something?
In Emiko Superstar by Mariko Tamaki and Steve Rolston, Emiko lives the life of a suburbia teenager. She works for three whole days before getting fired. Spends loads of time watching TV until her mother finds her a new job -- babysitting. But Emiko can't complain, right? $15 an hour is better than the $8 an hour she was getting at the other place!
Babysitting for the seemingly perfect suburbian couple and the adorable baby Sam makes Emiko good money and when she's at the mall spending it, she meets Poppy, a performing artist who is promoting the Freak Show at the "Factory". Emiko is mesmerized by Poppy who is the complete opposite of her. With the help of geeky Henry, Emiko gathers her courage to do a spoken word act using the diary of her boss.
This is a quick read. I read it sitting in the teen area this morning. I was putting it on display and thought "hey I haven't read this one yet!" So I did. Emiko is charming and reminds me of myself as a teen. Of course, I went to poetry readings instead of performance arts, but seeing her explore this new side of herself was a delight to read.
With the publisher, Minx, closing its doors,I hope that these graphic novelists find new publishers, especially Mariko Tamaki who has had two great graphic novels come out this year.