GRAPHIC NOVELS

Dancing at the Pity Party: A Dead Mom Graphic Memoir

Dial. Apr. 2020. 208p. ISBN 9780525553021. $18.99. Rated: Teen+. Memoir
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Feder (Unladylike) had just finished her first year of college, was managing being away from her awesome family, and heading toward the best years of her life when tragedy struck. Here, Feder tells the story of her mother’s diagnosis with late-stage cancer, the chemo appointments that followed, her mother’s eventual death, her funeral, and shiva. As Feder faces life without her mother, her feelings of sadness, loss, and hope will resonate with those who still have their moms in their lives and those who don’t, as well as anyone who has dealt with grief or have struggled to help others through the process. Throughout are helpful pointers for coping through difficulty and a resounding personal message of I understand you.
VERDICT Feder’s colorful, realistic illustrations, rendered in unusual paneling styles, bring her cherished mother to life and offer a refreshing take on a subject no one wishes to talk about, compelling readers to reexamine their own understanding of the grieving processes and that of others.

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