Author: Alice Oseman
Publisher: Hodder Children’s Books (Hachette)
You can also find the entire comic on Tapas.
*･｡ﾟPlease consider supporting your local indie bookshop – ask if they have this in stock! ☆ﾟ.*･｡ﾟ
Charlie, a highly-strung, openly gay over-thinker, and Nick, a cheerful, soft-hearted rugby player, meet at a British all-boys grammar school. Friendship blooms quickly, but could there be something more…?
Charlie Spring is in Year 10 at Truham Grammar School for Boys. The past year hasn’t been too great, but at least he’s not being bullied anymore, and he’s sort of got a boyfriend, even if he’s kind of mean and only wants to meet up in secret.
Nick Nelson is in Year 11 and on the school rugby team. He’s heard a little about Charlie – the kid who was outed last year and bullied for a few months – but he’s never had the opportunity to talk to him. That is, until the start of January, in which Nick and Charlie are placed in the same form group and made to sit together.
They quickly become friends, and soon Charlie is falling hard for Nick, even though he doesn’t think he has a chance. But love works in surprising ways, and sometimes good things are waiting just around the corner…
(Taken from Goodreads)
#LGBTQMonth Readathon Bingo
My first Pride Month review! I’m happy to be able to kick it off on such a wholesome note. I curled up in bed and read all three volumes in a morning. Because I will have to get through a lot of books this month, reviews will be somewhat shorter and more focused on my personal experience.
The Book Review
The story follows Nick and Charlie: two high school boys who fall in love with each other. As they navigate life, they grow ever closer.
I discovered this series last year after a friend recommended it to me. I fell instantly in love. The story is soft, tender. This is also reflected by the art style, which feels warm and homely. I know it’s a weird way to describe it, but if you gave it read, you’d understand what I mean! Every time I open the book, it’s like a welcome back.
I like how relatable the characters and the story are. I could relate to Nick and the discovery of his sexuality. When I began questioning my orientation because I found myself feeling attracted to a girl, I was very confused. His experience is a close match to mine. Likewise, as someone who has been suffering from anxiety for several years, I also related strongly to Charlie’s doubts and the way in which his thoughts spiral out of control.
Essentially, I love when I can find stories that speak to me, my experience, and read about characters with whom I can identify. It’s so important that more LGBTQ+ literature portraying positivity becomes mainstream. LGBTQ+ literature must continue offering stories that deal with the normalcy of every day life. Reading something like Heartstopper would have massively helped my younger self figure out what was happening to her, so I can imagine how much wholesome stories like this would help other queer youths.
The appeal of this comic book series lies in its peacefulness. This doesn’t mean it avoids heavier topics; as a matter of fact, the first volume opens up with an abusive relationship. However, Oseman explores these and other delicate topics with incredible sensitivity. The author strikes an excellent balance between serious and light-hearted, showing that there is a peaceful, healthy and positive way to resolve conflict.
This comic series is a personal favourite which I will keep coming back to in the future. It’s one of those comfort reads you need on bad days to make the world feel a little better.
Would I recommend this book? A million times yes!
Other books like this: Bloom by Kevin Panetta and Savanna Ganucheau.
I’ve set up a ko-fi account to support my book expenses, as finances are a bit uncertain due to covid. No worries if you can’t donate right now! Take care of yourself 💗