Bound To Stay Bound

View MARC Record
 Other boys
 Author: Alexander, Damian

 Publisher:  First Second (2021)

 Dewey: 373.1826
 Classification: Biography
 Physical Description: 201 p., col. ill.

 BTSB No: 050484 ISBN: 9781250222824
 Ages: 10-14 Grades: 5-9

 Alexander, Damian -- (Cartoonist) -- Childhood and youth
 Middle schools -- Comic books, strips, etc
 Identity (Psychology)
 Gay youth -- Biography
 Family life

Price: $12.29

Damian is the new kid at school, and he has a foolproof plan to avoid the bullying that's plagued him his whole childhood: he's going to stop talking. Starting on the first day seventh grade, he won't utter a word. If he keeps his mouth shut, the bullies will have nothing to tease him about--right? Unfortunately, it only makes him a bigger target. In graphic novel format.

 The Hornbook (00/01/22)

Full Text Reviews:

School Library Journal - 10/01/2021 Gr 7 Up—In this graphic memoir, Alexander examines his early adolescent struggles and offers a takedown of gender norms. Damian and his brother, who are white, grew up under the care of adoptive grandparents following their mother's death. Now in seventh grade at a new school, following some intense bullying, Damian has taken a vow of silence to avoid becoming a target. Flashbacks progress through each grade, leading up to the present. Through the years, Damian is told by classmates, family members, and doctors that he should like "boy things" even when he clearly states a preference for princesses, dolls, and domestic play; boys and girls alike ostracize, tease, and attack him for his feminine tastes, quiet nature, and home situation. Pop culture references to music, movies, toys, and video games highlight the different forms of play and escapism available in the late 1990s to mid-2000s. Alexander's story conveys the lasting effects of the trauma that broke up his family as well as the isolation caused by others' superficial judgment. A few friendships and positive encounters stick, as well as a breakthrough with a school-appointed therapist and the personal revelation that Damian is, in fact, gay. Alexander's artwork is widely accessible, depicting both the effortless joy and casual cruelty of children. Bright background colors and large faces broadcast emotional cues, including a fair amount of tears. An afterword addresses the heavier topics of the narrative and lends some context to Damian's perspective. VERDICT Anyone who considered middle school a social minefield, or questioned gender norms will recognize themselves in Damian's painful journey.—Thomas Maluck, Richland Lib., SC - Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

View MARC Record