Bound To Stay Bound

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 Girl from the sea
 Author: Ostertag, Molly

 Publisher:  Scholastic (2021)

 Dewey: 741.5
 Classification: Nonfiction
 Physical Description: 245 p., col. ill., 22 cm

 BTSB No: 693723 ISBN: 9781338540581
 Ages: 13-16 Grades: 8-11

 Subjects:
 Lesbian teenagers -- Fiction
 Island life -- Fiction
 Friendship -- Fiction
 Shapeshifting -- Fiction
 Family life -- Fiction
 Graphic novels

Price: $19.98

Summary:
Fifteen-year-old Morgan has a secret: She can't wait to escape the perfect little island where she lives. She's desperate to finish high school and escape her sad divorced mom, her volatile little brother, and worst of all, her great group of friends ... who don't understand Morgan at all. Morgan is saved from drowning by a mysterious girl named Keltie, life becomes more exciting as the girls fall for each other. Can their relationship survive the secrets each one holds? In graphic novel format.

 Illustrator: Laiho, Maarta
Accelerated Reader Information:
   Interest Level: UG
   Reading Level: 2.60
   Points: 1.0   Quiz: 514392

Reviews:
   Kirkus Reviews (04/15/21)
   School Library Journal (+) (00/06/21)
   Booklist (03/15/21)

Full Text Reviews:

Booklist - 03/15/2021 In the wake of her parents’ divorce and a newly realized secret—she’s gay—15-year-old Morgan Kwon is drowning. Figuratively, at first, then literally, when she bumps her head and falls into the ocean. She’s saved by Keltie, who appears as a sun-tanned, wild-haired teenage girl but is actually a selkie, a mythical, shape-shifting seal given human form thanks to a kiss from Morgan. As Morgan fights to keep their sudden relationship secret, she struggles to maintain her other friendships, especially after another girl’s family threatens the safety of the waters Keltie calls home. Ostertag (the Witch Boy trilogy) is clearly writing from a personal place, and it comes through in Morgan’s emotional depth, but for all her angst, the tone is kept cheery through panels of light, aquatic blues and greens, accented by purples and yellows. Large eyes and expressive postures beautifully illustrate Morgan’s need for control and Keltie’s free-spirited nature. The girls are perfect foils, adding tension to their romance, and although it comes to a bittersweet end, this is ultimately a hopeful coming-of-age—and coming-out—tale. - Copyright 2021 Booklist.

School Library Journal - 06/01/2021 Gr 7 Up—This sweet sapphic romance with light fantasy elements makes for an absorbing, poignant summer read. Fifteen-year-old Morgan Kwon wants to escape. After her parents' divorce, her household is tense: Her little brother is angry; her mother is sad. The teen also wants to get away from tiny Wilneff Island, where she's lived since she was little. Morgan, who's a lesbian but not yet out, longs to go to college, where she can truly be herself. But she takes pleasure in walking along the beautiful and soothing yet treacherous cliffs. When she slips and falls into the water, she meets Keltie, a selkie who rescues her. Convinced she's having a near-death hallucination, Morgan kisses Keltie. True love's kiss gives Keltie her land legs and makes her eager to discover her fate alongside Morgan—which directly jeopardizes Morgan's carefully regimented plans. With a timely environmentalism subplot about how tourism and pollution affect seal habitats, the romance and coming-of-age narrative wind together in a story about identity, family, and friendship. While the plot is simple on the surface, Ostertag's deeply saturated, expressive art makes deft use of gutters and panels, and incorporates text conversations between Morgan and her friends. Morgan's last name indicates Korean heritage, Keltie is blonde with tan skin, and Morgan's friend group is racially diverse. VERDICT Adorable and authentic, this coming-out story is a must-purchase for YA collections hoping to entice younger teens. Additionally, this would be a great title for book clubs.—Emmy Neal, Lake Forest Lib., IL - Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

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