I never had braces or the attendant "dental drama." I never went to middle school. I hate The Little Mermaid. But I still loved this story.
Raina Telgemeier's autobiographical graphic novel tells the story of her life in middle school, from the freak accident that began years of braces and oral surgery to learning how to stand up for herself and choose her friends.
The author skillfully blends the current events that impacted her world - a major earthquake, The Little Mermaid and scrunchies (trust me, they were a current event) into the plot without making the story seem outdated or old. Every kid in middle school - boys and girls - can relate to something in this story. Even kids who have different experiences will understand young Raina's angst over friendship and growing up.
Verdict: This is a must-have for your library collection! Even if you don't collect graphic novels, it's handily published in a regular book-size hardback format, so you can sneak it onto your shelf and no one will ever know - except the kids who beg you for more books like this one.
ISBN: 978-0545132060; Published February 2010 by Graphix; Purchased for the library (stolen; purchased AGAIN)