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|Read Book ¼ Kiss Number 8 ô Amanda can t figure out what s so exciting about kissing It s just a lot of teeth clanking, germ swapping, closing of eyes so you can t see that godzilla sized zit just inches from your own hormonal monstrosity All of her seven kisses had been horrible in different ways, but nothing compared to the awfulness that followed Kiss Number Eight An exploration of sexuality, family, and faith, Kiss Number Eight is a coming of age tale filled with humor and hope 2 stars for the story, additional star for the artwork.You may have seen other reviews saying the cover art does not match the interior story This is true.You may have seen other reviews saying there are a lot of plotlines in this book and none of them are really given full service, especially the tale of a transman, and the end result is chaotic Also true.You may have seen other reviews saying this takes place in 2004 which makes no sense for a book that s supposed to be aimed at contemporary 2 stars for the story, additional star for the artwork.You may have seen other reviews saying the cover art does not match the interior story This is true.You may have seen other reviews saying there are a lot of plotlines in this book and none of them are really given full service, especially the tale of a transman, and the end result is chaotic Also true.You may have seen other reviews saying this takes place in 2004 which makes no sense for a book that s supposed to be aimed at contemporary youth, some of whom wouldn t even have been alive in 2004 So very true.I d like to add that I have not been able to confirm this is an ownvoices story which leads me to question why it was written Ok, I know why it was written the author and illustrator include an interview they did with each other in the back of the book and the author mentions she was inspired to write this story in 2004 when her sister came out But this isn t a story of allyship, this is the story of a teenager questioning gender roles and her sexuality I suppose this could be aimed at kids who have friends who are LGBTQA but for the kids exploring their own sex and gender ideals, this may bepainful than useful.In this case, I think it s the art that carries the story There is so much emotion in the characters body languages, so much being told via illustration that s not told in text In some cases, the two oppose one another a character is telling a story in text while the actual story is playing out in pictures.While I liked the idea behind this, I don t feel it was executed well nor do I strongly believe it was told by the person s who should be telling this story Other reviews suggest better stories of LGBTQA youth and those may be worth looking into if this one seems like it s not going to please you as a reader Who on earth told this 300 page YA graphic novel that it had to have acomplicated story than most 700 page high fantasy epics This did the absolute most for NO reason.I mean Some spoilers, but It s the story of Amanda, a girl who has kissed seven boys before realizing that she may want to kiss girls, and specifically wants to kiss her female best friend, who is lowkey homophobic, and so in the pages of this story Amanda must kisspeople and also realize her sexuality and also come o Who on earth told this 300 page YA graphic novel that it had to have acomplicated story than most 700 page high fantasy epics This did the absolute most for NO reason.I mean Some spoilers, but It s the story of Amanda, a girl who has kissed seven boys before realizing that she may want to kiss girls, and specifically wants to kiss her female best friend, who is lowkey homophobic, and so in the pages of this story Amanda must kisspeople and also realize her sexuality and also come out BUT THAT S NOT ALL She also realizes her grandmother was trans, and that at least four of her loved ones are deeply transphobic and not all that non homophobic And also she hascrushes And also she kisses between 8 and 14 people, depending on how you look at it.It s justway too much.And it makes a mess of simply everything Everything feels shallow and half baked and incomplete Redemption arcs happen in like half a page so two drawings, basically.It is frustrating and confusing and most of all a HUGE BUMMER.Because this could have been a really powerful story.And instead it swhatever this was.Bottom line this didn t really accomplish anything it hoped to and also it broke my brain.review to come 1.5 stars i m slightly behind on my reading challenge so you know what time it isGRAPHIC NOVEL COME THRU FOR ME thanks to First Second for the arc I should have known from the very beginning that this would be a VERY dramatic book, not a romantic comedy like I expected Rom com, really That could not be farther from reality After all, the cover itself is overly dramatic Mads s friend is whispering who knows what in her ear while she is blushing and holding a CROSS But I had to give it a chance because it s a GRAPHIC NOVEL and it has LGBTQIA themes That s a combination that should have worked after all, BLOOM by Kevin Panetta was abso I should have known from the very beginning that this would be a VERY dramatic book, not a romantic comedy like I expected Rom com, really That could not be farther from reality After all, the cover itself is overly dramatic Mads s friend is whispering who knows what in her ear while she is blushing and holding a CROSS But I had to give it a chance because it s a GRAPHIC NOVEL and it has LGBTQIA themes That s a combination that should have worked after all, BLOOM by Kevin Panetta was absolutely lovely But this was not lovely Actually, I dare say it was kind of a mess and not a pretty one at all.The author focused on too many things at once There s Mads s sexuality and crush on her best friend Cat, which she doesn t really understand and has no one to talk to about or so she thinks There s her relationship with her dad which is a love hate one since he appears to be lying to her There s the mystery surrounding her grandparents There s her other friend who she s not sure she even likes There s Adam who is in L O V E with her and she couldn t care less, and yet somehow it s a source of stress for her because it forces her to face her own desires Boy oh boy It s as though the author wanted to write multiple different stories about different things but then suddenly decided to put all of those stories together to form just one It s HEAVY and DRAMATIC because there s too much going on The characters rarely take time to just calm down It s dramatic scene after dramatic scene I did find the illustrations cute and the characters three dimensional, but as for the story It wasn t a winner for me Blog Youtube Twitter Instagram Google Bloglovin Trigger Warning Homophobia, Transphobia, the f wordMads parents are strained, and what s worse, she thinks her dad is cheating on her mother with another woman And her dad won t tell her anything about it But Mads keeps her thoughts away hanging out with her best friend Cat, and kissing boys Even if the kissing isgross Where s the appeal Then everything starts to unravel.And everything starts to make sense.Forgive me while I mop up the massive tears rolling down my face, k This was an Trigger Warning Homophobia, Transphobia, the f wordMads parents are strained, and what s worse, she thinks her dad is cheating on her mother with another woman And her dad won t tell her anything about it But Mads keeps her thoughts away hanging out with her best friend Cat, and kissing boys Even if the kissing isgross Where s the appeal Then everything starts to unravel.And everything starts to make sense.Forgive me while I mop up the massive tears rolling down my face, k This was an emotional roller coaster I was not expecting I was thinking, mmm, okay, maybe 2 3 stars, nothing special, and then the second act hit and cue the mother fucking waterworks.But I want to start with one thing first Cat is a colossal asshole and 100% complete hypocrite.After that, well, there s not much I can say without spoilers, but there s a lot of figuring out who you are, and realizing that you re not alone And that sexuality is a weird and wonderful thing, and that being trans doesn t mean that you re diseased And that maybe what you remembered as a child isn t what actually happened, but how you rationalized events in your mind in order to survive.This is a definite must read, but um, get yourself in a good headspace and beware of those trigger warnings becausewhew There s some heavy shit in this It was such a great reminder that the early 2000s were a such a shit time for gay students view spoiler I m so fucking happy I didn t figure out my sexuality until I was in my late twenties, although, tbf, a lot of people probably thought I was gay since I hated wearing dresses, I dressed fairly androgynously okay, I wore the occasional mini skirt but eh, it was whatever , and I rarely if ever expressed any interest in any dudes Plus I had this weird crush on this one girl who had such amazing calves yeah I dunno and a beautiful face andwell, let s just say I m a slow learner about myself hide spoiler But there s always hope, and you are never alone.Although spoiler Kiss 14 is totally my favorite.I received this ARC from NetGalley for an honest review