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Anansi & Groundwood Gift Catalogue

Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up with Me
By (author): Mariko Tamaki Illustrated by: Rosemary Valero-O'Connell
Mariko Tamaki ,

Illustrated by :

Rosemary Valero-O'Connell


Groundwood Books - Toronto



Product Form:


Form detail:

Trade, Picture book
Paperback , Trade, Picture book


Juvenile: Age (years) 14, Grade (US) 9
May 21, 2019
$19.99 CAD


8.5in x 6 x 0.7 in | 0.99 lb

Page Count:

304 pages


2-colour illustrations throughout
Groundwood Books Ltd
Groundwood Books
YOUNG ADULT FICTION / Comics & Graphic Novels / LGBTQ+
Junior Library Guild Selection 2019, Commended Walter Award, Teen Category 2020, Winner Harvey Award for Best Children's or Young Adult Book 2019, Winner Lambda Literary Awards, LGBTQ Comics 2020, Nominated Joe Shuster Award ? Writer 2020, Short-listed NPR's Best Books 2019, Commended
  • Short Description
From This One Summer co-creator Mariko Tamaki comes a hilarious and poignant story of teen heartbreak and friendship.

From This One Summer co-creator Mariko Tamaki comes a hilarious and poignant story of teen heartbreak and friendship.

All Freddy Riley wants is for Laura Dean to stop breaking up with her. The day they got back together was the best one of Freddy’s life, but nothing’s made sense since. Laura Dean is popular, funny and SO CUTE … but she can be really thoughtless, even mean. Their on-again, off-again relationship has Freddy’s head spinning — and Freddy’s friends can’t understand why she keeps going back.

When Freddy consults the services of a local mystic, the mysterious Seek-Her, she isn’t thrilled with the advice she receives. But something’s got to give: Freddy’s heart is breaking in slow motion, and she may be about to lose her very best friend as well as her last shred of self-respect. Fortunately for Freddy, there are new friends, and the insight of advice columnist Anna Vice, to help her through being a teenager in love.

Mariko Tamaki and Rosemary Valero-O’Connell bring to life a sweet and spirited tale of young love that asks us to consider what happens when we ditch the toxic relationships we crave to embrace the healthy ones we need.

Key Text Features
rough sketches
character drawings
speech bubbles
process art

Correlates to the Common Core State Standards in English Language Arts:

>Determine a theme of a story, drama, or poem from details in the text, including how characters in a story or drama respond to challenges or how the speaker in a poem reflects upon a topic; summarize the text.

Compare and contrast two or more characters, settings, or events in a story or drama, drawing on specific details in the text (e.g., how characters interact).

Describe how a narrator's or speaker's point of view influences how events are described.

Cite textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.

Describe how a particular story's or drama's plot unfolds in a series of episodes as well as how the characters respond or change as the plot moves toward a resolution.

Explain how an author develops the point of view of the narrator or speaker in a text.

MARIKO TAMAKI is a Canadian writer of comics and prose. She is the co-creator with Jillian Tamaki of Skim and of Caldecott and Printz Honor book This One Summer. Mariko also writes about superheroes for Marvel and DC Comics. She lives in Oakland, California.

ROSEMARY VALERO-O’CONNELL has done work for DC Comics, BOOM! Studios, CAPY Games and Mondo Tees, among others. Her work has been recognized by the Society of Illustrators and shown in galleries both locally and internationally.

Beautiful and bracing. Tamaki and Valero-O’Connell capture Freddy on the cusp of adulthood and in the throes of perpetual heartache. Good God, I wanted to break up with Laura Dean. - Rainbow Rowell, Number 1 New York Times–bestselling author of Eleanor & Park and Carry On

Mariko Tamaki and Rosemary Valero-O’Connell expertly capture the awkwardness, tragedy and hope of figuring out love. - Gene Luen Yang, author of American Born Chinese

This exploration of toxic relationships and social dynamics at the cusp of adulthood is, like its cast, sharp and dazzling. - Publisher's Weekly

Tamaki explores the nuances of both romantic and platonic relationships with raw tenderness and honesty. Valero-O’Connell’s art is realistic and expressive, bringing the characters to life through dynamic grayscale illustrations featuring highlights of millennial pink...a triumphant queer coming-of-age story that will make your heart ache and soar. - Kirkus Reviews

[A] relatable, heart-wrenching, and often funny graphic novel . . . - Horn Book

In their first collaboration, Tamaki and Valero-O’Connell have developed a sophisticated storytelling dynamic . . . . fresh and exhilarating . . . - Quill and Quire

It’s a special work, as we might expect from inspirational Canadian creator Mariko Tamaki and the elegant, accessible art style of Rosemary Valero-O’Connell. But the best part is this team showed that a story about a lovelorn queer teenage girl, published in a YA book, can be relatable to anyone who’s ever had a bad relationship. . . . The narrative is framed around Freddy’s letters to an advice columnist and it’ll hit you right in the feels. It ends with a message that (no spoilers) everybody should hear. - Toronto Star

By framing the dangers of normalizing toxic relationships within a wider context, Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up With Me presents healthy, respectful connection not just as an act of self-preservation but as care for your friends and community, too, doubly so within marginalized groups. - Winnipeg Free Press

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