I started reading “Operatic” by Kyo Maclear because it had a pretty cover and a sewn-in purple cloth bookmark. My aesthetic interest quickly expanded, and I slowed down for the content in this middle grade graphic novel.
With each page, “Operatic” emerges as a sweet blend of educational, artistic, emotional and queer. Illustrations rooted in soothing hues are anchored with thick outlines, sharing the stories of middle school students and biographical information about opera singer Marie Callas (trust me, this will be harmonious when you read it!).
While the main character Charlie reads as straight, her unrequited crush on a queer character transforms into a supportive friendship. Oozing with empathy and the rewarding process of building community, “Operatic” serves as a story, biography and resource about embracing the truest parts of one’s self and others.
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