Borders

by Thomas King, illustrations by Natasha Donovan
Support your local independent bookstore: buy it there!
Content: There are some moments that might be intense for some readers. It’s in the middle grade Graphic Novel section of the bookstore.

The premise is simple: A boy and his mother want to go visit family in Salt Lake City from Canada. However, when they get to the border, the customs agents want them to declare a country The mother says “Blackfoot” which isn’t an acceptable answer. The rest of the book is the story of them being caught in the space between border crossings and how they get out.

It’s a simple story, but a powerful one. I admire the way the mother stuck to her values: they are Blackfoot, not Canadian, and that should be an acceptable answer for border crossings. The art is clear and realistic but not overly so. It was the story that I really appreciated in this one. I appreciated the back story about their lives, even if the only person named was the sister, and I enjoyed the way this story was resolved. It may not be the most brilliant graphic novel out there, but it is an important and interesting one.

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