Title: A Map to the Sun
Author: Sloane Leong
Genres: Contemporary, Graphic Novel
Publisher: First Second
Review Copy: Author
Availability: Available August 4, 2020
Summary: One summer day, Ren meets Luna at a beachside basketball court and a friendship is born. But when Luna moves to back to Oahu, Ren’s messages to her friend go unanswered. Years go by. Then Luna returns, hoping to rekindle their friendship. Ren is hesitant. She’s dealing with a lot, including family troubles, dropping grades, and the newly formed women’s basketball team at their highschool. With Ren’s new friends and Luna all on the basketball team, the lines between their lives on and off the court begin to blur. During their first season, this diverse and endearing group of teens are challenged in ways that make them reevaluate just who and how they trust.
Sloane Leong’s evocative storytelling about the lives of these young women is an ode to the dynamic nature of friendship. [Image and summary via Goodreads]
Review: Spoiler alert: I’m going to recommend you pick up A Map to the Sun. The cover alone is reason to check it out. (I mean, just look at it.) There honestly isn’t a single page that isn’t visually stunning.
Of course, that’s not all there is to this graphic novel. A Map to the Sun follows Ren and her friends as they navigate friendship and family, and everything in between — all while growing as a women’s basketball team. It’s a powerful and poignant story that fans of Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up With Me and This One Summer will love. The story doesn’t shy away from heavier topics, so I would recommend paying attention to any content warnings available, if that’s relevant to you — I’ve noted three items at the end of this review.
I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again — there’s so many incredible graphic novels coming out. A Map to the Sun is one of them. Be sure to pick it up when you get the chance.
Content warning: Self-harm, sexual harassment, and abuse.
Recommendation: Get it soon! A Map to the Sun launches on August 4th.