Review: Colin Kaepernick: Change the Game

Colin Kaepernick Change the Game

Title: Colin Kaepernick: Change the Game
Creator: Colin Kaepernick, Eve L. Ewing, Orlando Caicedo (Illustrator)
Genres: Graphic novel, memoir
Pages: 144
Publisher: Graphix
Review Copy: ARC from publisher
Availability: Out now

Summary: Colin Kaepernick: Change the Game is an inspiring high school graphic novel memoir for readers 12 and up from celebrated athlete and activist Colin Kaepernick. High school star athlete Colin Kaepernick is at a crossroads in life. Heavily scouted by colleges and MLB as a baseball pitcher, he has a bright future ahead of him as a highly touted prospect. Everyone from his parents to his teachers and coaches are in agreement on his future. Colin feels differently. Colin isn’t excited about baseball. In the words of five-time all-star MLB player Adam Jones, “Baseball is a white man’s game.” Colin looks up to athletes like Allen Iverson: talented, hyper-competitive, unapologetically Black, and dominating their sports while staying true to themselves. College football looks a lot more fun than sleeping on hotel room floors in the minor leagues of baseball. But Colin doesn’t have a single offer to play football. Yet. This touching graphic novel explores the story of how a young change-maker learned to find himself and never compromise. How the right decision is very rarely the easy one, but taking the road less traveled can make all the difference in the world.

Review: Anyone who’s been paying attention to American sports even a little bit knows of Colin Kaepernick: a star football player who knelt during the national anthem during the Black Lives Matter protests. What you might not know is his life story. Colin Kaepernick: Change the Game seeks to change that, with a graphic novel memoir highlighting Colin’s teenage years and the journey he went on to become the man he is today.

I came to this graphic memoir with high hopes and was not disappointed. I’ve always been curious about Colin Kaepernick’s story, and I’m a fan of Eve L. Ewing’s writing, so this team up made perfect sense to me. The writing is gripping and tells a compelling narrative of Kaepernick’s life. The art does the difficult job of depicting quieter moments of self-reflection and action-packed moments that happen on the field — both baseball and football — and does it well. The illustration and writing pair fantastically together.

I’m usually not one for memoirs or biographies, but I can certainly get behind graphic memoirs. I hope this is the beginning of many more graphic memoirs highlighting the trailblazers and activists. Colin Kaepernick: Change the Game is a graphic memoir not to be missed.

Recommendation: Get it now!