Here’s a review roundup for BRIGHT LIGHTS, DARK NIGHTS, so far! It’s out August 11th, we’re less than a month away!
Kirkus – Starred Review
“The pressure experienced by couples from different ethnic backgrounds is realistically intensified for this sweetly likable pair when Walter’s dad arrests a black teen for burglary and is accused of assaulting him, igniting debate and anger in their neighborhood and at large. Most impressive in this emotionally charged novel is the way each of the characters is fully imagined; they emerge as complex individuals who are shaped by a variety of factors and are not portrayed as simple heroes or villains.”
Voya – Starred Review
“This illustrated novel is timely and realistic. Walter’s voice is funny and true, and the banter between him and Naomi is clever and engaging. The depiction of their budding romance is sweet. The illustrations add an interesting layer to the tale. The racial scandal, white cop against black teen, offers a nuanced depiction of a divisive, current issue. The online community is portrayed perfectly, demonstrating how the knee-jerk reactions of angry, anonymous posters have real-world effects. Walter undergoes real change and growth.”
“Emond raises difficult questions about racism, crime, and civil rights, without promising or providing easy answers. As in Happyface and Winter Town, illustrations share part of the storytelling weight; Emond’s stark b&w imagery, mostly cityscapes and neighborhood scenes, dovetails with Walter’s interest in comic books and noir films, while underscoring his idea of the city as a “mood ring,” reflecting what one brings to it.”
“Emond’s take on a ripped-from-the-headlines story is decidedly understated and deeply rooted in the characters and
the setting. The fictional East Bridge comes to life in Emond’s gorgeous, inky, noir-infused cityscapes, and the richly imagined inhabitants add verisimilitude to the novel.”
School Library Journal
“The story focuses on Walter trying to reconcile reality with the way he has been raised to see the world and Emond handles it authentically, including making it clear that Walter is just starting to understand the bigger issues like his own privilege.”
Also here’s a look at the cover! This is the first cover I designed myself, so happy with how it came out!
And thanks to Faith Erin Hicks, Michael Buckley, and Mariko Tamaki for the kind words we used on the back!