by Jarrett Krosoczka
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
You wouldn’t know Jarrett’s somewhat tumultuous childhood from the lighthearted books he’s known for, like the Lunch Lady graphic novel series and Platypus Police Squad. His mother struggled with drug addiction and was in and out of his life. When Jarrett was five, his grandparents successfully gained custody of him. Though they were salty, smoking and swearing and fighting with each other, there’s no doubt that he was better off in their care than with his mother. As they gained custody, she began drifting in and out of his life, in and out of prison and rehab. He recounts eventually meeting his father and half siblings, and the power of his first real art class with a teacher who encouraged him and believed in him. He shows us a school visit from Jack Gantos and how that impacted him. I would give this to a high schooler who either enjoyed Jarrett’s work when they were younger or someone going through some of the same things (absent parent, drug addiction, prison, being raised by grandparents).