Wednesday, November 19, 2014

beautiful graphics, great themes.

The Hockey Saint is the second installment in the Forever Friends trilogy by Howard Shapiro, following the extremely popular, The Stereotypical Freaks. Graphic novels are all my middle grade boys want to read at this point, so Shapiro has been a real lifesaver. This sports-oriented graphic novel revolves around world renowned Canadian hockey player Jeramiah Jacobson and his huge fan, an ordinary college kid named Tom Leonard who is still grieving the loss of his parents. The two meet by chance, become friends, and Tom learns that celebrities really don't have it all. The fame and spotlight is slowly eating away at Jeramiah, and although Tom has a lot of his own stuff to deal with, he realizes that by putting forth the effort to save others, you can also save yourself.

Shapiro has a huge win here. A graphic novel carrying themes such as depression, helping others, the meaning of true friendship, and addiction. The Hockey Saint carries with it a moral compass and takeaway values for an age group that desperately needs both.

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