Laura Dean Keeps Breaking up With Me

Laura Dean Keeps Breaking up With Me

Graphic Novel - 2019
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k
kwsmith
Jan 26, 2020

Seventeen year old Frederica Riley loves her girlfriend Laura Dean. But it's complicated because Laura Dean isn't a very good girlfriend. The art is smooth flowing and gorgeous and the story has something to say about toxic relationships.

IndyPL_ShainaS Jan 03, 2020

Confession: I keep reading this title as Laura DERN Keeps Breaking Up With Me (which sounds like an incredible story/mood itself). Conclusion: This story is lovely, vital, and beautifully rendered, splashes of pink like a young heart pulsing, a color palette I haven't seen anywhere else yet. I loved these characters, and have known manipulative people like Laura Dean, and I can't stress how real and relatable and moving this tale of young love is.

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mm_vega
Nov 27, 2019

absolutely adorable :')) the art is beautiful (the color palette <33) and the writing perfectly conveys love and high school. bonus(it shouldn't be a bonus but we live in this world): super diverse

LPL_VanessaR Nov 20, 2019

MY HEART. Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up with Me encapsulates that beautiful and burning first love feels. The searing heartbreak that we desperately want to avoid at all costs and the friendships that hold us together through that process. And the times we lose sight of ourselves. If I had read this as a college student, I’d be a different person I am now. It’s a reminder that love, or rather the loss of love, is never an end-all. As the book reminds us: “It’s also true that you can break up with someone you still love. Because those two things are not distinct territories: love and not loving anymore... Have faith in yourself to know what’s right for you. Whatever answer you need, it’s inside somewhere.”

JessicaGma Nov 05, 2019

Mariko Tamaki's tale of Freddy and her terrible girlfriend, Laura Dean will resonate with so many. High school may be a bit too full of this sort of popularity/status friends, and Freddy does figure out what matters to her, just in time. It's a great read, and the art is perfectly matched.

JCLBrittanyC Nov 01, 2019

This is your classic teen who can’t get over their first love book. Freddy falls for
one of the most popular, charming girls in school, Laura Dean, but Freddy
quickly finds out Laura Dean is the WORST girlfriend. Whatever it is though,
Freddy can’t shake it. I do love all the LGBTQ love that is happening in graphics these days, but overall I found this to be a less than riveting story. We all know what’s going to happen cause let’s be honest this storyline has happened thousands of times.

ArapahoeSusan Oct 08, 2019

This book has all the drama and "feels" of high school relationships. Laura Dean, the most popular girl in school, keeps her girlfriend, Freddy, on a relationship yo-yo. Doodle, Freddy's BFF, has always been there for her during her annoying on-again-off-again romance. Making a choice between someone that's not good for you and someone who's friendship is priceless isn't always easy. Everyone will relate to at least one of the characters in this story.

SJPL_JessL Sep 29, 2019

Freddy's girlfriend, Laura Dean, is the most popular girl in school, and she keeps breaking up with Freddy and then getting back with her. Freddy keeps letting Laura back but it is starting to wear on her. Freddy confides in friends, Anna Vice (an advice columnist), and even a medium to figure out her feelings for Laura and whether the pain of being taken advantage of is worth her emotional well-fair.
"Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Out With Me" is a self-realization story that speaks to anyone in or has been in a difficult relationship. The art work and illustrations are breath-taking considering the minimal color usage and the story will make you feel all of the heart break and struggle of Freddy and how personal issues effect her friends and family.
I particularly love the artwork by Rosemary Valero-O’Connell. Not only are her characters drawn so uniquely, but her backgrounds and perspective are so realistic while staying within her characteristic universe of Berkeley, CA. The vibe of her Berkeley is pretty spot on too.

z
zombiegravitation
Sep 29, 2019

I know I say this about every comic book I've read but the art was wonderful & gorgeous. The story was good, journey of learning to let go is a hard one and realizing who is there for you (and who you should support in return). Leaving behind a toxic relationship is so hard when it's feels good, when it's so easy and comfortable until it isn't, but even when you get the chance to be with them again after you break up...it's a big temptation even with it's high cost. The characters were wonderfully diverse, though it did fall on a few cliches. They were believable, they're humans they stumbled they make mistakes but I still was able to sympathizes with them (yes even with Laura Dean). The issues it dealt with did get heavy (toxic relationship, abortion, infidelity) but that is one reality. It doesn't matter they're high schoolers, they are facing hard issues & showing actual consequences without romanticizing it and not just for the sake of shock or drama. Like I said great story, it tied up all major plots even if it wasn't as explicit detail as the main storyline, a second read through really helps catch the little details with the b plot. I would recommend it.

STPL_JessH Sep 19, 2019

Well, any opportunity to feature Mariko Tamaki’s work and I am there! Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up With Me is a wonderful graphic novel created with Rosemary Valero-O’Connell. I marked this as “To Read” earlier this year as soon as I heard about the book. Then realized it would fit the “comic by an LGBTQIA creator” category for Read Harder. Tamaki and Valero-O’Connell find the balance of light and depth in this beautifully crafted story that is very relatable. Plus, the artwork is stunning!

n
nbartos
Sep 16, 2019

I'm so glad I gave Tamaki another chance after not enjoying This One Summer. This is probably the most beautiful and aesthetically pleasing graphic novel I've read. This book also uses the fact that it's a graphic novel to its advantage by using the art to show the passage of time, convey moods and emotions, etc. This seems like an obvious thing to do, but I think it's something a lot of graphic novels forget to do, to use the medium to its greatest advantages and have a reason for making it a graphic novel outside of the fact that they can draw or know a great artist.
Outside of the beautiful art and color scheme, I enjoyed the story of Freddy growing and finding her place in her relationships. Yes, Freddy is absolutely a frustrating character, but most of us also know a Freddy, and I loved seeing that growth. One of my only problems with this book was that I wish we could've seen more of Laura Dean (although, so does Freddy I guess). I just feel like we didn't see enough of what's going on with her apart from the end. I also don't feel I gained much from the random comments by inanimate objects.
Overall, I loved this, and I would read it again.

lgbtq rep: main character in on-again-off-again f/f relationship; side characters in m/m relationship (it's super queer)

l
lhohman
Sep 11, 2019

The art in this book is absolutely gorgeous. Every page was a treat. The writing of this graphic novel was also excellent. The characters had depth and the world they reacted to and motivations they responded with felt honest. I was completely absorbed! I only wish this had existed when I was still a conflicted LGBTQ+ teen.

LPL_CentennialC Sep 05, 2019

God, I wish this book had existed as a teen and I wish that someone had given it to me. What a lovely and lovingly told story about growing up and learning how to be a good friend--to others and to yourself. This book hit home for me in so many ways, and I feel strongly that this book is part of a new canon of young adult literature for this generation of teens. Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up With Me is definitely going on my favorites of 2019 booklist, but it’ll be one that I keep on my favorites shelf for a long time coming.

Other strong points:
Complex & tenderly crafted characters with realistic flaws and motivations
Gorgeous (and frankly, iconic) pink & grey color scheme
Creative use of panels, transitions, and shadows
Plot that is personal and quiet, but never slow or boring -- reminds me of something like Whisper of the Heart
A heartfelt, true message to take away from the story: “Your love should be a thing that brings something to you. It’s true that giving can be a part of love. But, contrary to popular belief, love should never take from you.”

TL;DR: Read this book if you are interested in: coming of age stories, relationships gone wrong, creative comics art, or staying current with YA book trends.

p
penelopegomez
Sep 04, 2019

Can I just say how beautiful the cover of this book is! This cover is what first caught my attention. I had no idea it was a graphic novel when I first placed this item on hold, but I was happily surprised. Honestly this book was so good. The main character Freddy is in love with Laura Dean, the most popular girl in school, the only problem is, Laura Dean is a PLAYER! Laura Dean has broken up with Freddy a total of 3 times! Freddy knows she's a habitual cheater, but keeps running back. They are left in a complicated / heartbreaking cycle of repetitiveness. Her friends are over it, and have given up trying to talk any sense into Freddy. They know she will always take Laura Dean back. Reading this book I couldn't help but cheer for Freddy, I couldn't wait for her to WOMAN UP, take her POWER back and DUMP Laura Dean! Tamaki and Valero-O'Connell did a wonderful job of depicting a 'toxic relationship.' Not every toxic relationship is going to be the same. Not every toxic relationship has hitting, or fighting, or name calling, some toxic relationships are subtle. Freddy's character knows something is really, really wrong in her relationship, but she's in 'love' and is mindlessly getting dragged along in an endless cycle of breaking up and making up. I really appreciated this novel for its honesty and I think a lot of people are going to be able to relate to the main character Freddy. Also in this novel Freddy reaches out to an advice columnist to get her opinion, and I have to say that the advice she received was STUNNING! That was relationship advice everyone deserves to hear! I loved this novel and the artwork was amazing. I really liked the fact that this book was in black and white and PINK! It just kind of gave it a little something extra and this book was also a great LGBT+ book. Big thumbs up for this graphic novel, and it's great advice and plot.

m
Maluka11
Sep 03, 2019

One of the best comic romances for teens or just romance books I have ever read. I look forward to rereading this book in the future.

p
pmcnames
Aug 15, 2019

Great story, great art, a little open - ended for my taste

Tigard_HollyCP Jul 26, 2019

Freddy is in love with the stereotypical player Laura Dean despite Laura Dean breaking up with her multiple times, cheating on her, using her, and always choosing to do what seems fun at the moment rather than making any sort of commitment to Freddy. And in turn, Freddy always flakes on her best friends in favor of Laura Dean. Despite my respect for the author, this was not my favorite. I had a hard time following a lot of the panels (I suppose that is due more to the illustrator than the author), and Freddy’s constant pining over Laura Dean just wore on my nerves. I kept thinking back to slogging through the second Twilight book, New Moon, because it reminded me so much of Bella pining over Edward for basically the entire book. Though probably authentic to many experiences, the constant cycle of letting Laura Dean do the same thing to her over and over again was just too much for me.

Tigard_LisaE Jul 18, 2019

Having never lived in Berkeley, i wonder if it's actually like this? I've read enough books and heard enough stories to get the idea that it's some sort of progressive queer utopia where you can enjoy LBGT pun-themed fusion food on every corner, and everyone has multi-cultural, gender diverse, gay, and/or poly-amorous parents. This is Freddy's world, and it's where she falls into deep love (or maybe just obsession) with Laura Dean, in spite of the fact that Laura sometimes cheats on her, acts possessive one minute and dismissive the next, and tends to break up with her on national holidays. My main problem with the book? I cannot fathom maintaining a long-term attraction to someone like that, so I was repulsed by Laura, frustrated with Freddy, and kept getting my little feelings hurt on Doodle's behalf (the loyal, LARPing best friend who's constantly left behind.) Freddy eventually catches on and becomes a better friend through an arc of growth that, though believable, I didn't have much patience for. The art was lovely, the spare, elegant prose carried the story where it needed to go and supported the graphics, and I appreciated Freddy's letters to the advice column as an effective framing device.

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mclarjh
Jul 11, 2019

Thin type hard to read; manga-style drawings; juvenile story and characters; another pathetic teenage romance.

ArapahoeLiz Jun 27, 2019

This is one of Tamaki's bittersweet romance stories that involves a toxic relationship. Beautiful illustrations and story line this book shows how important having good friends and family is... and to break up with a jerk. (The polite way.)

JCLEmmaF Apr 19, 2019

Let’s start with the art. Incredible. I could spend all my time just examining interiors and plants and clothing. I’m in awe, and I’m smitten.
But not in the way Freddy is smitten. Freddy has an issue: Her girlfriend sucks. Big time. So what’s a girl to do? Decide to just call relationship poly? Invest in other friends? Stay preoccupied? Or recognize toxicity and break it off?
This book felt authentic and heartfelt. Love love love.

SPPL_TKBTeenChoice Apr 08, 2019

From TKB Teen Finn: The thing I enjoyed most about this book is how it shows that:
1. Toxic relationships can exist in queer relationships.
2. Toxic relationships in queer relationships consist of the same problems as straight relationships.
I would have LOVED a few full-color pages, but otherwise I think this book is amazing! I loved Doodle a lot! I think she is such a necessary character and balances out the other characters with her generally happy personality. The art was BEAUTIFUL, especially because of all the little details (such as plants, knick-knacks, etc.) add so much to the general picture.

The diversity was five star, and satisfied all my diversity wants:).


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