From Archie to Zack

Vincent X. Kirsch. Abrams, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4197-4367-2
Archie, a pale redhead with a penchant for suits, has a crush on his best friend, Zack, a Black boy with dark curls, in this picture book by Kirsch. By all accounts, Archie’s love is requited (“ ‘Archie loves Zack!’ ‘Zack loves Archie!’ Everyone said it was so,” the first page reads), but neither can muster the courage to confess. What ensues is a deliberately paced journey as Archie pens and hides three love notes addressed “From A. to Z.,” before classmates discover the missives and offer assistance. Illustrations done in watercolor, ink, graphite, and colored pencil have an uncanny bent, with goggle-eyed, noodle-limbed children; unfortunately, two presumably East Asian characters have lines for eyes, and those of a seemingly South Asian child with a bindi are puzzlingly diamond-shaped. Still, the book’s sweet queer interracial love story will appeal. Ages 4–8. (Dec.)
Reviewed on : 12/17/2020
Release date: 11/01/2020
Genre: Children's
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