cover image Gadget Girl: The Art of Being Invisible

Gadget Girl: The Art of Being Invisible

Suzanne Kamata. GemmaMedia (Ingram, dist.), $14.95 trade paper (228p) ISBN 978-1-936846-38-2

Fifteen-year-old manga artist Aiko Cassidy begins a life of her own when her mother, famous for her sculptures of Aiko, wins a major award, and they move from Michigan to the City of Lights for the summer. Aiko is obsessed with meeting her estranged father, an indigo farmer in Japan, but Paris’s diversity and creative atmosphere prove to be a welcome and even inspirational substitute. There, she teams up with Hervé, a dashing 16-year-old waiter with similarly big dreams, who admires Aiko and her art and helps her negative self-image (as a klutzy, biracial girl with cerebral palsy) to fade away. In addition, Aiko improves her relationship with her mother, discovers family secrets, and gains the freedom to be herself. Kamata’s love and intimate knowledge of Paris streets add atmosphere to this smart and surprising coming-of-age story, the author’s first book for teens (it was developed from a novella previously published in Cicada magazine). Readers will feel whisked away by the romance of an artistic life and appreciate the sensitivity and honesty with which Kamata writes about Aiko’s physical and emotional journeys. Ages 12–up. (May)