"Outside a dog a book is man's best friend, inside a dog it is too dark to read!" -Groucho Marx========="The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid." -Jane Austen========="I don’t believe in the kind of magic in my books. But I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book."-JK Rowling========"I spend a lot of time reading." -Bill Gates=========“Ahhh. Bed, book, kitten, sandwich. All one needed in life, really.” -Jacqueline Kelly=========

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Draw the Line by Laurent Linn

I had so much much fun with my last book review when I analyzed the book based on its title I decided to try again with Draw the Line by Laurent Linn

Now granted "draw the line" is not nearly as obscure a phrase as "exit, pursued by bear" but let's see what I can find. The urban dictionary defines the phrase this way:

draw the line

1. To decide firmly an arbitrary boundary between two things: "Where do you draw the line between your  own decisions and those of your superiors?" (Robert Marion).
2. To decide firmly the limit of what one will tolerate or participate in: The officer committed fraud but drew the line at blackmail.

So that isn't very fun. But it does explain quite a lot of the story. Aidan Piper is an graphic artist, a nerd, a shy-guy, and gay. He tries to fly below the radar. He doesn't even sign his name on his website promoting his art.  All of that changes one day when he witnesses, and attempts to stop, a hate crime on another gay boy, an acquaintance of his. Someone caught him on film screaming and shared it on social media. Now the whole school knows he is gay and bullying really begins. After weeks of letting everyone walk all over him, Aidan finally decides he has had enough and he draws the line. He will no longer be silent and fly below the radar if it means that he or others will have to bear the brunt of thuggish behavior. With his art Aidan creates a superhero, Graphite. Then Graphite, the gay superhero helps Aidan find his real power.

Hey, why take it from me? Take a look at the book trailer:

The trailer makes the book seem like it is all graphic novel. It is only partially so. About 50 of the 500+ pages are illustrated. Fortunately the book reads really fast.

I've read a lot of LGBTQ books this summer, each one has its own strengths and weaknesses. The strength of Draw the Line is the powerful message it gives to its readers to be yourself and embrace your own skills and talents.  When Aidan was finally ready to accept himself he found a whole world of friends ready to embrace him, and yes, he also found a very hot new boyfriend!

Here is what Time Federle, an author of another LGBTQ book I read this summer had to say about Draw the Line:

“Laurent Linn had me at ‘gay superhero’—and kept me glued to the page with his thoughtful storytelling and genre-defying art. It’s not a graphic novel. It’s not a novel-novel. It’s Draw the Line, and it’s unmissable.” Tim Federle, author of The Great American Whatever

Aidan and his alter-ego, Graphite, are superheroes and role models for all teens today. And we all need as many positive role models as we can get.

At 515 pages, Draw the Line qualifies for the Big Book Summer Challenge.

2017 Printz Award Contenders

27 / 35 books. 77% done!


  1. Awesome review. I've been thinking of trying this one, and potentially adding it to my library's collection.

  2. It is a fun idea, to analyze the book based on its title!

    Here's my Top Ten!

  3. Wow, this sounds really great, Anne! Also sounds very unique. Have you read Unbecoming yet? I just finished it on audio yesterday - also an excellent YA novel that addresses LGBTQ issues without that being its primary focus.

    Congratulations on finishing another Big Book this summer!


    2016 Big Book Summer Challenge


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