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Good Talk by Mira Jaco Book Review


Good Talk by Mira Jaco Book Review 

Good Talk by Mira Jaco this book mira jacob is exploring a lot of different topics. A lot of them revolving around identity and specifically like american identity, racial identity, things along those lines.

But also things like parenthood and her life growing up and sort of how that's formed how she views things now and those sorts of things. So the story begins with her having a conversation with her son who is biracial. 

Her husband is jewish american man. Her son is asking questions about his own identity, about really like sort of basic in terms of like surface level what he's looking for sort of questions, but questions that are really complicated to answer.

So things about like skin tones and people's races without specifically saying those things. So he's asking like whether or not like his other biracial friends that he knows are similar to him or not. He starts asking questions about like michael jackson because he was really obsessed with michael jackson when he was younger. 

And so he starts asking questions about michael jackson's skin tone and things like that. As he starts growing up, he starts hearing things in the news about black men being shot and people being abusive towards other people of color and things like that, and so he starts to ask questions about like whether or not his dad likes him and things like that because his dad is white and he's brown. 

And so mira jacob starts to really have to wrestle with her own identity as well as her son's identity and what those things mean in a modern american context. And the way that she does this is really beautiful because it's not just like a straightforward narrative story. 

She goes back and forth between scenes and conversations that she has with her kid as well as conversations with like her husband and her friends and things like that. 

But also she goes back in time and looks at how she viewed herself and the world around her growing up. She talks about her parents' experience being in america and things like that after immigrating here from the united states. 

And the way this book is set up, like the images themselves and the way she does her comics is like so well done, because the people themselves are like cartoons and it's all like speech bubbles and things like that but then the background is photographs, either like stock photos or like actual photos that she's gotten from people and things like that. 

And so it like places these stories in like very specific places and points in times and things like that. But it's still like, you know, a comic. and so it does a really good job of this like graphic memoir 

And so it does a really good job of really grounding this book more than i think some other graphic memoirs do because it does use like that photographic evidence. 

The conversations that mira jacob is having in this book are really, really complicated and i feel like she does a really great job of tackling them as well as she can within this book. 

You know, with graphic novels in general or comics or anything like that, like you are kind of limited with the actual words that you could use to talk about things. And obviously like tackling really complicated subject matter like this could potentially be hindered, 

but there's something about the way that she put together her story where she's able to pick up on the nuances of the conversation and the complicated feelings. And there's a lot that mira jacob covers in this book and it's kind of amazing like what she's able to build with the way 

this book is structured, covering both parts of her past as well as parts of her parents' past and how that's led up to where things are now, and difficult conversations and difficult situations that she's been in and things like that.

There's this like really beautiful way that she like illustrates like actual speech that's going on versus like what's going on in her head and things like that. And like the way that she's able to depict different people in her life is just, it's amazing. 

It's honestly amazing what she's done here. And i have to say like on a personal level, this book like hit me so much harder than i was ready for. I knew mira jacob was indian american, but i didn't know like anything beyond that because this is the first time i'm picking up anything that she's written. 

And i didn't realize she's Malayalee, like me, and her family's christian, also like me. And so there are certain like details that she talks about that really hit like a specific part of my brain. 

Like hit like that memory center of like things that have also happened to me or conversations that i've heard or the way things are phrased and things like that. There were multiple times in this book where i wanted to cry. 

And there's one time that i specifically did cry because she was discussing all of these things that i've also been through, and there's something like very affecting about like seeing conversations takes place in a book that you've also had. 

Like seeing yourself reflected in art is a very powerful thing and that happened to me multiple times in this book. And so there's things about like arranged marriages. 

There's a specific scene in here where she decides to like give her phone number to someone and that entire scene like felt like i was watching my own life play out before me. 

There's a conversation that she has in here with her dad who was at the time dying of cancer, and they have this like epiphany that her dad's never going to see her children or meet her children. And like that's the moment when i just had to put the book down and cry for a little bit as someone whose dad has also passed away. 

But even just like beyond those experiences that are kind of specific, there is a universality to a lot of what she's talking about here. These anxieties of being a parent and not knowing the right ways to have difficult conversations with your kids. 

The fact that when you're a person of color and you have kids, that you have to teach them that things are going to be different, that the world that we live in is not fair and you have to try your best to prepare them but it's complicated. Like we barely understand it ourselves as adults and we have to somehow prepare kids for living in this world as well. 

And those sorts of anxieties about wanting to do right by her son without overly burdening him with too much information, making sure that he knows that like even when they were having a complicated time with her husband's parents that like everyone still loved each other and they're all still family and things like that. And one of the things that really just resonates throughout this book is the fact that it's like filled with love. 

Like you can tell that like mira jacob loves her family in spite of and because of everything that's happening. And even when things got really complicated and difficult and things like that, like there's so much compassion with which mira talks about everything that's gone on that i really really appreciated.

Also read: On the Come Up by Angie Thomas book review

Also read: Spin the Dawn by Elizabeth Lim book review 

Also read: The Dutch House by Ann Patchett book review

Also read: The Other Black Girl by Zakiya Dalila Harris book review 

Also read: Your House Will Pay by Steph Cha book review



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