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My Mom Had an Abortion

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My Mom Had an Abortion is a unique coming-of-age tale told by a self-described dyslexic-asexual-lesbian-feminist teenager and illustrated by body-positive comic artist Tatiana Gill. We follow our protagonist Beezus B. Murphy as she chronicles her evolving understanding of menstruation, reproduction, and abortion and finds her place in a confusing world. Initially influence My Mom Had an Abortion is a unique coming-of-age tale told by a self-described dyslexic-asexual-lesbian-feminist teenager and illustrated by body-positive comic artist Tatiana Gill. We follow our protagonist Beezus B. Murphy as she chronicles her evolving understanding of menstruation, reproduction, and abortion and finds her place in a confusing world. Initially influenced by harmful narratives in pop media such as the "the pregnant teenager" cliche, we watch Beezus's ideas change as her body changes and as she learns more about the intricacies of her family history and her mom's own reproductive experiences. She grows from a confused, out-of-place kid into a self-assured, empathetic, and strong-willed activist teen. As Beezus says, "People shouldn't be shamed for getting or not getting abortions. Young people absorb the information that we gather from our surroundings. Sometimes it's good information and other times it can be harmful. But now I realize abortion is perfectly normal and should be kept safe and legal." Sprinkled with pop culture references, hilariously apt descriptions of unwanted body changes and menstruation like the chapter "Blood, Bath, and Beyond," and instantly understandable revelations of growing-up, this beautifully illustrated short graphic novel crucially fills a cultural gap around complexities of abortion, pop culture, body changes, and finding out where we fit in.


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My Mom Had an Abortion is a unique coming-of-age tale told by a self-described dyslexic-asexual-lesbian-feminist teenager and illustrated by body-positive comic artist Tatiana Gill. We follow our protagonist Beezus B. Murphy as she chronicles her evolving understanding of menstruation, reproduction, and abortion and finds her place in a confusing world. Initially influence My Mom Had an Abortion is a unique coming-of-age tale told by a self-described dyslexic-asexual-lesbian-feminist teenager and illustrated by body-positive comic artist Tatiana Gill. We follow our protagonist Beezus B. Murphy as she chronicles her evolving understanding of menstruation, reproduction, and abortion and finds her place in a confusing world. Initially influenced by harmful narratives in pop media such as the "the pregnant teenager" cliche, we watch Beezus's ideas change as her body changes and as she learns more about the intricacies of her family history and her mom's own reproductive experiences. She grows from a confused, out-of-place kid into a self-assured, empathetic, and strong-willed activist teen. As Beezus says, "People shouldn't be shamed for getting or not getting abortions. Young people absorb the information that we gather from our surroundings. Sometimes it's good information and other times it can be harmful. But now I realize abortion is perfectly normal and should be kept safe and legal." Sprinkled with pop culture references, hilariously apt descriptions of unwanted body changes and menstruation like the chapter "Blood, Bath, and Beyond," and instantly understandable revelations of growing-up, this beautifully illustrated short graphic novel crucially fills a cultural gap around complexities of abortion, pop culture, body changes, and finding out where we fit in.

30 review for My Mom Had an Abortion

  1. 4 out of 5

    Alex Nonymous

    Thanks to the publisher for providing an eARC of My Mom Had an Abortion in exchange for an honest review. While I liked My Mom Had an Abortion for its honesty and openness about a usually tabboo topic, it was a lot shorter than I think the topic deserved. This felt more like a section of a graphic novel than a graphic novel itself and I wanted more.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Colleen Frakes

    I thoughtful story that has been well translated into comics

  3. 4 out of 5

    Mark Robison

    There are two things that I would've liked to know before I started reading this. First, the author was born in 2004 (with the book published in 2021). Second, it's short and — if published in the 1990s — would've probably been billed as an illustrated zine rather than a graphic novel. It's text heavy and has occasional simple panels without much detail. All that said, I enjoyed this. The book follows Beezus figuring out who she is. Writing this at age 16 or 17, she ends up describing herself as There are two things that I would've liked to know before I started reading this. First, the author was born in 2004 (with the book published in 2021). Second, it's short and — if published in the 1990s — would've probably been billed as an illustrated zine rather than a graphic novel. It's text heavy and has occasional simple panels without much detail. All that said, I enjoyed this. The book follows Beezus figuring out who she is. Writing this at age 16 or 17, she ends up describing herself as a woke asexual lesbian feminist. I'll be interested if/how her self-description changes when she's 26 and 36. Regardless, I like seeing people of any age delve into why they believe what they believe — and even trying to understand their own bodies — and I appreciated Beezus sharing her efforts.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Person

    When I was going into the book, I had hoped it was solely about the perception of someone dealing with an issue that felt personal to her - such as in the case that she could have been aborted as well or she lost someone she could have felt close to more than her parents, the latter somewhat shown at the end of chapter three. From what I understand, it's almost as if this book has an identity crisis from such a misleading title to the approaching of the issue of abortion. Then there's Chapter Fo When I was going into the book, I had hoped it was solely about the perception of someone dealing with an issue that felt personal to her - such as in the case that she could have been aborted as well or she lost someone she could have felt close to more than her parents, the latter somewhat shown at the end of chapter three. From what I understand, it's almost as if this book has an identity crisis from such a misleading title to the approaching of the issue of abortion. Then there's Chapter Four, which goes into the aspect of a growing women, just before continuing talking about her mother's early life between her parents. Not only does it have an identity crisis shown in the first five chapters, but the tone of it seems inconsistent as the fourth ends with a joke about not holding her breasts, then it talks about the mother's early life. Chapter six somehow brings Beezus back as the titular character instead of her mother or the issue that is mentioned in the title and on the 'A Shout Your Abortion Project' on the cover. It almost feels as if this isn't really about someone's life, instead it's about something that is talked about on the moment - as shown with how there's only two pages of the mention of the writer being a lesbian before moving onto another chapter. Outside of a supposed preamble into social movements and everyday acts of resistance, it doesn't quite get better in any way in the rest of the chapters. The question that keeps circulating my mind is 'What intention did the author really have with this book that couldn't have been put into their own seperate sections instead of in a book about abortion or in between chapters not about her?' Again, the book has the identity crisis of not extending anything beyond just the discovery of something, which I'm quite sure anyone who can read is able to consume more information than what's presented. One final mention of how inconsistent the tone and purpose of this book is through mentioning how "woke" Beezus B. Murphy is before somehow adding more text about abortion as the final chapter. As someone that does understand the hardship of writing, especially when it's about postmodernism for an essay I should have gotten more than just a ninety-one percent; but after reading this book in an hour and ten minutes, I still have no idea what was going through the head of the writer. Sure, I can respect her and critique with reasonable reach, but she should have taken more inspiration from other books that are either more popular or intellectually scintillating than a book show that the hardest part was just trying to remember certain events. - Overall, my review isn't the best, but I wouldn't say I can't recommend this to anyone that is around ten years of age. It does have some capability to be an introduction, even if it's one-tenth of what it should have been, since it can be useful for periods, recognizing the necessity of accessible abortion and understanding family member's lives more than just the shell of who they are. Also, I thought Beezus looked nice with those heart glasses and that red hair.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Angela

    I picked up this book the other day. I want to share this with my 11 year old daughter but may wait until I feel the moment is right. I loved that a young person wrote this very personal book about her own experience. Taking the stigma and shame out of abortion will help us to continue to fight for this right. I cried when I read this book and I think the Shout Your Abortion movement is an important one.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Katlyn Ulinski

    Earc received via Edelweiss+ in exchange for an honest review. I was unaware that this book was in the form of a graphic novel, but I did not enjoy the artistic style of the graphics and also just found it to be very short and too the point. I appreciate the oportunity.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Marilou Rickert

    If you have a pre-teen or teen-age daughter, do yourself a favor and read this book! If you were ever a teen-age woman, do yourself a favor and read this book.

  8. 4 out of 5

    David

    Good discussion of a topic that shouldn’t be taboo. The format is accessible, which is important for this topic as well. Easily able to be read in a single setting

  9. 5 out of 5

    naga

    "... people are capable of remarkable transformation." "... people are capable of remarkable transformation."

  10. 4 out of 5

    Andréa

    Note: I accessed a digital review copy of this book through Edelweiss.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Ocean

  12. 4 out of 5

    Jules Wolfers

  13. 5 out of 5

    Bina

  14. 5 out of 5

    Alexandra

  15. 5 out of 5

    Paola

  16. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth Gee

  17. 4 out of 5

    Mollie

  18. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

  19. 5 out of 5

    Brittoney

  20. 5 out of 5

    Cappy Yarbrough

  21. 5 out of 5

    Naomi

  22. 5 out of 5

    Kaylee Fullerton

  23. 5 out of 5

    A.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Kaila

  25. 4 out of 5

    Crystal

  26. 4 out of 5

    Indigo

  27. 4 out of 5

    Allison

  28. 4 out of 5

    Sionainn (Sionainnsbooks)

  29. 4 out of 5

    Matthew Noe

  30. 5 out of 5

    Joshanna Robinson

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