Wednesday 22 April 2015

Review: Smile by Raina Telgemeier

Title: Smile
Author: Raina Telgemeier
Publisher: Graphix
Page Count: 224
Publication Date: February 1st 2010
Obtained: Purchased


From the artist of BSC Graphix comes this humorous coming-of-age true story about the dental drama that ensues after a trip-and-fall mishap.

Raina just wants to be a normal sixth grader. But one night after Girl Scouts she trips and falls, severely injuring her two front teeth. What follows is a long and frustrating journey with on-again, off-again braces, surgery, embarrassing headgear, and even a retainer with fake teeth attached. And on top of all that, there's still more to deal with: a major earthquake, boy confusion, and friends who turn out to be not so friendly.

What I Thought:

I read Sisters earlier this year which I really enjoyed. Even though this book was the first in the series, the order that you read them doesn’t really matter as the stories in each book weren’t particularly connected. I actually liked this book even more that Sisters and I thought it was a really graphic novel.

In the book Telgemeier illustrates her life from 6th grade to about her sophomore year and how she tries to grow up and enter teenage life whilst also dealing with the reality of braces which were often painful and inconvenient. Along her journey she learns a few things about friends, boys, dental trauma and survives an earthquake. It all starts when she trips and knocks out both of her front teeth (ouch!). Over the years she visits dentists, orthodontists and doctors who all try to help fix her smile. After trial and error, they find a way to give her a smile that maybe isn’t completely perfect but is good enough. She learns to be less self-conscious about how she looks and that maybe when it come to her friends, sometimes she needs to stand up for herself.

I love the art work and I feel like the story was told very well at a good pace. I could really relate to Raina and many of the problems that she was going through at that age were similar to mine and I feel that a lot people could probably relate also. Overall, a really good read and I would definitely recommend it to people who like comics and graphic novels.

Rating: 5/5


  1. This was a book my teacher continued to try and encourage me to read when I had braces. For some reason the more she advertised it, the less I wanted to read it! I haven't read it until now, and I no longer have my braces as well. Maybe I should rethink this one.

    1. Haha, I know. When someone tells me something is really good it makes me a bit skeptical. I don't have braces but I loved this book. I gave it to my little sister to read because she's getting braces soon. I'm thinking of reading more graphic novels since I liked this so much.

      Thanks for commenting. :)