Sunday, May 8, 2011

Refresh Refresh, by Danica Novgorodoff

Refresh Refresh, by Danica Novgorodoff. New York: First Second, 2009. 138 pp. ISBN 9781596435223

Apart from a few lines here and there, it's been so long since Josh has received any real contact from his father.  He just wants to know where his dad is...

Graphic Novel

"Fathers, sons, and the war that comes between them. There's nothing Josh, Cody, and Gordon want more than their fathers home safely from the war in Iraq — unless it's to get out of their dead-end town. Refresh, Refresh is the story of three teenagers on the cusp of high school graduation and their struggle to make hard decisions with no role models to follow; to discover the possibilities for the future when all the doors are slamming in their faces; and to believe their fathers will come home alive so they can be boys again." ( synopsis)

This is a heart-breaking and vivid window into the experience of three boys who want nothing more than to hear from their fathers, and the title of the novel refers to just that, the act of hitting the "refresh" key to see if you've received any new email.  The teens' lives are portrayed realistically, and scenes of everyday things such as going to parties or practicing their fighting skills are interspersed with conversations about the future which is just around the corner for these high school seniors.  I highly recommed this honest graphic novel.  Potential controversial elements: violence, underage drinking, sexual activity.

This novel may help teens whose fathers or mothers are in the military and stationed away from the family.

I have always been interested in how teens deal with having parents overseas in the military.

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