Source: Recieved from DC Comics in exhange for an honest review. This in no way alters my opinion or review.
Publisher: DC Comics
Publication Date: July 27. 2021
From New York Times bestselling author Mariko Tamaki (Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up with Me, Harley Quinn: Breaking Glass) and artist Yoshi Yoshitani (Zatanna and the House of Secrets) comes a story about Mandy, the daughter of super-famous superhero Starfire, and her desperate attempts to get out from under her shadow.Seventeen-year-old Mandy Koriand’r is not her mother. Daughter of Starfire and high school outcast, Mandy is constantly trying to get out from under the shadow of her bright, bubbly, scantily clad, and famous mother. Dyeing her bright orange hair black and sticking close to her best friend, Lincoln, Mandy spends her days at school avoiding Teen Titans superfans and trying to hide her feelings for the gorgeous, popular, and perfect Claire. And while Mandy usually avoids spending too much time with her alien mother, she’s been particularly quiet as she’s keeping one major secret from her: Mandy walked out of her S.A.T.While Mandy continues to tell Lincoln her plans of moving to France to escape the family spotlight and not go to college, she secretly hides a fear of not knowing her identity outside of just being the daughter of a superhero and who she will become. But when she is partnered with Claire to work on a school project, their friendship develops into something more and a self-confidence unknown to Mandy begins to bloom. Claire seems to like Mandy for being Mandy, not the daughter of Starfire.But when someone from Starfire’s past comes to disrupt Mandy’s future, Mandy must finally make a choice: give up before the battle has even begun, or step into the unknown and risk everything. I Am Not Starfire is a story about mother-daughter relationships, embracing where you come from while finding your own identity, and learning to be unafraid of failing, if it was even failing in the first place.
I am Not Starfire is a coming of age story about self and accepting yourself. It is also an original LGBTQ+ story from DC Comics in the Young Adult Graphic Novels series.
We follow Starfire’s seventeen-year-old daughter Mandy as she is trying to get through high school knowing that she has always been different and living under the shadow of her mother. Mandy wants to tread her own path in style and life and her mother is too out of touch to seem to understand that.
I enjoyed this graphic novel, it had a lot of the teenage angst that is a common emotion during this time in some teens lives. Mandy is also in the LGBTQ+ crowd and learning to come to terms with that for herself all while dealing with the pressure to go to college which she doesn't think is for her. The emotions were strong throughout this graphic novel and they were very indicitive of what it is like to be a teen (at least from my point of view).
The story flowed well, there was enough normal teenage life to off-set the superhero Teen Titan parts. I felt like the ending was kind of rushed a bit. It was refreshing to see a realisitc teen character with a real body shape that is learning to be herself and not giving into the pressures of others. I think that this will be a good read for teens.
About Mariko Tamaki
Mariko Tamaki is a New York Times best-selling writer of comics and prose. Her graphic novels include Harley Quinn: Breaking Glass, with Steve Pugh, Skim and This One Summer, with Jillian Tamaki, and Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up With Me, with Rosemary Valero O'Connell. She is currently the writer of the Detective Comics and Crush & Lobo series at DC. She has received Doug Wright, Eisner, and Ignatz Awards as well as Caldecott and Printz Honors for her works. She has also had the pleasure of working for Marvel, Abrams, Dark Horse, and BOOM! Studios on various amazing superhero type things.
About Yoshi Yoshitani
Yoshi Yoshitani is a mixed-race artist who was born in California and raised in numerous locations. Inspired by numerous cultures, Yoshi uses art and stories to encourage readers to keep asking questions and keep learning about each other. Yoshi has previously worked with DC as the illustrator for the middle-grade graphic novel Zatanna and the House of Secrets, as well as with Disney, DreamWorks, Netflix, Image Comics, and many others.