This is a personal book--one I could still relate with when I read it in college.
My dental and orthodontic record includes--
- a palate expander that temporarily caused a gap between my front teeth
- 4+ years of braces
- a retainer I barely use these days
- extraction of all 4 wisdom teeth
and all of this began around the same age as Raina in her illustrated memoir. The constantly changing map of my teeth as well as maturing body gave way to some of the more struggle-filled years of my life--and Ms. Telegemeier gets it.
As I've read other stories she's written and illustrated, it really shows how comfortable Raina Telegemeier is with confronting the milestones and struggles of girls' adolescence. The majority of it surrounds changing interests, seeking personal identity, and trying to find your footing in the world. And that's a good thing to talk about. The more these stories are shared, the more we come to realize that it's all normal. Having metal in your mouth is something many people went through. I had that palate expander so one of my canines could fall into place. And it's embarrassing at the time, but it's a hurdle to overcome.
And you do. And you can smile.