“I’m a gamer and I kick arse. No, seriously. I organize a guild online and I’m looking for a few of you chickens to join me.”
In Real Life is a coming-of-age graphic novel that opens with Anda’s birthday. She’s a gamer girl who just moved to a new town and is trying to figure out where she fits in. Enter Liza McCombs – she heads an all-girl guild in Coarsegold Online, a massive multiplayer roleplaying game. Not only does the game provide a place for Anda to explore her identity, but it also allows her to investigate socioeconomic issues around the world and close to home.
Cory Doctorow knocks it out of the park in his debut graphic novel! He highlights complex topics like gold farming, economic inequality, and labor rights all with a feminist message.
Jen Wang’s illustrations are stunning. Real life characters are juxtaposed with their online avatars and in some panels the lines are blurred. The characters’ expressions are exquisite – they convey feeling and humanize the drawings. Her art is dynamic with perfect coloring.
I highly recommend this book to readers of all ages. It’s a page turner and will pique interest in “real-life” issues.