A Graphic Memoir

by Liz Prince




Librarians and educators take note: the free Tomboy Study Guide is now available!

Growing up, Liz Prince wasn’t a girly girl, but she wasn’t exactly one of the guys either (as she learned when her little league baseball coach exiled her to the distant outfield). She was somewhere in between. But with the forces of middle school, high school, parents, friendship, and romance pulling her this way and that, the middle wasn’t exactly an easy place to be. Tomboy follows award-winning author and artist Liz Prince through her early years and explores—with humor, honesty, and poignancy—what it means to “be a girl.”
From staunchly refuting ”girliness” to the point of misogyny, to discovering through the punk community that your identity is whatever you make of it, Tomboy offers a sometimes hilarious, sometimes heartbreaking account of self-discovery in modern America.

✳ Kirkus Reviews‘ Best Books of 2014
✳ Foreword Reviews‘ 2014  INDIEFAB Book of the Year Award Honorable Mention
✳ ALA Rainbow Book List
✳ Amelia Bloomer Project Top 10 Titles 2015
✳ IPPY Gold Winner for Graphic Novel/Drawn Book-Drama/Documentary 2015

✳ Texas Library Association (TLA) Maverick Graphic Novels Reading List
✳ YALSA Great Graphic Novels for Teens
✳ YALSA Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers

“Prince explores what it means to be a tomboy in a magnificently evocative graphic memoir….Simple, line-based art provides a perfect complement to her keen narration, giving this an indie, intimate feel and leaving readers feeling like they really know her. Liz’s story, captured with wry humor and a deft, visceral eye, is a must-read for fans who fell for Raina Telgemeier’s work in middle school. Spectacular; a book to make anyone think seriously about society’s preordained gender roles.”Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)

“The heroine of this charming, gently subversive graphic memoir loves Little League and hates dresses, so what does she grow up to be? Gloriously herself.”People Magazine

“Prince’s memoir shares the honesty and charm of Telgemeier’s books but explores mature topics like gender, identity, and how difficult early adolescence can be when one feels different than everyone else—perfect for readers on the cusp of YA. Prince’s illustration style is raw, with simple black and white line art, and perfectly reflects the difficult but touching narrative as readers are invited into Prince’s experiences growing up.”School Library Journal

“Prince’s tongue-in-cheek black-and-white line drawings, in a charming style reminiscent of Jeffrey Brown’s autobiographical comics, pack a punch in this empowering memoir that should have ample appeal for any kid who feels like an outsider.”Booklist

Tomboy is a coming-of-age story anyone can relate to and a great big middle finger to society’s gender roles. It should be required reading for everyone.”Foreword Reviews

“Prince’s most important revelation—that in dressing like a boy, ‘I subscribed to the idea that there was only one form of femininity and that it was inferior to being a man’—gives readers space to question their own acquiescence to gender stereotypes.”Publishers Weekly

“Her painful journey will resonate with more than gender-issue teens.”VOYA

“A real slash and burn of gender stereotypes, this title delivers a unique message for both teens and adults about finding your own way despite cultural conventions.”Library Journal

“Any girl who grew up with big love for sports, skate shoes, and/or giant, shape-obscuring T-shirts will know how contentious it is when you don’t fit the flawlessly feminine formula of the “average teen girl.” This is why Liz Prince’s latest graphic novel, Tomboy, is a fantastic primer on gender politics. Through a series of hilarious and heartbreaking episodes from her youth, Prince examines just why being comfortable in her own skin—and sweatpants—made everyone around her so freaking uncomfortable. It makes being a tomboy a political statement.”Rookie

“Liz Prince has been a cult and beloved figure in the world of comics for awhile, and in her autobiographical book Tomboy: A Graphic Memoir, she discusses the subject of growing up, in her inimitable, honest and simple style … makes for a fascinating look at what “identity” means in the process of growing up.”Flavorwire

“Prince’s art takes this book from good to knock-out…. Buy this one. Read it, then reread it, then pass it along to teens and adults who are interested in discussing or who have experienced the challenges of our society’s deep-seeded beliefs in gender.”Book Riot

“It’s an enjoyable and even comforting read as you find yourself rooting for Liz to find the acceptance you know a smart, funny, confident person like her will eventually find. …A lot of younger readers could benefit from reading the book’s lessons about self acceptance and what it means to be a girl.”Mental Floss

“Relatable, hilarious, and insightful, Tomboy is a must-read for anyone who feels like a square peg in a round hole.”Bookish

“Prince’s story is a testament to the joys of finding one’s place in a world so adamant about finding that place for you. …But perhaps Tomboy’s success lies most in its ability to get you to contemplate your own experiences growing up—swimming with your shirt on, searching for that special valentine, navigating social anxiety—and the ways in which we have all transgressed, and perpetuated, our society’s rigid definitions of what it means to be a girl or a boy.”Willamette Week

“Liz Prince tells gender norms to eat dirt.”Ariel Schrag, author of Adam and Potential

“Tomboy is a funny and relatable look at what every child has to deal with at some point—figuring out who you really are inside, when everyone else only sees what they think you should be on the outside.”Jeffrey Brown, author of Clumsy, Jedi Academy and Darth Vader and Son

“It’s hard to imagine anyone failing to be charmed by this entertaining, clever, and genuinely funny memoir of growing up with gender identity confusion. Even this pretty unconfused regular old dude found plenty to identify with in Liz Prince’s story of adolescent bafflement, exploration, and discovery—all delivered, like all the best such stories, with a light touch, wry wit, understated irony, and not one iota of preachiness.”Frank Portman, author of King Dork

Tomboy is a thoughtful, honest look into the evolution and acceptance of personal gender identity, as told by a smart-mouthed punk named Liz Prince. I wish it had existed when I was in high school.”Nicole Georges, author of Calling Dr. Laura


Read an excerpt here!

Product Details

  • Ages 14+
  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Zest Books; Original edition (September, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-13: 978-1-936976-55-3

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