Just Roll with It

Random/Graphic. Oct. 2021. 336p. Tr $20.99. ISBN 9780593125410; pap. $12.99. ISBN 9781984896995.
Gr 4-7–Sixth grader Maggie is anxious about starting middle school and following in the footsteps of her accomplished older siblings. A fan of role-playing games, she carries around a 20-sided die that she uses to help make decisions about friends and school. But when her obsessive-compulsive tendencies overwhelm her as she lets the die make her choices for her, fantasy merges with reality. Maggie and her loved ones realize she needs help, and she seeks therapy. Maggie and her family are cued as South Asian, and the story showcases a welcome diversity in her friends. Durfey-Lavoie’s compassionate story depicts mental health issues and treatment in a positive light. With anxiety and depression rising in teens, this book will let readers know that they are not alone. Agarwal has crafted winsome characters who are inspired by anime and chibi animation.
VERDICT For fans of Raina Telgemeier’s Guts, this charming graphic novel about coping with anxiety and learning not to be overwhelmed by fear is a recommended purchase for middle school library shelves.

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