Youth Group

First Second. Jul. 2024. 256p. Tr $25.99. ISBN 9781250789228.
Gr 8 Up–The narrative set-up for Youth Group may be familiar to readers who have been a member of a non-denominational church, or those familiar with the practice of taking pop songs and converting the lyrics to a faith-focused message. Kay enters the teen area of Stone Mission Church and meets Meg and Cortland, who lead the service through its stereotypical ups and downs. It’s only later that night when Kay sees them perform an exorcism that she finds out this “church stuff” is more exciting than she imagined. When the demons sense powers in her, Kay is swept up into a world that not only offers adventure but might also have something to do with her absent father. Morris has another hit here, following up his Eisner-nominated graphic novel, Bubble. The dialogue is witty and full of inside jokes for any who are familiar with the modern church and youth group. McCurdy brings both humanity and the supernatural to her illustrations, giving each character their own unique look.
VERDICT Fun and fast-paced, this graphic novel will “jump for joy” right off shelves and is for anyone who can see the comedy in worship or identifies with the drive to save their corner of the world.

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