Book Title:
Book Author:
Kevin Panetta
Book Illustrator:
Savanna Ganucheau
Page Count:
Publishing Date:
February 12th, 2019
First Second
Date Read:
January 6th, 2019
I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review - Thank you!


Now that high school is over, Ari is dying to move to the big city with his ultra-hip band―if he can just persuade his dad to let him quit his job at their struggling family bakery. Though he loved working there as a kid, Ari cannot fathom a life wasting away over rising dough and hot ovens. But while interviewing candidates for his replacement, Ari meets Hector, an easygoing guy who loves baking as much as Ari wants to escape it. As they become closer over batches of bread, love is ready to bloom . . . that is, if Ari doesn’t ruin everything.

Writer Kevin Panetta and artist Savanna Ganucheau concoct a delicious recipe of intricately illustrated baking scenes and blushing young love, in which the choices we make can have terrible consequences, but the people who love us can help us grow.

My Review

It’s been a while since I’ve picked up a graphic novel, and since I had the ARC of Bloom, I decided it was time to dive into it. I absolutely adore graphic novels, and this sounded like such a great read – not to mention the cover was sweet and kind of looked like it would be perfect for summer – a great break from the super cold temperatures of winter!

Bloom was one of those books (like most graphic novels for me) that I flew through in a single sitting because I enjoyed it so much. I loved the characters, the dialogue, the illustrations, and the entire premise to the story. It was beautiful, fun, refreshing, and overall just well written and illustrated. It was a great graphic novel, and for the most part, I had fun while I was reading it.

Ari is a teenage boy who used to love working at his parents’ bakery. He enjoyed baking and helping out with small tasks, and this summer, since his sister won’t be around to help, his parents are expecting him to spend time working there to help keep the family business running smoothly. When Ari realizes that he doesn’t want to spend the entire summer working at a bakery alone, they set out to hire a replacement for him. When Hector interviews for the job, they realize that he would be a great candidate, and they offer it to him. Ari shows him the ropes, and the two connect, slowly becoming friends.

Becoming friends isn’t the only thing on the menu for Ari and Hector, though, and the two realize that they might have more in common than they would think – such as the slow blossoming feelings for one another, which leads them to wonder if they can take their summer friendship to the level of summer romance, instead.

When a tragedy arises in the bakery, both Ari and Hector aren’t sure how to move forward from there, causing a rift between them. They work together to get over the rift and back into the swing of things, but they need to figure out if they can get past the damage.

While it wasn’t the most memorable of graphic novels that I’ve picked up, I do think it was well done and it made for a great read. This would be perfect as a summer vacation book, or a book to take to the beach or pool for a nice relaxing day. It’s a contemporary, with so much emphasis on friendship and a budding romance between Ari and Hector. I thought it was cute.

I wish the ending had been a little different, I guess. I wasn’t expecting it to end the way it did. It felt like of abrupt to me, which was a bummer, because the rest of the story was so fleshed out and written in a way that I kind of hoped it would just keep going on forever.

If you need a quick and cute read, I highly recommend this one. I had such mixed feelings while reading it (especially at first – I had a hard time really getting into it at the beginning, but that honestly could have just been the mindset I was in because I hadn’t read a graphic novel in a while), but I ended up really liking it!

4 stars
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