The Hazards of Love: Vol. 1; Bright World

Oni. Mar. 2021. 272p. pap. $19.99. ISBN 9781620108574.
Gr 8 Up–Stanley offers a thoughtful spin on the “Be careful what you wish for” trope. Amparo, who is nonbinary, has a crush on their classmate Iolanthe but knows the two would make an unlikely couple—while Amparo gets into fights and is facing suspension for pulling the fire alarm, quiet Iolanthe is devoted to her grades. One night a hairless cat enters Amparo’s room and offers to grant their wish to be a better person—one who will be a good match for Iolanthe and less trouble for their frustrated family, who have made sacrifices for Amparo’s education. But the duplicitous cat takes over Amparo’s body, then banishes Amparo to Bright World. While cat-Amparo adheres to the rules and romances Iolanthe, real Amparo struggles to survive. Bright World is lush, filled with beautiful plants and unusual human-animal hybrids, but for people, it is dangerous—inhabitants consume human memories, turning humans into empty servants, and often feed on their bodies. While Iolanthe suspects something is off about the new and supposedly improved Amparo, the real Amparo attempts to hustle back home. Stellar, expressive art, featuring angular, dramatic linework, and an engaging narrative with solid nonbinary representation and well-developed characters bring this fantastical story to life. Scenes of Bright World burst with rich colors; those set in the so-called real world (or topside) are equally appealing despite a more limited palette. Both Amparo and Iolanthe are Latinx, and the use of Spanish dialogue brings us deeper into their worlds.
VERDICT This fantastical, stunning tale shines in both story and artwork; a must for libraries serving teens.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing