Unearthed: A Jessica Cruz Story

DC Comics. Sept. 2021. 208p. pap. $16.99. ISBN 9781779500519.
Gr 7 Up–Rivera and Steph C. put a contemporary YA spin on DC Comics character Jessica Cruz. Instead of protecting the cosmos as a Green Lantern, she’s an undocumented high schooler under immense pressure. Jessica’s family expects her to submit DACA paperwork and earn a college degree, but ICE raids and xenophobic politics in her community leave her wondering if going to Mexico with her parents would be better. Aztec gods visit her to give advice that alternately pushes her toward reasoned advocacy and reactionary anger. Friends in her school and neighborhood provide encouragement and some semblance of a social life between class assignments. Though Jessica may not be clad in spandex, her ability to navigate her emotions and speak up for herself make her a more realistic hero, whether taking on ICE agents or her classmates’ privilege. The palette highlights Jessica’s emotional state, starting with the trademark calming green she will one day wear as part of a Green Lantern uniform. Red and yellow are used for scenes of vulnerability, including spotlight effects that emphasize Jessica’s anxiety.
VERDICT Readers seeking a relatable role model dealing with real-world issues and effecting change will find a true hero in Jessica Cruz.

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