Kiss Number 8 (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

Kiss Number 8 is a coming-of-age novel, that explores themes of sexuality, gender, religion, and homophobia. The characters are realistic, full of flaws, and have motives that make sense. Kiss Number 8 reads at a leisure but engaging pace, sprinkled with a few twists. It has a vintage-looking art style, that gives all of it’s characters their own unique look. Despite a few issues of unnecessary foreshadowing, Kiss Number 8 is a fantastic graphic novel that is worth reading.

— From Alice


Mads is pretty happy with her life. She goes to church with her family, and minor league baseball games with her dad. She goofs off with her best friend Cat, and has thus far managed to avoid getting kissed by Adam, the boy next door. It's everything she hoped high school would be… until all of a sudden, it's not.

Her dad is hiding something big—so big it could tear her family apart. And that’s just the beginning of her problems: Mads is starting to figure out that she doesn't want to kiss Adam… because the only person she wants to kiss is Cat.

Kiss Number 8, a graphic novel from writer Colleen AF Venable and illustrator Ellen T. Crenshaw, is a layered, funny, sharp-edged story of teen sexuality and family secrets.

About the Author

Ellen T. Crenshaw is a cartoonist and illustrator for books, editorial, advertising, comics, and children's media. Her work appears in Beer Advocate Magazine and The Nib, and her other books include Test Your Baby and Test Your Toddler's IQ (both written by Rachel Federman). She lives with her husband and two dragons. Kiss Number 8 is her first graphic novel.

Colleen AF Venable is an author, designer, and maker. Her graphic novel series Guinea Pig, Pet Shop Private Eye (illustrated by Stephanie Yue) was nominated for an Eisner for Best Publication for Kids and awarded “Best Book” recognition from Kirkus Reviews, NYPL, Bank Street, and the Junior Library Guild. Her other books include Mervin the Sloth is About to Do the Best Thing in the World and Amy the Red Panda Writes the Best Story in the World, both illustrated by Ruth Chan, and the YA graphic novel Kiss Number 8 with Ellen Crenshaw. In 2017 she was named a Publishers Weekly StarWatch Top 5 Finalist.

Praise For…

"[This is] a story of family and friendship and love in all its forms, perfect for the graphic novel format and elevated by the combined art and narrative...the characters shine, fully human and permitted to be flawed. Hope prevails. A rare blend of tender and revolutionary." –Kirkus, Starred Review
Product Details
ISBN: 9781596437098
ISBN-10: 159643709X
Publisher: First Second
Publication Date: March 12th, 2019
Pages: 320
Language: English