This Terrible True Thing: A Visual Novel

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In this heartbreaking multimedia debut--filled with drawings, poems, and journal entries--author Jenny Laden draws on her own experience to create a story of grief and transcendence, perfect for fans of Francesca Zappia and Jennifer Niven.

Danielle Silver is a Philadelphia high school senior at the dawn of the '90s. Ever since her parents split up, she has known her father was gay, but she never expected to be hit with the bombshell that he is HIV positive. As he sickens, and AIDS starts to claim the lives of his friends, Danielle searches for silver linings while trying to balance paralyzing fear, grief, her social life, and schoolwork--capturing all the feelings as adolescence and some hard facts collide.

"In This Terrible True Thing,  Jenny captures the confusion and sadness of the dark days of AIDS, when the closet was still the norm and those who feared judgment were bound by secrecy. Through her intimate voice and illustrations, she powerfully conveys the experience of being a teenager caught between worlds: the straight world and the queer world, childhood and adulthood, secure love and incomprehensible loss. The novel is also about a young woman's political awakening and what it means to be an artist not just of the world but in the world. This is a tender story, a beautiful story. I loved reading it." -- "Alysia Abbott, author of Fairyland: A Memoir of My Father"

Publisher: Blackstone Publishing
Pub date: September 05, 2023
374 pages
Format: Hardcover