Comic Review: Girlsplaining: A (Sorta) Memoir (BOOM! Studios)

We’ve heard of “mansplaining”, where a male exasperatingly takes it upon himself to “explain” something to a female that she probably already knows; in contrast, an original graphic novel released […]

We’ve heard of “mansplaining”, where a male exasperatingly takes it upon himself to “explain” something to a female that she probably already knows; in contrast, an original graphic novel released this week from BOOM Studios/ Archaia is entitled ‘Girlsplaining’. It’s “A (Sorta) Memoir” by Katja Klengel from Germany.

The essence is simple; Katja is exasperated. She’s in her late 20s and wants to tell the reader what she’s gone through and is continuing to deal with as a woman. It’s a sometimes funny, always touching memoir. She begins with her puberty experiences and her discoveries of the changes in her body at that time. Then Klengel moves to discussing topics such as shaving her legs (and more) without shame, insisting on correct naming of private parts of the body and identifying their function, to identifying and celebrating female heroes.

The material is strictly for-a-female, and males only appear at the periphery. It’s certainly not a dating book, or ‘how to get a man’. This is a book about women, FOR women. “Girlsplaining” it may be, and by its approach, the audience that it explains things to is likely to be almost entirely female.

Klengel’s illustrations are nicely crafted drawings in black and pink (coloured by Klengel along with Adrian vom Baur), accomplished with simple line treatments and tone. Lettering by AndWorld Design. Translation from German to English is by Nika Knight.

BOOM! Studios/ Archaia imprint; Girlsplaining graphic novel, $17.99 for 168 pages rated Mature

Alan Spinney

About Alan Spinney

After a career of graphic design, art direction and copywriting, I still have a passion for words and pictures. I love it when a comic book comes together; the story is tight, and the drawings lead me forward. Art with words... the toughest storytelling technique to get right. Was this comic book worth your money? Let's see!!