Kid Gloves
If you work hard enough, if you want it enough, if you’re smart and talented and “good enough,” you can do anything.Except get pregnant.Her whole life, Lucy Knisley wanted to be a mother. But when it was finally the perfect time, conceiving turned out to be harder than anything she’d ever attempted. Fertility problems were followed by miscarriages, and her eventual successful pregnancy plagued by health issues, up to a dramatic, near-death experience during labor and delivery.This moving, hilarious, and surprisingly informative memoir not only follows Lucy’s personal transition into motherhood but also illustrates the history and science of reproductive health from all angles, including curious facts and inspiring (and notorious) figures in medicine and midwifery. Whether you’ve got kids, want them, or want nothing to do with them, there’s something in this graphic memoir to open your mind and heart.

Kid Gloves Details

TitleKid Gloves
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseFeb 26th, 2019
PublisherFirst Second Books
Rating
GenreSequential Art, Graphic Novels, Autobiography, Memoir, Nonfiction, Comics, Parenting, Adult

Kid Gloves Review

  • Lola
    January 1, 1970
    Woah. This book feels like a GAME-CHANGER. And maybe it is, who knows, I sure don’t know many graphic novels mainly about pregnancy so this may just be one of the firsts of its kind. And maybe there will be more in the future, only time will tell. Wouldn’t that be amazing, though?I learned so much from it. I have read stories about pregnancy, like the memoir AND NOW WE HAVE EVERYTHING by Meaghan O’Connell which was fascinating but also a little bit (lot) traumatizing. Still, ever since I read th Woah. This book feels like a GAME-CHANGER. And maybe it is, who knows, I sure don’t know many graphic novels mainly about pregnancy so this may just be one of the firsts of its kind. And maybe there will be more in the future, only time will tell. Wouldn’t that be amazing, though?I learned so much from it. I have read stories about pregnancy, like the memoir AND NOW WE HAVE EVERYTHING by Meaghan O’Connell which was fascinating but also a little bit (lot) traumatizing. Still, ever since I read that book, I became interested in knowing more about pregnancy and motherhood. In this book, Lucy Knisley shares her experience of trying for a baby, having miscarriages, going through depression, being pregnant and having a baby… and more. She also takes the time to teach the readers. I did not expect to close this book and be so much more informed than I was when I first opened it. Who knew miscarriages were so frequent? Who knew there were so many misconceptions? Who knew you could control so little? So you CAN have babies after the age of 35?! I appreciated how far Lucy pushed. (I don’t know if that was a pun or a really inappropriate sentence.) She could have discussed widely known facts or misconceptions alone, but she went deeper and actually taught some History too. I was in a TRANCE the whole time. Crazy.But to be truthful, I am once again scared about getting pregnant and delivering a baby. None of the stories I read portray pregnancy as a beautiful, calming experience. No, it’s CHAOS. But I think that if you have someone by your side, someone who supports you and cares about you and helps you through, it can be very fulfilling and like Lucy said, there’s that reward at the end ;)Blog | Youtube | Twitter | Instagram | Google+ | Bloglovin’
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  • David Schaafsma
    January 1, 1970
    Lucy Knisley tells us at one point that she does NOT want to suggest that having a baby is “a terrible experience,” after having just told us several terrible things that happened to her, but I can say reading her book was for me at times a stressful experience, since her detailed account of her way difficult pregnancy, in spite of being enhanced by information gleaned by constant research she has done, and broken up by some laughs, reveals that she had the Pregnancy and Childbirth (her first) F Lucy Knisley tells us at one point that she does NOT want to suggest that having a baby is “a terrible experience,” after having just told us several terrible things that happened to her, but I can say reading her book was for me at times a stressful experience, since her detailed account of her way difficult pregnancy, in spite of being enhanced by information gleaned by constant research she has done, and broken up by some laughs, reveals that she had the Pregnancy and Childbirth (her first) From Hell. Since Knisley, like Quebec artist Michel Rabagliati, is writing memoirs about all stages of her life (and I am reading all of them!), she is committed to being here--as in her memoir about getting married, Something New: Tales from a Makeshift Bride --educational, entertaining, and painful honest about what she has experienced with her husband John (whom I love and want to take out for a beer). The marriage memoir was also angsty but very, very light-hearted compared to this one, though, trust me.Now, consider the source if you decide to continue reading this review; while Knisley makes the occasional nod to “non-breast-feeders” (which of course includes millions of women who have never done so, as well as men), her primary audience here is women who want to have babies and who have had them. And I guess her fans, like me, who have been following her for many years, just to keep up with what is going on, with her most dramatic story yet. She is essentially journaling the process, with an emphasis on the challenges: Miscarriages, depression, pain, anxiety, vomit, more vomit, swelling, embiggening mom body, so much pain at almost every stage, so much stress, and so on. She tells this in part to be helpful about all the possible pitfalls that are there for those wanting to have babies, some of which is not in the usual baby guides, such as What to Expect When You are Expecting (which I have read a couple times myself).Some of what Knisley shares is also humorously self-deprecating; she admits she eats 6 dates a day because she has learned that it will bring on labor, and so on. She follows advice from a million different sites and people. She’s anxious, she’s worried, and scared, and so this is in part useful to share, as if in solidarity with all other prospective-mom worriers. There is a lot of humor mixed into this anxiety cake, but let’s face it, this is not a typical pregnancy nor childbirth, if there ever was one. Hers was very, very hard and this—in spite of all the inviting fun colors and cute drawing that has made her justifiably famous--is not an advertisement for having a baby. It focuses on all the bad things that can and do happen, because they actually did happen to her. Maybe the colors are a kind of false advertising? Or maybe they just help to lighten things up a bit?I love it that one section is written from John’s perspective, which happens to be the Actual Birth part, and trust me, when he cries in meeting “Pal” and they both cry in meeting him, you cry, because that’s what you do in relief and happiness when a healthy baby arrives. Maybe it’s more emotional for us knowing what she has been through to get to this point. I say all this having very actively participated in multiple pregnancies and childbirths, and as a male, I know, it is of course different, but I could relate to a lot of the anxiety and fears and worries. And I think it has a lot of useful information and is interesting, never boring. The actual photographs in this book are cute, to break up all the foreboding and give you hope that pregnancy may indeed lead to joy. It seems to have done so for her, at last. So she has a baby! Knisley also then writes a picture book, You Are New, to (maybe, I am assuming here) in part celebrate this new baby, though the picture book is the first book I have read from her that is not about her. Anyway, I think this is a very good book, given all it attempts to do. Did I “enjoy” it? Not so much, but I appreciated it and I am thinking about it a lot. Would I recommend it to my friends who are trying to make a baby? I don’t know. I don’t want to scare them away, and I think this just might do it in spite of Knisley’s stated hopes to the contrary.Here is Kathleen's review in the Chicago Tribune (and you can follow her on Goodreads, too): https://www.chicagotribune.com/lifest...Another review, "an honest look at pregnancy, barf and all": The "weirdness of pregnancy," yes, but it almost killed her: http://www.chicagomag.com/Chicago-Mag...
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  • Julie Ehlers
    January 1, 1970
    LOL. How’d this happen? I’ve had an up-and-down relationship with Lucy Knisley for a few years now, with her most recent book, Something New, representing its absolute nadir. Ugh, Something New. So when I saw a Goodreads giveaway for Knisley’s new book, Kid Gloves, my first instinct was to stay far away. A faint spark of curiosity caused me to enter the giveaway anyway, but I was of course fully expecting that I wouldn’t win. The odds were against it, after all. I guess we can all see what happe LOL. How’d this happen? I’ve had an up-and-down relationship with Lucy Knisley for a few years now, with her most recent book, Something New, representing its absolute nadir. Ugh, Something New. So when I saw a Goodreads giveaway for Knisley’s new book, Kid Gloves, my first instinct was to stay far away. A faint spark of curiosity caused me to enter the giveaway anyway, but I was of course fully expecting that I wouldn’t win. The odds were against it, after all. I guess we can all see what happened next!I am therefore thrilled to report to you that Kid Gloves was great! As I’ve mentioned before on Goodreads, I’m not particularly interested in the fertility/pregnancy/childbirth narratives of people I don’t know at all, but Knisley really does her homework here, and this book is an entertaining and highly informative feminist analysis of all of these issues, in addition to being Knisley’s own personal story.And it’s that personal story that’s the most revelatory here. As a happily childless person, I would never, ever, ever, ever in a million years buy into the idea that childless people are inherently more self-centered than people with kids; anyone who truly believes that is just being a jerk. But as far as Lucy Knisley herself is concerned, her motherhood journey seems to be just the big life event she needed to jolt her into a place of more maturity, insight, and depth in her work. I was excited and appreciative and happy to see this development and to experience its end result in this book.Honestly, I tried to keep an open mind going into Kid Gloves but in reality it’s hard to think of a more hostile audience for this book than myself. Yet, I really, really enjoyed and admired this. 2019 is starting out as the year of authors subverting my expectations, and no one could be happier about this than me. I am still not sure if I’ll read Knisley’s next book, but I’m grateful I read this one. Thank you, Lucy. Thank you, First Second publishers, for winning back my trust. Thank you everyone! Read this book.
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  • destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
    January 1, 1970
    Kid Gloves looks like another cutesy book about pregnancy, but it's a lot more than that. It also features myths and facts about pregnancy, some interesting history regarding how far obstetric medicine has come, tidbits about medical struggles, and most notably, a long section on infertility and miscarriages.There's a point Lucy makes at one point that really resonated with me, as a fellow miscarriage survivor: If 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage, why aren't 25% of media portrayals of pregn Kid Gloves looks like another cutesy book about pregnancy, but it's a lot more than that. It also features myths and facts about pregnancy, some interesting history regarding how far obstetric medicine has come, tidbits about medical struggles, and most notably, a long section on infertility and miscarriages.There's a point Lucy makes at one point that really resonated with me, as a fellow miscarriage survivor: If 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage, why aren't 25% of media portrayals of pregnancies acknowledging that? Instead, we live in a world where people are made to feel guilty, ashamed, and/or tragically alone after a miscarriage, and we have to do better. It isn't fair for anyone to suffer these traumas alone.While it got a bit boring at times, overall, I thought Kid Gloves was an interesting pregnancy memoir. I'm not sure I would give it to an expectant mother, because I think it would have terrified me to read about Lucy's emergency c-section and pre-eclampsia in such vivid details, but it was still fascinating to read about and heart-warming to know that everything turned out okay for Lucy and her little family in the end.Thank you so much to the publisher for providing me with this ARC in exchange for an honest review!
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  • Olive (abookolive)
    January 1, 1970
    This is now one of my favorite Lucy Knisley books. As she discusses in this book, in each of her previous works, she chronicles a transitional point in her life. In the popular French Milk, she is a markedly less sympathetic character, being in that moody period of her late teenage years. But in her subsequent works, we see her develop into a passionate, empathetic adult who struggles to balance a career, family, and relationships. In her animated form, we walk with Lucy back into a "never-quite This is now one of my favorite Lucy Knisley books. As she discusses in this book, in each of her previous works, she chronicles a transitional point in her life. In the popular French Milk, she is a markedly less sympathetic character, being in that moody period of her late teenage years. But in her subsequent works, we see her develop into a passionate, empathetic adult who struggles to balance a career, family, and relationships. In her animated form, we walk with Lucy back into a "never-quite-over" relationship and then escort her down the aisle to marry her perfect quirky counterpart, John. And now, in Kid Gloves, Lucy gets even more grown up, taking us on the roller coaster ride of getting pregnant and becoming a mother. It was not an easy ride at any point; Lucy struggled through devastating miscarriages only to discover she needed a surgical procedure to be physically capable of carrying a baby to full term. Once this was performed and she successfully conceived, her difficult pregnancy began and eventually concluded with the nearly fatal delivery of her son.I follow Lucy on social media so I had an inkling of some of the things she was going through at this point in time, but obviously this book gives a much deeper look. The whole experience was very educational for Lucy as she tried to unpack not only what was happening to her body after becoming pregnant, but also all the cultural expectations and misunderstandings there are around the whole affair. So much of the experience of pregnancy is kept behind a veil and cultural conditioning has fed us a lot of baloney that simply isn't based in fact. Lucy draws us an education on issues and beliefs about pregnancy and childbirth while giving us, as always, a highly entertaining inside look into her own journey. Though it was horrifying at points and reaffirmed my decision to never carry any children of my own, it was touching to see how Lucy's son Pal (a nickname she gave him for social media to protect his identity) came into the world. He is one cute kid.
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  • Elizabeth A
    January 1, 1970
    "I was taught how to condom a banana, and to memorize the dates of amnesties, and the life-cycle stages of a pill bug .... But I was never taught about the intertwined history and science of taking care of my own body."This graphic memoir covers the next phase of the author's life. We've been through her new adulthood, her marriage, and it's now time for the baby carriage. Unlike her previous works, this one does more than explore her life and foibles. In addition to covering her personal experi "I was taught how to condom a banana, and to memorize the dates of amnesties, and the life-cycle stages of a pill bug .... But I was never taught about the intertwined history and science of taking care of my own body."This graphic memoir covers the next phase of the author's life. We've been through her new adulthood, her marriage, and it's now time for the baby carriage. Unlike her previous works, this one does more than explore her life and foibles. In addition to covering her personal experiences as she transitions to being a mother, there is a fun (if a tad horrific) illustrated history and science of reproductive health, with some of the key figures in the field. The art continues to be cutesy, but her talent for story telling has clearly matured. This is her best work yet.
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  • Hannah Garden
    January 1, 1970
    One of Lucy Knisley's undeniable strengths is that she is hardcore a Capricorn: by the age of thirty-one, as she tells you herself in this very book, she'd published five graphic memoirs, each one as cleanly constructed as if from a kit, gleaming with that I-write-outlines-for-my-to-do-lists singlemindedness goats are known for.I've read almost all of them. They are each of them lovely, bright and tidy as a paperdollhouse. And I slam through them--as unselfconsciously personal memoirs by a woman One of Lucy Knisley's undeniable strengths is that she is hardcore a Capricorn: by the age of thirty-one, as she tells you herself in this very book, she'd published five graphic memoirs, each one as cleanly constructed as if from a kit, gleaming with that I-write-outlines-for-my-to-do-lists singlemindedness goats are known for.I've read almost all of them. They are each of them lovely, bright and tidy as a paperdollhouse. And I slam through them--as unselfconsciously personal memoirs by a woman, they are precisely up my alley, and compulsively readable.And yet every single time I find myself having the same puzzling experience: Why don't I love them? The Lucy of these memoirs is brimming with self-assurance, and her experiences are of the largely consequence-less, upper-class variety: cultivating a relationship with gourmet food, going to art school, taking European vacations, DIYing a roomily-budgeted wedding. They are memoirs without stakes, and therefore without urgency: confession without viscera, self-reporting without introspection; more captain's log (the waves and the clouds) than anything scraped up from diving into the wreck (whether blue or breathing). Even this latest remains perplexingly landlocked. Kid Gloves is about the most harrowing, primeval experience a human can go through, yet Knisley renders it in the same antiseptic pastels with which she drew her wedding plans.There's this great quote from Aline Kominsky that I don't have memorized but where she talks about what kind of art she likes and she says she likes to see some of the struggle. That's what I like, too, and it's the opposite of Knisley's work. You won't see any struggle here: her line is smooth and her palette soothing, with everything from the sweaters to the sidewalks, the bushes to the vaginas, rendered textureless and benign, comprising an evenly contained but eerily shadowless world. Her panel layout is textbook-worthy craftsmanship, sturdy but flexible, creative but compliant. All of which make for a highly engaging but never quite electric read; she's always a B for me. A gentleman's 6.So what am I saying here. I'm not saying I didn't enjoy this book. I enjoy all of her books, and I enjoy them progressively more as she goes, so I enjoyed this one the most of all. I'm not even saying it's not a good book: it is a good book, and thorough.I guess I'm just saying I've been reading Knisley for some years now and I keep waiting for her to mine a gnarlier vein. Which might never happen, because not everyone needs to skin the whole cat, Hannah. A lot of people don't even like skinned cats, OK? You can snuffle your filthy old nose around in your Dirty Laundries and Plottes all you like and then appreciate this on its own merits, for what it is and excels at being: charmingly executed, carefully researched, and another genuinely impressive contribution from a talented, committed creator.
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  • Carol Tilley
    January 1, 1970
    An important and moving book that's certain to be an Eisner contender for 2019.
  • Ashley
    January 1, 1970
    I always feel the same way when I finish a new Lucy Knisley book. It’s so weird to have followed her since the very beginning of her career (through a stroke of luck, I’ve followed her blog from the beginning, before she published a book, because a friend also followed her), to essentially watch her life progress without having spoken a single word to her. (This is especially true since I started following her on Instagram after her son was born. She’s been posting lots of comics about her finic I always feel the same way when I finish a new Lucy Knisley book. It’s so weird to have followed her since the very beginning of her career (through a stroke of luck, I’ve followed her blog from the beginning, before she published a book, because a friend also followed her), to essentially watch her life progress without having spoken a single word to her. (This is especially true since I started following her on Instagram after her son was born. She’s been posting lots of comics about her finicky senior cat, Linney, lately, just as a public service announcement.)Because I followed her on Instagram, I was aware that she’d had a difficult pregnancy and birth, but until reading this, I wasn’t aware quite how difficult.I’ve always been fascinated with sexuality and the reproductive system, much more so than my peers seemed to be. I remember reading medical texts for fun in the library and online as much as I could while my fellow fifth graders were playing kickball outside, or whatever. Honestly, if I wasn’t so terrified of actually killing someone, I would have probably tried to become an OBGYN or midwife.Amusingly, Lucy Knisley seems to share my fascination, and like me, she regrets the lack of general education about pregnancy and women’s health. I knew I was going to like this book before I even read it, but when I got to this panel, I was just like, yep:“I’ve always wanted to know–how did it go?” Me too!That’s what this book is about, how it went for Lucy, and she talks openly about every aspect, including her difficulties in her pregnancy with Pal (this is a pseudonym she uses for him, short for Little Palindrome, because he was born on a palindromic day) and her miscarriages. There is actually a lot of talk about openness itself, and how even though miscarriage and other reproductive issues are so, so common, no one talks about them, and so nearly every pregnant person who experiences them feels isolated and alone. She tackles the experience of being in a medical system that dismisses patient concerns (Knisley had pre-eclampsia that escalated into eclampsia during labor, and though she noted all the symptoms to her doctor and was worried about them over the course of her pregnancy, he brushed her fears aside as irrelevant, and then she almost died). It was pretty visceral at times, but it was also funny and happy. Her fears and insecurities get just as much play as her excitement and joy over the impending birth of their son.That would have been enough for me enjoy the book, but it’s also peppered with pregnancy facts throughout history, and some of them are fascinating, and some of them are terrifying. Modern medicine is not perfect, but it’s a lot better than what they used to have, even 100 years ago!I know she will probably do a book about marriage or motherhood (or both) next, but I would like to nominate a book entirely about Linney the cat, instead, please (or in addition).[4.5 stars]
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  • Kate Olson
    January 1, 1970
    This book blew me away. Kid Gloves is an (adult) graphic-format memoir of trying to conceive, pregnancy and childbirth, and Knisley doesn't hold back in writing and drawing about struggles, grief and ALL of the ups and downs (and physical detail) of this stage of her life. I highly recommend this to anyone who has any interest in this topic as well as to high school health teachers, since the book touches on things the author wishes had been taught in school about birth control.
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  • Rod Brown
    January 1, 1970
    Knisley has become one of my favorite memoirists. She balances out the emotional story of her eventful pregnancy with humor and interesting historical facts about gynecology, pregnancy, and childbirth.It sounds like she's already at work on a book about motherhood, and I'm looking forward to reading that in the near future.
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  • Vanessa (splitreads)
    January 1, 1970
    Did I heave a nice loud sob at the end? Oh man, I did. Lucy Knisley has developed so much as an artist and storyteller. I loved my time reading this: I learned new things; I smiled at quirky or silly faces (her puking drawings... lol); I laughed out loud (please tell me more about elephant gestation); I nodded slowly reading about miscarriage stats and the maternal mortality crisis affecting the U.S.; and I cried because of what Knisley went through and the book's ending.If you like learning abo Did I heave a nice loud sob at the end? Oh man, I did. Lucy Knisley has developed so much as an artist and storyteller. I loved my time reading this: I learned new things; I smiled at quirky or silly faces (her puking drawings... lol); I laughed out loud (please tell me more about elephant gestation); I nodded slowly reading about miscarriage stats and the maternal mortality crisis affecting the U.S.; and I cried because of what Knisley went through and the book's ending.If you like learning about pregnancy/women's reproductive health from a cultural, political, and health perspective this ponders history and the current day. If you like an intimate and very honest personal perspective in your graphic memoirs, this will also appeal to you. I'm so happy this book was finally published and I totally recommend following Lucy Knisley on Instagram.
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  • Marcela
    January 1, 1970
    This gets a high rating because I'm a pregnant lover of comics and this book came along at the perfect time. Kid Gloves will actually be published right around the time when my baby enters the world, so I was thrilled to get an ARC via NetGalley. I really appreciate Lucy Knisley's candor and humor and how deeply she shares her own experiences of loss and pain and the incredibly bizarre and heartbreaking and wonderful ride that is pregnancy. There aren't enough graphic memoirs about pregnancy out This gets a high rating because I'm a pregnant lover of comics and this book came along at the perfect time. Kid Gloves will actually be published right around the time when my baby enters the world, so I was thrilled to get an ARC via NetGalley. I really appreciate Lucy Knisley's candor and humor and how deeply she shares her own experiences of loss and pain and the incredibly bizarre and heartbreaking and wonderful ride that is pregnancy. There aren't enough graphic memoirs about pregnancy out there, so I'm grateful to Knisley for sharing her story right when I needed it. I laughed, I cried, I related. Highly recommended for those who are expecting and need a break from the overwhelming crush of pregnancy fact books.
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  • Elena
    January 1, 1970
    I really enjoyed how she told this story, and I am still RAGING over her doctor's incompetence.
  • b.andherbooks
    January 1, 1970
    Content warning: miscarriageI adore Lucy Knisley's work, and this book is no exception. I truly appreciated Knisley's open willingness to discuss her struggles with pregnancy. The way she can depict her emotions through her art is just masterful. I also love how she explores history through her own story, and I even learned some new facts about my body that I should have probably known.That said, if you want to get pregnant, are trying to get pregnant, or are currently pregnant, be sure you want Content warning: miscarriageI adore Lucy Knisley's work, and this book is no exception. I truly appreciated Knisley's open willingness to discuss her struggles with pregnancy. The way she can depict her emotions through her art is just masterful. I also love how she explores history through her own story, and I even learned some new facts about my body that I should have probably known.That said, if you want to get pregnant, are trying to get pregnant, or are currently pregnant, be sure you want to read and visualize some pretty horrific stuff. Lucy doesn't have an easy pregnancy or labor, so I'm just telling you that in advance. Otherwise, highly recommend!
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  • Rachel Watkins
    January 1, 1970
    With brutal honesty and delightful images, Lucy Knisley documents her journey with birth control, pregnancy, and early parenting in KID GLOVES. Her book explores the history of birthing and fills in the gaps on what was blatantly missing in sex ed classes. Highly recommend.
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  • Suzanne
    January 1, 1970
    I’ve followed Lucy Knisley’s work since her debut French Milk in 2007. I’ve always found myself kind of connected to her, being that we’re close in age and life milestones. She wrote a book about her wedding not long after I got married, and now she’s published a book on her pregnancy not long after mine. I couldn’t sleep last night so I stayed up into the wee hours reading this beautiful, powerful story. It’s funny, it’s insightful, it’s heartbreaking, and it’s not always for the faint of heart I’ve followed Lucy Knisley’s work since her debut French Milk in 2007. I’ve always found myself kind of connected to her, being that we’re close in age and life milestones. She wrote a book about her wedding not long after I got married, and now she’s published a book on her pregnancy not long after mine. I couldn’t sleep last night so I stayed up into the wee hours reading this beautiful, powerful story. It’s funny, it’s insightful, it’s heartbreaking, and it’s not always for the faint of heart, particularly Lucy’s traumatic birth story. But I still loved every moment of it. Highly recommended that you check this graphic memoir out, but if you’re pregnant or a new parent, definitely prepare for some tears.
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  • Jamie
    January 1, 1970
    First, this 5-star glowing review is coming from a woman who never wants to have kids.I think this would benefit all people, especially women, yes, but also wouldn't it be nice to mail a copy to all the anti-abortion males who think that a pregnant woman should have to have the baby, no matter what. With the historical horrors covered and the author's eye-popping experiences through conception, pregnancy, and birth, it seems like you would have to come face-to-face with your sadism to deny women First, this 5-star glowing review is coming from a woman who never wants to have kids.I think this would benefit all people, especially women, yes, but also wouldn't it be nice to mail a copy to all the anti-abortion males who think that a pregnant woman should have to have the baby, no matter what. With the historical horrors covered and the author's eye-popping experiences through conception, pregnancy, and birth, it seems like you would have to come face-to-face with your sadism to deny women their reproductive rights. I loved her layouts and am a fan of her simple illustration style, honest revelations, and informative content. It was especially poignant since I follow her on Instagram and see frequent videos and photos of adorable Pal, but now have an even deeper appreciation of all she went through to be his mom.
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  • Ashley Owens
    January 1, 1970
    I received a electronic ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.I 100% loved and would recommend this. I related to it SO MUCH. I just gave birth to my daughter just under 4 months ago. And while my experience wasn't exactly the same as the authors, there were many events/hardships/points where I went though something incredibly similar. Because I related to her journey of infertility, pregnancy, and delivery so much, I was very emotional while reading this.It was awesom I received a electronic ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.I 100% loved and would recommend this. I related to it SO MUCH. I just gave birth to my daughter just under 4 months ago. And while my experience wasn't exactly the same as the authors, there were many events/hardships/points where I went though something incredibly similar. Because I related to her journey of infertility, pregnancy, and delivery so much, I was very emotional while reading this.It was awesome to get an actual history on women's health throughout this novel. And because the author is not shy about really detailing what she went through and because of her illustrations depicting her sadness and frustrations, I connected with all of it even more. It was also great to know I'm not alone in my experiences, and to know that others have/had the same doubts, struggles, and anxieties as me. It was kind of a cathartic read.I will definitely be sharing this with my loved ones who are trying to get pregnant, are pregnant, or have just had a baby. Once it comes out that is... the release date isn't until like January!
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  • Kathleen
    January 1, 1970
    My Q&A for the Chicago Tribune: https://www.chicagotribune.com/lifest...Lucy Knisley’s new witty and intimate graphic memoir “Kid Gloves: Nine Months of Careful Chaos,” offers the refreshingly frank, utterly un-sugar-coated account of her struggles with infertility and a high-risk pregnancy, blended with a lively and not un-disturbing exploration of the history of gynecology and reproductive health. It’s packed with “plenty of drama and comedy and bodily fluids” and such under-reported facts My Q&A for the Chicago Tribune: https://www.chicagotribune.com/lifest...Lucy Knisley’s new witty and intimate graphic memoir “Kid Gloves: Nine Months of Careful Chaos,” offers the refreshingly frank, utterly un-sugar-coated account of her struggles with infertility and a high-risk pregnancy, blended with a lively and not un-disturbing exploration of the history of gynecology and reproductive health. It’s packed with “plenty of drama and comedy and bodily fluids” and such under-reported facts as “about one in four pregnancies end in miscarriage.” She also has just published a children’s picture book, called “You Are New,” depicting a whimsical array of various babies — like the one she eventually successfully had—accompanied by such rhymes as: “You can open wide and yell. / Sometimes you make funny smells.”Born in New York City and now a resident of Chicago’s West Town neighborhood, Knisley earned her bachelor of fine arts at the Art Institute of Chicago and her master of fine arts at the Center for Cartoon Studies in Hartford, Vermont. Her debut, “French Milk,” came out in 2008 when she was 23, and she has been prolifically productive ever since; her second book, the food memoir, “Relish,” became a New York Times best-seller, and several other charming, autobiographical image-and-text books followed in swift succession.Knisley answered the following questions by email, just as her book tour was kicking off. The transcript has been edited for length and clarity.Q: You describe yourself as someone who spent a “lifetime of yearning” to become a mother. Why has that always been a desire of yours, and why — when faced with the extreme difficulty and danger of conceiving and bearing a child chronicled in your memoir — was it so important to you to have a baby who was biologically yours rather than adopting or perhaps living a childless life?A: Mostly I wasn’t aware of the hardships I’d go through when trying to get pregnant and giving birth. My mom had an easy pregnancy with me, and I was young and healthy and didn’t anticipate any problems. My doctors were all sanguine about the whole thing, and up until things went really bad at the end, I didn’t ever think my life would be in danger. That said, I have always been fascinated with my body’s capacity to build a human being. Pregnancy is fascinating and cool, and I wanted to do it, even just once (which is probably enough, considering).Q: Did you know all along you were going to make a memoir about pregnancy? You write about “ ‘Exorcist’ levels of puke,” “hormonal insomnia and nightmares,” and losing “about half the blood” in your body during labor. How did you decide to be so candid? What did it take not to shy away from the gross and terrifying parts?A: I always thought it would make an interesting graphic novel, to write about pregnancy. It’s a visual change and a transitional state, which I’ve covered in a lot of my other books. I thought it would be a pretty typical story, though. Turns out, I was right, but I hadn’t known how typical it was to have so much heartache, pain and vomit, as well as a near-death experience! My eyes were opened to a lot of the things surrounding human reproduction that I had no previous concept of, and that became a much more complicated book than I’d expected.Q: At what stage in the process did the children’s book come along? What were its challenges and do you have plans to write more?A: I’ve wanted to do a picture book for a long time and even have some experience illustrating books by other authors, but as someone who still worships picture books, I was always very intimidated by it. How to even begin to make something worthy of sharing a shelf with “The Snowy Day” by Ezra Jack Keats or “Ooh-La-La (Max in Love)” by Maira Kalman? Comics I know, but kids books were a new arena. Then, as so often happens, I had an idea of a story I wanted to read my kid, and it all came together from there. But it was weirdly a lot harder than writing a 300-page graphic novel! I hope I get faster eventually.Q: You’re adept at adapting your own lived experiences into memoir-comics; might you ever develop a fiction project?A: I’m currently working on a fictional middle-grade graphic novel about step-sisters, based on my own experiences. I’m getting closer and closer to full fiction!Q: You’ve said that you grew up reading comics despite your “artistic and literary parents’ mild objections.” Why does the comics form appeal to you as a reader and a creator? What do you hope your son will grow up reading and why?A: I actually think my parents were responsible, if inadvertently so, for my career. My dad is a literature and writing professor, and my mom is an artist and chef. I loved reading comics as a kid, but I wanted to be a midwife for most of my childhood. When I got older, I thought I’d have to choose between being a writer or a visual artist. I found a way to combine them through comics, and it’s allowed me to be both.Q: How did your higher education — especially here in Chicago — impact your work, and what advice do you have for younger artists starting out?A: I went to the School of the Art Institute to be a painter, but in my freshman year, changed my mind and wanted to make comics. At the time, there wasn’t a program for it, so I had to find understanding drawing and writing professors who would allow me to experiment with making comics. I also had to compromise and learn traditional techniques in both mediums, which I think made me a better comic artist and writer in the long-term. So my advice would be to allow yourself to learn things outside of the obvious in what you want to do, because it will all serve to make you a stronger, more versatile creator.Q: Would you describe yourself as optimistic, pessimistic or something else when it comes to the kind of future — political, climatological — that babies born in the early 21st century will face?A: I have a pin that I bought a while ago that says “Cheerful Despair” (it’s from The School of Life) and I love it. I think it sums up so much of being a parent and an artist and a human being. There’s this constant awareness of life’s fragility and the awfulness we all face, and how loving someone or something is dangerous and scary, but that we can contain that despair while being cheerful at the same time— enjoying what we can and the pleasures in life and love and art.Q: Any tips for soon-to-be or new parents, especially ones who live in your city of Chicago?A: The Garfield Park Conservatory is open 365 days a year. It saved our lives in the first winter of parenthood. Go and be in a place surrounded by green plants and watch your baby look at them for the first time. Breathe in the moist air and take a funny photo of your baby next to a leaf bigger than they are.
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  • Anne
    January 1, 1970
    "I grew the ivy over the garden wall."I really love Lucy Knisley's work. This is the third graphic memoir that I've read by her, and I've found that she has the ability to craft incredibly personal stories that still feel universal. In this book, she looks back on the conception, pregnancy, and birth of her first child. I'm not someone who personally envisions having kids of my own, but having loved Relish and Something New , I knew that I couldn't miss one of Knisley's books. Like with the o "I grew the ivy over the garden wall."I really love Lucy Knisley's work. This is the third graphic memoir that I've read by her, and I've found that she has the ability to craft incredibly personal stories that still feel universal. In this book, she looks back on the conception, pregnancy, and birth of her first child. I'm not someone who personally envisions having kids of my own, but having loved Relish and Something New , I knew that I couldn't miss one of Knisley's books. Like with the other two, Knisley weaves together a story that blends her personal experiences with historical details. As she crafts her own birth plan, she shares the origin of the natural birth movement. When she discusses pain meds, she shares a story of a woman burned at the stake for daring to request them. I'm coming away from this book having learned facts I've never come across before, a number of which I even paused reading to research further.In sharing her personal experiences, Knisley continues to be as open and honest as she is in her other books. I love reading her work because it reminds me of sitting down to catch up with a friend. Knisley opens up about her experiences with miscarriages (and the devastating effect they have on so many women), the fears her and her husband had about parenting, and the illness that nearly took her life after giving birth. There's humor, grief, joy, and more. I can definitely see this being an emotional read for anyone who has shared her experiences.Knisley makes a great point in the book about women not being taught their own history in schools—from the way our bodies and minds were treated and how this continues to impact us today (expecting or otherwise). In many ways, this book is a story of womanhood and both how it does and doesn't intersect with motherhood. Because of this I'd certainly recommend this to reader who identity as women, and anyone else who is interested in an insightful look at one woman's experiences and how universal they can truly be.
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  • Elise (LiveLoveYarn)
    January 1, 1970
    This was really, really good. I highly recommend it for parents or people thinking of becoming parents someday. I, myself, have a lot of anxiety around that prospect and this very real yet still humorous look at pregnancy and childbirth was oddly refreshing. I say "oddly refreshing" because there are some really heavy issues in here, issues that should have triggered my anxiety. However while reading this did not alleviate my anxiety it did validate it, which sometimes is better. Getting pregnan This was really, really good. I highly recommend it for parents or people thinking of becoming parents someday. I, myself, have a lot of anxiety around that prospect and this very real yet still humorous look at pregnancy and childbirth was oddly refreshing. I say "oddly refreshing" because there are some really heavy issues in here, issues that should have triggered my anxiety. However while reading this did not alleviate my anxiety it did validate it, which sometimes is better. Getting pregnant, carrying to full-term, and childbirth are hard...not to mention that if you are able to do all that now you have to, you know, actually raise a child. It was refreshing to hear someone talk about it all in a balanced way, a way that says "yes it's amazing but it's also really, really hard". I have so much respect for her talking this way about these issues. And not only that but this graphic novel is filled to the brim with information about the medical and social history of women's health, pregnancy, and childbirth. The art style is really enjoyable- the cartoons tell just as much of the story as the text. Highly recommend.
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  • Maggie
    January 1, 1970
    This is just the book I needed right before being induced on April 2nd. It’s realistic and not all pretty. It also broke my heart at times but makes me excited about becoming a mom. This book should be for anyone who’s having or had a baby because it’s awesome.
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  • Helen
    January 1, 1970
    I really love Lucy Knisley's graphic memoirs and this one was no exception. Lucy documents her pregnancy journey with humor and also with very thought provoking facts about a women's pregnancy. I look forward reading more from her in the future.
  • Bethwyn (Butterfly Elephant Books)
    January 1, 1970
    I am a huge fan of Lucy Knisley's work, so obviously I jumped at the chance to read Kid Gloves before its release. I wasn't entirely sure whether I would be super interested in the subject matter (I don't plan on having kids and have never really had the desire to research babies), but I assumed that Knisley would create a wonderful book that would engage me, anyway.I should never have even SLIGHTLY doubted Knisley - this book is amazingly drawn/created, the facts inside are fascinating and some I am a huge fan of Lucy Knisley's work, so obviously I jumped at the chance to read Kid Gloves before its release. I wasn't entirely sure whether I would be super interested in the subject matter (I don't plan on having kids and have never really had the desire to research babies), but I assumed that Knisley would create a wonderful book that would engage me, anyway.I should never have even SLIGHTLY doubted Knisley - this book is amazingly drawn/created, the facts inside are fascinating and sometimes anger-inducing (feminist rights being stomped all over in the past, etc.), and her writing had me in tears about two times during the course of reading this book (and, yes, I read it all in one sitting, so a LOT of tears were shed that day). Knisley's combination of research, engaging art, and tales from her own life works so well I can understand why I fell in love so hard with this book, too. I read and ecopy of this book from NetGalley (and First Second Books - thank you so much, guys!), and that means... I may have to get a physical copy when this comes out to put on my Lucy Knisley shelf. Lucy Knisley - you are a very very good human. Thank you.
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  • Maia
    January 1, 1970
    Lucy Knisley has a way of capturing the day to day moments of life that build an engaging, vivid story even when the subject (as often seen on her blog) is to-do lists and cat behaviors. In this book she has taken on bigger topics: sexual education, miscarriage, pregnancy, and a near fatal experience of bringing a new life into the world. I have know since I was quite young that I never wanted to have children and find most aspects of procreation, frankly, horrifying. Several friends had warned Lucy Knisley has a way of capturing the day to day moments of life that build an engaging, vivid story even when the subject (as often seen on her blog) is to-do lists and cat behaviors. In this book she has taken on bigger topics: sexual education, miscarriage, pregnancy, and a near fatal experience of bringing a new life into the world. I have know since I was quite young that I never wanted to have children and find most aspects of procreation, frankly, horrifying. Several friends had warned me that there might be parts of this book I'd want to skip. But I read every page, and was grateful for this raw, honest look into a human experience that I will never have. The art is simple but beautifully effective, the writing at times very funny, at times informative or matter of fact, in others deeply emotional.
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  • Laura
    January 1, 1970
    I got this book, yesterday, when it came out. I sat down to read it, during work, and found it hard to put down, even though I knew it would all come out right in the end.What is the point of a story where we know the ending? Because the journey is the reward, not the destination.Do you read stories to find out the ending? If so, then you will be disappointed with this book, because this comes out two years after the birth of Pal, so not only do we know he was born, we also know that Lucy succee I got this book, yesterday, when it came out. I sat down to read it, during work, and found it hard to put down, even though I knew it would all come out right in the end.What is the point of a story where we know the ending? Because the journey is the reward, not the destination.Do you read stories to find out the ending? If so, then you will be disappointed with this book, because this comes out two years after the birth of Pal, so not only do we know he was born, we also know that Lucy succeeded in getting pregnant. With this book, Lucy has given us the background, how she wanted to be a mother, and how society treats both those who want to be mothers, as well as those that are mothers. Society has done so much less research on the woman's body that many things that we think that the medical field should know, they don't.But this does not tell you why this is such a fantastic book. This is so well done, because this is Lucy's journey to motherhood, with all the humor, and real life slice of life that she has exhibited in all her other work, and does to this day. This is the story of how Lucy does become pregnant, and all the observations about how life is in that state.It is a story that so many mothers, who gave birth, know so well. And yet each story is different.If you enjoyed her books about growing up, this is about growing up. If you have enjoyed Lucy's books about food, food is mentioned. If you enjoyed her book about her marriage, this continues that story. And if you enjoy her current stories about life with Pal, then you will love finding out how he came to be.
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  • Hal Schrieve
    January 1, 1970
    I have followed Knisley’s work since she was in art school and I was a 12 year old on Livejournal. As i watched her grow as an artist and a person, I appreciated the way her scope grew with her—though as she has recently settled into heterosexual marriage with a software engineer, I have felt a prickle of annoyance at the insights she develops about the world. She seems perfectly nice, but also has become someone less likely to ask important questions. For example, I think Relish and An Age Of L I have followed Knisley’s work since she was in art school and I was a 12 year old on Livejournal. As i watched her grow as an artist and a person, I appreciated the way her scope grew with her—though as she has recently settled into heterosexual marriage with a software engineer, I have felt a prickle of annoyance at the insights she develops about the world. She seems perfectly nice, but also has become someone less likely to ask important questions. For example, I think Relish and An Age Of License function far better as memoirs than Something New, as a minutae-by-minutae look at heterosexual monogamy is less than thrilling to me. This book follows Knisley’s journey toward parenthood, and while the qualms about her art and work I have generally persist, I think there should be more writing about the difficulties of pregnancy, more normalization of discussions of birth control, and a broader conversation about the horrific negligence of many doctors toward pregnant women. So I read it —and I think it does something worthwhile to bring up good conversations. It should be said that Knisley is still a white woman ill-equipped to tell the story of modern gynecology. She’s a memoirist and not a researcher or historian, and it shows. For example, she references the violence toward enslaved black women in the name of science at the hands of James Marion Sims, but decides on not drawing any of these women—even in dignity , even just faces—or conducting more research about them or what their lives might have been like. Instead the women are a black censor bar that says “nope not drawing this” and Knisley depicts their tormenter looking dowdy but human (albeit with many curses around his head). She doesn’t know or doesn’t write about the 20th century campaigns of genocide against black woman and Latina women in the United States or elsewhere, or the conditions of women giving birth in incarceration, though she explores widespread fears of infertility and general decline in U.S birth rates. While she writes about doulas and midwives, she allows her view of natural birth to be influenced by the excruciating pain she was in during her own experience and doesn’t make an effort to include perspectives or voices by other mothers. She also doesn’t mention trans people, which wouldn’t irk me except for the scene where she shows herself wondering “what if men could get pregnant? Would gender exist?” when men can and do get pregnant —and Knisley should know, since she dated a trans man in high school and outed him and his deadname in her first published book.In short—it’s a memoir, beholden to the same limits as other memoirs by white well to do artists. But I think within her scope, Knisley does pretty well. She goes over her own complicated history with birth control, talks about the ways that sex ed and planned parenthood both educated her about her own body and failed her, and talks in depth about her miscarriages and final successful pregnancy. Her clean style makes each page easy to read. She notes the ways that different doctors made her uncomfortable, her devastating first trimester morning sickness, and the ways that her husband was impacted emotionally by what she was going through (I think she is too nice to him—I like John less after reading this book for making Lucy think it was necessary to give so much space to his anxieties about the responsibilities of parenthood for him as a dad when Lucy is enduring enormous physical trauma as a part of becoming a parent). She talks about the ways that her doctor ignored clear signs that she was experiencing pre-eclampsia and how her own research gave her information that was sometimes better , but how she felt as if she was not entitled to ask for a second opinion. I think this book could empower many pregnant people to seek more autonomy in their medical care leading up to birth. It also is just a comfort to have a graphic memoir about pregnancy. Something about illustrations makes a piece of media much more accessible. I appreciate the scenes centering on Knisley’s experience of birth, as it dives into territory too often made mysterious, spiritual or murky and tries to elucidate its details and precise physicality—not in relation to the exit of her baby, but with regards to her epidural, her surgery, her painkillers, and the structure of her multiple hospital visits. The health care system and its failures loom large, and it is worth taking Knisley’s experiences seriously.
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  • Errin
    January 1, 1970
    I've always thought pregnancy is terrifying and anyone who goes through it is a fucking warrior. This graphic novel further solidified that opinion. Lucy Knisley's story is sometimes sweet and sometimes sad. She went through some hard shit (I feel like her obgyn should be sued for malpractice). And in the end, I am so happy for her and her family. I love her colorful art style and humourous tone. This book is very informative and addresses many pregnancy/miscarriage myths as well as the countles I've always thought pregnancy is terrifying and anyone who goes through it is a fucking warrior. This graphic novel further solidified that opinion. Lucy Knisley's story is sometimes sweet and sometimes sad. She went through some hard shit (I feel like her obgyn should be sued for malpractice). And in the end, I am so happy for her and her family. I love her colorful art style and humourous tone. This book is very informative and addresses many pregnancy/miscarriage myths as well as the countless times men in power have claimed to know everything and control women's pregnant bodies. I knew that many victims of the witch trials were midwives whose existence was a threat to fragile masculinity but I had no idea Charlotte Brontë died from pregnancy sickness. Of course, the inventor of the speculum was a walking pile of shit... And the important statistic that 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage for inexplicable reasons but the vast majority of people who suffer a miscarriage go on to have a healthy pregnancy.I think this is a great read and I'm sure so many readers will be able to relate to some aspect of Knisley's journey.. or just learn something new while appreciating cute cartoons.
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  • Megan K.
    January 1, 1970
    This book was good. It was moving, and well crafted, smart, funny, informative. I am glad Lucy Knisley wrote it because, as she points out, there aren't many graphic novels about these things: miscarriages, infertility, labor, almost dying in child birth. And there should be. The thing that bothers me about this book though is she goes through A LOT and fails to really dig in deep on any of it. For example, when she is depressed after her first miscarriage she draws scribbly lines above her head This book was good. It was moving, and well crafted, smart, funny, informative. I am glad Lucy Knisley wrote it because, as she points out, there aren't many graphic novels about these things: miscarriages, infertility, labor, almost dying in child birth. And there should be. The thing that bothers me about this book though is she goes through A LOT and fails to really dig in deep on any of it. For example, when she is depressed after her first miscarriage she draws scribbly lines above her head in black, which I get. That is her visual of how she felt and it conveys her depressed and hopeless feelings fairly well. But also I want to know more about those feelings, about how it affected her marriage. I want to have a better understanding of her pain, something deeper than some scribbly lines. There are no real the details to illuminate for the reader exactly how she was suffering. Same for her husband's doubts and anxieties when she is pregnant. It's like "he was nervous about our impending child but la la la when he felt him move it all went away." I don't think it actually worked like that and I would like to know more about what it was really like for the two of them to come to terms with the enormity of what was happening. I mean what is the point of writing a memoir if not to really explore your experiences and share the with readers so that they can relate or not relate but at least feel something with you? I don't know I think I am saying what Hannah Garden already said must more elequently here.
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