Ditching what few friends she has and leaving high school, Selina takes to life on the streets after her mother’s abusive boyfriend causes her kitten’s death, and she hones the skills she needs while forging her new identity as Catgirl. Soon, she befriends other skilled youths who are planning a heist—a parkour whiz, a stylish hacker, and a nonverbal younger girl. Initially game, Selina regrets her involvement when she realizes her team has raided the home of her childhood friend, Bruce Wayne, and things become further complicated when a deranged murderer shows up during the heist. Myracle delivers a Catwoman origin story update that captures the inner challenges of adolescence and trauma. Myracle and Goodhart depict physical abuse and self-harm in all their lingering ugliness. Goodhart’s art depicts action scenes and traditionally normalized bodies in shades of blue and black that remind readers that regardless of time of day, Catgirl is a creature of the night. Ages 13–17. (May)
"Isaac Goodhart's lush, evocative black and blue illustrations pair perfectly with Lauren Myracle's dark reimagining of Catwoman's origin story.… Sophisticated teen readers will appreciate this tragic, heartbreaking tale of one lonely, determined teenaged girl's journey to becoming a badass anti-hero." —Kristin Hannah, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Nightingale
“A high-octane, emotionally-charged reimagining that is definitely the cat's meow.” —Kirkus Reviews
“With a smart heroine, plenty of action sequences, and a suspenseful plot, Under the Moon delivers the old-fashioned pleasures of comics in a package designed for today’s readers.” —ICv2
“This look at Catwoman’s backstory is dense with plot, emotion, and action. A sensitive origin story of a beloved antihero.” —School Library Journal
"Myracle delivers a Catwoman origin story update that captures the inner challenges of adolescence and trauma. Goodhart’s art depicts action scenes and traditionally normalized bodies in shades of blue and black that remind readers that regardless of time of day, Catgirl is a creature of the night." —Publishers Weekly
“Regardless of if you’re a Catwoman fan, you’re going to love it.” —Forever Young Adult
Gr 9 Up–Fourteen-year-old Selina Kyle's life is in the litter box. Her mother's latest in a string of boyfriends, Dernell, is short-tempered and vindictive. Selina is frustrated by her superficial friendships at school, despite her unflinching loyalty, and dreamy Bruce Wayne barely notices her. Selina rescues a tiny kitten by a dumpster, finding joy and purpose in caring for the creature. But when Dernell locks Selina in a closet and kills the kitten, she runs off, reeling from guilt and anguish, and begins a solitary life on the street. Another runaway, Ojo, teaches her parkour and invites her to join his gang in their latest heist: stealing a rare book from the private library of a local billionaire. This look at Catwoman's backstory is dense with plot, emotion, and action. Myracle offers a fresh take on the frequently sexualized portrayals of this character, creating a strong, sympathetic, but no less flawed Selina. Like teenagers and cats alike, she is a compelling set of contradictions; scrappy and vulnerable; quick to protect but slow to trust. Goodhart's illustrations are similarly nuanced, beautifully depicting both dynamic action and subtle emotion. His monochrome blues and purples evoke the titular moonlight and underscore Selina's nocturnal destiny. He displays a particular talent for illustrating hair; Selina's glossy black mane shines and bounces. Myracle doesn't shy away from the grisly circumstances of a runaway teen. There is mature language throughout, grisly domestic violence, and self-harm. VERDICT A sensitive origin story of a beloved antihero.—Anna Murphy, Berkeley Carroll School, Brooklyn
Catwoman's mythos is given a fresh graphic reinvention.
Fourteen-year-old Selina Kyle's life is wretched. After a string of despicable boyfriends, her mother finally settles on Dernell, a vile and toxic man who is abusive to both Selina and her mother. Reaching her breaking point, Selina runs away, dropping out of school. Now homeless, she joins a group of tech-savvy young thieves: rambunctious parkour-master Ojo, brainiac mastermind Yang, and Rosie, a nonverbal child. Like Selina, Rosie has suffered an appalling trauma, and the girls quickly bond. Despite rumors of a homicidal man-eating dog plaguing Gotham City, the gang decides to attempt a daring heist. When the plan goes disastrously awry, Selina must not only save Rosie, but confront her own demons. Catwoman has had many different iterations, but Myracle's (The Backward Season, 2018, etc.) interpretation is well-wrought, adding a new depth and a contemporary spin on an already complex, iconic character, transcending tired superhero tropes. Goodhart's cinematically styled, action-packed, blue-hued art holds back nothing from the reader, tackling difficult scenes of child abuse, violence against animals, and self-harm. Those who enjoyed Sarah J. Maas' prose in Catwoman: Soulstealer (2018) will certainly appreciate Myracle's interpretation. Selina, her mother, and Dernell present as white, Yang as Asian, and Ojo presumably as Latinx, while Rosie and her family appear African-American; the one nonslender female character is presented in an unfortunately negative light.
A high-octane, emotionally-charged reimagining that is definitely the cat's meow. (Graphic fiction. 12-adult)