'What does your love with this person offer?': Why Mariko Tamaki wanted to write about unhealthy relationships

Canadian artist and writer Mariko Tamaki tells us about her new YA graphic novel and why its message about unhealthy relationships is relatable at any age.
Mariko Tamaki is the author of Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up with Me. The book is illustrated by Rosemary Valero-O'Connell. (Shawnee Custalow, House of Anansi Press)

Mariko Tamaki has spent her adult life thinking about adolescence. The Canadian artist and writer is known for graphic novels like Skim and This One Summer, which explore the messiness of being a young adult.

She joined q's Tom Power from a studio in Oakland, Calif., to talk about her latest YA graphic novel with illustrator Rosemary Valero-O'Connell, Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up with Me. It's about a girl named Freddy whose girlfriend, Laura Dean, keeps stringing her along.

Tamaki tells us more about her new book and why its message about unhealthy relationships is relatable at any age. Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up with Me is out now.

An excerpt from Mariko Tamaki's new book Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up with Me. (House of Anansi Press)

— Produced by Vanessa Greco

Miss an episode of CBC q? Download our podcast.



To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Become a CBC Member

Join the conversation  Create account

Already have an account?