You can’t judge a book by its cover, but sometimes a good cover can compel you to pick up a book you wouldn’t otherwise be interested in. In the case of Blue is the Warmest Color, I just had to see if the rest of the graphic novel looked as beautiful as the cover. What I found was a graphic novel that was not only beautifully illustrated, but also a compelling romance that I couldn’t put down.
Blue is the Warmest Color is written and illustrated by French author Julie Maroh. Although originally released in 2010 under the French title Le Bleu est une Couleur Chaude, it was only recently released in the U.S. The story itself revolves around the life, sexual awakening, and subsequent relationship of Emma.
Without giving too much away, the story more or less starts off with Emma as a teen as she wrestles with why she doesn’t feel any kind of sexual warmth for boys--not even her boyfriend. Then, one day she sees a pretty girl whose hair is dyed blue, and all at once Emma experiences all the feelings that she never had for boys. The rest of the story could either be described as a romantic tragedy or triumph—maybe it’s both. In any case, Blue is the Warmest Color is definitely worth reading and will have you contemplating the story and characters long after you put it down.