Cover Image: Cici's Journal

Cici's Journal

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Member Reviews

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an electronic copy to read and review. 

This book is so much fun! It is part graphic novel, part scrapbook. There are letters, notes, illustrations, and a great adventure by Cici. I can't wait to pick up a copy for my kids - they will love to explore the story of Cici and the zoo. I know they will also love the format - there is just so much to unpack here and it will keep reluctant readers interested.
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Cici’s Journal is a mix of graphic novel and journal pages written by a girl named Cici, who loves writing and mysteries. The book is split into two parts, each focused around a different mystery. The first is a mysterious man who disappears into the woods - where could he be going? The second is about a woman who keeps checking out the same library book every week.

While some parts of this story were cute, there were a lot of issues with it. First of all, I had a big problem with the fact that Erica, Cici’s friend who is the only Black character in the story, had no real character traits other than complaining and being angry. Cici mentions several times that Erica always has something to complain or grumble about. When Cici is being a bad friend, Erica gets angry - visually, almost cartoonishly angry - and blows up at her, while white friend Lena is the mediator. While Lena isn’t much more of a developed character than Erica, she does have other aspects to her character - for example, she loves to take photos. Erica, though, we know almost nothing about other than that she’s friends with Lena and is always complaining and angry. While sometimes this anger is justified - Cici is being a bad friend - it comes off as very stereotypical and was a poor idea.

Also, this story apparently takes place in modern day, considering things such as a poster for a 2017 event. So why does the library still use checkout cards where someone writes their name down? They have their catalog online, as seen by Cici looking up a book. There is no way their checkout procedure wouldn’t also be online. This may feel nitpicky, and the checkout card forms the entire basis of the part two mystery, but it’s really unrealistic. The librarian’s behavior was also terrible. This is probably more obvious to me since I’m a librarian, but the amount of information she gives out about one of the patrons is appalling. This is completely unprofessional and could get her fired - librarians can’t just tell people what others are reading, what their habits are, etc! She’s also super judgmental about the fact that the older woman only reads one book, and while I’m not saying there aren’t judgmental librarians, it just felt like a poorly written character written by someone who doesn’t actually understand how libraries work. (This whole plotline made that abundantly clear, honestly.)

There are some cute, moving parts to this book, and I even found myself tearing up at some of the zoo scenes. Overall, though, I think the negative aspects of the story - especially the stereotypical, undeveloped Black friend - completely outweigh the positive ones. Giving it two stars because the artwork was cute and for the few sweet/interesting aspects of part one.
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Thank you to the author, the publisher First Second Books and Netgalley for this ARC in exchange for an honest review.

A graphic novel for children about friendship, family, love and life. 

Cici is a girl who wants to be a published author, and she loves mysteries. In the summer, Cici starts to follow and resolve little mysteries through her town. A mysterious man in the forest, an old woman going every Tuesday to a specific place... 

I loved the story, I loved the characters. There are a lot of things that are talked in this book that I myself find them so beautiful and so necessary for children to be there. It talks about life, about what love and friendship means, about family. 

One of the things that I loved most about the book was the friendship between Cici and her two best friends: Erica and Lena. It is a friendship built out of years, since they were little kids. They are 11 now, so they are not so old, really. They are still children.

I liked the illustrations and the way the book is written and how it is written.

If you're looking for a book full of fun, friendship, family, love, and topics about life, this is your book. This book is perfect for children, but I do think that it is also perfect for every age. 

#CicisJournal #Netgalley
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Cici's Journal is a unique graphic novel written by Joris Chamblain.

Gotta say, the unique art style is what pulled me in during the first few pages, but the intriguing story is what will keep you. The story about Cici, a young writer, is a fun one. It's unique, mysterious and will pull you along as you read. I like the various ways the author changed things up - the journals, the pictures - it stands out among the crowd, as they say.

Overall, this is a great, unique read! I wasn't the target audience for sure, but it was cool!

Two out of five stars.

Thank you to NetGalley and First Second Books for providing me a free copy of this book in exchange of an honest review.
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I would have love to be Cici as a young girl! Have that amazing mind (and luck), great friends and a selfless heart that unwraps a mystery into people's amends with their past and a starting point for a happy future!

This story gathers to great adventures of Cici (a ten-year-old sweet girl) that (sometimes) together with her closest friends Erica and Lena, will catch the loose thread of a mystery - an unknown character or repetitive behavior - in hopes of uncovering that secret that we all carry inside.

In her quest, she will also have to face the consequences of her actions and decisions, growing up and catching to the fact that sometimes our biggest secret lays deep in our past regrets.

A lovely story that takes the reader to a zoo with very lively animals and to a forgotten library wing.

A beautiful series that will allow young readers to learn about the difficult things in live while the adults will feel the heartwarming sensation that things can always be better.

An e-ARC of this book was kindly provided by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
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Cici’s journal was a very sweet graphic novel about a young girl who wants to be a writer and likes to investigate mysteries. I really enjoyed the multi-media beginning where we saw some pages from Cicic’s journal and learned about her a bit before the story started. I also really enjoyed the art style. It was fun and vibrant and expressive. 
I think that this story was a really sweet story about friendship and following your passions. I really think this would be a great book for young aspiring writers and kids who are interested in adventures and secrets. It was a very sweet little story that was just filled with wholesomeness and a little bit of mystery. 

Rating: 3.5/5
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I love Cici, she's so genuine and loveable. The story is good and cute. I cannot wait to read the rest. The drawings and coloring are great!
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I LOVED this charming little read! As a die-hard fan of Harriet the Spy and the Amelia books as a kid, this would have been right up my alley when I was younger. I know I would have read this over and over. 

I can understand some of the concerns around this one—Cici and her friends frequently run off on their own, and Cici goes through some growing pains in regards to her relationships with her friends and her mother. So, you may want to read along/discuss this with your child. As for me, I thought the story was handled in a perfectly charming and heartwarming way. The illustrations were totally endearing and absolutely darling. 

I adored this little graphic novel—I want to read more Cici!
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This comic is a comforting story about a little girl, dreaming of adventure and exploring the densities of life in order to write a book. 

Cici's Journal is the story of Cici, a child who wants to become a writer. To do so, she follows her neighbor's steps and decides to explore life, its secrets, friendships and adventures. 

A cute comfort read for anyone who wants to read something soft, and fast-paced. 
This is perfect for middle-grade children as well!
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Cici is an aspiring author. She has befriended a local author that has provided her some inspiration and tips on becoming an author. Cici is interested in other people too. She gets really curious and calls them "mysterious". The first part of the book had her wondering what the story of an older man covered in paint going into the woods was. She discovered there was an abandoned zoo that she and her friends helped rebuild. In the second part she was curious about a sad elderly lady going to the library and home with the same book every week. She discovered the mystery behind her too. In the process she lied to her mom and annoyed her friends with her obsessiveness. Cici learned a memorable lesson in not only how to become a writer but be a better friend, daughter, and overall person. I found the story very enjoyable.
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The illustrations are gorgeous, and the journal is beautifully put together, this has been by far the best comic I have ever read!!!
⋆┈┈。゚❃ུ۪ ❀ུ۪ ❁ུ۪ ❃ུ۪ ❀ུ۪ ゚。┈┈⋆
Basically it follows young Cici, a young detective who wishes to be an author when she grows up through two mysteries.
One about a zoo and the other about forgotten letters, read on to find more!!!
Thank you First Second Books and Netgalley for an advanced reader copy!
I wish the author luck for more books in this series!!
My rating ⊱ ─ {⋅. ✯5 stars✯ .⋅} ─ ⊰
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Gorgeously illustrated, this is a great graphic novel for kids describing both the importance of persistence but also about paying attention and thinking about people other than yourself (especially your friends and families).  It's easy to get interested along with Cici in the two mysteries she discovers (and solves!) and it's also great to see how she learns and grows.  Highly recommended for the art, story, characters, and theme.
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I want to thank Netgalley, Joris Chamblain and Aurélie Neyret, and First Second Books for giving me a chance to read this book in exchange for an honest review. 

First of all, I want to say that the artwork of this book is superb! I really fell in love with the artwork. Each scene is so beautiful and atmospheric. And I enjoy also seeing the journal entries! 

Now for the actual story, I love both of the mysteries. I actually enjoyed reading them and they are both so warm-hearted and sweet. I love the first part with the old man, but I think I love the second part the most because it actually got me teary-eyed. Both stories are sad in a way and still had that sense of being a comfort to me. 

For the characters, I actually liked it that each is so distinct from each other. They are easy to remember. And I like how the book makes the characters still stays with their personalities and traits. I really feel connected to Cici because I once was dreaming of becoming an author. I also love how imaginative Cici is, she makes me smile by her stories of people around her. Although at the second part, I was kinda annoyed at her. I thought that the book will just leave it like that but it got character developments and i'm kinda happy to see Cici being a better version of herself. 

Overall, I rated this book 4.5 out of 5 stars. It's really warm-hearted and the kind of book that feels like giving you a hug. So, be sure to check this one out!
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Cici’s Journal was a two part mystery journal containing a variety of mixed illustrations in photos, art supplies, drawings, articles, and journal notes. I absolutely loved the details of every page. The story was illustrated so beautifully that I cannot believe the cover does not match the beauty of what you will find inside.

Cici is a curious young girl who loves a good mystery. She enjoys people watching, particularly “mysterious” elderly citizens within her community and this gives Cici inspiration for the stories she will one day write as she dreams of becoming a novelist. 

The stories are ultimately about helping others, and learning a few hard lessons on why you should open up about your feelings, make time for friends, and to not lie to parents. I think there should have been more discussion about the consequences of lying to parents which Cici does repeatedly, but other than that small detail I wouldn’t change a thing.

This book is perfect for a new generation of young mystery readers. I would highly recommend this for any young reader who is imaginative, curious, or into mystery books.

Thank you to NetGalley for the digital ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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I received a free e-ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. 

[This review will be posted on my blog on 19 July 2021]

Cici's Journal is a delightful book about a young girl who loves mysteries and wants to become a writer/novelist. Cici is a warm-hearted person, but her curiosity gets the best of her. She can be very single-minded and her obsessions with her mysteries come at a cost sometimes. Her relationships with her mother, her friends, and her mentor all become strained because of her investigations. I thought it was an important point to explore - that you can have a dream and pursue it without giving up other important things in your life. 

The book consists of two stories, or "journals," in which Cici (and her friends) explore two very different mysteries. The first involves a strange man covered in paint who goes into the forest every weekend. The second revolves around an elderly woman who catches the same bus every week carrying the same book clutched to her chest. Both stories were heartwarming, and made me tear up a little. 

What makes this so special is the art, layout, and design. Each story begins with full colour pages from Cici's journals (what I always wanted my own journals to look like!), before moving on to graphic novel/comic layout. The art is super appealing, and beautifully coloured. 

I can say with absolute certainty that I would have loved to have a copy of this book when I was about 9 (I was going through a detective phase at the time.) I think this will appeal to middle grade readers (and perhaps even a little younger), especially those who love writing, journals, a mysteries.
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This one got my attention with he premise, a girl that love to play detective and wants to be a writer, so nice actually.

The first story was so amazing, really made me think what this mr. mysterious was and what he was doing, even thought for a moment he was a bad guy at any point since it was so shush and all.
Loved the idea of a very different museum was pretty awesome and cool, at the end it was heartwarming and nice.

The second story was heartbreaking in a good way actually, really liked the ideas of encrypted messages it's a good way to go and the mention of the II world war awesome, there's so much interesting things in that period.

The illustrations were fantastic, really well done and cozy it was an experience, perfect for middle graders or just lovers of art and good stories.
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Cici is a very curious little girl. She dreams of being writer, much like her neighbor. Cici is very interested in the lives of those around her, and enjoys making up stories about them. She uses her journal to practice writing and solve mysteries.

I really like Cici’s character. She has a tendency to get lost in her own mind. I was much like Cici when I was younger, though much more introverted. I liked that Cici grew through her journaling and conversations with mentors. 

The illustrations in this book were beautiful as well, especially the paintings at the zoo. They really helped bring the story to life. The pages that were from Cici’s journal were really neat as well. It helped the reader get into Cici’s head even more.

Overall this was a very enjoyable graphic novel. I highly recommend it.

I received an ARC of this book for free via NetGalley and I am leaving this review voluntarily.
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Cici's drawings and the beautiful comic illustrations will capture the attention of young readers as well as spark their creativity.
3.5 stars

Appeal Terms:
Character: flawed, mischievous, quirky,
Storyline and Pace: plot-driven and fast-paced
Tone: sweet, whimsical
Illustration: charming

I thought this book was very heartfelt--I even got a bit misty-eyed at the end! It's really lusciously illustrated and I enjoyed the parts of the journal interspersed between the story which really gave more insight into Cici's character. I would totally read more stories with Cici in her quaint little town.

Potential issues for young readers
It's a bit strange because the main character has a habit of lying to her mother. And really, the lying does not come back to bite her in the end. However, for young Cici, she does go through her own arc of learning about not using people like objects and gaining empathy.

~NetGalley Arc~ 

Note: I will probably mention this on Tiktok!
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I reallly enjoyed this story about Cici, her friends and the mysteries that she discovers and feels compelled to solve. At times she goes to the extreme to do this and learns the consequences of putting these mysteries above all else. She has struggles with friends, her mom and life in general while also navigating the mysteries and writing in her journal. Her journal itself includes pictures, drawings, newspaper clippings and other mixed media elements that will draw in readers and make it feel like an interactive experience. There are also a couple pages that younger readers could customize to feel like they are part of the story. The artwork (as well as what is included on the journal pages) is beautiful and full of whimsy, with a softer color palette that perfectly suits the story and Cici's style.
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3.5/5 stars

Readers who are inquisitive about the world around them will like Cici’s inquisitive nature in this graphic novel. Give especially to your readers who have a soft spot for animals.
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