Last June, I read a few different LGBTQ+ young adult graphic novels for Pride Month, and there was something so warm and comforting about them. All three of them were very much rooted in the slice of life genre, something a bit different than the normal blockbuster action you might see from DC (or anyone else) you might see on the shelves, and as I've talked about before across various reviews I'm always an absolute sucker for that.
You Brought Me The Ocean is something that had first caught my eye a long time before I got round to reading it (or at least it felt like it) and I'm glad I finally did last year. Through cameos, eventual story turns and the overall character of "Jake Hyde", this book is based enough in a few bits of relevant lore to be recognisable as being based off DC property for, not "old" readers necessarily but just anyone who's been reading for a while, but also not so much so that it's ever bogged down by that for new readers. As someone who likes the character of Jackson but isn't necessarily a die-hard fan I enjoyed this, so that's just my perspective. It works in a fun "Elseworld" manner that these YA GNs cater for.
The characters and the story in general are compelling, I thought it was well-written and entertaining, and I loved the artwork. I thought that was perfect for the story. It had a very pastel, ethereal feel and atmosphere to it which was very fitting for all the illustrations of the water. So light, fluid and just overall it all contributes to that warm and comforting feel I mentioned at the beginning. That's not to say there isn't conflict, but the artwork and the book itself was honestly soothing to read, soak and just get lost in.
If you're looking for an LGBTQ+ YA graphic novel that's tangentially connected to the DC universe and particularly the Aquaman side of it, with more of a focus on character drama and slice of life, then I think you can't go wrong with this. I would definitely recommend it.
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