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The Tryout: A Graphic Novel by Christina Soontornvat, Joanna Cacao (Paperback)

The Tryout: A Graphic Novel by Christina Soontornvat, Joanna Cacao (Paperback)

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Middle Grade Fiction - Comics & Graphic Novels - Sports & Recreation - Cheerleading Ages 8-12

Published: 9/6/2022




This pitch perfect graphic memoir about courage and competition, friendship and belonging is perfect for fans of Smile, New Kid, Rollergirl, and Real Friends.

“A captivating middle-grade gem.” ― The New York Times Book Review

★ “Funny, relatable, and genuine.” ― Kirkus Reviews, starred review

★ “Captures every nuanced emotion.” ― School Library Journal, starred review

★ “Genuinely nail-biting.” ― Publishers Weekly, starred review

★ “Cringe-worthy in the best possible way…inspiring and insightful.” ― Shelf Awareness, starred review

“Delightfully expressive…a standout.” ― Booklist

“Illustrated and told in a way that every middle school student can relate to. Captures the poignancy of the emotional rollercoaster that [they] experience every day.” ― School Library Connection, recommended

When cheerleading tryouts are announced, Christina and her best friend, Megan, literally jump at the chance to join the squad. As two of the only kids of color in the school, they have always yearned to fit in―and the middle school cheerleaders are popular and accepted by everyone. But will the girls survive the terrifying tryouts, with their whole grade watching? And will their friendship withstand the pressures of competition?


Hilarious and highly relatable, The Tryout by two-time Newbery Honoree Christina Soontornvat and shining new talent Joanna Cacao will make you laugh, cry, and cheer!


Christina Soontornvat is the author of several books for young readers, including the Newbery Honor books The Last MapmakerA Wish in the Dark, and All Thirteen, and the bestselling graphic novel The Tryout. Christina holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and a master's degree in Science Education. She spent a decade working in the science museum field, where she designed programs and exhibits to get kids excited about science and STEM. Christina lives in Austin, Texas, with her husband, two young children, and one old cat. You can learn more about her work at
Joanna Cacao is a Canadian-Filipino artist and illustrator who lives in Winnipeg with her Pomeranian, Danny. She loves working on magical and fantastical stories. Growing up in front of a TV, Joanna immediately became obsessed with any show or film that had a great story and set of characters. Her favorite shows consist of Avatar: The Last Airbender, Downton Abbey, and Gravity Falls. Her biggest influences come from various manga, as well as Ghibli and Disney films. She has a background in 3D Animation, and has self-published a queer webcomic: Toxic For You.

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