Montreal Mirror

Montreal Mirror June 2006
Gay and graphic

“What’s so great about graphic novels is the images draw you in before you even know what the story is about,” says author/illustrator Abby Denson. In Denson’s first full-length graphic novel for young adults, Tough Love: High School Confidential (Manic D Press), the story is about gay-bashing, teen romance, suicide and coming out—quite the departure from her earlier work scripting comics for The Powerpuff Girls, The Simpsons and Disney Adventures.

Inspired by Japanese manga comics about romance between men, Denson originally created Tough Love as a serial for XY, a gay teen magazine. “I had an overwhelming response from XY readers—hundreds of e-mails and letters, some from kids who were suicidal and needed help,” Denson recalls. “At first the project was purely creative, but it became an activist project, especially now with all the repression going on in the U.S. due to our conservative government.”

Denson will be signing copies of her book this Saturday, June 17, 3 p.m., at Librairie Millenium (451 Marie-Anne E.), visit for a taste. —Andrea Zanin