Let’s Talk About It: The Teen’s Guide to Sex, Relationships, and Being a Human (a graphic novel) is a WOW book. With the modern design and way to talk about The Big S, Erika Moen and Matthew Nolan show that it is not just about “slot A and tab B” anymore. There is a whole amazing, confusing, weird, and good time there.
This book covers the basics (yes, I know what to do but what do you do) to consent; to exploring yourself (literally), to the concept of kinks and fantasy, to abusive relationships (are you in one or are you creating one), to learning what is OK for you, friendships, and even STIs (though I feel that chapter was glossed over and a bit too casual). Not everything could be covered (the author afterwards mentions that even as Moen was finishing creating the last page, they were still trying to figure out how to add more) but there is a lot there. I am sure there is another book of not covered subjects that should/could be covered. (Do I see a series?)
Each section/chapter is usually at least two people dealing with a subject. The modernness comes alive in even slightly subtle ways. The sisters talking have the “Have I meet her, yet?” conversation and the younger sister says that no older sister has not meet them. But this is presented as perfectly normal, as all the other situations are. It is “it is what it is” and that is a refreshing take. There are people of all colors, sizes, shapes, and disabilities. Some people you can tell present male, others female, and some well, it really is not important, is it?
Images are simple, moderately detailed, and scientifically graphic (nothing is held back. The good bits are shown in all their floppy, hairy, erectness). I joked there are a lot of “neck-ed people” in this book, but it is not “giggle” nakedness. It is just naturally nude bodies. There are also images of discreet sexual encounters, obvious encounters, breasts, vaginas, penises, simple conversations on a city bus, classroom settings, and well, this is not your mother’s sex-ed book. This is not just an educational book it is an Education!
I would say this book is not for everyone, but some would say it should be. I would not feel comfortable giving this to my 9-or-10-year-old without reading it first, and then with them. However, a lot of this is aimed at the teen who is well, ready to go. If you want to give your child “This is how your body changes,” this is not the book. As the characters who start the book say, “They know the condom goes on the banana, but what else is there?” But if you want language, possible understanding, and a way to start talking to your teen and/or allowing your teen to safely explore (and allowing for you to become part of their “safe community”) this is the book you want.