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The Secret to Superhuman Strength by Alison Bechdel

American cartoonist Bechdel (she of the Bechdel film test fame – does a film have two female characters, do they have names, do they speak to each other about something other than a man; a shocking number do not pass this very low bar) reflects on her life through her obsession with exercise in all its forms in this funny and illuminating graphic memoir. From a childhood wishing she had the muscles of tv strongmen, to discovering running and skiing and jiu-jitsu as mapped through her relationships with her family, her coming out, and long-term relationships and career success.

I greatly enjoyed this as something really fresh and personal. A rare memoir not laced with trauma, Bechdel’s graphic and literary mix situates you in her body and how she experiences the world in a unique and interesting way.

- Erin

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