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STILL STACE by Stacey Chomiak


My Gay Christian Coming-of-Age Story: An Illustrated Memoir

by Stacey Chomiak ; illustrated by Stacey Chomiak

Pub Date: Oct. 19th, 2021
ISBN: 978-1-5064-6951-5
Publisher: Beaming Books

Navigating queer and Christian communities can be complicated.

This illustrated memoir by Canadian artist Chomiak traces her life between the summer of 1996, when she was a 16-year-old attending a Christian summer camp and trying to understand confusing feelings about her friend Joanna, until the spring of 2011, when she was heading home to Winnipeg from Vancouver to marry the woman she loved. Chomiak documents the complexities of being a lesbian while growing up in a conservative religious household. The narrative is open and at times raw with the emotional distress of Chomiak’s teen life, from complex relationships with her parents to her hormonal urges, the pain of early hidden relationships, and reconciling her sexuality with her deep faith. Illustrations of Chomiak and the people close to her fill the pages (all present as White), documenting her stress, anxiety, and sadness through her facial expressions and body language. At times, the sepia tones of the illustrations, possibly meant to indicate flashbacks, work against the art’s emotional impact, as the muted colors read as dull and lifeless. This quibble aside, readers of all sexualities and genders will benefit from this glimpse into the life of a Christian lesbian. Other gay Christians will benefit from the resources that are included—lists of faith-oriented websites, organizations, and books designed to help others on their journeys.

Insightful and inspiring.

(author’s note, letters to Stace’s younger self, letter to readers) (Memoir. 13-18)