Want personalized picks that fit your family?

Set preferences to see our top age-appropriate picks for your kids.

Get age-based picks

Parent reviews for Drama

Common Sense says

Sharp, funny graphic novel captures chaos of theater.
Based on our expert review

Parents say

age 11+
Based on 22 reviews

Kids say

age 10+
Based on 45 reviews
Adult Written bycatapault November 8, 2013

There is a little more to the story . . .

It's important to know that this book addresses the homosexuality of twin 8th grade boys, both of which come out to the central character in the book. Cassie is respectful and kind to the boys and accepts them for who they are. However, the book also has a third character, named West, who it is revealed isn't sure if he is gay or bi. The confusion over sexuality may be a theme too mature for your elementary age child. The book makes no mention of these themes in the summary on the back, in the descripton on the Scholastic website or on Amazon. (Thank you Common Sense Media for mentioning this here.) The book is written on a 2.6 grade level and is a graphic novel, so odds are if it's in your child's elementary school library, your younger child could end up reading this and may not understand these parts of the story. The sexuality of the boys is a sub-theme of the book and I feel that parents should be aware of this so they can make an informed decision about whether their child is ready for this issue or not.

This title contains:

Positive role models
Sexy stuff
Adult Written byajwmom May 22, 2013

Disappointed...

My 12 yr old daughter is a big fan of Smile and a bit of a reluctant reader so when she saw Drama she instantly gravitated to it based on her experience with Smile. I looked at the book and thought the graphics were great. She stopped reading it a few chapters in. She's in Drama and was interested from the aspect of someone who wants to be the star but falls short in acting/singing talent but finds her place behind the scenes. That appealed to her but once she hit the same sex crush, she was confused. It sparked a conversation about steroetypes regarding males interested in Drama and singing in musicals. My daughter elected not to continue the book because she felt a bit mislead from the synopsis and beginning of the story. Just not her cup of tea. Parents should be prepared to discuss boys having crushes on other boys, perpetuating sterotypes of males involved in Theatre , girl crushes on boys who like boys, and unkind behavior amongst friends. I give it 1 star simply because the graphics are so good. Provided you're ready to broach mature subject matter with you middle-schooler, they'll enjoy the graphics.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Adult Written by100ftabove May 7, 2015

Great read, important subjects

I read this because I work in a school library where the kids basically fight for the only copies we have of this graphic novel (one English and one French translation). I thought it was a cute read, and I can see why the kids like it so much. I think the subject matter is totally fine for any kid over the age of 9, despite some people's misconceptions of the book. Kids ought to know about different sexual or romantic preferences, and to be honest, most kids have no issues with it in the story. It isn't "all about" people's sexualities like most people are making it out to seem. It's set in middle school, a time where the majority of kids are obsessed with romance and crushes and whatnot. I thought that the way the twins are presented are awesome, especially with how open and supportive Callie and the other students are. I think we need more books that talk about these things if we're going to get kids to understand that it's okay not to be heteronormative. I wish there was more stuff like this when I was younger and questioning my own sexuality.

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byJen O. April 4, 2017

Great Book!

As a Gay-Straight Alliance co-advisor, classroom teacher, and a parent, I think books that include LGBT youth are important for all children to read. It is important for LGBT youth to have a safe learning environment, and for all students, regardless of gender identity or sexual orientation, to understand that people are people and love is love. People who identify as LGBT deserve to be treated with respect and integrity as much as any other person who identifies in any other way. They also deserve to see themselves in books as characters they can relate to. The fact that a character is gay should not be startling or reason to turn down the book. My daughters, aged 8 and 11, both enjoyed reading this book (and read it many times) because it has a good story and lesson to be learned regardless of the "romantic" element of the plot. The sexual orientation of the characters was not something they considered a big deal.

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byJ S. January 30, 2017

Not forthright, not for kids under 12!

This book is not for the age specified. It targets grades 2-4, which is crazy. It shows students sneaking backstage to make out. Girl/ boy crushes, boy/ boy crushes , boys coming out as gay, and boys kissing each other ( albeit in the play). I was not prepared to answer the questions that my 3rd grader asked me ( after she read this book) regarding sexuality and kissing at school. For me, this is not about someone being gay or not, I have plenty of gay friends. This is about promoting sexual behaviors in school to kids who are not ready for this kind of information. Even my gay friends agree. In closing, if you have .... 1. Gone over the birds and the bees with your child to include LGBTQ topics. 2. Read the book yourself. 3. Talked to your child before and after they read it . ...then go for it. If you skip any of the steps, I would not bother.
Parent of a 5, 11, and 13 year old Written byNellup September 2, 2016

Sensitively handled, complex characters

This is a beautiful book about a girl who finds her place not on the stage but in the community of backstage crew. Typically middle grade, it's all about having crushes on the wrong people and negotiating the complex feels that spring up in the spaces between people who are still working out who they are. Gay characters make this more vivid and realistic, reflecting real experiences.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byYeehawgirl July 23, 2018

“Drama” gives a great example of finding the gay community in theater.

The book, for me, was rather entertaining and interesting as it should be for children. The book follows the main character, Callie as she works in the stage crew of a middle school musical. As two new children arrive in the school and theater scene, Callie befriends them. Later in the book she learns they are both gay. There are few scenes of finding some kids kissing, which I believe is perfectly fine for children 10-11+. As the gay community is becoming more wide, I think this book is perfect to show that homosexuality is fine, and gay people are just about the same as everyone else.

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Parent of a 8 year old Written byMarianne C. April 22, 2018

Fun book

I read this book before giving it to my eight year old, to decide if I would. I enjoyed the book myself quite a bit, but decided to hold off. I'm not sure when it's developmentally appropriate to discuss adult relationships of any kind, but the homosexual content in this book is not a problem. The homosexual characters are treated as just the same as the heterosexual protagonist; just kids with crushes. In fact, this book would be a good way to gently open a discussion about accepting people no matter what their differences.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Adult Written byMamalucy January 9, 2018

Terrible

This book appeals to young readers but has way too much sexuality to be anywhere near appropriate.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Parent of a 8 year old Written byLybi W. May 24, 2018

Not for little kids!

My 8 year old begged for this book. The other books by this author were fine for younger kids, so I thought it would be ok. There is absolutely no warning in the descriptions that this book revolves around the homosexuality/ bisexuality of 3 of the main characters. The boy-on-boy kiss in this book actually WAS romantic, despite what some other reviews said. Yes, it was for a play, but they begin a romantic relationship after as a result of it. NOT for 2nd and 3rd graders! This book perpetuates a lot of harmful stereotypes, like that hetero guys are jerks, guys that love theater are all gay, and that girls should be alone. I really wish there was some warning about the sexual themes in this book.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Parent of a 5 and 9 year old Written byLollipopmom126 November 16, 2018

Ignore the homophobic soccer moms

So. A lot more 13+ ratings than I'd thought. Theres literally just 2 real kiss scenes, one which is between the same gender, and one which is between different genders. Now, it's your child, your choice, but a children's or tween book with LGBTQ characters, and in 2012, is downright amazing! Really, it depends on your views and wether or not your child is young enough, but really, the book is pretty amazing.

This title contains:

Educational Value
Sexy stuff
Adult Written byMiyuki I. April 7, 2018

Great book!

Good book for 5th graders and above. Tells about the thrills of theatre and screenplay. Other than the same-gender kissing scene I think that anyone 10 and up should read this book! :)

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Positive role models
Parent of a 7 year old Written byJen B. October 17, 2017

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Adult Written byY'all inmature March 12, 2019

LIES

Are you serious it’s so dumb that everyone thinks this book is inappropriate, how can talking about different sexuality’s be considered inappropriate, I mean sure if you want your child to be uneducated in real life situations then don’t read this book,but seriously, to all those homophobic soccer moms who won’t let there 16 year olds read this book, back off it’s a great book that teaches great life lessons.

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byPansexualWhale March 12, 2019

THIS IS AN AMAZING BOOK (AND BEING LGBT ISNT A BAD THING)

This is indeed a great book because the graphics and storyline are great and it’s good to introduce kids to the world of being LGBTQA+.

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byMackenzie P. September 8, 2016

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byHappysprinkletime December 29, 2018

Good for a better understanding

I, personally, was in sex-ed/health class when I was eleven. I thought it was interesting that I was in it so young, but nowadays things like this are being taught or just picked up along the way by kids going to school and listening to the talk there. Especially considering that LGBTQ acceptance has become so engraved into many lives these days, if a kid hasn't heard enough to be mature about this book by the time they are 12 or 13, I would be very surprised. Raina Telgemeter gives a unique view to going to school and being friends with individuals of another sexual orientation, and sound it with her signature humor and beautiful illustrations. Callie is a realistic depiction of a 7th grade girl navigating school, theater, crushes, and keeping her friends' secret. Rather than being offended, i am happy to read a book that portrays a young girl staying true to her friends and sticking with them no matter what they feel. This book is real, heartfelt, and honest. Five stars!

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byGuineapigs10 December 28, 2018

Helps reader understand LGBT society in our today world

I'm 13, and I can tell you this book is definitely appropriate. Being gay is not a reason you shouldn't read the book, a lot of the adult comments are going against the book because of same sex relationships. I don't believe this book was misleading in any way and it was amazing to see they added LGBT characters into the book as it's not a common topic in graphic novels. I think this book is appropriate for 11 and up as kids get older and mature (puberty, discovering yourself) they seem to understand the topic and are used to it. It also won't put a negative view on LGBT community from a kids perspective. The book was interesting and pulled you in very quickly and near the end it shows a character having trouble discovering his sexuality. It shows what kids may go through later on in their life and it's all apart of growing up. In my opinion, this book was just plain amazing.

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written bypizza John September 19, 2018

best book!!!!

very very interesting. Im glad it tells kids the truth. And people say Its to Gay but really its saying be the person you were born to be.#Drama

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Adult Written byMe0wfaceMom August 30, 2018

A great book to start a conversation on a topic that even adults may having trouble navigating

I find that this book is a great way for parents or adults to have an honest and open conversation with children about real life, perspectives and rights of all people. I feel that depending on your own personal stance to the topic of sexuality, this may or may not be a beneficial read for your child. My daughter is 7 years old and really loves the book. I asked her to give me a summary and it was confusing a bit for her about a "boy kissing a boy". However, I was honest and open and had a truthful conversation that was nonjudgmental, understanding and empathetic to perspectives of characters in the book. I modeled the behavior and responses that I would hope my daughter would have for our LGBTQ+ community and I think this book is a great addition to children's literature.

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Positive role models

Pages