Spinning by Tillie Walden


Poignant and captivating, Ignatz Award winner Tillie Walden's powerful graphic memoir, Spinning, captures what it's like to come of age, come out, and come to terms with leaving behind everything you used to know.It was the same every morning. Wake up, grab the ice skates, and head to the rink while the world was still dark.Weekends were spent in glitter and tights at competitions. Perform. Smile. And do it again.She was good. She won. And she ha...

Details Spinning

Release DateSep 12th, 2017
PublisherFirst Second
GenreSequential Art, Graphic Novels, Autobiography, Memoir, Comics, Glbt, Nonfiction, Queer

Reviews Spinning

  • Lola Reviewer
    This book held my attention completely. Sports books are not necessarily rare, but those with figure skating and synchronized skating? And a graphic memoir at that? With LGBT themes? It was gorgeous. The author may only be twenty-one (and I believe she started this book when she was a bit younger), but she’s got talent to behold and admire.Not only that, but the melancholy atmosphere fitted the main character, AKA the author, entirely. It follo...
  • Korrina (OwlCrate)
    Really moving story that made me shed a tear. I absolutely loved the art as well.
  • Calista
    The cold from the ice rink seeps out of this book. Tillie has created a mood here and also she has shared her childhood. Getting up at 4am every morning, how do people do that? Tillie has shared her story openly and honestly, all her falls and all the times she soared. I love that she included her cello lessons here. Lessons are a place we grow up in, this little weekly bubble.Tillie also told her coming out story and what that was like. I think ...
  • David Schaafsma
    Tillie Walden is at this writing 21 years old (!), and this is already her fourth book, but this is her first long form work, a memoir about the 12 years she spent figure skating. I have read and reviewed two of her shorter, earlier works, I Love This Part and The End of Summer, and liked them actually better than this memoir as subtle, atmospheric short stories. This book is almost 400 pages, on a subject she herself never really loved. The mood...
  • Cecelia
    4.5 stars. I'm very confused about how there are so many "eh" reviews because this book is GORGEOUS. Just tactically, the feel of holding this book is your hands is so *satisfying*. A lot of reviews said the pacing was "off", however I thought it was extremely relatable to how we remember our own childhoods and own our traumas. Tillie Walden is only 21 (!!!!) and she crafted this book with such bravery and honesty. I wouldn't necessarily say it f...
  • Rebecca Foster
    (3.5) I’m uncomfortable with the term “graphic memoir,” which to me connotes a memoir with graphically violent or sexual content. However, it seems to be accepted parlance nowadays for a graphic novel that’s autobiographical rather than fictional. Tillie Walden’s Spinning is in the same vein as Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home and Craig Thompson’s Blankets: a touching coming-of-age story delivered through the medium of comics.Specifically,...
  • Cam (abookeater)
    A copy was provided by the publisher through Netgalley in exchange for an honest reviewThis graphic novel was anything BUT what I expected it to be. I expected something lighthearted and full of fluff but it’s definitely no that.Spinning tells the story of a young girl named Tillie who has been figure skating since she was little. Her story is one filled with loneliness even when surrounded by dozens of girls, which is kind of the lesbian exper...
  • Krista Regester
    Incredibly beautiful.
  • Vanessa (splitreads)
    The art is gorgeous and I am impressed that the author is as young as my little brother - 21! This book had an interesting mix of subject matter (lesbian author, competitive ice skating) and had a melancholy, mellow mood which I enjoy. I felt like a lot of it was surface-level though and even the really monumental life experiences are rarely explored with much detail. I like my graphic memoirs with a little more introspection.
  • Ashley Owens
    I was provided with a copy of this book by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.I really liked this story. It was a very personal tale and one that really made me ache for the best for Tillie. I didn’t know going into it that it is a graphic memoir, and so that was a pleasant surprise.My main qualm with this story was the pacing. I didn’t get enough time in any one event of Tillie’s life, and we moved onto the next part of her story s...
  • Tressa
    I wasn't sure I would like Spinning because I have zero interest in figure skating and the whole figure skating competition world of children. I never played an organized sport or joined a group as a child/teen because that's just not me, so I surprised myself by enjoying this graphic memoir by Tillie Walden.Although Spinning touches on many issues—the isolating and exhausting life of a child athlete; non-demonstrative parents; the push for per...
  • Cori Reed
    This was a gorgeous coming of age graphic memoir. Tillie Walden's story of growing up as a figure skater and navigating life as a gay teen was sad, poignant, and made me shed a tear.
  • Zizeloni
    readathon17 book 44: a book where the main character identifies as LGTBQThis is the autobiography of Tillie Walden from the age 12 to 17. Tillie was a figure skating athlete (in a group, not solo). She was training twice a day, with school in between and going to competitions. Plus she knew since she was 5 that she is gay. The book describes her life, how she was competing but didn't really like the whole skating life (she found the courage to qu...
  • Jilly
    I have to admit that as someone who grew up skating that I was already partial to this book. This graphic novel is the author's coming of age story as she struggles with the sport of figure skating, school yard bullies, her family and coming out. There's a lot going on in this book (and it may have been better stretched out between two books), but the story is compelling and well complemented by the art. The artwork is beautiful--the panels are n...
  • Christy
    I saw Tillie speak this weekend and couldn't wait to dive in. Was not disappointed! Spinning is Tillie's story of how the little (and not so little) moments shape who we are as an adult. Absolutely adored this and hope we see more from Tillie soon!
  • Lauren
    Ahhh, well that was a refreshing graphic novel. Spinning is the only book by Tillie Walden I have read and I will say that it won't be my last. I didn't expect this book to be as deep and gut-wrenching as it was but it really affected me. I'm astonished at how much Walden was able to cram into her childhood - attending skating classes very early in the morning (meaning she had to wake up at 4am) and after school must have been exhausting. I'm sur...
  • Shenwei
    once I got started I couldn't stop. the depiction of ambivalence, depression, etc. was really compelling and visceral for me. My teen years were very different from Tillie's in a lot of ways but something about this really resonated with me.
  • Laura
    The problem with memoirs, if the author is being true to themselves, is that things don't always happen in a neat, perfectly rounded up way, the way they do in fictionalized stories. As I was reading this, I didn't realize it was a memoire, and I kept wondering why the author didn't expound on what she was writing about, give more details, but the author is in her early 20s. This is her fifth book. As far as I can tell, she is entirely self-taugh...
  • kelly {BookCrushin}
    Well this was unexpected. I thought I was going into a story about ice skating and identity, but it was so much more. It is about loneliness, companionship, and feelings of a young girl and how they shape our lives.
  • Dylan
    I really enjoyed the art style, the pacing was just REALLY off.
  • Kayley Hyde
  • Lina
    For weeks, my best friend kept coming up to me saying that I had to—I absolutely had to—read Spinning. I was promised a bucketful of tears and a heart full of queer feelings; that is exactly what I was given after reading Spinning by cartoonist Tillie Walden.In Tillie Walden’s graphic memoir (published on September 12), ten years of her life are recounted, in which her mornings and nights are consumed by competitive figure skating. Initia...
  • Laura (Bookies & Cookies)
    Incredible and riveting. This was the perfect memoir to put in graphic form, I felt every moment and feeling so poignantly. Tillie is surrounded by girls in her figure and synchronized skating classes and at school, but still feels completely alone. This memoir tells her 12 years in the competitive skating world, coming out, and discovering her artistic passion.TW: homophobia, sexual harassment, bullying, depression.
  • Xanthe
    Tillie Walden’s graphic novel memoir, Spinning, is focused around her intensive training in ice skating through her teens and how all her feelings about herself and her family are reflected through her time on the ice. As a kid who dabbled in figure skating (I quit when I couldn’t get the hang of spins. Probably didn’t have enough core body strength, but regardless it wasn’t fun any longer. Jumps were great though. And nothing beats ice s...
  • Rachel (TheShadesofOrange)
    4.0 StarsThis is thoughtful ice-skating graphic memoir that follows the author through her formative teenage years. This book is really a coming of age story about a young lesbian who is struggling to fit in and find herself during this period. The tone of the story is quite melancholy at times. The artwork was sparse, yet effective.
  • Vanessa
    This book was never about sharing memories; it was about sharing a feeling. I don't care what year that competition was or what dress I was actually wearing; I care about how it felt to be there....People ask me all the time "What's this book really about?" I still say ice-skating, mostly because it's the simplest answer......I feel like it's not really my turn to answer that question. It's for the reader to decide, to speculate, to guess.--Tilli...