Check, Please! by Ngozi Ukazu
Graphic Novel, LGBTQ+ Contemporary Romance
Eric Bittle loves baking pies, sharing recipes on his vlog, and ice skating so he doesn’t know what to expect when he’s recruited for the Samwell Men’s Hockey Team. While Bitty is fast and agile he’s not on board with all the checking involved in college hockey and he’s still trying to figure out how to navigate a new team and find his place at his school. To make matters more complicated, Bitty has to find a way to come out to his team and keep his crush on the captain a secret.
I devoured Check, Please! and all it’s adorableness! Bitty is such a sweet character and I loved his earnest manner and his uncontrollable pie baking. He’s not sure how he’ll fit in among the manly men of Samwell hockey but Bitty quickly learns that acceptance can be found in surprising places. This comic is low angst and super light and fluffy and it just made my heart sigh. I was so happy to see the hockey team accept Bitty for exactly who he is and prove to him that he can be himself without worry. A surprise favorite, was fellow team member, Shitty, who leaps off the page and is a truly hilarious but wonderful character. And yes, Shitty is his nickname.
As for Bitty’s crush on Jack Zimmerman, the team Captain and star player, I won’t give too much away but they were adorable together. The comic is divided up by each year that Bitty is at college and the fourth year is still ongoing online. Each year has a truly fantastic ending that will have you rushing to start the next one. Once Bitty reaches Junior year things really start to take off and I loved everything about Jack and Bitty together. They have a lot of things to work out but I adored the way they each leaned on each other when they needed it. The way that Ukazu draws Bitty and Jack together is so sweet and there’s something so intimate about them together without actually showing anything. They just seem to wrap around each other in such a natural way and I can’t stand how perfect they are.
You can read the whole comic online for free (linked below) and I’ll be anxiously awaiting more from Bitty’s Senior year.
5 out of 5 stars
Tags: Athlete | College | Coming Out
Helloooo, Internet Land. Bitty here!
Y’all… I might not be ready for this. I may be a former junior figure skating champion, vlogger extraordinaire, and very talented amateur pâtissier, but being a freshman on the Samwell University hockey team is a whole new challenge. It’s nothing like co-ed club hockey back in Georgia! First of all? There’s checking. And then, there is Jack—our very attractive but moody captain.