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Go with the Flow

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Good friends help you go with the flow.
Best friends help you start a revolution.

Sophomores Abby, Brit, Christine, and Sasha are fed up. Hazelton High never has enough tampons. Or pads. Or adults who will listen.

Sick of an administration that puts football before female health, the girls confront a world that shrugs―or worse, squirms―at the thought of a menstruation revolution. They band together to make a change. It’s no easy task, especially while grappling with everything from crushes to trig to JV track but they have each other’s backs. That is, until one of the girls goes rogue, testing the limits of their friendship and pushing the friends to question the power of their own voices.

Now they must learn to work together to raise each other up. But how to you stand your ground while raising bloody hell?

336 pages, Paperback

First published January 14, 2020

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About the author

Lily Williams

9 books117 followers
Lily Williams is the author and illustrator of the If Animals Disappeared nonfiction picture book series and graphic novels Go With The Flow and Look On The Bright Side (co-written with Karen Schneemann). Lily seeks to inspire change, engage audiences, and educate people of all ages with her artwork. Her work can be seen in films and books and on the web at lilywilliamsart.com.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,359 reviews
Profile Image for Lukas Holmes.
Author 2 books19 followers
March 23, 2022
Well that was just terrific. As a father of two girls who haven't had their periods yet, after I finished this I thought "I can't wait to share it with them!" so they won't be so mystified and scared. But then I realized, besides them, I have to share this with my son so he won't be a confused, rude idiot like I was in middle/high school.

The characters are so terrific you not only really respond to the story itself and the subject matter, like Sasha, you want to know 'What's next?!'.

I also really enjoyed all the factual details sprinkled throughout the blog and the notes afterwards. A fictional story is great, but giving real world information and facts for readers really helps propel this into a true actionable story.

So, in summation, great for those who will get their periods, those who are having them, and those who never will because it's a great story with something for every single reader to relate to or learn from.
Profile Image for Reading_ Tamishly.
4,476 reviews2,411 followers
February 2, 2023
***Stop Period Shaming***

How come I am reading this beautiful, important graphic novel after a year of its publication?


But hell, why are we not even talking about this graphic novel?!

This. Awesome. Book. Is. So. Damn. Awesome.

Yes, we are talking about periods throughout the entire graphic novel. 4 friends working towards a cause because none of the adults in school seem to care about providing tampons or pads for emergency.

And yes, talk about the misconceptions and period shaming!

I absolutely adore the characters! They are outspoken, different and unique, totally dramatic at times, and so real!

The LGBTQIAP representation is done well. One of the best coming of age stories that's represented quite well.

The artstyle is red real good. It's so red throughout (maybe the team went overboard because we are dealing with heavy period stuffs here) but it works like a hot waterbag during the peroid cramps. Well done!

The characters talk about the different problems they face while having peroids, discuss the problems the rest of the girls from all around the world and how it is adversely affecting their health and mental state.

I love rhe character of Christine so much! She's my kind of person.

And I really wish Abby's severe cramp problems were dealt with more elaborately towards the end because she's suffering too much and it was affecting her schooling.

Yes, things do work out towards the end. But the people out here in the real world:

Are we going to just read about these things and not going to do anything about it?

This graphic novel needs to be circulated everywhere, needs to be in every school and library. It's quite informative, insightful and educational.
Profile Image for Betsy.
Author 8 books2,835 followers
January 17, 2020
The nice thing about children’s literature is that it often replicates, on a smaller scale, themes and topics that you’ve find in more mature fare. Take, if you will, the protest novel. Which is to say, a novel in which the kids in the book decide to take a stand against an injustice. Examples that come immediately to mind vary from the fluffy (Frindle and The Homework Strike) to slightly more serious topics ( The Day They Came to Arrest the Book). For a long time that was pretty much as far as a book for children would go when it came to civil disobedience. Then came the election of 2016, the rise of the Black Lives Matter movement, the Women’s March, and any number of other factors that suddenly made those old "protest novels" look downright quaint. Since that time we’ve had book stunners like A Good Kind of Trouble by Lisa Moore Ramée, and other titles in the vein of The Hate U Give. But, Go With the Flow is different. Unusual. And it exhibits a kind of bravery, both on the part of the creators and, to a certain extent, the publisher, that is rather rare. Sometimes you don’t know what you’ve been missing until it’s arrived. I didn’t know I need a graphic novel for kids on period parity. And now, here we are.

What’s your worst nightmare? There are so many to pick and choose between. How about the one where you get your period one day at school while wearing white pants and it feels like EVERYONE notices? Sasha’s worried enough about making friends at her new school and now this? Fortunately, her misfortune leads to meeting three amazing girls. Abby, Brit, and Christine are exactly the kinds of friends you wish you had in high school. They’re smart, funny, and passionate. Abby in particular sees Sasha’s problem and then starts to notice other issues. Why are the school’s machines in the bathrooms always empty of tampons and pads? What are kids who don’t have access to a lot of money supposed to do when they need them? Why doesn’t the administration care? What starts out as an annoyance quickly grows into a cause, but how do you get the world to notice something it simply doesn’t want to see?

Let’s talk menstruation. I know I haven’t. In the field of children’s literature, if it gets mentioned then it’s a side note or a joke. Feeling cramps tends to be paired with the idea that the heroine is just stressing out about something else. I guess the most famous book for kids to feature periods is Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret, particularly since Judy Blume had to update the sanitary napkin belt info in its more recent reprints. Even so, I can say with certainty that the idea of linking menstruation to the basic human right of having access to pads and tampons struck me as practically revolutionary. So too is the idea of turning this not into a nonfiction middle grade book (which would be the usual route) but a fun story set between four friends. You can teach the nonfiction book lovers all day long and they’ll howl for more, but comic fans? By the time they realize what the subject matter is, it’ll be too late. They’ll be hooked and (gasp!) learning. Such a smart battle strategy.

The part of this that struck me as particularly keen, however, was that the book is not merely about raising the awareness of the existence of menstruation and the ways in which it can physically hurt those girls and women with endometriosis, adenomyosis, PCOS, and fibroids, but also how Williams ties all this into economic disparities. She makes the choice not to make any of the starring girls in this book lower income. They could afford those 50-cent tampons (if the bathrooms ever bothered to stock them). And everyone but Abby is fairly fine with this fact. She’s the only one consistently bothered that “there are kids here who can’t even afford lunch… How can they afford proper sanitary items for their periods if they cannot afford lunch?” Every woman I know has been in a bathroom where the tampon and pad machine was empty or, more often the case, missing entirely. And like Abby points out, who even carries around quarters all the time? This is one of those rare books that raises awareness not simply for the kids reading it but the parents, teachers, and librarians that find it as well. I’ll say it. I felt smarter after reading it.

Many of us have had that friend like Abby. The one who cares so much about a cause that she brings it up in every conceivable situation (“But have you guys heard about Toxic Shock Syndrome?”) and then plunges forward with bold plans to right the wrongs of the world without thinking about how her choices might affect people closer to home. The authors make the opposition she faces shudderingly believable. When the principal says to her, “It’s not like the boys get free jock itch cream,” it can be mighty hard not to start screaming at the page. Now the real trick to the book, to a certain extent, comes when Abby writes a blog post and it goes viral. I think we’ve seen this plot twist before, and often it’s unbelievable. Due to the nature of the subject matter, I didn’t have that hard a time believing that Abby’s story would catch national attention … except that the blog post doesn’t appear to show any images from the shocking display she made in the school hallways. I can understand why, from a plot perspective, she didn't include photos of her act of disobedience, but the inclusion of a photo or two in the viral post would have made it MUCH more believable.

So is it fun to read? I mean, face the facts, when I tell you I found this great book on menstruation rights, you’re not going to pick it up hoping for a chucklefest. That’s why it’s such a relief to discover that the book knows how to make a good joke. Long story short, it is very difficult not to fall in love with a comic that contains the line, “WALK AWAY! Ya big ol’ fart bag!” Or to enjoy it when Brit tells everyone that in the event that she can’t have kids, Sasha volunteered to have her children for her. Quoth Christine, “Totally normal high school thoughts.” Or, quite frankly, the sheer number of period puns. Interestingly, the Acknowledgments at the back are where some of the most egregious double entendres lurk. You gotta love a book that ends copious praise with the sentence, “You are all bloody awesome!” Hey, man. Commit to the bit.

In children’s book publishing there’s a general rule out there regarding the age of characters in a book versus the readership. Long story short, if the kids in your book are teenagers then the book will not and cannot be marketed to kids. This rule applies to adult main characters as well, unless they are furry animals (don’t ask). So it was with great surprise that I found the characters in this book weren’t the usual middle school troupe but out and out high schoolers. Wow! I mean, kids love reading books about teens, but rarely are they allowed specifically to do so. And the subject matter being what it is, this book is going to get some adults upset. Sure it is. I mean, it’s about menstruation. There are adults out there that would tell you with a straight face that kids don’t need to know about that stuff when they MOST certainly do! What Go With the Flow does is show not just a range of body types, orientations, races, and belief systems, but it also shows how differently menstruation affects one person or another. If you have kids suffering seriously from cramps, this book is going to offer them some much needed information. They're going to need to know this and know it early. Honestly, there’s only one moment in the book that I actually found more in the YA sphere of things than anything else. In one scene Christine is studying with a swimming doofus named Ted. Ted digs Christine (Christine does not dig Ted) and as she preps for studying he hops onto the couch and then nonchalantly places a pillow over his crotch. It’s not a big obvious move but its visible enough that I raised one of my eyebrows a good quarter inch higher than its normal resting position. I wouldn't kick this book out of the kids section, but it sure seemed like a weird thing to just drop in the book casually like that.

Alright. Enough of all that. Art time. Sometimes you can have a hard time following the narrative thread of a debut graphic novelist. Not here. Panels connect and flow expertly. But even more impressive to my mind is the color scheme. I don’t think I’m spoiling anything for you to say that it’s red. Red red red red red. Different shades, you betcha, but this isn’t one of those books where the color scheme shifts or adds a new color at a significant point in the proceedings. Williams’s drawing style is easygoing and enticing. Any fan of Raina Telgemeier, Shannon Hale, etc. is going to see this cover, completely miss the double meaning behind the title and the subtitle, and want to pick this up for a read. I should know. I’m basically that reader myself.

When an author and artist release their book into the world, they don’t know what effect it may make on the general populace. In the back of this book is information on “How to be a Period Activist.” To a large extent Go With the Flow aims to remove the stigma surrounding periods, but I recall middle and high school really well. The girls who read this book and take it upon themselves to follow in its wake are honestly going to be extraordinary humans. Kids are less afraid these days to speak out and pursue various forms of activism, but this takes it to a whole other level. It opens you up to a new kind of personal shame and embarrassment hitherto unexplored. To those girls that read this book, embrace this book, learn from this book, and use this book, I salute you. And to the women that wrote this book and illustrated this book, I bow to you. You never know what you never know. Now though? No more excuses. This book is one in a million.

For ages 9 and up.
Profile Image for Jessica.
Author 28 books5,682 followers
October 1, 2021
Do you ever think about the burden we placed on Judy Blume back in the day? I mean, if you wanted to read about real stuff: periods, bras, heavy petting, it was all her. Even the Kimberly Clark pamphlet that came with your first box of enormous pads was written by her! (TRUE STORY!) Judy Blume walked so that Lily Williams and Karen Schneeman could run!

And run they have, with a fabulous graphic novel about periods, focusing on a group of friends who campaign to get free sanitary supplies for their school. Lots is covered, though, from the unnecessary stigma and teasing that makes high school even shittier for girls (pardon my French, but you're already going through A Lot, and worrying about bleeding through your pants or pads falling out of your backpack just made it even worse!) to the fact that many girls and women can't afford these products, and others are suffering and missing school because of severe period pain or lack of access to sanitary products. (Raise your hand if you ever vomited from cramps! *raises hand*)

When they found out that their school had just given the football team new uniforms and equipment, but said refilling the tampon machines (WHICH CHARGE YOU MONEY FOR THE WORLD'S CHEAPEST MOST GARBAGE PRODUCTS) was an unnecessary expense, I was filled with a holy rage. This is probably the story at most schools around this country. The Humanities building at my UNIVERSITY only had one machine that ever worked, and it was so old that we used to joke that you needed one of those old timey belts to go with the pad.


I am pro-school, pro-teacher, extremely fed up with the lack of funding and administrative toolery.

Put a copy of this on the desk of every principal in the US.

Give it to a girl that you care about, along with the copy of the Care and Keeping of You.

And give Judy Blume massive props for daring to go there first!
Profile Image for Katy O. .
2,326 reviews723 followers
June 8, 2020
Let’s just make this a required “textbook” for every 8th grade health class in the US, m’kay? My 14 yo daughter and I both read and loved it.
Profile Image for madame Gabrielle.
619 reviews487 followers
October 3, 2022
ÉNORME coup de cœur et je me demande encore pourquoi je n’avais jamais entendu parler de cette BD?!
j’ai tout tout tout aimé! c’est si pertinent parce que le fait que les règles soit si tabou est encore si étrange. plusieurs sujets — dans notre société, sont abordés bien ouvertement, mais les règles restent un sujet sensible pour trop de jeunes filles. puis que dire de l’accessibilité aux produits hygiéniques … j’ai adoré que ces adolescentes se soutiennent et qu’elles défendent leurs idées de la sorte, j’ai adoré que ce soit ainsi romancé et si accessible! c’est juste génial! 👏🏻 vraiment, c’est à offrir à une jeune de votre entourage et à ajouter à votre bibliothèque de classe sans hésitation!
Profile Image for Bel.
363 reviews
June 21, 2019
A wonderful, beautiful, important, relevant graphic novel which is centered around menstruation, an often taboo subject. It is both approachable and grounded, and the author and illustrator have created a story that covers not only what it’s like to be a teenage girl but also manages to be utterly inclusive and diverse in equal and perfect measure.

This book has the potential to become one of “those” books - one of the ones that *every* girl reads as a right of passage and boys read in order to understand girls.
Profile Image for Erin Cataldi.
2,242 reviews84 followers
January 31, 2020
I wish I had this graphic novel when I was younger! It's not just about periods; it's about activism, friendship, and bullying. Three teenagers take a new kid under their wing after she gets her period at school and all her classmates start taunting her and calling her Bloody Mary because it went through her pants. The four of them quickly become close and realize how unfair it is that the pad machine is never stocked AND it costs money. They decide they want to try and change that but they don't know how. A beautiful graphic novel that is a must read for teenagers, teachers, parents; and women of all ages. It's never to early to make a difference!
Profile Image for Emma.
932 reviews887 followers
December 14, 2020
Yes to everything in this book!
Go with the Flow is a wonderful graphic novel about periods, which are something that should be normalized and talked about more in our everyday life. It's 2020 people and if you have a problem with periods, then I really don't wanna talk to you.
Also, this book is about female friendship and how important and uplifting it can be. It was just amazing.
I so wish I could have read this book when I was a young teenager, I think I would have loved it even more!
Profile Image for Elizabeth A.
1,853 reviews111 followers
July 23, 2020
Periods are a fact of life for about half the world's population, and yet there is still shame, and secrecy, and lots of other BS surrounding this natural cycle. This lovely graphic novel addresses these themes head on. I appreciated the direct approach taken, and loved how these girls were friends first and everything else second. We need more stories like these. There's nothing wrong or shameful about female bodies and their functions. Highly recommended for tween/teen girls and boys.
Profile Image for Maia.
Author 27 books2,542 followers
March 12, 2020
This is a sweet, information-rich graphic novel about friendship, menstrual health, and student activism. Christine is a lanky goofball crushing on her best friend. Abby is an art student who burns to make the world a better place. Brit is a Jane Austen fan and a good student who keeps having to miss school due to horrible cramps. She worries there's something seriously wrong with her, but hasn't been diagnosed. Sasha is a new student who might never live down bleeding through her pants in her first week of school. These four have different dreams and different goals, but they will always have each other's backs.
Profile Image for Brittany.
224 reviews21 followers
October 20, 2019
This is the book I needed in middle school and high school and I’m so excited to have found this title! So many people will benefit from this. Young and old.

The art work was very smooth and streamline, it flowed perfect with the story and portrayed emotions and situations in a way that made me feel them too! I learned somethings I didn’t know, and I plan to buy a copy to add to my collection.

I’m proud of the authors for creating such a monumental and inspiring book!

Thank you #Netgalley for this title!
Profile Image for Laura.
2,770 reviews83 followers
January 14, 2020
A cute graphic novel about bonding around periods in high school.

And how tampons and pads are not free, and should be.

And why it is a human right issue.

And thought that sounds kind of heavy for a cute, funny graphic novel, it is also a serious issue.

The authors said they wrote the novel they would have liked to have had when they were growing up.

And if nothing else, it is a good conversation starter, and there is a lot of interesting information about periods in there.

Profile Image for Bookishrealm.
2,086 reviews5,075 followers
March 14, 2023
Ya'll, where was this book when I was growing up!? I needed this book as I'm sure so many others before me did as well. CW: period shaming, bullying

This was a hell of an experience and in a good way. I wish that I would have been able to have the important conversations related to periods with my caregivers, but alas I didn't. It came as a mystery and I wasn't prepared. From the artwork to the beautiful conversations and inclusions of facts associated with the history of periods, I cannot recommend Go with the Flow enough. If you're interested in hearing more about my thoughts about this one check out my review: https://youtu.be/mHz19W7iYa4
Profile Image for Rakisha.
475 reviews22 followers
October 8, 2019
Go with the Flow is a delightful graphic novel about four best friends experiences during their second year of high school. They deal with crushes, artistic inspirations, trig, questioning their sexuality, being the new kid, menstruation and endometriosis. When one the new girl, Sasha, unexpectedly gets her period, a trio of girls--Brit, Christine, Abby--come to her rescue. Upon discovering that the girls' bathrooms has empty pad and tampon dispensers (again!), Abby starts a crusade to end the stigma surrounding periods and the school administration's belief that menstrual hygiene products in the girls' restrooms aren't that necessary.

The story moves along nicely and captures the lives of each girl outside of school. The girls are of diverse races, body sizes, and family structures. There are single mom homes, two parent homes, and a single grandma. Although the girls are all different, they bind over the shared stress of menstruation. Abby, the super feminist of the book, is supported by her friends even when they disagree on which path of activism to take. Go with the Flow demonstrates a healthy female friendship that is supportive but not afraid of being honest.

The book can be a little heavy handed with it's feminist message, but it doesn't take away from the main story of girls health and personhood being treated as less. Readers of all genders will see how entrenched sexism against women and Misogyny is in our everyday thinking. (For example, the principal equates the need for maxi pads with anti-jock itch cream or students who bullies Sasha with blood and period jokes.) The back material is what really makes this graphic novel needed in every middle school and high school library. Besides the historical perspective of how menstruating women have been treated throughout known history, it goes into the social aspects of period poverty (people who unable to afford menstruation products because they're homeless or living at or below the poverty line) and period and reproductive health issues like PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome) and endometriosis) in accessible language for younger readers.

Go with the Flow is colored in shades of red.

I love this book.

Go with the Flow
book cover
Profile Image for Alexandra.
357 reviews41 followers
January 30, 2019
Work perk: Got to read an early edition of GO WITH THE FLOW and all I can say is it is fantastic. I wish it was a book I'd had growing up and the friendships in this one are some of the best I've seen in YA. Feminists, LGBTQ community, diversity advocates - put this on your radar for Winter 2020. You'll love it!
Profile Image for Abby Johnson.
3,373 reviews319 followers
April 3, 2020
When Sasha unexpectedly gets her period at school and is woefully unprepared, a new group of friends swoops in and takes her under their wing. Not only does Sasha quickly feel at home in their friend group, the incident inspires activist/artist Abby to start campaigning for less stigma and more resources for the school's students who menstruate. This is a smart and supportive book that's great for anyone who gets a period or anyone who's curious about getting a period. I love that it is very inclusive and mentions several times that it's not just girls and women that get periods (trans men may get a period, nonbinary people, etc.).

Beyond periods, it's also just a great friendship story about high school friends supporting each other and dealing with all the stuff that high school throws at you. This is a book that needs to be on our library shelves and needs to be where teens can get to it.
Profile Image for Dani.
182 reviews32 followers
September 24, 2019
Go with the Flow is a fun, feminist narrative paired with a friendship story, all delivered in a colourful and thoughtfully created graphic novel. This one will be great to put into the hands of young menstruaters so that they can learn to see their bodies (and others') without shame. The friendship element of the story was equally as strong as the feminist message. While each member of the foursome represents a different facet of young-womanhood, anyone who has been the new kid at a school will be able to identify with Sasha's yearning to fit in. The wordless panels spoke just a loudly as the text-heavy pages from Abby's blog. I often found myself re-reading whole spreads just because they were so wonderful. Highly recommend!
Profile Image for Samantha .
732 reviews
March 25, 2020
I loved this book. It touches on so many important topics for us ladies. It tackles not only the difficulty of having your period (which is its own thing) but also navigating through high school. Navigating your own friendships.

Period stigma is crazy. So many women have periods and it doesn't make sense that we're taxed for it. It doesn't make sense that they aren't free and available in schools for all students. I for one can't wait to galvanize my girls, and make sure they understand that this is something that all women should care about. We need to take care of one another.

This was really well written, and definitely a book I'm going to let my girls read. Not just as a funny graphic novel, but as something that will show them that this is a normal part of life. Kudos.
Profile Image for Laura Gardner.
1,680 reviews113 followers
June 24, 2020
5⭐️ I love this book by @lwbean and @whatthestuffs ; must-read, must-buy!!
Period stigma and period poverty are addressed head on in this entertaining graphic novel that's about so much more than menstruation. Brit, Christine, and Abby are three confident sophomores who welcome Sasha to their friend group when she is bullied for unexpectedly getting her period in public at school. What follows is a fabulous read that acts as a primer for activism while also giving each girl her own storyline. The book is entertaining, frequently funny, and expertly illustrated; the reader learns so much about the girls' personalities just from their expressive faces! Just to be clear, this isn't just an issue book; it's a really good graphic novel that addresses an important issue, as well. It's going to be in hot demand in my library this fall!
Stigmatizing a natural part of life isn't fair to all the girls, women, and trans men (as the authors point out in their afterward) who experience menstruation. This book will help get the conversation started so conditions like endometriosis can be better understood, the #periodtax can be stopped, and schools can learn the importance of offering period products for free. Viva la menstruation revolution! .
This book would pair great with the NF book Period Power: A Manifesto for the Menstrual Movement by @nadyaokamoto, which I reviewed a year ago (swipe to see the cover). I sincerely hope #gowiththeflowbook gets a sequel; it's clear from the ending that Brit, Christine, Abby and Sasha's story is not over! I can't wait to see what injustice they take on next... Book 4 for #30booksummer !! .
#periodpower #menstrualequity #mgbooks #yalit #bookstagram #bookreview #graphicnovels #middleschoollibrarian #middleschoollibrary #library #librarian #futurereadylibs #iteachlibrary #bookstagrammer #bookstagram #librariesofinstagram #librariansofinstagram #librariesfollowlibraries #librarylife #librarianlife #schoollibrarian #middlegrade #middlegradebooks #iteach #booksbooksbooks #amreading #bibliophile #bookreview
Profile Image for Rod Brown.
5,565 reviews197 followers
March 28, 2020
A book devoted to menstruation? Proof positive that I will read anything as long as it is in graphic novel format. And, hey, it's not even the first time! But I think it is telling that the previous comics I've read that were so focused on menstruation gave the subject a horror story twist: Alan Moore's Swamp Thing #40 back in 1985 and the much more recent Man-Eaters by Chelsea Cain. What happens when things get less metaphorical?

I'm impressed to see real issues and injustices tied to women's periods directly addressed in this entertaining and engaging tale about four high school friends. Sasha is being teased and bullied due to an unfortunate incident. Brit is dealing with a physically painful condition. Christine is working through a same-sex crush on one of her friends. Abby aspires to make a difference, and the dismissive attitude of the school administration to her complaints about the tampon dispensers in the bathrooms is getting her riled up.

It works as a story of friendship, as a source of information about the topic, and as a call to action. Recommended.
Profile Image for aqilahreads.
555 reviews48 followers
March 4, 2021

"nobody wants to talk about it. i wish there was a way to open the conversation. i wish periods weren't shameful".

this is such a necessary read, showing how important it is to talk about periods, having proper support for those who menstruate incld. making sanitary products readily available. the pacing could have been better but im still so glad that this book exists & also such a cute friendship story too :")

cant help but to also notice how the art colour palette used is various shades of red which totally matched the subject matter of the story. period stigma must stop. the information section about menstruation at the back was helpful too & i honestly felt that this book really serves a good purpose to raise awareness in general. what a great start!!!!
Profile Image for Meredith Ann.
606 reviews11 followers
December 20, 2019
A great period primer/feminism 101 graphic novel for younger readers. While the characters are in high school, the book reads very middle grade, which I'd argue is a better intended audience. Some of the dialogue was a bit off and more fact filled than an average teenager speaks; still, it fit the story that is being told. It'll get kids thinking, and hopefully talking, about topics they may have otherwise thought of as something to keep private. Also, the characters are just delightful and super likable. I often missed days of school due to extremely painful cramps so I found Brit especially relatable, even as an adult.
Profile Image for Beth Heltebridle.
67 reviews4 followers
February 8, 2020
A youth graphic novel about period equity that recognizes trans women and is illustrated completely in shades of blood? I think I’m in love.
Profile Image for Riley Hubby.
5 reviews
January 20, 2021
~ Very Minor spoilers of the inciting incident ~

Before I get into my review proper, I would like to say I am biased: I am a non-binary trans person that gets periods, and I was very much an Abby when I was in high school (extremely concerned with the injustices that menstruating people face, and many other injustices). And in all honesty, based on how this book accomplished the goals it set out to achieve, it should probably be 4 stars. If you have a preteen or teenage girl that menstruates in your life, this would be a great book to get for them.

I specify girls who menstruate because this is a very female centered book. And again, I’m aware this is by design, but I think a huge opportunity is missed by only paying lip service to the fact that trans men and gender nonconforming trans people can also menstruate. There are unique issues trans people who menstruate face that really could have fit well into the story, especially considering the whole plot starts with the pad and tampon machines at their high school being empty. Consider a trans boy at that school who is stealth unexpectedly getting his period. There are NO machines in the bathroom he would use! Additionally, getting periods can trigger dysphoria for some trans people, adding additional stress and emotions onto the pile of period feelings.

I understand that this is not the book the authors intended to make. I understand that this is intended as a book to empower people with periods and address the injustices they face. I just feel it would have been stronger in 2020 if issues of trans periods were addressed in a more nuanced way. As is, the book felt like it could have come out in 2014, when I was a junior in high school figuring out these issues for the first time. Maybe it’s because of the trans people in my life and my personal experiences, but I feel like in 2020, if trans people are not in the conversation in a more substantial way, it’s just disappointing.
Profile Image for Kelly.
Author 7 books1,212 followers
September 23, 2021
A thoughtful, honest, and relatable book about periods, about period justice, activism, and, most importantly, friendship. The art is in shades of red and black, perfectly mirroring both the tone and topic of the book. The initial start of the book is about period embarrassment and bleeding through one's clothes as a freshman in high school and as someone who was still having this happen in graduate school -- yay unpredictable cycles -- I can only imagine the shame attached when you're younger. This book destigmatizes it so smartly.

One of the main characters has endometriosis, which is a refreshing addition to the few YA books which explore this (The Girls I've Been, Dark and Deepest Red, and Period Power: A Manifesto for the Menstrual Movement do this). There is one very brief mention of PCOS in one panel, and frankly, that was refreshing since that's even MORE uncommon in YA (and missing entirely in Period Power).

A good use of inclusive language and acknowledgement that it's not just women who menstruate -- and that some women don't menstruate at all.
Profile Image for Seen is fighting capitalism.
450 reviews191 followers
July 22, 2023

قصة مصورة تطرح موضوع الدورة الشهرية ومشاكلها المتعددة من وجهة نظر المرأة طبعًا.
من المشاكل التي تحدث عنها الكتاب والتي أولى الاهتمام بها أكثر من غيرها هي مشكلة قلّة توفر علب الفوط الصحية النسائية في المرافق العامة ودورات المياه في المدارس والأماكن العامة، وإن وجِدت فلا يتم الاعتناء بها ولا إعادة تعبئتها بل وتكون بمقابل مالي..
تطرح الكاتبة أهمية أن تكون هذه المواد مجانية ومتوفرة للجميع لأهميتها وحاجة فئة كبيرة من المجتمع إليها.

تحدثت كذلك عن عدة مواضيع أخرى بشكل أقل من المشكلة المذكورة سابقًا، ومنها؛ تنوع آلام الدورة الشهرية من امرأة لأخرى، الضريبة الوردية، قلة الاهتمام بالدورة الشهرية علميًا وطبيًا، ومشاكل أخرى.
الرسومات جميلة، والفكرة رائعة بالطبع، سعيدة بانتشار الوعي والتحدث بصوت عال�� عن مواضيع يتم تجاهلها عمدًا لأسباب واهية.. واثقة أن ذلك سيحدث تغيير إيجابي بإذن الله، وأتمنى أن أشهده بنفسي.

June 10, 2020
This boooook!! I would love to put this graphic novel into the hands of every school principal and every girl in the world, as a start.
I’ve been breaking into some of my daughter’s library stash, and Go With the Flow was an absolute delight while confronting the insufferable stigma around menstruation, and exposing period poverty. I was also so impressed with the diversity of the book - not just with race, but body types, sexuality, family structures and even our cycles, and how they can be vastly different. It’s full of heart and a call to action. Highly recommend!!!
For more reviews and bookish musings, visit http://www.bornandreadinchicago.com/
Profile Image for Kiera.
355 reviews117 followers
July 14, 2020
This is was a very fun graphic novel. It brought up so many important issues, that aren’t talked about a lot.

This book is a great introduction to periods for kids. It provides a lot of great information at the end of the book as well. I wish I had this book when I started my period!!

The book brings up important topics such as endometriosis, period poverty, and period activism. It is so refreshing to see these topics displayed in a children’s graphic novel. (I’m not 100% sure if this is more of a teen graphic novel or not, but I think that it is appropriate for tweens and older children, as well as teens).
Profile Image for Bonnie Grover.
806 reviews10 followers
December 25, 2019
Where was this book when I needed it? “Talking about periods is the first step to taking that period power back.” First, I loved how the young women in this graphic novel were there for each other and lifted each other up. Secondly, I loved how issues of the pink tax, empty machines, heavy periods, cramps, endometriosis, and period history was covered in a classy, respectful way. “Going with the Flow” will definitely be a book that I share w my students.
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