Beauty Queen Update
It is with hopeful hearts that Jamie Parreno and I are announcing that we have withdrawn Beauty Queen from Papercutz Charmz line. We hope to find a new publisher for it soon and appreciate all of the support we’ve received from readers and comics professionals. We believe in Beauty Queen, knowing it tells a story that reflects our cultural heritage and will inspire young readers. We’re sorry for any disappointment this has caused, but we are sure our decision was the best one we could make for our book. If you pre-ordered from Amazon, you should have received a refund. Please keep an eye on my Twitter feed (@Jennifer_deG) and this blog for updates.
In the meantime, please enjoy this lovely new art that Jamie created showing all of our girls — Renata, Mercedes, Gloria, and Lourdes — in their school uniforms!
Beauty Queen by Jennifer de Guzman and Jamie Jo Parreno
“Mamalarang! Witch!” These are words that have followed young Renata for most of her life, all because she has a power that no one quite understands. Living in the squalor of Manila’s Smokey Mountain — a slum within a garbage dump — Renata uses her power to communicate with insects to help her with the daily task of collecting recyclable rubbish. As her family ekes out a living, the flip side of Manila is one where glamorous Beauty Queens reign supreme. When a flamboyant talent coach spots Renata in the market, he gives her the chance to be plucked from poverty into the heady world of Filipino pageants. It’s a chance to help her family that she can’t refuse. But even as she is groomed in poise and beauty, her past and the plight of the poor in Manila haunts her. And her secret power just keeps strengthening. Renata knows what she has to do, but it means revealing her power — and exposing herself to shame and scorn. Will the love of a fellow pageant girl help Renata find the strength to set her power free?