Next week sees the release of It’s Not What You Thought It Would Be. Published by Fantagraphics, the graphic novel by cartoonist Lizzy Stewart follows the lives of a pair of friends through a series of short stories and different illustration styles. Today The Beat is pleased to present an exclusive excerpt from the forthcoming graphic novel.

Here’s how Fantagraphics describes It’s Not What You Thought It Would Be:

A young girl imagines a grand future for herself, far from the drab British suburbs. Two friends, once inseparable, find their connection gradually slipping away. Three women discuss how life in the big city makes them feel seen — or invisible. Stewart focuses on ordinary, slice-of-life moments and charges these scenes with a quiet intensity. Through keen observation and an ear for naturalistic dialogue, she reveals the complex natures of her characters, from their confidence to their insecurities, as they experience the joys and pains of growing up.

The London-based Stewart has illustrated a handful of children’s books, including There’s a Tiger in the Garden, The Way to Treasure Island, and Juniper Jupiter. She’s also the writer and illustrator of Walking Distance, an illustrated essay about living – and walking – as a woman in the city.

Check out the exclusive five-page excerpt from It’s Not What You Thought It Would Be below. The 168-page hardcover graphic novel is set to arrive in bookstores on Tuesday, July 27th, and in comic shops the following Wednesday, July 28th.