adults

Saga, vol. 4

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If you haven’t read Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples’ Saga so far, the fourth volume might be a jarring entry point; the opening pulls no punches. The first image is of a naked woman, legs spread, giving birth. You…

Alex + Ada, vol. 2

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The second volume of Alex + Ada picks up right where the first volume left off with no summation to remind the reader of what had transpired (a pet peeve of mine). So, readers, read volume 1 first. Ada is…

The Fade Out

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Hollywood, California, 1948. Fade in on professional screenwriter and semi-professional drunkard Charlie Parrish as he slowly wakes up after a wild night on the town. Charlie finds himself in a hotel bathtub, unable to remember anything about the night before—Charlie…

Girl In Dior

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Girl In Dior is a dreamy book—a frothy, flighty confection full to the brim with evening dresses and post-war Parisian vignettes. It doesn’t amount to much story-wise, but that is by no means the point. It achieves its goal: to…

Jupiter’s Legacy, vol. 1

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Tales of superheroes and their impact on fictional worlds have become common in the comics landscape since the revelation of Watchmen and the works derived from the familiar pairing of great powers and the “real” world. While the universes of…

The Hospital Suite

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I’ve hesitated to write a review of John Porcellino’s The Hospital Suite because his work almost always leaves me at a loss for words. It’s not because it’s hugely dramatic or intricate or complex. Rather, it’s the opposite. Simple, understated,…

Displacement: A Travelogue

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I must start my review by saying that Lucy Knisley’s graphic memoirs (French Milk, Relish, etc.) frustrate me—I know that she is more or less my contemporary in age (early millennial), predilections (delicious foods! Francophilia!), and social class (lower-upper-middle perhaps?).…

Multiple Warheads

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Set in a chaotic, post-war, highly technological Russian landscape, Multiple Warheads follows Sexica, an organ smuggler, and her boyfriend, Nikoli, as they search for a better life in a city far from Sexica’s organ-smuggling ring. At the same time, Nik…

Alive

Alive

Alternative manga is often obtuse, which can be a detriment or a delight. Taguchi Hajime’s Alive is often both at once. The book is a collection of loosely-connected stories: teenagers hiding from their exams on a rooftop; a man who is afraid to love, cohabiting with a…

The Late Child and Other Animals

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The Late Child and Other Animals is an intriguing beast: a personal memoir of Marguerite Van Cook’s post-war British childhood that reads like lush fiction, segmented into seemingly unrelated stories that drift in and out of sharp focus. There’s a…

Beauty

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With a heroine bearing an uncanny resemblance to Snow White and a story peopled with buffoons, tyrants, and mischievous fairies, Beauty begs comparison, at least visually, to a Disney Princess film. But alternatively, it’s just about the farthest thing from…