best of adults

The Borgias

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Borgia: the name is nearly synonymous with deceit and debauchery, a family whose infamy, deserved or not, has become entrenched in Western cultural memory for over 500 years. A tangled web of power, religion, sex, and violence, the Borgias have…

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…

Gyo 2-in-1 Deluxe Edition

First published in Japan in 2002 and translated into English in 2003, Junji Ito’s Gyo has been re-released this April in a deluxe hardback 2-in-1 edition by Viz Media. Designed to complement Ito’s classic Uzumaki, the handsome matte cover opens…

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…

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…

iZombie, vols. 1-4

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To the outside world, Gwen looks like any other white-haired, pale-skinned Goth Grrrl. The fact that she’s stuck in a dead-end job as a gravedigger might raise some eyebrows, but as far as anyone knows, Gwen is just another twenty-something…

Fatherland

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Fatherland is a chilling portrait—a month after reading it, I looked again at the ominous cover image of a smiling, clean-cut blond man, and felt a palpable sorrow. The man is the author’s father, a radical Serbian nationalist whose troubled…

Journalism

Journalism

In his introduction to Journalism, comics-journalist Joe Sacco makes it clear that while objectivity might be the “Holy of Holies” in American journalism, the medium of comics is, by nature, a subjective form. While he may be able to capture…