The circus has always held a great allure for storytellers–who can resist the wonderful contradictions of the center ring and the freak show, the blaring showmanship and the everyday lives of the performers? In Escapo, Paul Pope draws inspiration from a very familiar circus trope: scarred but talented escape artist Escapo loves the beautiful trapeze artist, though she seems to be unmoved by his affection. Working his way through a series of terrifying escape machines, Escapo tries to figure out if he can profess his feelings or if he should simply leave well enough alone. Pope’s fluid and sinuous black and white style lends the long moments of escape and contemplation energy and melancholy beauty. You’ll also find that though this tale has been told many times, this time around it doesn’t work quite as you’d expect, with a satisfying and affirming finish.

ISBN: 1882402146
by Paul Pope
NBM Publishing, Inc. 1999

  • Robin B.

    | She/Her Teen Librarian, Public Library of Brookline

    Editor in Chief

    Robin E. Brenner is Teen Librarian at the Brookline Public Library in Massachusetts. She has chaired the American Library Association Great Graphic Novels for Teens Selection List Committee, the Margaret A. Edwards Award Committee, and served on the Michael L. Printz Award Committee. She is currently the President of the Graphic Novels and Comics Round Table for ALA. She was a judge for the 2007 Eisner awards, helped judge the Boston Globe Horn Book Awards in 2011, and contributes to the Good Comics for Kids blog at School Library Journal. She regularly gives lectures and workshops on graphic novels, manga, and anime at comics conventions including New York and San Diego Comic-Con and at the American Library Association’s conferences. Her guide, Understanding Manga and Anime (Libraries Unlimited, 2007), was nominated for a 2008 Eisner Award.

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