In a clean, almost child-like style of wiggly lines and shifting shadows, Scott Mills tackles a story of the French front in World War I. At the center of the story are three men: Lloyd Allenby, a upstanding husband and worker volunteering for the war, Davey, a less than admirable and rather bumbling younger brother who nonetheless manages to leave two women pining at home, and Jonathan Hemingway, a stalwart, upper class man who will be their commanding officer. Mills traces their time on the front through a series of instances, from jokes and scuffles in the trenches to the relative ease of the local bars, all the while making clear the horrible loss and sudden attacks that became everyday occurences. Although not as harrowing as other tales of the Great War, Mills manages to create a subtle and realistic portrait of the bonds that formed between men in those fields, unexpected and against class rules though they may be, and shows tragedy on an intimate scale. The look of the panels and grayscale tone stylizes the more graphic violence and a bit of sexual content, but it is still powerful, as it must be to make the story resonant.

ISBN: 1891830287
by Scott Mills
Top Shelf Productions 2002

  • Robin B.

    Editor in Chief

    Teen Librarian, Public Library of Brookline | She/Her

    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.

Liked it? Take a second to support us on Patreon!
Become a patron at Patreon!