My Favourite Thing is Monsters: Book 1. Emil Ferris (Fantagraphics)

As social beings, our lives are imbricated forcibly with one another. Through family ties, friendships, work relations, neighbourhood life, nationality, identity communities, we relate to everyone around us, whether we feel attracted or repulsed, or even if it’s simple indifference. To be indifferent towards someone or someone is not indifferent to our own constitution as human beings and citizens.   Continue reading “My Favourite Thing is Monsters: Book 1. Emil Ferris (Fantagraphics)”

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Michel. Fils des âges farouches. Pierre Maurel (L’employé du moi)

This small book follows the life and days of Michel, a lonely, stocky, forty-something, apparently working as a freelance radio reporter. His subjects and interests seem to be left leaning, with a sympathetic ear towards class and labour struggles, personal political stories, but his precarious life makes him also attentive to the possible comforts that he lusts after.  Continue reading “Michel. Fils des âges farouches. Pierre Maurel (L’employé du moi)”

L’Année de la comète. Clément Vuillier (Éditions 2024)

There is a beautiful word in French that I love, which should be used with parsimony. That word is “époustouflant.” Etymologically and literally, it’s close to the English “breathtaking,” but with a stronger sense, perhaps like “awesome.” But just like the English term “awesome” has been beaten to death, and lost all its power, so the French word is often abused. However, reading L’année de la comète is, in the most profound meaning of these words, a breathtaking and awesome experience.  Continue reading “L’Année de la comète. Clément Vuillier (Éditions 2024)”

The Party. Tomi Ungerer (Les Cahiers Dessinés)

An illustrated book for adults, originally published by Grossman in 1966, The Party is a loose storybook about the titular party, thrown in honour of a senator in the East Hamptons. The book presents, one by one, the attendants: members of the high society that dignifies such a charming, outstanding night. La crème de la crème. You know, that filthy film on top of the milk that you throw away.  Continue reading “The Party. Tomi Ungerer (Les Cahiers Dessinés)”

The Structure is Rotten, Comrade. Viken Berberian e Yann Kebbi (Fantagraphics/Actes Sud)

Something is rotten, but I don’t think it’s the structure. Purportedly, this should be a book about architecture, urban planning, the ergonomic and symbiotic relationship between human living and construction, the materiality of cement and the very nature of the arts. Instead, I feel that this is an awkward narrative that remains at ground level in these topics, neither taking off towards flights of fanciful philosophy about architecture nor plunging into the depths of the wondrous technicalities of materials.   Continue reading “The Structure is Rotten, Comrade. Viken Berberian e Yann Kebbi (Fantagraphics/Actes Sud)”

Epiphania. Ludovic Debeurme (Casterman)

A mixture of ecological fable, teen angst novella, Bildungsroman disguised in superhero lore (or is it the opposite?), and all-time romp, Epiphania is, to my knowledge, Ludovic Debeurme’s most domesticated series. More prone to put out intricate, thick books with disturbing Lynch-like, psychological nightmares and bodily eerie transformations, Debeurme creates here a trilogy for a wider audience.  Continue reading “Epiphania. Ludovic Debeurme (Casterman)”

La Déconfiture. Pascal Rabaté (Futuropolis)

The last time I read a Pascal Rabaté book he was working with David Prudhomme in Vive la marée! (Portuguese only), an amazing visual feat with a kind of continuous pan-like effect around a day at a beach. In terms of theme and gravitas, La Déconfiture couldn’t be more different, but a common dimension is the strong anchorage and restraint found in this two-volume work.  Continue reading “La Déconfiture. Pascal Rabaté (Futuropolis)”

Tinta nos Nervos.

On June the 6th, a new bookstore-gallery opened in Lisbon, Portugal. It’s a space dedicated to the drawing arts, including graphic arts, illustration, editorial cartoon, comics and other stuff. It’s also a gallery, in which collective and solo shows from people and works associated to those disciplines will be held. Moreover, there’s a very cozy, tranquil café with a lovely, secluded esplanade that may turn even a quick visit into a relaxing experience. Continue reading “Tinta nos Nervos.”

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