tripping the life unbalanced

Thursday, May 11, 2006

#10 Epileptic

I have a confession to make.

I've been feeling the pressure of reading some of the books on my 50 book challenge. This is probably a subject for another longer post (in which I wax poetic about how choices are made regarding the books that end up on award lists), but basically I am feeling overwhelmed by how WEIGHTY some of them are. Engaging and intelligent, but heavy on the metaphors and subject matter. I want something I can pick up and dive into right away, and let the story just take me away. Something different, and little out of my regular comfort zone would be great. And lucky me, I have found this in David B's collection of his graphic novels Epileptic.

Let me say right off the bat that I am a novice when it comes to graphic novels. I have many friends who are fans and who have been encouraging me to read some, but I frankly never understood the interest. I believed that a good novel was all about the words, the language, the way a writer could spin a good tale with a few sentences. What I didn't take into account was the way a story can be told, and told well, through pictures and visuals. Epileptic is David B.'s story of his family's experiences with his older brother's epilepsy. The visuals are stunning - full of comic relief combined with intense pain. It acts as a memoir of a family's struggle with a disease that engulfs them. It contains all the elements of emotion and grief that I am finding in the other books on my challenge, but yet it is told through a different medium. Just what I was needing. A good refresher before diving back into the throes of lengthy descriptions and page-long metaphors.


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