Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Book Review: Epileptic 1

I probably should not call this a book review; it's really a quarter-of-a-book review. Turns out our library only has the first volume of David B's graphic novel Epileptic, but of course I didn't realize i was reading only the first volume until I came to the end and thought, "Huh. That's seems to be a quick ending."

Epileptic was recommended by a friend of a friend, who recently finished his dissertation on graphic novels. The story is David B's memoir of growing up in a family whose central focus is his older brother, an epileptic. Most of the first volume centers on the various "cures" that the family embarks upon, from psychics to macrobiotic communities. It is a chaotic, frightening childhood, and the art reflects the artist/author's confusion and yearning for a normal life. I really wanted to smack some sense into his selfish, irresponsible, childish parents. Perhaps the remaining volumes shed some light as to why they drag their children from one deranged situation into another.

I do intend to purchase the nearly 400-page graphic novel ultimately, as my 75-page version left things hanging. I'm really enjoying trying out different graphic novels, although thus far I did appreciate Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis much better.


Girl Detective said...

I know many people who loved this book, but I'd recommend trying to get the HC from a library instead of buying it. I bought it, and didn't love it. I thought the beginning was very good, but that it deteriorated at the end, as the author didn't have sufficient perspective--he was much better at presenting the less recent past. Worth reading, but for me, not worth owning, and not as good as Persepolis, Maus and Fun Home.

Laura said...

Hey! Just wanted to let you know - Freeville is between Ithaca and Dryden (which is also teeny tiny). The next large-ish town would be Cortland - when you head east from Ithaca.