Friday, June 04, 2010

Jeff Lemire

Jeff Lemire is a cartoonist I've recently started loving and following. His works include The Complete Essex County, The Nobody, and, more recently, Sweet Tooth (on order for the library - keep an eye out for it in FindIt!). I just finished the award-winning (an Alex award and an Eisner nomination), critically-acclaimed Essex County trilogy and it was wonderful! It is set in Essex County, Canada where Lemire himself grew up and portrays life in a rural, farm town. The sparse panels and small town characters leave an indelible impression of life in the countryside, which made me realize how rarely I come across graphic novels concerned with rural life. The first volume begins with an orphaned boy named Lester and his seemingly unlikely friendship with an outcast gas station attendant; the second focuses on the relationship between two hockey-playing brothers; and the third a charming nurse as well as the early 20th century tragedy that had an effect on most of the county's residents. The level of emotion Lemire is able to evoke from the silent panels he incorporates, the literary nature of his storylines and the way he constructs a story, and the intimacy with which you get to know Essex County's residents are just a few of the reasons you should check out either the volumes in this series or the collected edition. It has broad appeal and could easily be enjoyed by both teens and adults.

Essex County is the featured graphic novel in a *NEW* addition to APL's suggested graphic novels webpage. Every other Friday, I will be updating the webpage with a new graphic novel I've either personally read or can't stop hearing buzz about. I hope you'll take a look every few weeks, but, most importantly, I hope you find something you enjoy there!

The Complete Essex County
This is the entire collected series, but you can also read the three individual volumes, if you like.

Good Reads: Suggested Graphic Novels for Adults
Check here every other Friday for a new, featured graphic novel.

The Nobody
This is kind of a spin on The Invisible Man. A very enjoyable read with simple artwork that still manages to astound.


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