A heartbreaking wartime tale of a Korean comfort woman stands out in an excellent year in which stalwarts Seth and Chris Ware continued to expand the horizons of the form
This would have been an extraordinary year for graphic novels even had no other comics save for Seths Clyde Fans (Drawn & Quarterly) and Chris Wares Rusty Brown (Jonathan Cape) been published. Seths book is a history of mid-century capitalism disguised as the story of two elderly brothers; Wares uses a single day in a Nebraska high school in the 1970s to tell, in characteristically frown-inducing manner, a host of very human stories. Both are utterly amazing; both push the form in new directions. That said, even without them it would have been an exceptional 12 months. I could write a piece three times as long as this and still have to leave out several favourites.
I loved and reviewed the following: Sensible Footwear (Myriad), Kate Charlesworths vital and joyful history of British LGBTQ life; Sundays Child (Jonathan Cape), in which Serena Katt pieces together with exquisite tact the story of what her Polish-German father did in the war; Maggy Garrisson (SelfMadeHero), an intricately plotted collection of stories about a female London gumshoe by Lewis Trondheim and Stphane Oiry; and Off Season, James Sturms spare and strangely affecting book about a canine builder who finds himself estranged from his wife and politics in Trumps America. And I can say, without hesitation, that all four of them would make fantastic Christmas presents.