Thursday, May 21, 2015

Graphic Novel Review: "The Infinite Wait and Other Stories" by Julia Wertz

I guess I've kind of been binge-reading Julia Wertz lately.  I really enjoyed Drinking at the Movies, which was her first big-publisher book.  I read Fart Party Vol. 1 (which I did not discuss here) but was her first published book ever, and now The Infinite Wait which is a more recent, yet not her latest, work.  I'm getting there.

The biggest reason that I didn't write about Fart Party Vol 1, is that everything about it shows that it is her first published effort.  It is funny, but is made up of mostly disconnected (and kind of spastic) scenes that make it more of a pick it up for a few pages book rather than a read through it all kind of book.  I already knew that she was getting better, or at least closer to what I enjoy to read (if that makes any sense whatsoever).

So this effort is fantastic.  It is a set of three short stories:  Industry, all about the jobs she held while figuring out the comics business; The Infinite Wait, all about her lupus diagnosis and how it has affected her; and A Strange and Curious Place, which is all about her love of libraries.  OF COURSE I'm going to like anyone who writes about how awesome libraries are!  I am completely and unapologetically biased.

The art is all inked black & white and simply drawn.  It fits the mood and characters perfectly.  It is kind of unusual that with the second story, the artist is getting pretty personal with something that could be devastating (even fatal) but the character of herself is pretty closed off and detached so while you get and feel like you understand what she is going through to a certain extent - she is definitely in control of how much you get to feel and understand.  If something is getting a little too heavy or personal, she'll throw a crude joke in to lighten it up or distract a bit.  I don't mean this a criticism, it is actually pretty masterful how she does this - she is very specifically telling her story the way she wants to tell it and I really admire that.

*****
The Infinite Wait and Other Stories
by Julia Wertz
Koyama Press, 2012
228 pages
Source:  Library
*****

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