#18 – Essex County – Jeff Lemire

Where does a young boy turn when his whole world suddenly disappears? What could change two brothers from an unstoppable team into a pair of bitterly estranged loners? How does the work of one middle-aged nurse reveal the scars of an entire community, and can anything heal the wounds caused by a century of deception?

Set in an imaginary version of Jeff Lemire’s hometown, ESSEX COUNTY is an intimate study of an eccentric farming community, and a tender meditation on family, memory, grief, secrets, and reconciliation. With the lush, expressive inking of a cartoonist at the height of his powers, Lemire draws us in and sets us free. – Publishers Website

I didn’t love this book, but I didn’t hate it either.  Jeff’s portrayal at small town Canada was interesting and intriguing.  There was definitely a story told in the panels, albeit, you did have to kind of think through the panels otherwise you would have missed it entirely.  It was a quick read, it took me an evening to read the entire thing.  So, do not be anxious about the size, you will move through it as quickly or as slowly as you desire.  Sara Quinn has been defending Essex County and has done so far a brilliant job.  She has the passion and determination to make sure it is seen and heard about by everyone who will listen.

Sadly, on Canada Reads day one of the debates, Essex County was voted off.  My son said something interesting since he was watching the debate when he came home from school – “So what if it is a graphic novel”.  “It is still a novel in my eyes, just an unconventional one”. Can you see the brilliance in my son says his beaming mother ha !This is absolutely true, I agree with my son’s reasoning – When my generation was younger we all ran to the store to grab the next comic book in the series, or our parents were going through the paper to read the comic strips just to see what Archie was up to…am I right?!?

Admittedly, this is a new genre of fiction, we haven’t seen the  end of  yet.

Jeff’s Blog

 

 

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