Image: Jérôme Ruillier, Detail from ""Les Mohameds"
February brings our annual showcase of the international graphic novel. From time travel in Buenos Aires to rebirth in postwar Beirut, starvation in Mao's China and assimilation in 1950s Paris, these artist-writers delineate character and plot with their singular styles. See how Krzysztof Gawronkiewicz and Grzegorz Janusz, Mazen Kerbaj, Li Kunwu and Philippe Ôtié, Nawel Louerrad, Héctor G. Oesterheld and Solano Lopez, Roannie and Oko,and Jérôme Ruillier make every picture tell a story. WWB contributor Rutu Modan talks with Meg Storey about writing comics in Israel. Elsewhere, we present seven new poems by Vénus Khoury-Ghata, winner of the 2011 Prix Goncourt de poésie.
In the second installment of our World Through the Eyes of Writers column, in which established writers recommend new and emerging international authors, Korean writer Jo Kyung Ran introduces Hye-Young Pyun's “O Cuniculi.”
Letter to the Mother
Because of you I fancied killing a hundred times.
I've been wearing this tutu since I was a kid.
from “The Eternonaut,” Part II
There are other survivors!
A Great Step Forward: Memoir of the Famine
Even the roaches in the village are dying of hunger.
from “Les Mohameds”
I loved Renault like you'd love a mistress.
Our technology enables the resurrection of an incomplete body.
from “The International”
The old man had his eye put out by the colonists a few years ago.
A Necessary Distance from Reality: An Interview with Rutu Modan
Since there is no tradition of comics in Israel, you don’t have to decide what style you are.
Reviewed by Emma Garman
"Always Coca-Cola" comes off as a work of searing intensity that powerfully conjures the atmosphere of contemporary Beirut.
Reviewed by E.C. Belli
Sitting in any of the rooms that is each poem in "Approaching You In English" you’ll notice a tear in the ceiling; none of these poems are sealed shut
Reviewed by Christopher Tauchen
To the members of the Letter Killers Club, letters of the alphabet are the prison cells of concepts, and they need to be destroyed.
Reviewed by Heather Cleary
What is it that we do, really, when we write? And why can’t a fish be embalmed to look like it’s playing a tiny piano?