cover image My New York Marathon

My New York Marathon

Sébastien Samson. Humanoids, $19.95 trade paper (192p) ISBN 978-1-59465-754-2

Samson’s immersive graphic memoir chronicles his three-year progression from out-of-shape, middle-aged novice to successful participant in the 2011 New York City Marathon. The logistics of marathon preparation are outlined in expert detail: changes in diet, obtaining proper gear, navigating the marathon’s paperwork, and a wealth of other minutiae are offered emotional counterpoint with the author’s introspection during his journey. Drawing inspiration from his wife’s running prowess, he fortifies himself with solitary runs along the beaches and cliffs of his native Normandy while reflecting upon the area’s wartime history and his own worthiness weighed against the sacrifices of the soldiers who died there. As his training escalates, the unfortunate realities of explosive diarrhea and other ways a runner’s body can become its own enemy add sometimes visceral texture. The story culminates in the marathon, interspersed with a heartfelt N.Y.C. travelogue from a Gallic point of view. Presented in a visual style fusing animation influences and observational realism, Samson’s work is indispensable to marathon runners and those intending to take up the sport. [em](Oct.) [/em]