First Year Healthy

Michael DeForge. Drawn & Quarterly, $14.95 (48p) ISBN 978-1-77046-173-4
DeForge’s latest tells the story of a woman released from a hospital following her “outburst,” which she believes her town still whispers about when her back is turned. The unnamed woman works at a fish market, begins a relationship with a man involved in crime and known as “the Turk,” and takes care of the Turk’s infant son. In just a few dozen pages, DeForge builds the woman’s world, however tenuous, and then fractures it from her unreliable perspective. Much quieter and more restrained than his off-the-wall Ant Colony, this graphic novel retains his unsettling art, which at times turns manic but more often favors direct, single-panel pages presenting the woman’s lone thoughts. Each of these pages offers a new facet of the woman’s routine and her psyche—an early page detailing her private bet with herself about how far onto a frozen lake she can walk is particularly memorable—and the result is a haunting and strange tale of illness and isolation. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 02/16/2015
Release date: 01/01/2015
Genre: Comics
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