cover image Gone to Amerikay

Gone to Amerikay

Derek McCulloch, Coleen Doran, and Jose Villarrubia. DC/Vertigo, $24.99 (144p) ISBN 978-1-4012-2351-9

Three intertwined stories in 1870, 1960, and 2010 embrace the U.S. past when three great waves of Irish migrants swelled the American population, as well as its evolving face through the 20th and early 21st centuries. Irish hopeful Ciara O’Dwyer relocates to New York’s notorious slums to await a husband who never arrives; decades later the mystery of what happened to Fintan O’Dwyer remains unsolved until a specter from the past points the way to a resolution. We also meet 1960’s Johnnie McCormack, a roughshod would-be actor who comes to terms with his sexual orientation; and 2010’s euro millionaire Lewis Healy. Despite laws like the Emergency Quota Act and the xenophobic attitudes that drove them, America remains a magnet for hopeful immigrants; Gone to Amerikay focuses on the once-despised Irish, previously seen as barbaric outsiders but now assimilated into the American mainstream. Beautifully illustrated by Doran and Villarrubia, the richly detailed narrative is sometimes undermined by a tepid ghost story and occasional reliance on broad stereotype, but provides some colorful historical yarn spinning. (Mar.)