cover image Everything Is OK

Everything Is OK

Debbie Tung. Andrews McMeel, $16.99 trade paper (208p) ISBN 978-1-5248-6327-2

Tung (Quiet Girl in a Noisy World) chronicles her struggle with depression and anxiety in short comics interludes drawn in clean, simple lines and written with equal directness. After a too-long period of feeling like she was “observing life from behind a thick, blurry glass wall” and experiencing a panic attack, Tung admits that drowning herself in work isn’t helping. With the support of her husband, she sees a therapist, learns to deal with intrusive thoughts, and wrangles the “monster inside my head.” Tung’s cute, friendly-looking self-portrait serves as a reassuring guide for readers who may feel lost in the darkness of depression, which she illustrates with images of herself drowning or falling into a pit. As she moves toward healing, the black-and-white, ink-washed art periodically lights up with flashes of color. Much of the second half of the book consists of self-care mottos (“Trust that good things can still happen,” etc.) that are illustrated with color splashes or images of Tung gazing at starry skies, walking forest paths, and swimming instead of drowning. For a book about dark thoughts, it’s lighter fare. Readers dealing with their own inner monsters will appreciate the gentle reassurance that “you are not alone, even if it feels like you are.” Agent: Laurie Abkemeier, DeFiore & Company. (Sept.)