cover image Luisa: Now and Then

Luisa: Now and Then

Carole Maurel and Mariko Tamaki, trans. from the French by Nanette McGuinness. Humanoids, $29.95 trade paper (272p) ISBN 978-1-59465-643-9

In Maurel’s sumptuously drawn time-travel fantasy, teenage Luisa is transported from the 1990s to the present to meet her 30-something self. Tamaki (This One Summer) adapts the translated French with freshly worded dialogue in this elegant English-language edition. Young Luisa is disgusted to learn that adult Luisa is single and boring, living in a tiny apartment in Paris and working at a compromised version of her dream job. For adult Luisa, the meeting stirs up old regrets and forces her to face truths about her sexuality that she’s tried to ignore. But the more time they spend together, the more their identities blend. The idea of meeting one’s past or future self isn’t terrifically original, but Maurel tells the story with insightfulness and depth and an eye for period detail; note young Luisa’s oversized scrunchie and the pacifier necklace that was a ’90s fad for mere moments. In stand-out art, Maurel renders attractive characters with open, emotive faces and detailed Paris streets drenched in sunset-toned watercolors. There couldn’t be a lovelier setting for this winning story of romantic self-discovery. (Jun.)