cover image Genius


Steven T. Seagle and Teddy Kristiansen. Roaring Brook/First Second, $17.99 trade paper (128p) ISBN 978-1-59643-263-5

Ted Halket advanced rapidly through school as a child after he was recognized as a genius, but his understanding of human relations didn’t develop as quickly as the rest of his intellect. Even when he’s married with two children and holds a prestigious job at a major research institute, Ted is drowning, both personally and professionally. Then his elderly father-in-law, whose health is failing, dangles a dazzling prize: Einstein’s last secret—a scientific truth so huge it will save Ted’s career from encroaching failure. Frequent collaborators Seagle and Kristiansen (It’s a Bird...; House of Secrets) create a sad and sweet virtuoso portrait of a besieged man lost in his own disconnection from humanity. Seagle illuminates Ted’s inability to connect emotionally with his wife and explain sex to his teenage son, and a series of confrontations with his father-in-law escalate like a puzzle-box mystery. Eisner Award–winner Kristiansen’s painted artwork is exquisitely detailed and colored—gorgeous muted pastels and earth tones explode in abstract, psychedelic shades, revealing Einstein’s secret and Ted’s epiphany. Most remarkably, Seagle and Kristiansen allow the connection of words and pictures to mirror the reader’s own comprehension of Ted’s journey to awareness. This touching and affecting story unlocks the secrets of the universe and of a man’s heart. (July)