cover image Macanudo: Welcome to Elsewhere

Macanudo: Welcome to Elsewhere

Liniers. Fantagraphics, $24.99 (176p) ISBN 978-1-68396-556-5

Eisner Award–winning Argentinian cartoonist Liniers (Good Night, Planet) enchants with this whimsical, wistful collection of his daily comic strip, published in La Nacion since 2002 and syndicated in English by King Features. In delicate brush lines and bright picture-book watercolors, Liniers conjures up a cast of characters including the Mysterious Man in Black, the superhero Captain Deja Vu, a little boy and his imaginary monster Olga, penguins, witches, elves in long stocking caps, and Henrietta, a book-loving little girl who declares, “I read... therefore I think... therefore I am,” and eventually starts drawing a comic strip of her own. In between these vignettes, one-off strips illustrate more knowingly adult conceits, such as a couple whose anxieties are piquantly made for each other or free-range chickens raised on readings of Proust. The gentle humor traffics in absurdity, puns, literary references, and occasional fourth-wall-breaking gags. Liniers freely quotes from favorite books and wears his artistic influences on his sleeve, with characters variously recalling the work of Maurice Sendak, Gary Panter, Bill Watterson, and Patrick McDonnell. He fills his panels with lifelike animals and natural landscapes, wise children and weird monsters. Lovers of classic comic strips will revel in Liniers’s colorful, sweetly funny world. (Aug.)