cover image Henni


Miss Lasko-Gross. Z2 Comics (Diamond, dist.), $19.99 (168p) ISBN 978-1-94087-802-7

Following the success of her autobiographical graphic novels, Escape from Special and A Mess of Everything, Lasko-Gross has come up with a different type of story, an allegory about free will. Set in a richly drawn and unfamiliar world populated by catlike, strangely religious citizens, the tale follows Henni, a girl who’s more spirited and intelligent than most of the other women in her community. Following a scene where her mother betrays her heretic father, the story flashes forward several years, with Henni about to be married to a groom chosen by the temple. Beginning to question the restrictive society she’s been raised in, Henni commits a brazen act of rebellion. She is banished into the wild, where she must face savage beasts, and she eventually enters a society that none of her previous experience has prepared her for. The art’s lush, rich tones blend into luminous blues and purples, and characters are charmingly expressive, echoing classic children’s book illustrations. Lasko-Gross has crafted a coming-of-age story that’s weird, cool, and touching. (Jan.)