Bundle up and ready for some heavy feels in this month’s Do You Even Comic with Blankets by Craig Thompson.
This book is an autobiographical graphic novel published by Top Shelf (a company I would love to have my work published by) created by Craig Thompson. He actually began the graphic novel back in 1999 but wasn’t published until 2003. Over the past decade the graphic novel has gone on to receive 3 Harvey Awards and 2 Eisner's including best artist/writer in 2004.
As I mentioned, the book is autobiographical and follows a young Craig Thompson on his coming of age journey. The story blends family relationships and discovering love as a kid.
Craig begins his story by describing his relationship with his brother while growing up in Wisconsin. His childhood is rough as he describes bullies who harsh him at school and a babysitter who sexually abused both he and his brother. The story continues and follows Craig as he goes to meet a girl he had been exchanging letters with. When they meet, he experiences feelings of both love and guilt and realizes that he is conflicted by all of his emotions.
The struggle is relatable to many people but it is the art that helps transfer you into those scenes with Craig. You feel Craig’s heart on the pages by the way the panel and ink work are done in this book.
Why this book?
Why? Simple. It’s a book about relationships, and as a writer that’s my main focus in my own work. Even more than that, the book has a very relatable subject. As someone raised very christian, growing up with conflicting ideas, I connected with this book in many ways. I am a younger brother and I consider myself a hopeless romantic and have dealt with my own beliefs and faith growing up in a strong christian family. I think it is a book many people can relate to because we all have a coming of age moment when we begin to learn who we are, and it’s those small moments, intimate moments that shape us.
This is a must read.